The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds has been out for a little over a week now, and in that time, we’ve seen all kinds of opinions from all corners of the internet. Our own Brian Scheid, the author of our official review, gave it a perfect score, and editor-in-chief Nathanial Rumphol-Janc went so far as to say it is arguably the best Legend of Zelda game ever created. The game has been given stellar scores by nearly every important gaming website and magazine in the world, with only one slightly mediocre rating at all. As a closing homage to what has turned out as one of the greatest and most perfect games I’ve ever played, I’d like to make one more review about everything that this game does so flawlessly, and everything that sets it over its predecessor, the almighty Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.
Spoiler Alert: This game has been out for several weeks now, so you can expect to see major spoilers as to the story, dungeons, bosses, and the finale, as well as small details about the game itself. Read at your own risk.
What do A Link to the Past and Ocarina of Time have in common? A Link Between Worlds is better than the both of them. You may not believe it and you may not dare to question it, but while it doesn't do much to change the franchise in a large way, A Link Between Worlds accomplishes what it sets out to do and so much more. Continue reading to find out why A Link Between Worlds is the best entry in the franchise since the original A Link to the Past!
The Legend of Zelda is one of the most famous, most successful, most influential, and frankly, most awesome franchises in video game history. The latest entries in the series, such as Twilight Princess and Skyward Sword, are truly amazing games from beginning to end, but are known notoriously for their "insulting" difficulty level. Really, ever since Aonuma took over, the games have been getting easier, both in terms of intellectual difficulty and actual combat. This isn't always a bad thing.
While it can get some of the older fans really pissed, Zelda does have to appeal to a broader audience, and the new games have been proof of that. However, as most of us know, there isn't any fun in an easy game, because if you do everything on the first try, then where's the sense of accomplishment? Where's the triumph in uniting the Triforce of Courage and killing Ganondorf if you didn't lose a single heart in the process? Past harder difficulty levels and a "boss rush mode" for the hardcore fans, which I don't think really add anything to the experience, I think that the new games in the series would benefit from some truly ridiculously difficult content to keep everybody satisfied.
Find out why after the jump!
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time brought our favorite franchise into the realm of 3D, and paved the ground for some of the most incredible video games ever made. In fact, many would argue that Ocarina of Time is, itself, one of the most incredible games ever made—and it would be hard to disagree.
Famed European game site Eurogamer has published a retrospective on Ocarina of Time that examines the game from both a gamer's nostalgic point of view, as well as a more experiential point of view regarding the medium of video games and what Ocarina has accomplished therein.
"Ocarina of Time is an experience that uses the videogame as a vessel, but isn't mired by the medium's limitations—a feat of dramatic accomplishment that deserves recognition outside its immediate sphere of influence, and a more valuable gift than any petty price tag would have you believe.
Brilliance can't be classified in clinical standards because art is an experimental science, but time—whether weeks, months, years or decades—judges the enduring qualities of a work and its authors. 15 years on, Ocarina is as fresh, vibrant, and luminous as it ever was, and the most powerful example of video game expression. Pass it on to your kids." — Tom Massey of Eurogamer
If you'd like to read the rest of the retrospective, you can check it out right here.
It’s been a whole decade since Nintendo released The Wind Waker. Now, a little over ten years later, they’ve brought it back on the Wii U in full HD, and it looks even better than before. However, does our little hero clad in green still have what it takes to thrive in the modern market? Or is it bogged down by old game design? Hop on in to find out!
Being a writer for Zelda Informer, it would be absurd to attend E3 and not get my hands on the playable demo of The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds. Serving as a sequel to the Super Nintendo’s A Link to the Past, the game takes players back into the same overworld that was once traversed by the pink-haired incarnation of our Hylian hero for an all-new adventure. The demo for A Link Between Worlds gave players the option of starting inside a dungeon or exploring the overworld and making their way to the dungeon later. I chose the latter.
Much like A Link to the Past, I began my journey right outside of Link’s house in the overworld of Hyrule Field. The demo starts players off with a sword and shield, a bow and arrow, the giant hammer, and of course Link’s new magical ability to become a drawing and traverse the side of cliffs and walls.
Head inside to read all about the experience!
The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD was announced via Nintendo Direct a few months back, and ever since then, Nintendo fans have been waiting to get their hands on the game. You all are, no doubt, familiar with The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker for Nintendo GameCube, so the story and setting should need little explanation.
The Wind Waker HD brings dozens of changes to the original Wind Waker format, most notably moving menus to the GamePad and speeding up the drudging sailing system, a much-needed boost to make the game more appealing on its new console.
Head past the jump to read all about the demo!
The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons and Oracle of Ages are one long game split into two chapters: one in which Link is sent by the Triforce to protect the Oracle of Seasons, Din, and another where Link is sent to protect the Oracle of Ages, Nayru. Both games use largely the same game mechanics as well as art and music styles, so this review will shine some light on both the mutual points and the game-specific ones.
As this review is written based on the Game Boy Color release of the games, I will not be discussing 3DS bonus features that may affect gameplay, such as restore points. I will, however, point out that the games use a nifty password system that comes in handy in a 'linked' game — one where you've carried over a password from a completed game to a fresh file of the other game to continue your story. The 3DS does provide one feature that those of us who enjoyed this game at release didn't have: notes! When you receive a password from a game, you can simply press the home key and tap the little pencil icon on your menu there. You'll be able to see the suspended game screen displaying your password and write it down on a note that will be on your 3DS until you decide to erase it. As someone who never seemed to have a pen and paper handy when I came across a password back in the day, I highly recommend using the note feature.
With that out of the way, let's get on with this review. Head past the jump to read the review in full!
With the release of Hyrule Historia so fresh in our minds, it’s wonderful to see the stellar guide to Hyrule’s past and present garnering so much attention. To tack on to the string of good news for the book, it has been recognized by Alex Carr, a books editor at Amazonblogs, as “One Legend to (Hy)Rule Them All.”
Today is a great day for video game fans in the United States: after over a year, the fervently anticipated and debated The Legend of Zelda: Hyrule Historia is at last available in English (and, as of this writing, it’s currently #1 on our bestseller list in all of Books). Originally released in its native language in Japan, the oversized tome—a love letter to Hyrule, the fictional realm where much of the series takes place—was sought after, imported, scanned, and pored over worldwide by fans. At last, here it is in all its translated glory—fret not, Zelda fans. This one is worth all the hype. —Alex Carr, Amazon
It’s wonderful to hear companies like Amazon sing such high praise for this kind of quality material. While more devoted fans of the series no doubt recognize the caliber of this release, it’s surprising to see the efforts put into it by Dark Horse and Nintendo so widely appreciated. On the cusp of its success, hopefully Nintendo will begin to increase fan-gratifying efforts like these. If you’d like to read Alex Carr’s full review of Hyrule Historia, you can do so here.
The Zelda Reorchestrated team has yet to announce a date for the album's digital release, but you can subscribe to the Twilight Symphony mailing list to find out as soon as one is announced.
Past the jump, you’ll find a full review of Twilight Symphony followed by a closer examination of the tracks and Zelda Informer’s exclusive preview of this incredible album. Without further ado, let’s begin!