This is a featured article.

This article refers to the recurring boss. For other uses of the name Ridley, see Ridley (Disambiguation).

Heh, humans are always so weak to the death of their own kind! Who knows, perhaps I even ate your "mama" so that my cells may live, hmm? Is she here... or here?! AT LEAST PAY YOUR RESPECTS!


Ridley (リドリー Ridorī?) is a high-ranking Space Pirate and one of the most recurring characters in the Metroid series, appearing as a boss in over half of the games released thus far. He is the archenemy of Samus Aran, a status he gained over the years since his prominent role in Super Metroid; in addition to this, he also became widely regarded as the main villain of the entire franchise despite never being the primary antagonist of any game. Ridley's actual role is that of a secondary antagonist where he answers to a higher power and/or his presence is overshadowed by an unrelated threat, depending on the game.


Sadistic and bloodthirsty, Ridley delights in death and destruction, and was responsible for the massacre of the colony K-2L. Since then, he and Samus have clashed several times, with Samus usually emerging the victor. But Ridley's brutality is matched only by his resilience, and he regularly returns from apparent death to do battle with Samus once more. As such, he is fittingly referred to as the Cunning God of Death (狡猾の死神?) in his Zero Mission official art on the Japanese website.

Resembling an emaciated pterodactyl-dragon with glowing eyes, the true name of Ridley's species is unknown. Despite his appearance and often bestial behavior within the games, Ridley's position as a Space Pirate leader has been confirmed since back in Super Metroid's instruction booklet, with the Metroid Prime manual and in-game scans further describing him as a mainstay and enforcer of the Pirate armies. The Magazine Z manga depicts him as being highly intelligent and even capable of speech. He also successfully built a robot in his own likeness, according to the co-creator of the Metroid series. Ridley is often depicted as a comrade of Kraid in supplementary materials such as official merchandise, artwork, media and the manga, while the games themselves vaguely reference this through their statues.

Although Ridley often appears in different forms and varying sizes, it is clarified not only through scans in the Metroid Prime series but also through events in Metroid: Other M that all his incarnations chronologically seen before the latter game are indeed the same individual despite his numerous defeats (the exception being Mecha Ridley). Strangely, some of his prior battles ended with his entire body seemingly exploding but in-game lore states he somehow survived these violent defeats until his final battle in Super Metroid. His proficiency for survival is also displayed in the manga: following the destruction of his flagship and its wreckage falling on top of Ridley, he reappears unscathed later on, claiming to have healed his wounds by consuming the bodies of the dead humans in K-2L.

Ridley has been present in all but five Metroid games - Metroid II: Return of Samus, Metroid Prime 2: Echoes, Metroid Prime Hunters, Metroid Prime: Federation Force and Metroid Dread. Minor references to him can still be found in several of these via his associated theme in their demos, cosmetic Paint Jobs based on him and images of the character present in galleries. Ridley is usually the penultimate or ante-penultimate boss in the games he's featured in, and half of them present multiple battles against him and/or some manifestation of him. His sole appearance as a final boss is in Metroid: Samus Returns, the remake of Metroid II.


Main article: Biography of Ridley

Boss Battles


In Metroid for the NES and Famicom, Ridley is one of the two bosses on Zebes who must be defeated to access Tourian. He awaits in a chamber in Mini-Boss Hideout II. Here, Ridley is approximately Samus' height.

Ridley only attacks by hopping in place while shooting zig-zagging fireballs. He can be damaged by any weapon; his fireballs, however, are indestructible and excel as a defense mechanism, blocking long-range weapons and nullifying Bombs. If Samus possesses the Ice Beam, she can freeze the fireballs, keeping Ridley from shooting any more until the ice thaws. Depending on the position the fireballs are frozen in, this can either leave Ridley exposed to attack or completely block him off.

Ridley's battle is more challenging in the Japanese Famicom version of the game, due to the console's superior specs over the American NES version. The Famicom randomly chooses a different trajectory for each fireball, meaning players must deal with a wide variety of speeds and patterns. The NES can only choose a single trajectory for all fireballs each time the NES is turned on, consistently leaving safe zones where the fireballs never reach.

Once Samus defeats Ridley, 75 Missiles are added to her maximum amount. His defeat also activates one of the two Stone Statues overlooking the path to Tourian.

Metroid: Zero Mission

In the remake Metroid: Zero Mission, Ridley is off-world aboard the Space Pirate Mother Ship when Samus infiltrates the Pirate base on Zebes. Following the defeat of Kraid, he returns to Zebes to ambush Samus in Lower Norfair.

Ridley is much taller and more agile than in the original Metroid. He flies around using his attacks from Super Metroid, spitting fireballs and swiping at Samus with his tail. His fireballs can be destroyed by any of Samus' weaponry, unless he has grabbed her in his talons first. He falls quite quickly to Super Missiles.

Ridley explodes upon his defeat, allowing Samus to leave with the Unknown Item she had obtained just before the battle. This also unlocks one of the Stone Statues blocking the way to Tourian.

Also in the same game is his incomplete project Mecha Ridley, a robot which guards the Space Pirate Mother Ship and serves as the final boss of Zero Mission.

Metroid Prime series

Main articles: Meta Ridley and Omega Ridley
SSBU Spirits Meta Ridley

Meta Ridley in Metroid Prime.

After his defeat on Zebes, Ridley's remains were recovered and reconstructed with cybernetic implants, turning him into a cyborg. He is known as Meta Ridley for the entirety of the first Prime game and the prologue of Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, until his final battle in the latter game where he becomes the Phazon-infused Omega Ridley.

Metroid: Samus Returns

Main article: Proteus Ridley
MSR ProteusRidley artwork

Proteus Ridley in Metroid: Samus Returns

Despite not appearing in Metroid II: Return of Samus, Ridley is present in the game's remake as Proteus Ridley. Returning from his defeats in the Metroid Prime series with fewer cybernetic implants, he ambushes Samus and attempts to capture the last Metroid just as they are about to leave SR388. This marks the first time in the series where Ridley acts as a final boss.

Super Metroid

Ridley is first fought in the Ceres Space Colony, carrying the last Metroid in his talons after slaughtering the scientists of Ceres. He attacks with fireballs as usual, but neither he nor Samus can be defeated - once Samus takes a certain amount of damage, Ridley retreats with the Metroid and returns to Zebes, with it being implied that Ridley set Ceres to self-destruct. If the player shoots Ridley 100 times without losing, Ridley briefly drops the baby, but quickly recovers it and flees before Samus can retrieve it.

Ridley is one of the four bosses that must be defeated to unlock the Golden Statues and access Tourian. He and Samus clash again in the depths of Lower Norfair. He is a nimble flier who uses the height of the chamber to his advantage, raining down fireballs from above. Ridley can also use his invulnerable tail to shield himself, even against the Screw Attack. He also uses his tail for offensive maneuvers, many of which would be seen in future Metroid games, such as the whip and pogo stick-like attacks. With no weak points, Samus must simply dodge Ridley's attacks while landing hits of her own - it takes 30 Super Missiles to bring him down. Upon losing all of his health, he aggressively moves to grab Samus one last time. If he succeeds, he flies her to the center of the room to make one last roar before exploding into pieces, dropping Samus. If she manages to evade his final attempts at grabbing her, Ridley eventually dies anyway.

Ridley's defeat offers Samus no reward besides access to Tourian; in the next room she finds a shattered capsule that once held the last Metroid, a final jab from her nemesis. Once Samus kills Mother Brain, planet Zebes explodes, taking Ridley's remains with it. Metroid: Other M states that this defeat marks the first true death of Samus's arch-nemesis; Ridley had seemingly survived all of his previous battles, regardless of apparent occasions of disintegration.

Metroid: Other M

Main article: Ridley (clone)
MetroidOtherM OfficialGuidebook Ridley Render

Ridley's clone in Metroid: Other M.

Following his death, Ridley's DNA lingered on the surface of Samus' Power Suit. As the Galactic Federation took samples from it to clone the Zebes wildlife, they unknowingly cloned Ridley as well, not recognizing his juvenile form Little Birdie. On the BOTTLE SHIP, Samus encounters Little Birdie in the Biosphere, and once it molts into a Mystery Creature, it attacks her at the Exam Center. She tracks it to the Geothermal Power Plant, where it emerges in its adult form as the draconic Ridley. He seemingly kills Anthony Higgs before fighting Samus, but she defeats him using the Plasma Beam. He then retreats to the Bioweapon Research Center, only to be killed and reduced to a husk by the Queen Metroid.

Metroid Fusion

Main article: Neo-Ridley
Neo Ridley Animation

Neo-Ridley in Metroid Fusion.

The husk of Ridley's clone was transferred to the Sub-Zero Containment in the BSL research station, where it was eventually copied and disintegrated by an X Parasite. Using the corpse's DNA, the X transforms into an unnatural imitation known as Neo-Ridley, which Samus defeats and absorbs to gain the Screw Attack.

The original Ridley appears in one of the endings of the Japanese version, acquired by completing Normal Mode in over four hours. He is seen advancing on a young Samus and what are presumably her mother and father, the latter of whom is shooting Ridley to no avail. It should be noted that this was the first time that Ridley's involvement in the K-2L raid was ever referenced by official Metroid media.

Physical appearance

Ridley's signature traits are scaly skin, wings, a pointed head, a bent neck, and a long tail with a bladed tip; overall, he closely resembles a European dragon or pteranodon. He is most commonly depicted with vibrant purple skin and yellow eyes, though this varies.

In the first Metroid, his Japanese artwork depicts him as a dragon with large eyes and blue skin, while his American artwork portrays him with a vastly more alien design, featuring a sucker-like mouth and numerous ocular organs. Due to technical limitations of the time, Ridley's sprite had purple skin and green eyes, and his wings were very small in proportion to the rest of his body.

Super Metroid established a more consistent look for Ridley. He has didactyl feet, glowing eyes, a longer neck, and an exaggerated tail so long that it is used as a weapon. His head has even more pterodactyloid features, including a head-crest. His physique is also grotesquely emaciated, exposing his ribcage and musculature just beneath his flesh. While arwork gave him red skin and orange eyes, sprites gave him his signature purple skin and yellow eyes.

In subsequent appearances, Ridley maintained most of the design traits introduced in Super Metroid, though his colors leaned towards purple rather than red. Notable design departures include his mutation as Neo-Ridley in Metroid Fusion, his green-brown skin, red eyes, and red patagium in Metroid: Zero Mission, the Metroid Prime series which introduced his Meta Ridley form, and his clone in Metroid: Other M who had a more muscular build, opposable thumbs and tridactyl feet, and red patagium.

Ridley's size has fluctuated greatly throughout the series. In the first Metroid he was barely taller than Samus, while in Super Metroid he was over twice her size. His Meta Ridley form in Metroid Prime 3 may be the largest he has ever been as Samus can fit almost entirely in his mouth, though later on in the same game he reappears noticeably shrunken down as Omega Ridley, now only large enough to fit her Arm Cannon in his jaws.

Personality and traits

First, enjoy the slaughter to the fullest!!

—Ridley, to the Space Pirates, immediately prior to their massacre of K-2L in the Metroid manga.

Not much is known about Ridley within the games, as most of his time on screen consists of being in combat with Samus while rampaging and roaring like an animal. This makes him an ideal killing machine to fight on the front lines of the Space Pirate forces and likely why he is frequently seen alone.

ZM Ridley cutscene

Ridley sits quietly in the Space Pirate Mother Ship, in Metroid: Zero Mission.

However, there are nonetheless glimpses of intelligence and deviousness. A cutscene in Metroid: Zero Mission showed him sitting quietly aboard the Space Pirate Mother Ship, exhibiting self-control. Another moment of self-control is in Super Metroid, where he hid in the shadows and left the Baby in plain view for Samus to find before making his presence known to her, at which point he gave her ample time to strike first while he stared her down. It is also implied he activated the Ceres Colony's Self-Destruct System. In Metroid Prime, Ridley bombed the Cradle on Tallon IV specifically to prevent Samus from accessing and destroying the source of Phazon within the Impact Crater. In Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, he attacked Samus on Norion when she was traversing through ducts in her Morph Ball form to limit her defensive options. Later, he made sure to have Samus fall down the Generator C shaft with him to ensure she would at least fall to her death if he was beaten. Interestingly, Ridley's cunning seems to be embedded on a genetic level, as his clone, who was feral as a result of lacking civilized upbringing, was nevertheless capable of manipulating or provoking fellow bioweapons into attacking the 07th Platoon while he focused on Samus.

His capacity to reason was shown during his fight with Samus on SR388, where despite clearly being aware of the Baby's role in aiding Samus late into the fight, he made no attempt at killing it with the implication that he still needed to capture it alive for the Space Pirates on Zebes. Additionally, if she were to inflict enough damage to him at Ceres he will preemptively flee with the Metroid, demonstrating he can assess the situation and disengages from a losing battle to avoid jeopardizing the plans of his organization.

Ridley is also shown to be prideful and to have a sadistic sense of humor. He had Mecha Ridley created in his image, displaying narcissism.[3] His bloodthirsty tendencies were indicated in a Pirate Data scan explaining his reconstruction as Meta Ridley, where the crew stated that Ridley becoming the mainstay of security was "a job he will certainly relish."[4] His sadism also manifests in his clone when he toys with the emotionally shocked Samus using the sharp-end of his tail as holds her in his hands. This characterization is also displayed in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate; in his third victory pose, he is seen from behind raking the ground with his claws as if eviscerating a downed opponent, before grinning wickedly at the camera. In his character trailer, A Piercing Screech, Ridley twirls Mario's cap on one finger to mock his victim and taunt the latter's companion, Samus. In addition, one of the gameplay scenes in the same trailer has a brief hint towards his sadistic nature where, after using Skewer on Link, he proceeded to crouch and watch as Link keeled over.

Because of this capacity for pride, Ridley has developed a bitter rivalry with Samus Aran due to her constant interference and his various defeats at her hands. He is shown to make spiteful jabs at her, such as leaving the Baby's empty capsule in the adjacent room behind him to ensure he gets the last laugh if she defeats him. His pride and hatred has sometimes been a detriment as well: Ridley's final ambush on Norion leads to both him and Samus falling down a pit but instead of flying away and leaving her to die, he tries to kill her himself during the free-fall and consequently suffers injuries that make him incapable of stopping Rundas from rescuing her. It's also implied that his hatred of Samus may be rooted as genetic memory, due to his clone being especially eager to kill Samus, with the Mystery Creature's Trophy in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U / 3DS hinting that its antagonism was rooted in Ridley's murder of Samus's family. His hatred of Samus is given a reference with his Final Smash Plasma Scream, where he always attacks her Gunship irrespective of whether Samus herself is one of the fighters launched into it.

The manga and comics are the only sources of media where Ridley is seen talking. A possible explanation is that the sounds Ridley and the Pirates make in the games are the Space Pirate language, translated for the reader's benefit. Regardless, Ridley's speech and thoughts being shown to the reader reveal details of his personality that are not entirely communicated in the games while other aspects are exclusive to these literature works.

In the manga, Ridley is presented far more clearly as a leader of the Space Pirates, showing the character giving orders to his subordinates who respect him and obey without question. He is portrayed with an incredibly brutal disposition and love of destruction when, during a Pirate raid on K2-L with the main goal of stealing Afloraltite, he orders his army to annihilate the planet's peaceful inhabitants as a priority, going as far as to tell them in the midst of the chaos to "First, enjoy the slaughter to the fullest". His cruelty is further made apparent when he attacks a small girl trying to befriend him, pretending to pity her at first and then killing her mother in the process. Ridley even went so far as to taunt Samus by saying that he may have eaten and incorporated the cells of her mother's corpse, and sardonically wondered where her cells rested in his body, as well as sarcastically demanding while forcing a then-catatonic Samus to kneel that she "at least pay her respects" in reference to her mother. Despite the emphasis on Ridley's malice, the manga manages to portray him with some rationality and self-control, such as when he tells his soldiers on K2-L to nevertheless take caution around the highly explosive Alfloraltite during their enlivened attack, and how he seemingly withdraws himself from the raid at some point to be content with simply watching his subordinates continue the massacre, at least until he got confirmation that the Alfloraltite was secured.

Ridley also displays a foul temper and an arrogant belief that nothing can defeat him. He seems to hold a grudge against Samus for her deceased father's role in the massive failure of Ridley's raid on K2-L. He also refers to Samus's existence when meeting her for the first time since the K-2L raid as a "nightmare", implying that his hatred for Samus stemmed also from the fact that she survived the massacre at all. He, like many Space Pirates, also believes in the superiority of certain races over others, counting himself among the privileged elites and seeing the "lower" races such as humans as pests to exterminate. Interestingly, Ridley grudgingly shows respect to those who are natural leaders, such as when Gray Voice ordered the Pirates to their battle stations; Ridley, taken aback, smirked at being told by Gray Voice to attend to his job and sarcastically addressed him as "Sir Military Commander" as he left.

Powers and abilities


Meta Ridley charges his Plasma Breath, in Metroid Prime Remastered.

Ridley is a cunning and brutal warrior. His most recurring ability is his plasma breath, which can take the form of rolling fireballs or short-ranged plumes of flame. While fighting hand-to-hand, Ridley slashes with his long claws and bites with his giant teeth. His nimble tail has a razor-sharp blade at the end, which he uses to slice or impale targets. He is an adept flier whose wings let him move through the air at incredible speeds to outrun and ambush opponents. He can even fly through outer space to an unknown extent, able to at least fly from the Frigate Orpheon to Tallon IV unaided (it remains unseen if he flew from the Ceres Space Colony to Zebes unaided or not). One of Ridley's signature combat techniques is grabbing victims with his superior strength, able to hold Samus in one claw for point-blank plasma blasts or to bash and scrape her along surfaces.

In Metroid: Other M, Ridley's clone displays the ability to change the pigments of his skin and harden it, a state called Black Ridley that enhances his speed and strength and makes him immune to Samus' beam attacks. He can only be damaged by Super Missiles in this state. In Super Metroid, he appears briefly camouflaged into the darkness of his arenas, possibly thanks to this ability to change skin pigments.

As Meta Ridley, he was installed with various built-in weaponry that enhanced his firepower. These included a plasma breath laser, aerial bombs, missile salvos, and stomp shockwaves. As Omega Ridley, he could also channel Phazon into these attacks.

Ridley is incredibly adept at survival, able to heal himself by consuming others and incorporating their cells into his body.[5] He is infamous for his uncanny ability to cheat death on many occasions. Notable occasions of his survival include:

His battle against Samus during her final visit to Zebes is the definitive end of the original Ridley. However, true to his title as the "God of Death", Ridley quite literally returns from the dead through astonishing circumstances:

  • Ridley's DNA lingered on Samus' Power Suit after their battle on Zebes, allowing Galactic Federation personnel to unknowingly collect his DNA and create his clone on the BOTTLE SHIP.
  • Following the death of Ridley's clone, his deceased body was moved to the BSL research station, where his DNA was copied by an X Parasite to form the mimicry Neo-Ridley.

Official data

Metroid manual

"It's the head of Mini-Boss Hideout II. It jumps up into the air and breathes fire. It's the original life form of the planet Zebes and is controlled by Mother Brain. Destroy it and you win 75 missile blasts!!!"

Virtual Console retranslation

"Flies up into the air and breathes fire. An indigenous life-form of Zebes, this creature is being controlled by Mother Brain."

The Official Nintendo Player's Guide

"It attacks Samus by spewing fireballs. A missile attack is very effective, but if you have the wave beam, it would be a good idea to use the beam continuously while jumping through the lava."

Nintendo Power Volume 29

"When you enter the chamber, Ridley begins firing balls of flame. Make sure your energy tanks and missiles are filled up. Two methods of attack can be successful. Using the Wave Beam, maneuver beneath Ridley's platform and fire upwards. Keep jumping to reduce the damage. The other method is to use missiles from point blank range or near the door.
Not only does Ridley shoot fire, it hops around on the platform.
If you stand in the lava while attacking, jump continuously to reduce the damage."

Super Metroid manual

"(The Boss of Norfair)
Ridley headed the mission to the Space Colony and stole the Metroid Hatchling. It whips out at enemies with its long tail and spits fire while flying through the air."

Super Metroid Players' Guide

"Samus met him at the start of the game, just before the science academy went down in flames. The winged space pirate leader had other things on his mind at that point, like getting away with the last Metroid. This time he has only one objective - to see Samus' quest come to an untimely and stomach churning end...
Ridley attacks in three main ways. First off, he flies off the top of the screen then swoops down quickly. When he disappears, it's best to jump up as you'll catch a glimpse of him hovering. If you know where he's swooping from it's easier to take evasive action. The second attack takes the form of swipes from his spiny tail. These are very hard to avoid so just keep jumping. He can also launch a series of fireballs from his mouth which have to be avoided. If Samus isn't careful, Ridley may catch her in his mouth. In this case, wiggle the pad left and right while pounding the buttons to try and shake free of his grip.
A good strategy is to morph down on the opposite side of the screen to Ridley's next swoop and drop a power bomb. Keep this going until you run out, then switch to super missiles. Finish him off with regular missiles and charge beams."

Defeating Ridley
Jump up when Ridley flies off...
Leap over his spiny attacks...
Use bombs and missiles against him.

Samus (JoyRide Studios)

"The dragon-like Ridley is the first boss you'll encounter in Metroid for the NES. To slay the beast, use powerful attacks such as the Wave Beam or a missile fired at point-blank range."

"Use the Ice Beam to freeze Ridley's projectiles, then close in and fire missiles at point-blank range."

"If you use the Wave Beam, you'll have to stand in the lava to take your shot. Keep jumping to minimize your damage."

Metroid: Zero Mission interview

"Though there are many secrets in the Metroid series, my instant thought is why is Ridley preserved in the freezing chamber? What was the Galactic Federation planning to do with him?"

  • Yoshio Sakamoto: "For the time being, I don't know. Maybe it will be revealed in the near future?" [6]

Official Metroid: Zero Mission website


Image from the Zero Mission website.

"Extremely dangerous! Enormous wing-span and long, whip-like tail. Moves very fast and attacks with alarming ferocity. Emits fireballs of gas from elongated beak. Will try to pick up enemies and crush them with razor-sharp talons. Vulnerable to Super Missiles. DANGER LEVEL: VERY HIGH."

  • "Powerful wings"
  • "Razor sharp talons"
  • "Elongated beak"

Metroid Prime 2: Dark Echoes Q&A

QUESTION: I have again great things to say [about Metroid Prime 2]. The details to the settings are amazing... Anyway, as for my question: Metroid Prime 2 comes after Metroid Prime 1, correct? And, since the Space Pirates are also present... does this mean that Ridley will be back, too?

ANSWER: If you play to the end, I think you’ll figure it out.[1]

QUESTION: I'm in the middle of playing the game right now. It's very interesting. I have a small question. In the previous game there were limited time scans (pained smile) and was wondering if there any of those in this one? In my opinion so far the game has a great presentation that does not lose your interest. I often forget what time it is. And even if I play for a short amount of time it feels like you’ve made a good amount of progress. I’m expecting Ridley to appear at any moment because for me he is the true Metroid nemesis. I hope to be snatched and taken away. Basically I’d like to see Ridley in literally every game...

ANSWER: If you see something, scan it! It’s the basics. If not, you may regret it... Whether or not Ridley will appear, you’ll be able to tell if you finish the game.[2]

Nintendo of America tweet

"Did you know? If you’re able to do enough damage to Ridley, he’ll momentarily drop the Infant Metroid before leaving the Ceres Research Station.

Play Super Metroid and other classic #SNES games now with #NintendoSwitchOnline!"[7]

Cameo appearances

"What's the matter? All I said was that Komaytos look like little Metr-"

Non-canon warning: This article or section contains information that may not be considered an official part of the Metroid series in the overall storyline by Nintendo.
  • Ridley appeared in the Captain N: The Game Master comics and TV series.
    • Ridley appears in the comic stories Welcome to Videoland, Money Changes Everything (in name), Breakout, and When Friends Fall Out (as a flashback) based on his original concept art. In Breakout, he impersonated Judge Racklas, another member of his species, after Mother Brain had all of her own crimes reattributed to Princess Lana. In the comics, his design was derived from the art for Ridley for the NES version.
    • In the TV series, Ridley appears as an orange potbellied dragon. Although this is very different from his original design, it is identified as "Ridley" in concept artwork, and storyboards show Ridley with an appearance that much more closely matches his original NES manual artwork, with multiple eyes and a pointed tail. Ridley appears in the episode GameBoy as one of the monsters generated by Game Boy while under Mother Brain's control.
  • Ridley appears in the Super Metroid comic from Nintendo Power, with largely the same role as in the game. However, a notable difference from the game is that, other than their brief encounter on Ceres Space Station, he never actually fights Samus, and instead "called a retreat" and left the Space Pirates to fend for themselves when Samus arrived, with Armstrong Houston also noting that Ridley was a coward upon witnessing this. As such, he never actually was killed by Samus.
  • Ridley is on the box and cartridge art for Super Metroid, which also appears in WarioWare: Smooth Moves on the Wii, in the microgame Super Nostalgic Entertainment System.
  • As part of another collaboration between Nintendo and Team Ninja, Ridley's clone and his signature theme make a cameo appearance in Dead or Alive Dimensions. He attacks characters from the background of the Geothermal Power Plant arena, and is killed by a Power Bombing Samus when a sound is made in the mic.
NL Kraid and Ridley

Kraid and Ridley animatronics in Metroid Blast

  • Ridley appears in Nintendo Land as an animatronic boss in the Metroid Blast attraction. Ice Ridley is an additional variant whose attacks freeze the Mii players. Depending on the mission, Ridley may be fought alone, or he may be teamed up with Ice Ridley or Kraid. Ridley can also be unlocked as a prize, placing a non-hostile version of the animatronic in the main plaza. Its description is "Violent, villainous, and highly intelligent, Ridley is Samus's nemesis, commander of the Space Pirates, and the galaxy's greatest threat. Attack him from the back when he's stunned."
  • Defeating Ridley acted as one of the challenges in NES Remix 2 as well as its 3DS port, Ultimate NES Remix. A promotional 3DS wallpaper for the latter game also featured Ridley fighting Link (the latter in his Zelda II: The Adventure of Link sprite).
  • A flashback of Samus's battle with Ridley in Metroid appears in the Discover the Hunter Trailer for Metroid Dread.

Super Smash Bros. series

Main article: Ridley (Super Smash Bros.)

Ridley has made appearances in all games in the Super Smash Bros. series in some form, but it was not until Super Smash Bros. Ultimate that he became a playable character.

Development notes

An unused Fake Ridley, similar to Mini-Kraid, exists in the data for Metroid. It was cut for unknown reasons, though other Ridley imposters would eventually be introduced in later games.

Ridley has multiple different vocalizations throughout his appearances. In Super Metroid, his vocalizations were directly taken from the roars of the character Anguirus from the Godzilla film series. In Metroid Fusion and Metroid: Zero Mission, Ridley (or in the case of Fusion, Neo-Ridley) gave notoriously loud shrieks similar to a parrot. In his 3D appearances as well as Metroid: Samus Returns, he is given more bestial roars, which were also given a slight alien filter in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.


The name "Ridley" is an English name which means "Reed clearing; cleared land; barren land",[8]. Although technically befitting his bloodthirsty and sadistic nature, Ridley's name is commonly assumed to have derived from Ridley Scott, the director of the first film of the Alien film series, which was acknowledged as a significant influence on Metroid. As further evidence of this homage to Ridley Scott, Ridley's stinger-tipped tail and (since Super Metroid) his lean skeletal appearance bear a close resemblance to the titular Alien Xenomorph.


Main article: Ridley is too big

Ridley's size has mostly wavered throughout the series, and even from panel to panel in the prequel manga. The only constant since Super Metroid is that he is larger than Samus. This led to the "Ridley is too big" meme among fans who disagreed with his suitability as a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, a sentiment Masahiro Sakurai agreed with. However, he was eventually made playable in Ultimate, now standing roughly as tall as Bowser for ease of implementation.

During the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate conference, Sakurai stated that Ridley was about four meters tall (or 13'1½"). Based on previous games, Ridley could very well be the smallest of the Space Pirate generals at a confirmed height of four meters, as Phantoon is massive in Other M, Kraid is quite large in Super Metroid and Zero Mission, Draygon is slightly taller, and Mother Brain's main body in Super Metroid significantly adds to her height.

Metroid Prime 3 frequently changes Ridley's size between gameplay and cutscenes, as well as in-between camera shots within the latter. Hacking into the data reveals Meta Ridley is at 450% of his "default" size when he is first seen in Cargo Dock C, then changes repeatedly from 275% to 350% in the cutscene within Generator C. His size settles on 450% during the battle in the Generator Shaft, but is reduced to 250% for the cutscene at the end of the battle. Omega Ridley is at 100% size during the intro & outro cutscenes, but 250% size for the entire fight.

In all of his 2D appearances, Ridley's wings are disproportionately smaller than his body to the point of making them unlikely to even lift Ridley off the ground, and yet he soars through the air with ease. This was likely an intentional design choice to prevent him from taking up most of the screen in his in-game fights. His 3-D appearances and manga rectify this by giving him wings that exceed the size of his main body.

Metroid: Other M is the only game where Ridley's upper jaw is not longer than the lower one, and is also the only game where it points upwards, not down.


Ridley's signature battle theme was originally used as a generic boss fight background music in Super Metroid (also being used for the Torizo, Golden Torizo and Draygon fights), but in later games, it has been associated solely with Ridley. Although there have been variations of Ridley's theme in each game (different tempo, extra beats, etc.), the music's rhythm and sound are consistent and used for every incarnation except for his very first boss fight in the original Metroid. The theme has also been used during the countdown sequences of Super Metroid, Fusion and Other M, with the first one having alarm blaring being heard in the background for this reason.


Japan Baby Ridley

Super Metroid commercial.

  • In every 2-D game featuring him, Ridley's fireballs have an uncanny resemblance to Mario's 2-D fireballs. Whether or not this similarity is intentional is unknown. Except in Corruption and Zero Mission, Ridley's fireballs are always indestructible.
  • No explanation is seemingly given for Ridley suddenly leaving Ceres when he gains the upper hand in the battle against Samus. When the latter's health is lowered to a critical point, he chooses to let her live instead of ending the life of the greatest threat to all Space Pirates and their ambitions. This decision dooms the remaining Space Pirates on Zebes, as Samus soon recovers and builds up enough strength to single-handedly wipe them all out, including killing the original Ridley for good.
  • Ridley's absence in Federation Force was explained by the developers as wanting to distance themselves away from familiar Metroid elements,[9].
  • While Meta Ridley's theme is found in Metroid Prime Hunters: First Hunt and Metroid Prime 2: Bonus Disc, it is only in the former where it is featured in regular gameplay. In the latter, the theme's existence is only known through its internal data and is a variant slowed down by 50%. Unused text in the full version of Metroid Prime 2 implies that Meta Ridley's theme was going to be present in the multiplayer mode.
  • Ridley's physical similarities to the Aliens/Xenomorphs from Alien are further highlighted with his design in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Additionally, in his reveal trailer, he kills Mario and Mega Man in a similar fashion to the Xenomorphs.
  • Ridley appears on the Super Metroid Stare-E-O Poster.
Ridley Pirate Homeworld monitors

Space Pirate monitors depicting Ridley's image.

  • In the Pirate Command sector of the Pirate Homeworld, images of Ridley can be found on the glowing orange monitors. Rooms with these monitors include Command Courtyard and Command Station.
  • Samus has kept a tendency in most games to shoot Ridley directly inside his mouth and throat, either during cutscenes or in-game battles.
  • Meta Ridley can be seen on Nintendo Monopoly representing Tennessee Avenue for $180, though the property is simply referred to as "Ridley". It features a claw-like appendage at the tip of his tail instead of the usual spear-tip, and his wings are attached below his arms akin to a bat.
  • Ridley apparently does not seem to need oxygen to live. Metroid Prime clearly portrayed him flying out into space without any gear as he escapes the Orpheon, though this may be due to his cybernetics. Additionally, the Super Metroid comic features him exiting out into space and his Super Smash Bros. Melee trophy states that he flies through space with his wings; however, these sources are considered non-canon.
  • There is no explanation on how he is able to fly in an environment which does not contain air or gas, a necessary medium for any creature with wings to take flight; he is nevertheless seen flapping his wings. Meta Ridley's wings appear to be energy-based, which may hold some significance.
  • The Ridley clone's blood is green, as shown in Other M. This is a common trope for alien creatures in science fiction environments. However, Ridley's blood is shown to be red in Corruption during the boss battle on Norion before he falls down the shaft. Coincidentally, some reptiles in real life also have green blood.
  • Although Ridley is canonically male, several official sources (including the manuals for Metroid and Super Metroid) refer to Ridley with gender-neutral pronouns.
  • An April Fool's Day cover for the magazine Game Informer that jokingly claimed that Team Ninja would work on the next Metroid game depicted Ridley wearing a two-piece bikini reserved for females (which had itself been a reference to Team Ninja's Dead or Alive Xtreme series).
  • Other M reveals that Ridley's vision is tinted green, possibly as a result of nictitating membranes that cover and protect his eyes.
  • His animated reveal trailer in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is the first time since Ridley's role in the Metroid manga where Ridley has displayed a sense of humor, playfully twirling the hat of a defeated Mario when revealing himself to Samus with something of a grin.
  • In Super Metroid, there is a glitch where Ridley gets stuck on the platform in his lair, leaving him unable to do anything and thus making him easier to defeat.[10]
  • The Metal Alien from the Contra series (another series inspired by the Alien franchise) bears a slight resemblance to Ridley. Further referencing this is the Metal Alien's strikingly similar attacks.


Past is Prologue

Crossover Appearances


Ridley's trophy in the main hub of Nintendo Land.

  • Comics
  • Welcome to Videoland
  • Money Changes Everything (Mentioned)
  • Breakout
  • When Friends Fall Out (Flashback)
  • Cartoon
  • Game Boy
  • Super Nostalgic Entertainment System


For concept art, see Ridley/Gallery.


Super Metroid

Metroid: Zero Mission

Other appearances


  1. ^ Q&A: Is Ridley from Metroid Really Native to Zebes? « Legends of Localization. Mato Tree (2014). Retrieved on 2014-04-04.
  2. ^ Metroid: Volume 2 pg. 12, based on the translation by Metroid Database
  3. ^ Development Room, Metroid: Zero Mission Official Site
  4. ^ "Meta Ridley" Pirate Data. Metroid Prime.
  5. ^ Metroid: Volume 2, Chapter 8, Page 10. Metroid Database (2002). Retrieved on 2013-10-03.
  6. ^
  7. ^ Nintendo of America (NintendoAmerica). 21 January 2020 4:00 p.m. Tweet.
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ Retro Game SuperHyper. Super Metroid glitch: Ridley Stuck in the Lava! YouTube. June 8, 2020. Retrieved June 5, 2024.
  11. ^ Nintendo of Europe (Nintendo Europe). "Happy #ReptileAwarenessDay! To celebrate, why not tell us who your favourite reptilian juggernaut is to fight against in #SuperMetroid, now available to play with #SuperNES – #NintendoSwitchOnline!" Oct 21, 2019 9:46 a.m. Tweet.