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Legend Of Zelda: Wind Waker HD Is One Of Ken Levine's Best Games Of 2013

Posted by Damien McFerran

Irrational Games creative director and co-founder loves a bit of Link

While many of us would have preferred a brand-new Zelda adventure to play on our shiny new Wii U consoles in 2013, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD was the next best thing. A gorgeous remaster of a certified classic, the game kept many Nintendo fans happy this year — including Irrational Games creative director and co-founder Ken Levine.

The man behind the critically and commercially acclaimed BioShock series has listed Wind Waker HD as one of his favourite games of 2013, saying:

A magical game about a floutist. What else do I need to say that hasn’t been said, except I was never one of those haters who didn’t like the way it looked on the GameCube, and it’s even better now.

He also had space in his top ten for the likes of Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag and LEGO Marvel Super Heroes.

Hopefully Levine's love of Link will result in his studio throwing some support in the direction of the Wii U. Back in 2011, Levine himself stated that Irrational had no plans to produce any titles for Nintendo's system, and more recently he has revealed that although he proudly owns a Wii U, it's for pleasure and not business.

[via giantbomb.com]

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User Comments (32)

Daemonite

#3

Daemonite said:

'Levine himself stated that Irrational had no plans to produce any titles for Nintendo's system'..Heh, well no suprise there!

Peach64

#4

Peach64 said:

I don't think we'll be seeing any Irrational games on Wii U, no matter how much Ken loves it. I'm sure these industry professionals are well aware of the phrase 'never mix business with pleasure'. They're PC people, and unless a port will be cheap and easy (it won't) or the install numbers are huge (not anytime soon), they just won't be putting games on Wii U.

I agree with him about not thinking in terms of lists. Honestly, I really struggle to give a list of my all time favourite games, and even games on the generation. I could probably name you ten games this year I loved, but I'd have no clue where to start if they had to be in any order.

Blue-Thunder

#5

Blue-Thunder said:

I have it on Gamecube so I couldn't buy it again. I played it again this year to celebrate its re-release and it didn't disappoint. Brilliant.

santaglause

#6

santaglause said:

i do love the wind waker, but i did find it a slight chore this time round, i still think twilight was a better game for the remake!

Frapp

#11

Frapp said:

@TwoTheNines
It's almost certainly a typo for 'flautist' and therefore pretty alarming to think that Mr Levine played through the entire game both in SD and HD without realising that Link used a conductor's baton. Nary a flute in sight.

LUIGITORNADO

#12

LUIGITORNADO said:

I like Ken Levine. I don't really care if his games ever come to a Nintendo system because I can play them on my PC.

Drobotic

#14

Drobotic said:

I have all 3 BioShock games on the PC.It would be nice to have them all on the Wii U in a collection.

MamaLuigi

#17

MamaLuigi said:

He wants to make a new game for Wii U, and not another Bioshock, I'm sure of it. If he can at least make it live up to his name or as good as Zelda, or both, then I'm all for it. :P

2Sang

#18

2Sang said:

How can a remake, not even a remake just an upscale be someone's favorite game of the year? Pikmin 3, Fire Emblem, ACNL, Luigi's Mansion, SM3DW, ALBW, X/Y, and tons of others should all be above this game. Sure it's not bad, but it doesn't deserve the same credit as original games.

sinalefa

#19

sinalefa said:

@Frapp

Maybe he meant a flouter?

It tells me a lot when the only Nintendo game in this list is a remake of a 10 year old game, while as @2Sang mentions, there were many great games this year for both Wii U and 3DS.

midnafanboy

#21

midnafanboy said:

nice maybe he might change his mind to make bioshock for the wiiu or what ever game they have to be a third party game for the wiiu that would be great.

TechnoEA

#22

TechnoEA said:

@2Sang

Not everyone cares for the same things, 3 of those games you listed (Pikmin 3, Fire Emblem, ACNL) don't even interest me.

WW is also my favorite game of the year as well.

I haven't played ALBW yet, so that may change.

JaxonH

#23

JaxonH said:

@Peach64
Right. It's hard to compare games sometimes- they're all so different and each fun in their own way. All I know is there are 2 kinds of games in this world. Games I really, really like, and games I don't.

JaxonH

#24

JaxonH said:

@2Sang
Why not? A fun game is a fun game. Regardless of whether it was released in a more primitive form years ago or not. It's a list of the games which are found to be the most entertaining. Being a remake has nothing to do with it. If it's one of the funnest games you've played all year, then it's one of the top games of the year.

JaxonH

#25

JaxonH said:

@TechnoEA

Seriously, I know you say Pikmin 3 and Fire Emblem Awakening don't interest you, but I think if you tried them you'd be like "Wow, this is actually a really great game! I totally misjudged it!" Reason I say that is because I wasn't too interested in Fire Emblem Awakening, but thought I'd give it a go to see what it's all about (I like trying new games), and let me just say, MIND. BLOWN.

Same for Pikmin 3. At first I dismissed it as one of Nintendo's more "casual" games. Looking back I think it was the aesthetic appeal that threw me off. But I bought it because it was the first highly acclaimed game to release on Wii U since Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate. And wow. Just, wow! The game is amazing! It really is. I'd highly recommend you try both those games to at least see for yourself. You might be surprised!

And Zelda Link Between Worlds really does deserve every ounce of praise it's received. It's a phenomenal game. Highly recommended!

2Sang

#27

2Sang said:

@JaxonH
Well the story is automatically not as good because if you played it, so even if a game like W101, Fire Emblem, or Pikmin 3 has a terrible storyline, at least it has something you haven't seen before. Sure the gameplay of WWHD can be just as fun, but without any new story and only a few new gameplay mechanics, it's hardly worth a mention for contending to be on a game of the year list.

I agree with your later statement, though. Every nintendo fan should be willing to try at least 1 installment of all the AAA franchises. If you don't like any of the following: Pikmin 3, ACNL, or Fire Emblem, video games probably aren't for you because all 3 games I mentioned basically cover every genre except sports, puzzles, and fighting games. If this is the case for you, I'd recommend an Xbone.

TechnoEA

#28

TechnoEA said:

Oh woops I actually played ACNL, I didn't realize what the initials were till I thought about it. I enjoyed that game for little while.

I've played the Pikmin series, it was okay just not my style of play. (I haven't played 3 though, if it's any different I might give it a go).

Fire Emblem is a TRPG series, I've tried the games didn't like them as I'm not into TRPG's.

Also just because I don't like games you like doesn't mean video games aren't for me.

I could say if anyone doesn't like inFamous series or Ratchet and Clank, then video games aren't for you.

I don't play Xbox as I'm not into the type of demographic they cater to, I play PS and Nintendo.

element187

#29

element187 said:

@2Sang sounds like you don't know the difference between a remake and an upscaled port.... There is a very large difference.

When Sony re releases a game it's an upscaled port. Wind Waker needed new assets (backgrounds, maps and actual textures on some models/environment), new visual effects.

I played Wind Waker on Dolphin in 1080p a few months before the HD remake. Nintendo's remake smokes it. Dynamic lighting and shadows makes all the difference in the world. Dolphin Upscaling it to 1080p doesn't look much different than the original. But of course you knew that, you just like being facetious.

2Sang

#31

2Sang said:

@element187 And looks affect the gameplay and plot how? I appreciate the sarcasm, but my point was that it can't be compared to games with new stories like Pikmin 3 or FE Awakening. Sure it's nice to have improved graphics, but changing what something looks like isn't the same as a new game. Maybe it's not easy for you to compare games from different series. Let me simplify: would you seriously place WWHD above LOZ: ALBW? No, nobody in their right mind would value a re-released game with new graphics over a new game entirely.

sonicfan1373

#32

sonicfan1373 said:

@2Sang
Actually I would say the remake has improved the gameplay. I love managing my inventory without having to go to a pause screen or looking at a map of where I am on the Gamepad as opposed to pausing or having the screen cultured with a needless HUD. The game also got improvements like the swift sail as well as a much (much) better triforce challenge at the end. If the game was a mere graphical upgrade I would agree with you and I would probably not like it (I personally do not see the point in making HD remakes if you change little of what people criticized concerning the gameplay; or just make an upscaled port which in many cases looks more hideous in HD).

I do get your point though that a new game like ALBW should not really be compared to a remake like WWHD and I agree because one is original while the other is an improvement over an already existing game. However, I can still see some people putting WWHD over ALBW because the changes in WWHD qualifies that to them or maybe they did not enjoy ALBW as much.

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