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This article refers to the recurring boss. For other uses of the name Ridley, see Ridley (Disambiguation).
Ridley
Ridley zerom
Official artwork of Ridley as he appears in Metroid: Zero Mission.
Species Unknown ("Space Dragon" in non-canon media)
Homeworld Zebes[1]
Born Prior to Metroid.
Reborn through cloning in Metroid: Other M.
Death Super Metroid
Metroid: Other M (Clone)
Metroid Fusion (X Parasite clone)
Gender Male
Eye color Yellow, orange, yellow-green (varies between appearances)
Affiliation Space Pirate military commander.
Kill as much as you want! Have fun!

—Ridley

Ridley (リドリー Ridorī?) is a high-ranking Space Pirate, the archenemy of Samus Aran, and one of the most common recurring characters in the Metroid series, appearing in almost every Metroid game with the exception of Metroid II: Return of Samus, Metroid Prime 2: Echoes, and Metroid Prime Hunters. Ridley's appearance is considered similar to a skeletal dragon with glowing eyes. Ridley is known for being very defiant and persistent; though Samus has defeated him many times, he always manages to return and do battle with her, either through his healing abilities or robotic enhancements. As such, Ridley is fittingly referred to as the Cunning God of Death in his Zero Mission official art. Ridley is considered the main antagonist of the series, despite not typically acting as such in any individual games.

Despite his fearsome and bestial appearance, Ridley is known to be highly intelligent and is shown to even be capable of speaking in the manga; with his intelligence, he was also evidently capable of building a synthetic construct made in his own image. He is known to have a bloodthirsty personality and takes great personal enjoyment in destruction. Though he often appears in different forms, through scans found in the Metroid Prime sub-series and events portrayed in Metroid: Other M, it is confirmed that every incarnation of Ridley before both the latter game and Metroid Fusion is indeed the same being (save for the Ridley Robot), from the Metroid to Corruption and Super Metroid despite his multiple defeats, some of which involve his body exploding. In most games he appears in, he has been the penultimate or antepenultimate boss, save for Zero Mission and Other M; however, the Ridley Robot is the final boss in the former game.

The manga also has revealed that Ridley is extremely adept at survival. Ridley was apparently capable of healing his wounds by eating human flesh, as illustrated in the manga in a part where he claimed that he survived the destruction of his flagship by consuming the bodies and cells of the dead humans in K-2L.

Biography

Main article: Biography of Ridley

Boss Battles

Metroid/Zero Mission

In Metroid for the Famicom Disk System and Nintendo Entertainment System, Ridley is located in his subterranean base, Mini-Boss hideout II. In his debut, Ridley is about Samus' height, if slightly taller, and merely hops around throwing zigzagging fireballs at her. Samus can use any weapon her Power Suit possesses to damage him. His fireballs however are indestructible and excel as a defense mechanism, destroying any long-range weapon and nullifying the blast from Bombs on contact. Once Samus defeats him, 75 missiles are added to her maximum amount. He is one of Zebes' guardians that must be defeated in order to activate the bridge to Tourian.

Zeromissionridley

Samus battles Ridley in his lair, in Metroid: Zero Mission.

In Zero Mission, Ridley, looking more like his later appearances, is instead initially offworld at the time Samus infiltrates the base, but returns with his ship by the time she reaches Lower Norfair. Ridley is much taller and more agile than in the original Metroid. He flies around and tries to kill Samus with his "classic attacks" first seen in Super Metroid, though are noticeably far less chaotic and his tail is less maneuverable. Ridley will often spit out different-sized fireballs in a variety of ways, but these can be destroyed with any weapon. He is also capable of using his crushing grip and fireballs in a combined form to heavily damage Samus. When she defeats him, she is allowed to leave with the Unknown Item she had obtained just before the battle.

Ridley Robot, created in the creature's likeness, guards the Space Pirate Mother Ship. The Robot serves as the end boss of Zero Mission. After Samus explores the Mothership, the nearby Chozo ruins, and recovers her lost Power Suit, she eventually stumbles upon the mechanized version of Ridley which she must destroy in order to leave the ship. After its destruction, it activates a self-destruct mechanism that obliterates the Mothership.

Super Metroid

Metroid ridley

Ridley in Super Metroid.

Ridley is first fought in the Ceres Space Colony, carrying the last Metroid in his claws. He uses the same attacks as his later encounter, but neither he nor Samus can be defeated - after he or Samus takes a certain amount of damage, Ridley escapes the colony with the Metroid and goes back to Zebes.

Samus fights Ridley again in his lair in the depths of Norfair. He is one of the four bosses that must be defeated to unlock access to Tourian. Unlike his previous forms, Meta Ridley and Omega Ridley, the space dragon is vulnerable to many different types of weapons, from any angle. However, Ridley can use his invulnerable tail to shield himself against any attack, including breaking through the near invincible Screw Attack. In addition to defense, he uses his tail for unique offensive attacks, many of which would be seen in future releases of Metroid games, such as the whip and pogo stick-like attacks. Body slams, indestructible fireballs and damaging grips are also used in battle. With no weak points or special tactics available, Samus must simply dodge Ridley's attacks while landing hits of her own - it takes 30 Super Missiles to bring the monster down.

When defeated in Norfair, Ridley's body combusts and breaks apart, with every individual piece disintegrating into ash. After Samus kills Mother Brain, 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 survived all his defeats chronologically taking place prior to Super Metroid.

Metroid: Other M

Samus grasped by Ridley Plasma Beam charge Geothermal Power Plant Pyrosphere HD

Samus battles Ridley's clone.

Samus tracks a Mystery Creature that molted from Little birdie into the Geothermal Power Plant in an effort to finish it off, believing that it has metamorphosed into a more powerful form after finding a second molted skin. The creature emerges from the shadows as Ridley, and Samus battles him once more.

Like his predecessor, the Ridley clone is equipped with some of the original's "classic" attacks, as well as a few new moves of his own. His main form of attack is to swipe Samus with his claws, as well as whip her with his tail. Both attacks can be dodged with the SenseMove. Ridley will also breathe a short-ranged burst of flame if Samus is close enough, and can also charge up a large stream of fire. Ridley's most devastating attack is to charge at Samus and, if successful, drag her along the wall (reminiscent of his battle in Super Smash Bros. Brawl), causing major damage (this attack can be predicted as he will raise his left hand to grab her). After this, Ridley will stop for a moment and prepares to breathe fire at her at point-blank range to knock her back onto the battlefield and deal more damage to her, though this allows Samus to fire a charged shot at him.

Ridley also has two aerial attacks at his disposal. His first move consists of stabbing the Hunter with his tail, then attempting to crush her from above. Well-timed SenseMoves can dodge this assault. His other attack consists of charging up a huge fireball and firing it at the center of the arena, creating a large shockwave that must be jumped over.

Once Samus has inflicted enough damage to Ridley, the Pirate leader will fall over, stunned and vulnerable to a Lethal Strike, where Samus grabs hold of Ridley and fires a charged shot down his throat. After performing a Lethal Strike, Ridley will immediately counter with a new move: he will harden his skin and gain a darker look, rendering him invulnerable to Samus' Plasma Beam shots. Samus can either wait until the effect wears off or fire a Super Missile at him, returning him to normal immediately. After hardening his skin, he will immediately fly up to unleash a fireball to the ground, though while he hardens his skin Samus can charge and fire a Super Missile at him before he can fly.

Interestingly, as Ridley takes damage, his body becomes more and more ravaged. Once Ridley has taken sufficient damage, he will fall over, unconscious, but quickly gets back up and escapes, where he is later killed by a Queen Metroid.

Personality and traits

While Ridley is commonly misinterpreted by players as a destructive beast, the official Metroid manga delved a great deal deeper into the persona of the Space Pirate General. Ridley first appeared in chapter one, where his violent disposition and love of death and destruction are made apparent when he orders his entire legion of Space Pirates to annihilate the peaceful inhabitants of K2-L as he looked on. His ability for cruelty is further made concrete in the manga, when he attempts to kill a small girl who tries to befriend him; killing her mother while trying to shield the child. He, like many of his Space Pirate brethren, also believes in the superiority of certain races over others, counting himself among the privileged elite species and seeing the "lower" races as something only to exterminate.

Despite these bloodthirsty tendencies, Ridley has shown to be an intelligent and competent battle tactician, orchestrating a great many successful battles, as well as proving a serious threat on his own. Interestingly, his traits as a competent leader seem to even be on a genetic level, as his clone, who was raised without any education (making him feral), was seemingly leading various creatures into attacking Adam Malkovich's squad while he handled Samus alone in his adolescent form. However, his quick temper and his arrogant belief that nothing can defeat him often undermines these qualities, leading to a great many defeats for him as well.

Ridley also seems to grudgingly show respect to those that are natural at commanding others, such as when Gray Voice is ordering the Pirate Troops to their battle stations; Ridley, taken aback, smirks at being told by Gray Voice to attend to his job and sarcastically addresses him as "Sir Military Commander" when he flies off.

He has also frequently displayed a very sadistic sense of humor, evidenced by his various comments against Samus upon their first meeting since K2-L. Ridley even goes so far as to taunt her by saying that he may have eaten and incorporated the cells of her mother's corpse into his body and sardonically wonders what part her cells reside in. He then proceeds to bring his foot down on Samus, angrily saying "At least pay your respects!"; referring to her dead mother, showing just how much joy he takes in the suffering of others. This sadism can also be seen in Other M, as the cloned Ridley appears to toy with Samus before being interrupted by Anthony.

While they have speaking roles in the manga and comics, Ridley and the Space Pirates have never displayed this ability in-game. A likely explanation is that the sounds Ridley and the Pirates make in-game are the Space Pirate language, translated for the reader's benefit in the manga.

Powers and abilities

Orpheon screenshot 16

Meta Ridley, escaping the Frigate Orpheon.

Ridley has proven to be a fierce opponent in battle. While fighting hand-to-hand, Ridley primarily makes use of his lethal claws, talons, and tail. Ridley is also capable of breathing plasma in battle, either in the form of large fireballs, or a large stream. His wings enable him to fly at fast speeds to outrun opponents. Ridley also possesses physical strength sufficient enough to grab Samus with one hand and drag her along the wall, as evident in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Metroid: Other M. He is also shown to be adept at survival, able to heal himself by consuming others and incorporating their cells into his body.[2] In Metroid: Other M, Ridley's clone displays the ability to change the pigments of his skin and harden it, making him immune to Samus' beam attacks. While in this hardened state, Ridley's attacks also gain greater speed and strength. He also appears invisible or camouflaged when encountered in Super Metroid, also likely an ability resulting from his ability to change the pigments of his skin.

Ridley is infamous for his uncanny ability to cheat death on many occasions. He is referred to as the "Cunning God of Death" in the official artwork of Zero Mission. Notable occasions of this are:

  • His survival of the destruction of K2-L by consuming the bodies of the dead humans, according to the manga.
  • His "resurrection" as Meta Ridley following his first defeat on Zebes.
  • Having survived his fall on the Impact Crater by seemingly fusing with Phazon and later transformed into Omega Ridley after his defeat on Norion.
  • In Super Metroid, he returns with a purely organic body with no traces of Phazon.
  • He is unintentionally cloned by the Galactic Federation.
  • An X Parasite mimics his DNA, transforming him into Neo-Ridley.

Official data

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?" [1]

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!!!"

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."

Super Metroid manual

"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."

Official Metroid: Zero Mission website

RidleyZMsite

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"

Cameo appearances

Komayto
"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 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, who is of his own species, after Mother Brain had all of her own crimes reattributed to Princess Lana. Packs of creatures similar to him attack the heroes on Metroid in the episodes Metroid, Sweet Metroid and GameBoy.
  • 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 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.
  • Ridley appears in Nintendo Land as an animatronic boss in Metroid Blast, and as a prize. 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."

Super Smash Bros. series

Sbshot ridley

Planet Zebes background cameo.

Sb2shot 03

Super Smash Bros. Melee website.

Super Smash Bros.

In Super Smash Bros., Ridley appears occasionally in the background of Planet Zebes. His appearance is based off of his Super Metroid sprite. 

Super Smash Bros. Melee

In Super Smash Bros. Melee, Ridley makes a brief appearance in the opening cutscene. In a homage to Super Metroid, he is shown breaking through a wall and confronting Samus in a corridor, with the capsule containing the Metroid Hatchling in his talons. He also has a trophy in the game.

Trophy

"The head of the Space Pirates on Zebes, Ridley soars through space on wicked wings. Ridley may look like a mindless monster, but he's actually quite intelligent. After the SR-388 incident, where Samus captured the infant Metroid, Ridley took the Space Academy by storm, annihilating the complex and taking the Metroid back."

Super Smash Bros. Brawl

RidleySSBB

Ridley as he appears in Super Smash Bros. Brawl.

Ridley appears as a member of the Subspace Army and a boss during the Subspace Emissary, fighting Samus and Pikachu at the end of the second Research Facility level. In the cutscene prior to the battle, Ridley ambushes and grabs Samus, flying upward and scraping her along the walls. Pikachu breaks Samus free from Ridley's grasp using Thunder. In the first battle, Ridley has higher health and uses moves ranging from claw swipes to a move similar to Rayquaza's Extremespeed to a tail swipe across the entire stage. The tail swipe can do major damage (The move can do around 70% damage if the other person is at 0% damage) on harder difficulties and the extreme speed move is a main killing move. He flies from one side to the other and is similar in style to Master Hand in the way of how it attacks and then pauses.

Ridley later attacks Donkey Kong, Diddy Kong, Captain Falcon, Captain Olimar, Samus, Pikachu, and R.O.B. as they are all escaping on the Falcon Flyer. In this fight, he is in his "Meta Ridley" form from Metroid Prime as he pursues. His attacks include firing missiles and energy beams from his mouth, diving at the player, and pounding on the Falcon Flyer in an attempt to send the player off-screen. During this fight, the player has only two minutes to defeat Meta Ridley.

Ridley is later resurrected by Tabuu, the main villain of the game, to fight the player in The Great Maze (oddly, Ridley and Meta Ridley are both resurrected as separate beings).

Ridley was and still is highly requested as a playable character in the Super Smash Bros. series. On the Japanese website, he was the second-most requested character behind King Dedede.[3] However, some fans argue he is too large to be playable and to include him would mean scaling him down in size. The contentious nature of Ridley has spawned the "Ridley is too big" meme.[4] Masahiro Sakurai himself commented on the idea of a playable Ridley in an interview with Nintendo Power:

I think that would probably be pretty impossible. [Laughs] If we had put our best efforts into it, we may have been able to do it. But he might have been a little slow. Would that be all right? [Laughs]

Hacking has uncovered data of Ridley as an Assist Trophy. This was likely scrapped in favor of making him a boss.

Trophy

"The leader of the Space Pirates. He looks like a pterosaur but has high intelligence and a brutal nature. He plans to steal the baby Metroid from Samus for his own use. Ridley utilizes wings for a full range of flight and attacks with fireballs from his mouth and whips of his tail. As the culprit behind the murder of Samus's parents, the connections with Samus run deep."

Metroid(1986) Super Metroid (1994)

Meta Ridley: '"The meta form of Ridley, revived using the Space Pirates' genetic engineering and cybernetic technologies. His thin chest plate--and weak point--is protected by a highly resistant membrane. Meta Ridley is highly mobile and features a multimissile system, a bomb launcher, and powerful wings. Ice attacks are particularly effective in dealing damage to him.

Metroid Prime (2002)

Stickers in Brawl

Super Smash Bros. for Wii U

Ridley SSB4

Unusually, Ridley does not appear in any capacity in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS, not even as a trophy.

It was implied by Masahiro Sakurai that an enemy of Samus' would appear on the Pyrosphere stage. The April 2014 Nintendo Direct featured Ridley's shadow, which suggested that he is to appear as a stage hazard on the Geothermal Power Plant similar to Dead or Alive: Dimensions. This was confirmed as true on October 23, when a "50 Must See Things" video was released showing Ridley. Ridley is an AI character that can be "recruited" by a fighter if enough damage is dealt by that fighter, though it is also possible to KO Ridley (even if he is working with the fighter that KOs him), and he will count as a KO in the final match results. The head icon used for Ridley in these results is taken from his Brawl artwork. Ridley spawns FG-1000s, Joulions and Zero. Ridley can consume energy from the purple pods on either side of the main stage platform, if enough damage is dealt, to become "Meta Ridley" (actually just Ridley flashing and with more powerful attacks).

A battle with Ridley and "Dark Samus" is simulated in the event match Galactic Avenger, which involves Samus killing the two on Pyrosphere to "avenge my parents".

Non-canon warning: Non-canonical information ends here.

Trivia

Ridleymzm

Development Room concept art.

Japan Baby Ridley

Super Metroid commercial.

  • Ridley's name is likely derived from Ridley Scott, the director of the first film of the Alien film series, from which Metroid games are stated to have taken a lot of inspiration. His first appearance in Metroid also resembles to the Alien creatures from the same series. Throughout the series, Ridley's tail resembles that of the Alien creatures.
  • In every 2-D game he is involved in, Ridley's fireballs have an uncanny resemblance to Mario's 2-D fireballs. Whether or not this similarity is intentional is unknown. Additionally, Ridley's fireballs are invulnerable to all of Samus's weapons in Metroid, Super Metroid and Fusion. However, in Corruption and Zero Mission, his fireballs could be easily destroyed, and sometimes yield pick-ups.
  • Ridley, Mother Brain, the Omega Metroid in Fusion and Dark Samus share the distinction of having bested Samus in a fight by canon. In the Super Metroid intro, Ridley is able to incapacitate Samus long enough to steal the last Metroid and accomplish his mission, though Samus can somewhat defeat Ridley. The result is Ridley losing his grip on the baby's canister and dropping it, but quickly grabs it again and flees.
  • Ridley is capable of bipedalism, shown in Corruption in the cutscene at the beginning of the battle, when Omega Ridley walks up to Samus and attempts to bite her and in the second phase of the battle: once she destroys the joints on his Phazite armor and his weak spot is exposed, he stands on two feet and clumsily walks around swiping at Samus as she blasts his chest with Phazon energy from Hypermode. Also, in Metroid Prime, he stumbles on two legs as the Chozo spirits blast at his exposed chest cavity. However, he also stands on his two feet during the battle when Samus fires a round into his mouth exposing his chest. While preparing his charge attack, he stands on his feet as well. In Other: M he is also seen standing on two legs while roaring at or grabbing Samus, he also moves on two legs while trying to swipe at her with his arms.
  • In all of his 2-D appearances, his wings are curiously smaller than his body size, logically making them unlikely to even lift Ridley off the ground, and yet he soars through the air with ease (even his X-Parasite mimic). His 3-D appearances and manga rectify this mystery by giving him wings that exceed his main body. This is likely to prevent him from taking up most of the screen in his fights.
  • 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.
  • The Lethal Strike Samus uses on Ridley in Other M is very similar to the way she defeats Meta Ridley in Corruption: both times she grabs him and fires into his throat.
  • Ridley's signature music 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.
  • Meta Ridley can be seen on Nintendo Monopoly representing Tennessee Avenue for $180, though the property is simply referred to as "Ridley".
  • Zero Mission concept art shows a new form of Ridley known as Ridley-2 (or perhaps Ridley-Z). This form has an extra clawed hand on the tip of his tail, and his arms and wings are merged.
  • 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 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; although 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, including the Alien creatures. However, Ridley's blood is shown to be red in Corruption during the boss battle on Norion before he falls down the shaft.
  • Despite being shown to be a male through the logbook scans in Metroid Prime, Retro Studios designer Mike Sneath refers to Ridley as a female. In the original Metroid manual, Ridley is referred to as an "it".
  • Other M reveals that Ridley's vision is tinted green, possibly as a result of nictitating membranes that cover and protect his eyes.
  • Throughout his appearances, Ridley had at least three different vocalizations. In Super Metroid, his vocalizations were based on that of a bird of prey such as a falcon or a hawk. In Metroid Fusion and Metroid: Zero Mission, Ridley (or in the case of Fusion, Neo-Ridley) gave shrieks similar to a parrot (these vocalizations are notorious for their loud volume). In both the Metroid Prime subseries and Super Smash Bros. Brawl, he was given a typical dragon's roar.
  • An unused Fake Ridley, similar to Mini-Kraid exists in the data for Metroid.
  • Judging by all past games, Ridley could very well be the smallest of the Space Pirate Commanders, as Phantoon was massive in Other M, Kraid was shown to huge in Super Metroid and Zero MissionDraygon appears to be slightly larger, and Mother Brain's main body in Super Metroid significantly adds to her height.

Appearances

MOMcommercial

Metroid: Other M commercial

Crossover Appearances

Nintendoland

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

  • Money Changes Everything (Mentioned)
  • Breakout
  • When Friends Fall Out (Flashback)
  • Super Nostalgic Entertainment System

Gallery

For concept art, see Ridley's Gallery.


References


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