The X-Ray Visor is a Visor upgrade that can be collected in Metroid Prime and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption. It uses X-rays to see in situations where the visible spectrum of light may prove inadequate.
In Metroid Prime
The X-Ray Visor can be used to spot invisible enemies, even those that don't appear to the Thermal Visor, and it also allows Samus to see through human flesh (when she lifts her arm in front of the visor, her hand's skeleton can be seen), Bendezium, Cordite, and Sandstone. The disadvantages to the visor include its monochrome image, which can make it difficult to differentiate between several objects or enemies, and its very low visibility range. Enemies that can be tracked with the X-Ray Visor include Flickerbats and the Chozo Ghosts.
In Metroid Prime 3: Corruption
The X-Ray visor appears in Metroid Prime 3: Corruption with a revamped look. While most objects are varying shades of blue, the heat signatures of some objects appear to be visible as an orange tint, much like when Samus uses the Thermal Visor from Metroid Prime. Power-ups are also visible while using the X-Ray Visor, which can be useful if Samus is searching for any power-ups in the surrounding area.
The material Phazite is penetrable by X-rays, allowing Samus' visor to see through it. This, when used in combination with the Nova Beam, a beam weapon that can pass through Phazite, is very helpful. If this visor is used in conjunction with the Nova Beam, Samus can target the weak spots of certain enemies (such as the brains of Pirate Commandos and Berserker Knights and the internal nuclei of Phazon Metroids and Metroid Hatchers) for a one-hit-kill. Collecting the visor makes certain devices usable as well, such as the code locks scattered across the Pirate Homeworld.
However, this version of the X-Ray Visor still retains the weaknesses of its previous incarnation: enemies and some objects will appear in monochrome, making it difficult to notice weapons and attacks. Enemies without weak points will also become harder to see with the visor active. Finally, if a nearby enemy enters Hyper Mode while Samus is using the X-Ray Visor, it will overload the visor and fill the HUD with static.
Metroid Prime manual
"After Samus tracks down the X-Ray Visor, she'll be able to peer through walls to find hidden passages and even see hidden objects. This visor also helps track any enemies that use optical camouflage to render themselves invisible to the naked eye. As with the Thermal Visor, the X-Ray Visor can often identify alternate means of attacking foes."
Official Metroid Prime website
"The X-Ray Visor upgrades Samus Aran's Heads Up Display with the ability to see through certain types of materials. Samus uses the X-Ray visor to reveal invisible enemies, areas and items. Caution is used around robotic enemies, which can jam the X-Ray Visor's frequency."
- The X-Ray Visor was preceded by a similar upgrade in Super Metroid, the X-Ray Scope. This item allowed Samus to see through false walls and water as well as see invisible walls, special blocks, and hidden items. The Dark Visor in Metroid Prime 2: Echoes is also very similar to the X-Ray Visor, especially when compared to its appearance in Corruption.
- In Corruption, there appears to be an in-game joke (pictured right). When the X-Ray Visor is collected, Samus stares right at the screen as though she could see through it and watch the player, seeming to break the fourth wall. She also makes a faint gasp during the cutscene.
- Also in Corruption, due to the increasing levels of Phazon within Samus that cause sections of the Power Suit to gradually turn more and more blue each time a Leviathan Guardian is killed, many fans tend to mistake her visor's color change from green to blue as a result of the X-Ray Visor upgrade; the actual cause is the high amount of Phazon within Samus at the time she finds the visor. In fact, when the first Leviathan guardian is defeated, during the cutscene when Samus takes off her helmet to vomit and then puts it back on, a close-up shows that her visor is already a cyan-turquoise colour. Players may be fooled because Samus' visor briefly turns green when she gets the X-Ray Visor, and then changes back to blue.
- In Metroid Prime, the X-Ray Visor reveals that Samus changes her Arm Cannon's beam types by positioning her fingers in a shape resembling the symbol of the weapon in question. To see this, the background must be an area mostly devoid of machinery (such as the root tower in the Tallon Overworld) since machinery appears white like Samus's bones, while organic material appears mostly dark. The configurations for each of her beams are: fingers close together with thumb and pinkie apart for the Power Beam, fingers spread apart for the Wave Beam, middle and ring retracted with index and pinkie erect for the Ice Beam, and fingers close together and slightly curled for the Plasma Beam.
- A graphical glitch was introduced in the Wii versions of the game (featuring motion sensing controls): using the X-Ray visor reveals that Samus's hand is not affected by recoil when firing the Arm Cannon, and remains still, although the cannon is pushed back. A Charge Beam shot can even make the hand clip outside of the cannon (best seen with the Wave Beam).
- It is easier to see Samus's hand in the Arm Cannon using the X-Ray Visor in Corruption, because in this version, living objects glow red on the X-Ray Visor, and therefore Samus' hand is instantly recognizable from the Arm Cannon material surrounding it. However, since this game uses a beam-stacking system, Samus does not change the position of her hand. It is also possible see that Samus fires the Arm Cannon by pulling some sort of trigger within the cannon.
- In Corruption, it would appear that several or all Space Pirates also possess an X-Ray Visor (or some alternative) as several random code terminals on their Homeworld require the Visor to be used at all. It is also possible that Space Pirates are able to see slightly further into the needed spectrums of light than the human eye without the use of a Visor.
- When playing Corruption in either Veteran or Hypermode difficulty, Samus will be unable to use the X-Ray Visor on Pirate Commandos with their Hypermode activated, for all she will get is static interference. This makes it very difficult to quickly kill the Commandos with Nova Beam Head Shots. However there is a way to work around this problem: Samus can lock on the Commandos with the Combat Visor and then switch to the X-Ray Visor without releasing the lock-on. The visor will still have static but the zoom will lock on to the weak spot.
- The Corruption X-Ray Visor is the only non-default visor.
| Combat Visor | Scan Visor | Thermal Visor | X-Ray Visor|
Dark Visor | Echo Visor | Command Visor
Hacker Mode | X-Ray Scope | Search View
|Metroid Prime||Spazer Beam • Screw Attack • Speed Booster|
|Metroid Prime Hunters||Power Bomb|
|Metroid Prime 2: Echoes||Thermal Visor • X-Ray Visor • Wave Beam • Wavebuster • Ice Beam • Gravity Suit • Ice Spreader • Plasma Beam • Flamethrower • Absorb Attack • Dark and Light Shields|
|Metroid Prime 3: Corruption||Ship Grapple Expansion|
|Super Metroid||Long Beam|
|Metroid: Other M||Gravity Suit (purple)|
|Metroid Fusion||Fusion Suit (black) • Grappling Beam • Spazer Beam|