Unlike other enemies encountered on the BSL, these are the result of host bodies being directly inhabited and controlled by free-floating X, rather than simply being mimicked. However, the integrity of these bodies has become severely compromised, reducing them to partly-liquefied, shambling monstrosities clad in tattered lab coats that collapse into gelatinous puddles in the absence of X to animate them.
The exact explanation for this remains unknown; it is speculated in the manual that the humans were infected by X which had previously infested slime bioforms, though Adam later hypothesizes that the X use human hosts as sustenance after their knowledge is assimilated. Slowly lurching through the BSL Space Station corridors, usually on the Main Deck, or throughout the artificial sections of the various sectors. The reanimated zombies pose little threat to Samus, being very lethargic and only attempting to ram her if she is close. One shot from the unmodified Arm Cannon of the Fusion Suit is enough to reduce these organisms back to a puddle of organic sludge and expel the X Parasite within. The puddles, however, cannot be destroyed, and any roaming X Parasite is capable of reanimating the remains.
Metroid Fusion Manual
ENEMIES IMITATED BY X PARASITES (pg. 39)
- ZOMBIE RESEARCHERS
- "These shambling creatures are probably the result of X parasites absorbing a slime creature's DNA then infesting staff researchers. They're remarkably similar to zombies."
- The name-tag depicted in concept art appears to read "S.C.R. 7".
- Adam Malkovich at one point in the events of Metroid Fusion hypothesized that the collective knowledge of the high-clearance researchers throughout the BSL Station was absorbed by the X Parasites, in order for them to gain more knowledge of the station. One example is the scientist, which was an X Parasite mimicking a researcher. Using its newfound knowledge, it tried to indirectly set off the explosives for the station's auto destruct sequence in an effort to eliminate Samus Aran and give the X Parasites on SR388 a greater chance of survival. Curiously, this researcher showed no signs of decay; however, Adam inferred that this scientist had only recently fallen victim to the X, which indicates that the Zombie Researchers found on the Main Deck may have been dead for a while.
- In early builds of Metroid Fusion, the researchers were pale green in color, bearing a resemblance to the appearance of Frankenstein's Monster in the Universal horror films. They were also seen in a room not accessible in the final game, but reachable by hacking.
- ^ Nintendo of America (NintendoAmerica). "After being infected by the X Parasite, Samus’ original Power Suit needed to be surgically removed. She recovered with the help of a vaccine created from Metroid DNA and returned with the new Fusion suit seen here. ¶ - SA-X ¶ - Samus ¶ - Samus’ Gunship ¶ - Zombie Researcher" 18 August 2021 17 August 2021 3:00 p.m. Tweet. https://twitter.com/NintendoAmerica/status/1428069256697090048
- ^ Metroid Fusion manual, pg. 39