Three years ago, the development of Metroid Prime 4 was totally scrapped and restarted. This troubling news came from Shinya Takahashi of Nintendo EPD, the game development division of Nintendo, prior to the project being taken away from original developer Bandai Namco. Takahashi stated that the shakeup was due to the previous studio not meeting Nintendo’s standards.
It was then handed to Retro Studios, the team behind the original Metroid Prime titles. At E3 2021, Metroid Dread was announced, only confusing fans more–how could an entirely NEW Metroid game be coming before Prime 4? Given the success of Dread, the time for more Metroid is now, and some new job openings posted to the Retro Studios Twitter account are giving fans renewed hope.
Currently, Retro Studios is hiring a concept artist, an environmental designer, a material artist, a character artist, a UI artist, a UI scripter, a technology engineer, an environment artist, an environment terrain artist, and a tools engineer. It’s worth noting that not all positions mention Metroid specifically–only four of them have been confirmed by the studio as being Metroid Prime 4 related. The studio is located in Austin, Texas, and it’s unclear whether any amount of remote work would be possible. Given the number of open spots, it looks like Metroid Prime 4 is still in the early stages of development. To save some heartbreak, it’s best not to expect any concrete release date announcement in the near future.
Nintendo and Retro Studios haven’t mentioned much about Prime 4. No trailers or teasers of any sort have been released since the first logo was shown at E3 2017. In October 2020, Retro posted a job listing for storyboard artists to work on “emotional” and “interesting and innovative scenes that elevate the narrative,” implying that Metroid Prime 4 will be more cinematic than previous games in the series.