Metroidvania, although an idiotic term, came to be because of the popularity of the original Metroid series coupled with the (awesomeness) of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. Of course, other games that were similar to that Castlevania that came out earlier; Faxanadu, Ys III, never got that name combo; Faxtroid, Metroidadu, Ystroid or even Metroidys mainly due to not reaching that level of popularity. It was known that the 2D-Platformer-Action-Adventure-RPG-type thing was called a "Metroidvania" and would become one of my favorite game-play styles.
Let's fast forward to the release of the 3D versions of both Metroid and Castlevania. Now, for some brain-dead reason, all of a sudden, just because "Metroid" and "Castlevania" were in their names, "Metroidvania" (an already stupid, yet defined term) has now come to include 3D games. Now, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Wind Waker, Twilight Princess and Majora's Mask are considered "Metroidvanias". The list now includes Mega Man Legends and God of War.
Under this ideology, if any official Metroid or Castlevania game comes out looking like the original Legend of Zelda, (kinda like this: http://i.ytimg.com/vi/P6bu4YlPFcM/0.jpg) then every Zelda game, including the Mana series like Secret of Mana, will be considered "Metroidvanias", a term that wasn't even coined with that style of game-play in mind. Of course, based on this stupidity, if an official Metroid or Castlevania game ever came out in any other genre, the entirety of the gaming universe will be known as "Metroidvania", from Pong, to Galaga, to Gradius, Tetris and even to ******** Zoop. While we're at it, why not call Super Mario Bros. a "Metroidvania" because it was a time-based platformer like the original Castlevania and Castlevania 3?
All in all, this term has seen it's day. The entire purpose behind the original theme gets enshrouded by stupidity, and it's gotten to its maximum point of idiocy, despite it still remaining as one of my preferred game styles.
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