Various power-ups as they appear in Super Metroid

Power-ups or upgrades are collectible items that Samus Aran uses in every Metroid game to gain new abilities. In the series, there are many different kinds of power-ups, which include more powerful Beams, Morph Ball functions, grapple and movement systems. They will usually give Samus an ability that she needs to reach and explore a new area, but not all power-ups may be needed to clear the game and some required ones can be skipped through Sequence Breaking. Items such as the Spring Ball in Super Metroid make exploration easier but are otherwise optional, while other items like Expansions merely increase ammunition or energy capacity. Gaining a power-up is almost universally accompanied by the Item Acquisition Fanfare, with Metroid: Other M being the only game to not feature this in its entirety.

Power-ups in most Metroid games are pieces of Chozo technology used to expand the Power Suit, but in the series Samus also uses power-ups of Luminoth, Alimbic and Galactic Federation origin. The latter, in Metroid Fusion, gives Samus Power-ups through Data Rooms, where she downloads the upgrade to her Power Suit. Expansions for certain power-ups can be collected to increase ammunition or energy capacity.

In some cases, power ups are also utilized by enemies after taking them from Chozo Statues, such as Corpius and the Phantom Cloak. Others can steal them directly from Samus, as seen with the Ing Sub-Guardians in Metroid Prime 2: Echoes.


Metroid Chozo Statue

A Chozo Statue holding a power-up inside an Item Sphere, a protective case Samus can shoot to destroy.

In most of the games, a power-up's appearance is a symbol for what it does; for example, the Morph Ball Bomb power-up is a case with a bomb in it. The Screw Attack power-up icon (usually a red or purplish-black ball with a small yellow lightning strike on it) is used in several Metroid game logos.

Many power-ups can be found in the hands of a Chozo Statue; if this is the case, then the power-up will often be concealed in a protective casing referred to as an Item Sphere. To break the sphere, all Samus has to do is shoot it with any beam. Some power-ups will float in mid-air until Samus touches it (this is common if the power-up is gained from a boss, an example of this is the Charge Beam in Metroid: Zero Mission), some are placed on various pedestals in rooms, and some of them are hidden in various places and sit on nothing in particular. In Zero Mission, all items absorb Beam attacks and deflect Missiles, the item making a "ping" noise when struck.

In the Metroid Prime series, items are not encased in anything and are in the open for Samus to obtain directly, though many require puzzle solving to reach or are dropped by defeating a boss. Most are placed atop a small ground pedestal usually within the center of a small room, while a rare few are held openly by a Chozo Statue identical to the 2D titles. In the case of the Phazon Suit and the PED Suit (and their respective Beams), they are obtained via automatically applied means and not by any sort of item form. To help Samus locate well-placed or hidden items, all power-ups will give off a faint humming noise to advertise their presence. Power-ups also possess a heat signature, leaving them vulnerable to spot via thermal imaging. In the Prime Trilogy, Samus starts off her adventure with some power-ups already in her possession and, in the first two titles, she loses some and must reobtain them. In Prime, an unlockable developer map marks the location for every obtainable power-up. In Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, all power-ups (except for the aforementioned PED Suit) are contained inside a rotating capsule and when obtained, the item model can be viewed anytime via the Samus Screen in the Inventory menu.

In Metroid: Other M, all power-ups except the Diffusion Beam, Seeker Missiles, Missile Expansions, Energy Tanks, E-Recovery Tanks and Accel Charges are in the possession of Samus, but out of respect for Adam Malkovich she refrains from using them, though he gradually allows her to use them and sometimes she activates them without his explicit permission because despite already acquiring them in previous games.

In Metroid Fusion, power-ups are received either as downloadable data (in which they do not have a physical form), or in the form of an enemy, the Core-X, which must be defeated and absorbed to receive its power-ups. Expansions can be directly obtained by Samus and will automatically apply to her inventory, however she is unable to use Power Bombs until the Power Bomb data is acquired. The SA-X is able to utilize many of Samus's past power-ups as a result of an X Parasite absorbing the Varia Suit. In one instance, a Core X absorbs Federation Data and utilizes the power-up to reverse-engineer its weakness. Samus eventually reobtains the power-up by defeating and absorbing the thief.

Official data[]

Metroid manual[]

Hunt out the Power Items and boost Samus' power!
"At the start of the game, Samus carries only a short beam. You have to boost' Samus' power by finding the rooms that contain the Power Items and capture them. Boosting Samus's power gives him new ways to attack--such as wave beams, screw attacks, and bomb-setting. There are 10 Power Items in total. Collect as many as you can to fortify Samus."
The Key to Winning - Hunt Out the Power Items
"Samus' power of attack is weak at the beginning of the game and he is armed with only a short beam. It is essential to hunt out the Power Items to strengthen him."
To make the Power Items appear...
"Rooms containing Power Items are hidden somewhere in the fortress Zebes. Find the rooms and hit the crystal ball held by the statue, to make a Power Item appear."

Metroid Virtual Console manual[]

Power-Up Items
"Collect power-up items to improve Samus's abilities and unlock new ones. Some power-ups allow you to access new areas."
Power-Up Items
"Most power-up items appear after these crystals are destroyed."

Metroid II: Return of Samus manual[]

"These items will help Samus increase her offensive and defensive powers."

Metroid II: Return of Samus Virtual Console manual[]

Locating Items
"Ruins of an advanced civilization that once flourished on SR388 are scattered throughout the planet's underground. Inside these ruins are powerful hidden items essential to your journey, each just waiting to be found and equipped."

Nintendo Power Volume 31[]

"Cybernetic Power-Ups are hidden in the dark tunnels and ancient ruins of SR388. Find them and Samus will become an even more powerful threat to the Metroids. She begins with 99 Energy Units and 30 Missiles."

Super Metroid manual[]

"There are several special items scattered throughout the planet. Collect them and make Samus a more powerful warrior."

Super Metroid Players' Guide[]

"Occasionally you'll come across items that enhance Samus's physical abilities. All of these can be activated and deactivated on the status screen."

Metroid Fusion manual[]

"When the X parasites attacked Samus, her power suit became contaminated, and pieces of it had to be surgically removed. As a result, the majority of Samus's abilities were lost. However, the Metroid vaccine, which was used to treat her, radically affected her physical makeup, giving her the ability of a Metroid to resist the X parasites. In effect, she was reborn as the ultimate X parasite predator."

Metroid: Zero Mission manual[]

"There are many different items hidden in the fortress on Planet Zebes that will boost Samus's abilities. Shoot the item balls that the Chozo Statues hold to reveal these power-up items. There may be other items that can be gained in other ways, as well.
There are other power-up items that Samus can activate and use by fulfilling certain conditions."

Metroid Prime manual[]

"As Samus delves deeper into the Space Pirates' operation, she'll find power-ups that improve both her arsenal and her suit. Every power-up she finds will help her access something new in vast regions of Tallon IV, so remember areas where she can't progress and return once she's gained new abilities. Pay special attention to the colors of closed doors, as they should help you determine what weapons you need to use to open them."
"There are many other power-ups strewn across the world of Metroid Prime, and all of them will play vital roles in Samus's quest. Scan every room for possible power-ups--very often, you'll need to solve a puzzle to reach a specific power-up. You'll also want to practice some advanced moves that will help you progress through the game."

Metroid Prime and Metroid Fusion: Prima's Official Strategy Guide[]

"Samus may be a powerful warrior, but she's far from invincible. What really makes her so tough is the incredible gear she employs in the battlefield and her skill at using it. You begin the game with only the most basic gear, but Samus's powers will grow over time as she finds additional gear hidden throughout the world. How much or how little of the equipment you find is up to you and the amount of exploration you're willing to do."
Power Moves
"Beyond her weapons, some of Samus's most important upgrades are those that increase her abilities. As she gains these powers, she'll be able to travel farther into the world and reach areas that are normally inaccessible."

Metroid Prime 2: Echoes manual[]

"Samus will find many power-ups that improve both her arsenal and her suit, all of which help her access new areas. Early on, she also will gain two important abilities, the first of which allows her to become a vessel that can transport the Light of Aether back to the Luminoth Energy Controllers. The second is a translator that allows her to scan and open some Luminoth doors; she will update this translator several times over the course of her adventure.
Samus finds many weapons over the course of the game, each of which will become integral to her success. New to Samus is an ammunition system; for the Dark, Light, and Annihilator Beams, she will have to collect light and dark ammo to replenish her supplies."
"There are many other power-ups scattered throughout the worlds of Aether, and all of them will play vital roles in Samus's quest. Scan every room for possible power-ups--very often, you'll need to solve a puzzle to reach a specific power-up."
"Besides using features like Grapple Nodes and Morph Ball Launchers to move around, you must also collect power-ups to attack others."

Metroid: Other M manual[]

Abilities and Special Moves
"As you progress through the game and more abilities are authorised or acquired, Samus will be able to perform more moves and her suits and beams will become more powerful."

Metroid: Other M Premiere Edition[]

"Samus gains several useful upgrades to her equipment throughout the course of the adventure on the BOTTLE SHIP. In some cases, she must wait for Adam to authorize their use. In other cases she must find the upgrade after defeating a particular enemy. All upgrades, however, are tied into the story. That means that no matter how hard you search for them, you will get them only when you are supposed to."

Metroid Prime: Federation Force manual[]

About Power-ups
"Power-ups can be picked up after the ball has been shot a number of times. Once collected, press [Y] or touch the power-up on the Touch screen to use it."
"Press [Y] or touch a power-up on the Touch Screen to use it."

Metroid Prime Remastered microsite[]

Tools of the Hunter
"Trained as a warrior and infused with Chozo DNA, the indomitable Samus Aran patrols the galaxy as a feared freelance bounty hunter.
Explore some of the Chozo-created weapons and abilities Samus has at her fingertips on this adventure."


  • Michael Kelbaugh once jokingly suggested that Bill and Ted are the source of Samus's upgrades, which they would place around environments for her to collect while they were time traveling.[1]

See Also[]


  1. ^ NOM Staff. "Post game report: Retro Studios talk Metroid Prime 2 Echoes". Computer and Video Games. December 3, 2004. Archived from the original on March 9, 2012. Retrieved December 5, 2021.