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The Best Way To Beat Metroid Dread's Final Boss, Raven Beak

Along with its uniquely vertical 2D side-scrolling design, one of the things "Metroid" games are most well known for is their challenging gameplay, and the new "Metroid Dread" is no exception. One of the things that gets repeated again and again in the game's overwhelmingly positive critical reviews is that it's definitely not easy. Narrow corridors, vicious alien enemies, and tough boss battles all contribute to making "Dread" a worthy successor to "Metroid Fusion," and that's before you figure out how to unlock the game's hard mode.


Beware of spoilers ahead for "Metroid Dread."

As players might expect, the hardest boss is the last one. Raven Beak is a powerful enemy, the leader of a powerful tribe of Chozo known as the Mawkin and the donor of a few genes in Samus' right arm. It takes roughly 6-12 hours to even get to him, and then players have to somehow beat this incredibly brutal foe to finally finish the game. It will likely take practice and players will have to use many of the abilities they've gathered along the way, but it can be done.

Raven Beak - Phase 1

Raven Beak doesn't give players a lot of time to get acclimated to the battle. Attack him with missiles that can penetrate his protective shielding any time there's an opening. Storm Missiles are good here, due to their relatively low charge time. Raven Beak utilizes a large laser that starts as a straight-up beam and then curves downward. Players can avoid this by sticking close to the giant bird-man's side, as there will be a tight cone around him where the laser doesn't reach. 


Players will have to be careful to move away as soon as he drops the laser field, though. He will immediately perform a melee strike with his claws when it disappears. He sometimes tosses black and purple orbs, which can damage Samus if she makes contact, but shooting them yields much needed health and ammo. He will also occasionally perform a move where he absorbs energy in his chest and covers the entire field in a reddish shockwave of energy. This can simply be avoided by crouching into a morph ball. Raven Beak's 3-hit slashing combos and charge attack can either be countered or simply dodged with a jump.

Raven Beak will stop being vulnerable to normal projectile attacks once his shield starts radiating a yellow aura. Players should charge him when he stops to laugh and taunt Samus, but be prepared to counter twice. Doing this successfully will trigger a brief cutscene in which Samus blasts off a piece of his armor — which signals the shift into Phase 2 of this massive battle.


Raven Beak - Phase 2

Now Raven Beak is using his wings... great. Many fans have pointed to this section of the fight as being especially difficult, since Raven Beak can now fly, making his attacks harder to predict and his directional movement harder to read. He will do a dash attack, a ground pound, and a wide laser blast from his arm cannon at a 45-degree angle. There isn't really one tried-and-true trick to avoiding these, as they all pretty much travel in a straight line. Players should just be sure to crouch or get out of the way whenever they see the attacks charging up. Most of his move animations give players a short window to snap off a few counter attack missiles following a successful dodge.


There is another move that's a little more insidious, though. Raven Beak will target Samus with a laser from his arm cannon and then unleash a salvo of blasts. Players must space jump in a circle, up, over the levitating boss, all while keeping just ahead of the lasers. There's a slight opening to blast him with regular fire each time you hit the ground. 

Doing enough damage will trigger another cutscene where Samus manages to blast off one of Raven Beaks wings, finally ending his flight and taking the player into Phase 3.

Raven Beak - Phase 3

The third phase takes Raven Beak back to the ground, where he'll start using familiar and modified versions of both of his previous move sets. One of the big ones to watch out for is the wide beam from Phase 2, only now he will lock onto Samus and track her for 2-3 seconds before firing. The attack feels intimidating at first, but it's easy to bait him upwards before turning Samus' cannon on him when he discharges his attack in the wrong direction. 


The laser field, dash attack, and swipe attack all make a reappearance here in their original forms, so the methods for dealing with them haven't changed. He continues to throw the black and purple orbs from Phase 1, which can be shot for health and ammo, only now he also throws glowing orange ones that look like tiny suns. Players should turn into a Morph Ball and hit these with a Power Bomb as soon as they see them.

Aside from a few new attacks, the tactics for beating Raven Beak here are very similar to the ones from the earlier phases. Players need to simply focus on dodging attacks, disrupting the orange orbs and firing every single time there's an opening. After all, all that's left to do is kick back and enjoy the ending of "Metroid Dread.".