Nintendo surprised the masses at this week's Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles when it announced the first new “Metroid” game in five years, called “Metroid Prime Federation Force” for the Nintendo 3DS. Longtime fans were divided about a decision to drop legendary protagonist Samus Aran from the game: Some fans were excited about the change, while others wanted nothing to do with it.

Perhaps the biggest change in “Metroid Prime Fedaration Force” is the focus on multiplayer gameplay. While other games have had co-op modes before, this is the first “Metroid” game with a primary focus on the multiplayer mode, as reported by GameSpot.

The game has players making a team of four and battling a number of monsters that have long been in “Metroid” lore. It is up to the team to clear out the enemy bases and complete various objective-based missions in the game, though what those missions are is currently unknown.

Various gameplay shots from the official Nintendo website have shown that the game doesn’t look much different from a typical game of “Metroid Prime,” aside from the controversial multiplayer-focused aspect of the title. The game is in a first-person point-of-view, like most shooter games, with a few main differences -- particularly the ability of players to transform into a ball and bomb several enemies down.

While the game will be set in the universe of “Metroid Prime,” the exclusion of Samus Aran and lack of single-focus has, ironically enough, alienated some of the “Metroid” fan base, to the point that a petition has been launched to cancel the title. Considering that the game hasn’t come out yet, nor have there been any announcements about a possible single-player mode, it could be argued that those who sign the petition are overreacting.

Not much else is known about “Metroid Prime Federation Force” besides the fact that it will be released in 2016 for the Nintendo 3DS. It may take a while before Nintendo decides to dish out more details on the controversial “Metroid” game, though it will be interesting to see how fans react.

Nintendo 3DS - Metroid Prime: Federation Force E3 2015 Trailer (Credit: YouTube/Nntendo)