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Neo-Ridley (ネオ リドリー Neo Ridorī ), also known as Ridley-X, is the tenth boss Samus faces aboard the Biologic Space Laboratories research station in Metroid Fusion. This creature is an X Parasite mimicking a clone of Ridley, which Samus had encountered previously in Metroid: Other M.
The first time Samus sees the corpse of the Ridley clone, it is frozen inside the Sub-Zero Containment room on the Main Deck. After the station loses power, Samus enters the back of this room while making her way back to her ship. As she approaches the clone's frozen remains, his eyes suddenly glow, recalling the original Ridley's previous encounters with Samus in Super Metroid. Instead of coming to life and attacking Samus, however, the clone shatters as a Core-X leaves his body and flies away.
As Samus continues exploring the station, she encounters what appears to be the Ridley clone's dry and rotting corpse in the Tourian-like section of SRX. As she approaches, the clone's eyes glow once more before the X Parasite mimicking it morphs into the being known as Neo-Ridley. This "new" Ridley has a considerably altered physical appearance from the original Ridley, including enlarged talons; this is most likely due to the Core-X attempting to create a more efficient Ridley in the same way that Arachnus-X had improved the original Arachnus' capabilities.
Link to Metroid: Other MEdit
The presence of both an X-infected Ridley and Zebesian Space Pirates onboard the BSL station was considered enigmatic after Fusion's release, given that the Pirates were thoroughly routed and Ridley was permanently defeated in Super Metroid. The official Fusion web site indicated that the pirates were onboard the station on a marauding mission, which initially suggested they were not Federation-preserved specimens as has often been conjectured by fans. The events portrayed in the later-released Metroid: Other M, which chronologically takes place before Fusion, clarify this mystery: after Ridley's clone was killed by the Queen Metroid and became a dried, rotting corpse, the Galactic Federation intervened in the game's ending. When Samus returns to the BOTTLE SHIP some time later, the corpse had vanished. The Federation would eventually send the Ridley clone's remains to the BSL station to be preserved.
Considerable evidence supports the conclusions made by Other M; for example, the Ridley clone's corpse in Other M is similar in color to the X-mimic in Fusion. Also, Ridley's clone would have been extremely fragile after being drained by the Queen Metroid, which certainly explains why the frozen corpse shatters when the Core-X leaves it. This theory is further supported by the presence of another specimen, codenamed Nightmare, aboard the BSL station; Nightmare was also originally encountered on the BOTTLE SHIP and could easily have been transferred to the BSL in the same manner as the Ridley clone. The presence of Zebesian Space Pirates in both titles makes it unclear if the previously-mentioned marauding mission (likely to recover Ridley's corpse) was retconned out of existence, as the cloned variants featured in Other M could have been transferred to the BSL as well. Samus Aran also believed that the Space Pirates were completely destroyed after the explosion of Zebes, making it a more likely explanation.
Neo-Ridley will attempt to ram himself into Samus, try to grab Samus with his talons, and shoot gigantic homing fireballs from his mouth. He also uses his classic tail attacks first seen in Super Metroid, which involve spinning his tail (serving as an offensive and defensive measure), whipping it towards Samus and using it in a manner similar to a pogo-stick. His large size makes it difficult for Samus to evade him, requiring her to do a fair amount of maneuvering. All the battle involves is repeatedly firing Diffusion Missiles or the Charge Beam against the creature, considering that unlike most powerful enemies Samus faces, Neo-Ridley does not have a specific weak spot. The Charge Beam is the preferred method as it contains the Plasma Beam; this allows it to pass through Ridley and causes continuous damage. When dealt with massive damage, he'll utter an long shriek while having his eyes shut.
As he takes more damage, Neo-Ridley will change colors from blue to purple to red. Once Neo-Ridley is defeated, he will transform into a Core-X like almost every other boss on the BSL station. Once Samus absorbs the Core-X, she obtains the Screw Attack, the second-to-last power-up on the station.
- The sprites for the Ridley clone's original form prior to its transformation into Neo-Ridley (the frozen corpse and the X-mimicked "rotting" body found in Sector 1) seem to be directly based off of the Super Metroid Ridley sprite art.
- Metroid Fusion: The Official Nintendo Player's Guide depicts in the "X Collection" feature an image of Samus fighting a Core-X in a room resembling a blue version of Neo-Ridley's room, suggesting this was a beta screenshot.
- When Ridley's clone is frozen, his eyes glow as they did in Super Metroid (and on the later-released Corruption and Other M), suggesting that he was temporarily resurrected by the X. The corpse seen later in SRX also has his eyes glow, however at that point it is the X Parasite mimicking the clone of Ridley.
- For unknown reasons, the Core-X that infected the body locked in the Sub-Zero Containment room initially takes the form of the dried body seen near the end of Other M before transforming into Neo Ridley.
- Neo Ridley is the only boss in Metroid Fusion that does not seem to use the upgrade that Samus acquires from him after the battle. However, Ridley's spinning fireballs and/or his extremely flexible (and invulnerable) tail might be a way of demonstrating the Screw Attack. He also used these abilities in Super Metroid and Metroid: Zero Mission.
- It is unknown whether or not Ridley's clone from Other M retained any memories of Samus Aran from the original Ridley. If he did, Neo-Ridley would have subsequently inherited all of these memories as well, since the X Parasites are known to acquire their hosts' memories. Regardless, Neo-Ridley assuredly obtained the clone's memories of the events that transpired on the BOTTLE SHIP.
- Omega Ridley is also the antepenultimate (third from last) boss in Metroid Prime 3: Corruption and both have been infected with a form of harmful substance. Their facial structures are also similar.
- Curiously, Neo-Ridley's head structure heavily resembles both of Ridley's forms' seen in Corruption (Meta Ridley and Omega Ridley).
- Neo-Ridley's battle music is remixed for the escape theme that plays immediately after setting the BSL station's propulsion sequence. Battle theme Escape theme
- Neo-Ridley is notorious for his loud screams throughout the entire battle, especially when taking damage. The screams sound similar to that of a parrot. These screams were later reused for the actual Ridley in Zero Mission.
- Neo-Ridley's sprite is so big compared to other bosses, it actually makes the Game Boy Advance lag slightly during the fight.
Little Birdie • Mystery Creature • Clone • Neo-Ridley
Fake Ridley • Ridley-2 • Ice Ridley
Ultrathermal Flamestrike Projector
Multi-Missile System • Phazon-enhanced armorskin
Vs. Meta Ridley/Meta Ridley • Omega Ridley