The Gunship, also referred to as a Hunter-Class Gunship, Hunter Gunship, Starship (スターシップ Sutā Shippu ), or Samus's Ship, is the hunter-class gunship flown by Samus Aran during the events of Metroid Prime and Metroid Prime Hunters.
Additionally, pre-release versions of Metroid Prime referred to Samus's craft as the Stealth Strike Corvette.
According to the Metroid Prime website, Samus's Gunship in Metroid Prime both "survived Samus Aran's mission on Planet Zebes and is the only space-faring vessel ever registered under the bounty hunter's name". If this is true, then this ship is a reconstructed version of the Starship from Metroid: Zero Mission. It is known that Zebes was occupied by researchers after Samus's Zero Mission, who presumably salvaged and repaired the original Starship. However, since the Metroid Prime website predates the release of Zero Mission, this information may have since been retconned and may no longer be considered canonical.
The ship resembles the Zero Mission incarnation, though without the wings and orange in colour rather than red. It also has a new set of four thruster-like multi-directional rockets underneath used for both landing and atmospheric flight. The ship still has the same topside entrance hatch. It is implied by a Space Pirate scan that the ship also has some form of cloaking device, which hindered their efforts to locate the gunship. The ship has been shown to be remotely controlled with Samus's Arm Cannon, similar to the way the Command Visor is used in Corruption. It also has some kind of hyperdrive that Samus uses when leaving the planet, and is therefore presumably capable of intergalactic travel.
While not demonstrated in-game, the Metroid Prime website states that this Gunship is armed with twin Power Beam turrets and a retractable rear-mounted Plasma Beam cannon, allowing it to battle other ships even when outnumbered. This may have been added to Samus's new ship after her previous Starship was left defenseless against Space Pirate vessels. Otherwise, its principle purpose is rapid transport, reserving its weaponry for when battle is inevitable.
In Metroid Prime, the Gunship arrives at the Exterior Docking Hangar of the Frigate Orpheon, although Samus cannot return to the ship through normal gameplay until she escapes the frigate's countdown. Afterward, the Gunship touches down in the Tallon Overworld Landing Site, where it remains for the rest of the game for Samus to use as a save and recharge point. Upon defeating the Metroid Prime, Samus summons the Gunship via her Arm Cannon to pick her up at the Artifact Temple before departing the planet.
In Hunters, the Hunter Gunship's cockpit serves a greater role in gameplay. The Tetra Galaxy Scan Screen provides a map of the Alimbic Cluster, allowing Samus to adjust the Ordinate and Abscissa Axes to select a planet or space station. Once the ship is landed at a Gateway, the Hunter Gunship's interface displays Samus's current Energy, Sub-Weapons, and location, and various buttons can be used to save the game, access the Logbook, select a Sub-Weapon, adjust Options, exit the ship, or launch the ship back into space. It can collect information about its surrounding area and communicate with Samus remotely, as demonstrated when it detects Kanden's Ship in the Celestial Archives and later when it notifies her about events relating to the Alimbic Prophecy in the Oubliette.
Chronologically, the Hunter Gunship is not seen again after Hunters. It is unknown if the more iconic Gunship from Echoes and the 2D games is related to this ship; it is possible since the ship's size, basic structure, and entrance point are the same, though the thrusters have been replaced with three antigravity landing pods.
In other media
In Pinball, Samus's Gunship takes its appearance from Prime and Hunters, since the game is based on the former. It can be seen in the background of the Pirate Frigate stage, and it can trigger Gunship Multiball on Tallon Overworld. During Gunship Multiball, the front of the ship opens and releases three balls. The ship is never seen opening like this in Prime or Hunters.
Official Metroid Prime website
|Vessel Classification||Hunter-class gunship|
|Dimensions||9.144 meters by 6.096 meters by 2.4384 meters|
|Drive type||Relativistic: 44 MHz|
|Power source||Field-exclusion Gluino|
|Maximum velocity||Relativistic: 7.2 x 10 C|
"Registered to Samus Aran, the Gunship is equipped with twin Power Beam turrets and a retractable rear-mounted Plasma Beam cannon. The versatile cockpit is used for navigation, regeneration and record retention. This ship survived Samus Aran's mission on Planet Zebes and is the only space-faring vessel ever registered under the bounty hunter's name.
The principle use of this Hunter-Class Gunship is rapid transport. Dual engines serve this purpose with great efficiency. If battle becomes unavoidable, the ship is outfitted with enough firepower to survive firefights against bigger and more numerous foes. Once the destination is reached, the ship serves as an excellent base camp for ground-based ops."
Hunter-class gunship registered to Samus Aran. You can return to your ship to recharge energy, reload weapons and save progress in the game.
- [A BRAVE NEW WORLD] (pg. 30)
- "Save the game by entering Samus's spaceship, then set out for the door directly in front of you. Samus's ship is the only save point that restores energy, Missiles and bombs - once you've acquired them."
- NOTE (pg. 18)
- "Your ship stays here as you go off on your adventure. Along your adventures, you can return to your ship to save your game and replenish your Energy and weapons."
- SAMUS'S HOME AWAY FROM HOME (pg. 16)
- "Return to your hunter gunship as often as possible. From it you can save your progress, change control options, set course to a distant planet, and review everything you've learned with your Scan Visor. Best of all, your Energy Tanks, missile stocks, and UA reserves will be completely refilled every time you stop in."
Starship (Metroid Prime Hunters)
Launch Power + 22 | Usable by: All
Metroid Prime Trilogy manual
- "The Gunship is Samus's vehicle. In addition to being able to save your progress, you can also restore energy, missiles and Power Bombs here."
In Metroid Prime, the Gunship was designed, modeled and textured by James Dargie and later re-skinned by Gene Kohler. Nintendo gave him carte blanche to design it, and he took inspiration from Samus's classic Gunship (as seen in Return of Samus and Super Metroid) and the Millennium Falcon from Star Wars. He added guns to the underside of the ship as an homage to the Falcon, although they cannot be seen in-game. Dargie personally refers to the Gunship by the name Thrush Eterna and compares it to a "little immortal bird". According to Dargie, this name was used in the top internal directory of Prime as a filename for the ship, although no trace of the name appears in the files of the released game.
- The ability to use Samus's Gunship to fly from planet to planet was first used in Metroid Prime Hunters. A similar system was later used in Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, in which the Gunship could be used to fly and land in different areas of the same planet. Interviews with developers of Metroid Prime Hunters states that flying segments were created for the game, but were pulled out due to pacing issues with the rest of the game. In the same interviews, it is confirmed that the Gunship in Metroid Prime and Metroid Prime Hunters are the same.
- In Metroid Prime Hunters, the Hunter Gunship has its own leitmotif, with four different variations that play depending on its current landing site. The variation that plays in the Oubliette is the same as the one for Arcterra. These tracks are not included in the Music Test.
- ^ Metroid Prime Logbook
- ^ Metroid Prime Pinball manual
- ^ Metroid Prime Hunters manual
- ^ Metroid Prime Trilogy manual
- ^ Metroid Prime website
- ^ a b Metroid Prime Hunters Logbook
- ^ Super Smash Bros. Brawl Sticker
- ^ Metroid Prime and Metroid Fusion: Prima's Official Strategy Guide
- ^ Zebes#Metroid Prime website
- ^ http://www.n-sider.com/personnelview.php?personnelid=1433 (dead link)
- ^ a b DidYouKnowGaming? "Metroid Prime Devs Share Secrets (EXCLUSIVE)". YouTube. April 17, 2022. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
- ^ Thrush Eterna | METROID
Samus Unmasked • Zero Suit Samus
|Family||Chief Rodney Aran (father) • Virginia Aran (mother) • Old Bird (father figure) |
Gray Voice (Thoha DNA donor) • Raven Beak (Mawkin DNA donor) • Commander Adam Malkovich (father figure) • Baby ("child") • Solomon Aran (brother)
|Abilities and powers||Power Suit (other) • Zero Suit • Arm Cannon (Beams/Missile Launcher) • Morph Ball |
Samus's Gunship (ZM/MP1/MP3/RoS/MF) • Paralyzer • Special Actions • Metroid powers
Super Smash Bros. attacks
|Music||Theme of Samus • Crateria Surface • Theme of Samus Aran, Space Warrior |
Samus Aran's Appearance Fanfare • Samus Aran's Final Cry • Record of Samus • "Vs. Samus"
|Other||04: Samus • 29: Zero Suit Samus • Biography • Cake • Gallery • Hairstyle • Helmet • Journal • Mimics |
Monologues • Official data • Residence • Samus in Super Smash Bros.
|Actresses||Minako Hamano • Jennifer Hale • "VM" • Chisato Morishita • Alésia Glidewell • Jessica Erin Martin |
Ai Kobayashi • Lenka Volfová • Nikki García
|Features of Samus's Gunship|
|Personal||Adam's helmet • Chozo biotech computer • Data records • Logbook • Mii Bobblehead • Samus Screen • Ship Bumper Stickers • In the Cockpit • Music player|
|Armaments||Plasma Beam • Power Beam • Ship Grapple Beam • Ship Missile Launcher • Gunship Multiball • Bunker-Busting Annihilator • Gunship|
|Mission features||Auto-repair function • Biohazard scanner • Blast Shield • Bombing Run • Command Visor • Commander Adam Malkovich • Cryostasis • Escape Pod |
Heads-Up Display • Helm controls • Landing Gear Legs • Microfactories
Missile Station • Recharge Station • Save Station • Tetra Galaxy Scan Screen • Transmission console • B-Unit
|Cargo||Theronian Bomb (1st piece • 2nd piece • 3rd piece) • Colossal War Golem|
|Passengers||Baby • Anthony Higgs • Dr. Madeline Bergman • Commander Adam Malkovich (computerized) • Dachoras • Etecoons|