Could Metroid Prime 4 Be Releasing in 2018?

Metroid Prime 4 could be out sooner than you think. While it’s a no-brainer that Nintendo’s bombshell of an announcement at E3 this year was certainly one of the more talked-about bits of news coming out of the event, details on the series’ first foray on Nintendo’s new console, the Switch, have been fairly thin. Outside of confirmation that Retro Studios wouldn’t be behind the game’s development.

But it appears Charlie Scibetta, Nintendo of America’s head of Corporate Communication, may have provided a key piece of new information that Nintendo themselves haven’t yet discussed. In an interview with VentureBeat, Scibetta was asked about the company’s plans for the remainder of the year and beyond — specifically 2018. “We’ve announced a nice lineup through this year, and next year we have some big games coming with Metroid [Prime] 4,” he explains. “2018 will be around Metroid, Kirby, Yoshi, new Pokemon game has been announced [sic]. We feel good about the lineup for this year and beyond.”

As you may know, the original trailer announcing Metroid Prime 4 to the World, stated that the game was currently in development, which may have been a subtle way of saying that the release date was still some way off. And given previously anticipated titles like Kingdom Hearts 3 debuted with a trailer back in 2013 — stating the game had commenced development — as well as games like Final Fantasy VII Remake & Shenmue 3 offering small (if any) pieces of new information since their reveals in 2015 respectively, is it any surprise that the words “in development” may scare some people off speculating a release was roughly nearby?

Granted, that’s an eighteen month window roughly until the Holiday of next year. Even still, if true, could we be seeing actual gameplay and more specific details for a title that has long been anticipated and, in some people’s eyes, long overdue in the coming months, not years? Don’t forget, Metroid will be returning this year before Prime 4 in Metroid: Samus Returns — a remake of the original Metroid 2 on Game Boy — when it releases on 3DS September 15.