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The Space Pirates are a terrorist group in the Metroid universe. The term "Space Pirate" refers both to a member of the organization as well as a member of the actual species. They are sometimes incorrectly called "Zebesians" in the original game and Super Metroid, even though they are not native to Zebes.
In all games, the Pirates are bipedal lizard-like creatures about six feet tall. They usually wear armor and have laser cannons attached to their arms or in between their claws. In Metroid Prime, they wield vibro-blades on their left arm. In Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, they wear Phazon armor, but appear to die just as easily as before.
The Space Pirates are a species (although their actual species name is unknown) of reptilian creatures who took up arms against the Galactic Federation when it was formed. Their unnamed homeworld makes an appearance in Metroid Prime 3. Although mentioned in the original game, they do not actually appear. They appear for the first time in Super Metroid. The Pirates in the 2D games are capable of climbing on walls and jumping high, but these acrobatic traits do not appear to have been carried over to the 3D games.
In Super Metroid and Metroid Fusion, there are special gold Pirates who can only be harmed from behind. In Super Metroid, there are grey Pirates who use melee attacks instead of projectiles. These Pirates guard Ridley's lair, and have been nicknamed "Kung Fu Pirates." In Metroid Fusion, there are Aquapirates, who have fins and swim underwater. In Metroid: Zero Mission, there are powerful grey troopers similar to the Kung Fu Pirates. In Metroid Prime, there are many specialized troopers. There are Flying Pirates (who return in Primes 2 and 3) who use jetpacks and attempt to dive bomb Samus as they die, Beam Troopers, who each use a beam based on one of Samus's (Power Troopers, Wave Troopers, Ice Troopers, and Plasma Troopers) but can be killed by the same type of weapon, and Shadow Pirates, who possess cloaking technology. There are also Elite Pirates, who have been enlarged and mutated by Phazon. In Metroid Prime 2, there are Pirate Grenadiers, who use Grenade Launchers, and Pirate Commandos, who have shield generators, EMP launchers, and short range jetpacks. The Ing can possess a Pirate or Commando to make a Dark Pirate or Dark Pirate Commando. In Metroid Prime 3, there are Berserker Lords, Pirates who are very similar to Elites in both appearance and attacks. Samus kills one as the first boss onboard the Olympus. Ghor is seen fighting one in a cutscene, and a Galactic Federation Marine kills one using his P.E.D. Suit's powers.
In Metroid Prime, there are two unique, singular Pirates. One is the Phazon Elite, an Elite Pirate further mutated by Phazon who guards a Chozo Artifact. The boss of the Phazon Mines is the Omega Pirate, an enormous Phazon mutated Pirate with Phazon shoulder and knee pads that must be broken to fight the boss. Many fans consider the Omega Pirate to be one of the hardest boss battles in the series. In Metroid Prime Hunters, the character Weavel is a former high ranking Space Pirate who was injured in an altercation with Samus and rebuilt with cybernetic enhancements. He can seperate his torso and legs, using his lower half as a turret while his upper half attacks with his arm-mounted scythe. The Pirate Commander is a new character in Metroid Prime 3, a boss towards the end of the game.
The Pirate command hierarchy is a subject of confusion due to conflicting sources within the game. Normal Pirates and their varients make up the lower ranks, with unique soldiers like the Omega Pirate being higher up. Ridley is the leader of all invasions and battles and could be considered the leader, but Mother Brain is also called the leader in some games (see Ridley's position in the Pirate hierarchy). A High Command is mentioned in Metroid Prime, as they gave the order to rebuild Ridley after his death in the original game.
The Pirates' ruthless natures make them avoid alliances, but in Metroid Prime 3 they ally themselves with Dark Samus, their enemy during Metroid Prime 2, due to how both have a need for Phazon.
|Metroid Prime 3: Corruption|
|Samus Aran - Dark Samus - Ridley - Rundas - Gandrayda - Ghor|
|Items - Creatures - Locations - Aurora Unit - Galactic Federation - Space Pirates - Phazon|