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"Through vigilance and strength, we create peace."

—Luminoth Creed

The Luminoth are a technologically advanced species of moth-like bipeds who have an intense spiritual fixation with light. They are believed to be the among the last of the known higher races, as the Chozo civilization has declined significantly and the Alimbics were reduced to telepathic entities. The Luminoth were aided by Samus Aran in a crisis in which their world was invaded by the parasitic Ing and nearly destroyed.


Luminoth are slender, beige-colored beings who stand at roughly twice the height of an average human and bear a striking resemblance to moths. Their limbs are long and thin, with their arms extending below the knees of their digitigrade legs. Their hands each have three fingers, whereas their feet have a pair of toes each. The fronts of their rounded upper torsos are covered in thick, white fluff, and their heads feature two feather-like antennae. Their faces are flat and triangular, tapering down to a point and possessing two small mandibles on either side. The Luminoth's heavy-lidded eyes are frequently red, though blue-eyed phenotypes have been observed in A-Kul and her Keybearers. The two wide, flat appendages hanging down their backs are presumed to be wings, though they have never been seen to aid in the Luminoth's hovering. They are capable of manipulating pure energy, and can produce simple balls of light without any effort.


Before dark times[]

According to Luminoth Lore, they were "born of stars" and had searched for a home planet for a very long time. During their travels, they encountered other advanced races such as the Chozo, Bryyonians, Ylla and N'Kren and possibly exchanged technologies. In fact, based on circumstantial in-game evidence, it is speculated that the Screw Attack may have been of Luminoth design, which the Chozo then brought to some of their worlds. The Luminoth finally found Aether, which was a wonderful oasis to them. They colonized the planet, and made it their own in just a short time.


The Luminoth lived in peace on Aether, until a mysterious meteorite crashed into their planet carrying high amounts of Phazon. The explosive impact of the meteorite's payload against Aether's unique planetary energy resulted in the creation of a parallel dimension containing a second planet known as Dark Aether. On the dark world, the sentient Ing thrived, and they discovered portals that took them to Aether. Thus, they began invading Luminoth territory by possessing various inhabitants (including machines and the Luminoth themselves).

After almost fifty years of a war of attrition, the Ing drove the Luminoth to near-annihilation, at which point the very few that remained were forced to exile themselves in the Great Temple. Upon the order of U-Mos, the current Sentinel, all remaining Luminoth entered hibernation within stasis pods to await either a painless death, or an unlikely miracle that would save them. U-Mos stayed vigil to protect them and prayed for salvation.

The Arrival of Samus[]

Samus Aran was initially brought to Aether in order to search for a downed Galactic Federation vessel known as the G.F.S. Tyr which had detected the presence of Space Pirates. She then discovers that the Galactic Federation soldiers had been killed and, in some cases, reanimated by the Ing. As she explored further, Samus eventually reached the Great Temple and encountered U-Mos. It was he who guided Samus to Energy Controllers located throughout Aether and Dark Aether. Samus recovered advanced technology on the way to help her in her mission. She was able to defeat the Ing and Dark Samus (who had arrived at Aether to consume the Phazon found in Dark Aether), finally destroying Dark Aether.

Samus Aran is heralded as the savior of the Luminoth.

After Dark Aether's destruction, Samus returned all the Luminoth technology she had borrowed and left the planet with their gratitude.


Today, the Luminoth live in peace on Aether. It is revealed during the events of Metroid Prime 3: Corruption that the Galactic Federation visited the Luminoth on Aether and helped them clean up the remaining Space Pirate technology; it is unknown whether or not the race became members of the Federation following these events. The Galactic Federation also discovered Phazon during this visit and began the Phazon Enhancement Device program.


The Luminoth culture is often noted for its constant use of circle motifs. They are used in their technology, statues and structures. Often, these circles are connected with lines, most notably used in the different Lore entries that were found throughout Aether. Said circles and lines represent the written Luminoth language, based on hand symbols formed by their long fingers and bulbous joints.[1] These circular patterns have been carved into rock structures in the Torvus Bog area and are incorporated into Multi-Lock Blast Shields. They are also found on the Dark Suit and its Morph Ball form. Interestingly, they are even found on the locks guarding access to the Dark Aetherian temples. The color of these circles is generally red, which is the primary color in the Luminoth culture, most likely because most Luminoth bear the same color.

The Luminoth have also made many statues, mostly to honor those who fought and died in the war. All statues have rounded, closed shapes and resemble simplified Luminoth. They made use mostly of grey colors combined with bright red, green, amber, or blue. Unlike the Statues built by the Chozo, most Luminoth statues do not help Samus in her exploration and are simply part of the architecture. However, some statues will move when they are energized by a Morph Ball Bomb. Most notable are the ones that Samus uses to reach the various Energy Controllers of Aether.

The Luminoth architecture varies, depending on the surrounding area.

  • Structures in the Temple Grounds consist of carved rocks, pillars and caves that are sometimes covered with big red circles. The Great Temple was built in the centre of this area, placed on what looks like a giant tree.

Red circle motifs at the Temple Grounds.

  • In the Agon Wastes, there are only a few Luminoth buildings. Most notable are the large Agon Temple and the Portal Terminal, the room with the portal to Dark Aether. Some machines here can be activated by use of sunlight or the movement of the sand. The rest of Agon consists of natural areas like caves and cliffs.
  • In the Torvus Bog area, the Luminoth used a greater amount of metal in their structures, probably because the area was originally a forest and the plants and moisture would have eroded any stone structures. Several bridges, including the Great Bridge have been built in the area, presumably to allow the Luminoth to cross the waters safely.
  • The Sanctuary Fortress is one of the Luminoth's greatest architectural and technological achievements. It is suggested that it was the first area of Aether to have been colonized by the Luminoth, and as such is the most developed of their lands. Its architecture follows a color scheme composed mostly of primary colors, and is filled with various rogue mechanoids of Luminoth design.

All known Luminoth are named according to the scheme X-Xxx, where each X is replaced with a letter; the resulting names do not necessarily contain any vowel letters. B-Stl had a similar name to her male mate J-Stl and V-Mos had a similar name to her son U-Mos (whom she died giving birth to), which suggests that the Luminoth follow a matrimonial naming tradition similar to that found in many Earth cultures.

List of known Luminoth[]

With the exception of U-Mos, all of the following named Luminoth are deceased:

Additionally, the Temple Sanctuary contains 28 unnamed Luminoth who rest in Hibernetic stasis chambers and emerge from stasis after Dark Aether is destroyed. Furthermore, there are 17 unnamed Luminoth bodies seen in the game, totalling 68 Luminoth present on Aether and Dark Aether, regardless of whether or not some are alive or deceased.

Metroid Prime 2: Dark Echoes Q&A[]

QUESTION: I'm very excited to play. Is there any relation between the Luminoth and the Chozo?

ANSWER: Actually, there is a strong possibility that there had been an interaction between them.

QUESTION: Where had the Luminoth who appeared in the ending been throughout the game? Hadn't they all been eliminated, besides U-Mos?

ANSWER: Look closely in the Luminoth Temple's Golden Slumber [Temple Sanctuary] room, at the walls. You'll be able to see many Luminoth hibernating within.[2]

QUESTION: What planet were the Luminoth born on? And who are their ancestors if any?

ANSWER: Their origins are unknown. Their ancestors could perhaps be moths.[3]

QUESTION: In the Metroid comics the Chozo are described as having previously been a warrior race, but what about the Luminoth? What were they like in the past?

ANSWER: The Luminoth were a nomadic people, but now reside on Aether. They enjoy keeping peace.[4]

QUESTION: I'm very much so enjoying playing Metroid Prime 2. I was thinking, in multiplayer, it would have been really cool if we could play as like a Space Pirate or Galactic Federation soldier. Anyway, my question is, why is it that the Luminoth were [also] using things like Morph Ball pipes and ball cannons, and spider ball tracks?

ANSWER: While this is not something that [I] can confirm, though there is a rumor of effectively carrying around balls [for this purpose].[5]

QUESTION: Why is it that Samus decided to save the Luminoth despite no sort of repayment?

ANSWER: That's the kind of person she is. As long as there is evil [in the world], she will keep fighting.

QUESTION: This is somewhat of an artless question, but how are the alien-form [shape] Space Pirates and Luminoth able to move from area to area? It seems like they're about 3 meters tall, and wondered if there was a strain on their back or something.

ANSWER: Their [both] joints are very flexible, and we haven't heard anything about their backs being in pain...[6]

QUESTION: How tall are the bigger Luminoth? Samus is about 190cm, but she was only as tall as their knees.

ANSWER: While there's individual variation, they're around 6m.[7]

Super Smash Bros. Brawl[]



"A creature of the native race of the planet Aether. The Luminoth develop facilities to draw the dwindling energy from the core of their planet. However, they lose that energy when the planet is hit by a Phazon meteor and they are attacked by a race of dark creatures, the Ing. A war over Aether's energy then rages between the Luminoth and Ing races."

GCN Metroid Prime 2: Echoes



The word "Luminoth" is possibly a portmanteau of the two words "luminous" and "moth." The design of the Luminoth and especially their many Statues, seems to be based upon a 遮光器土偶 Shakōki-dogū—a "spaceman" clay figurine from the Jōmon period of Japanese history.


  • The Luminoth are very similar in appearance to the urSkeks, an alien race from the 1982 film The Dark Crystal, of which Metroid Prime 2: Echoes has many plot similarities.
  • While the Ing would have every reason to try to possess the Luminoth, Samus did not encounter any Dark Luminoth while on Aether or Dark Aether. It is known through a lore titled The New Terror, however, that near the beginning of the conflict, Luminoth were possessed and killed one another in battle. Additionally, in that same lore and in a Keybearer Lore titled D-Isl's Testament, it is stated that Luminoth devised shielding to prevent Ing possession and would be ready to self-terminate, rather than become a weapon for the Ing if ever the shield failed. This confirms that following the first few incidents of the war, the Luminoth quickly took actions to ensure that Dark Luminoth would never again be created. Subsequently, it can be safely assumed that all initial Luminoth Darklings were wiped out.
  • Three dots connected to form a triangle can be seen on the Luminoth's knees. This symbol, resembling the Luminoth letter "F", is found on many artifacts of that species.
  • Luminoth resemble moths, and tiny moths can be seen in the Temple Grounds, the Great Temple, the Agon Wastes, and in the land areas of Torvus Bog. The reason for their existence is unknown. If left alone, U-Mos will "play" with the moths around him by creating a ball of light above him that they will flock to, and then disperse them by putting out the ball. These moths will sometimes follow the Morph Ball around (possibly because it glows, or because they do not see Samus as a threat).
  • Lumites, another moth-like creature of Aether, may also be related to the Luminoth.
  • A secret Nintendo forum called the "Luminoth Temple" was created around the release of Echoes.
  • A black-colored Luminoth could be seen in the E3 2004 trailer, in the Portal Terminal room. Although fans have speculated that it is a Dark Luminoth, unused in the final game, an interview stated that it was an early model.
  • The Luminoth made a cameo in the Metroid Prime Hunters Spanish commercial, where one can be seen in the background along with an Ing.
  • The Defense Cannon and Fedtech Plasma Generators on Norion seem to collect planetary energy in a manner similar to the Planetary Energy Controllers. It is possible that the Luminoth aided the Galactic Federation in the development of these technologies.
  • U-Mos and the holographic Sentinels occasionally make illegible vocalizations when speaking to Samus. According to Clark Wen, these vocalizations were performed by an unknown voice actor and then heavily processed.[8]
  • The beta version of Metroid Prime 2: Echoes implied that, besides U-Mos, at least one Luminoth remained outside of stasis to operate a Sacred Path bridge, although he ended up killed sometime between encountering R. Harris and Samus's arrival on the planet.
  • In the mail bag for Nintendo Power around the time of Metroid Prime 2: Echoes release, one fan submission noted several similarities between the Luminoth and the Chozo.[citation needed]



  1. ^ KIWI TALKZ - #105 - Mike Wikan Interview (Metroid Prime Trilogy, Game Design, Crunch, Booz Allen Hamilton etc.) September 6, 2021. Retrieved January 12, 2021.
  2. ^ Shinesparkers Q&A
  3. ^ Shinesparkers Q&A
  4. ^ Shinesparkers Q&A
  5. ^ Shinesparkers Q&A
  6. ^ Shinesparkers Q&A
  7. ^ Shinesparkers Q&A
  8. ^ "Interview: Clark Wen", Shinesparkers, 2018-06-02. Retrieved on 2018-06-02.