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Metroid: Samus Returns’ hard mode seemingly locked behind amiibo

Get that Metroid amiibo if you want play Fusion Mode

Metroid: Samus Returns - artwork of Samus Aran kneeling in space
Metroid: Samus Returns

Some content in upcoming Nintendo 3DS game Metroid: Samus Returns, including an optional difficulty mode called Fusion Mode, appears to require the use of Nintendo’s amiibo figures to unlock.

While much of the unlockable content seemingly gated behind amiibo figures is designed to give players extra power-ups or gallery artwork, the apparent amiibo-exclusive nature of Fusion Mode is being met with ire from some Nintendo fans.

Metroid: Samus Returns supports four of Nintendo’s amiibo figures: the Super Smash Bros. series Samus and Zero Suit Samus released in 2014 and 2015, respectively, and the Samus Aran and Metroid amiibo coming Sept. 15.

Here’s what each amiibo does in Metroid: Samus Returns, according to descriptions posted to Nintendo posted on Facebook.

Metroid amiibo:

In Metroid: Samus Returns, the Metroid amiibo unlocks Metroid Marker, a tool to help you find nearby Metroids. In addition, it will also unlock Fusion Mode, a new mode that offers increased difficulty and features Samus in her Fusion suit. Note that Fusion Mode will only be available after finishing the game at least once.

New Samus amiibo:

In Metroid: Samus Returns, the new Samus Aran amiibo will unlock an Aeion reserve tank allowing you to recharge your Aeion energy. In addition, it will unlock a unique Metroid II Art Gallery once the game has been completed at least once.

Super Smash Bros. series Samus and Zero Suit Samus amiibo:

The Samus amiibo will unlock a reserve missile tank, and after completing the game, an additional in-game art gallery.

The Zero Suit Samus amiibo will unlock a reserve energy tank, and after completing the game, a selection of music.

Information about the Metroid amiibo functionality in Metroid: Samus Returns started to come out via Nintendo Japan and Nintendo U.K. earlier this month, but the official descriptions of what each figure unlocks was a source of confusion for some players. However, Nintendo’s Facebook page seems to make it clear: Players will need to use an amiibo to unlock everything the game has to offer.

Polygon reached out to Nintendo for clarification on whether Fusion Mode was indeed exclusive to the (squishy) Metroid amiibo, or if players could unlock it through other methods. The company pointed us to its messaging on Facebook.

Metroid: Samus Returns will be released for Nintendo 3DS on Sept. 15.

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