Nintendo 64x64

64/64

1998

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

"The most hyped game the N64 ever received was a heavenly gaming spectacle. The franchise leapt across to 3D glitch-free, providing everything that was already loved: a franchise-traditional story, dungeons, longevity and challenge. The game's engine, controls and camera were perfect and allowed us to be immersed in Link's adventure. Despite the (much-loved) story, I feel it wasn't overly ambitious whereas Majora's Mask's was."

10/10 - Steven Smith 64

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User Reviews (25)

"THIS is the greatest game ever made. No other game in a 3D world made since would exist to the quality it dies now if it wasn't for this game. THIS game blew everything out of the water on every conceivable level and to this day no other game has had such an impact on the gaming industry. An utter masterclass in video game development. kudos Miyamoto"

10/10 - Shinobi1Kenoby 64

"10 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 10"

10/10 - luigiluigiluigi 64

"What can be said about this game that hasn't already been said. It was one of the best 2D to 3D transitions of it's time, and set an example of how to do 3D games right, like Super Mario 64 before. While I like it's sequel, Majora's Mask, a bit more, this game will always hold a special place in my heart. < ^ > < ^ > Zelda's Lullaby!"

10/10 - TradeMark 64

"I remember when screenshots first started showing up in mags like gamepro and online at ign. It created a sense of wonder as we hadn't seen the franchise in a 3D world to that point. Not my favorite Zelda, not even my favorite 3D Zelda (shows how good the series is!), but still one of the best games of all time. Gold cart rules!"

10/10 - TheBigHamlin 64

"This is probably THE best game in the series, after the original. I remember renting a copy when it came out, incurring a large fine because I wanted to beat it before returning it. I've played it many times since, and the hardest area is still the Water Temple. Beating the bosses is also a lot easier, if you get the Biggoron Sword first."

8/10 - Moviefan2k4 64

"I feel this game is a bit overrated. Yes, it is a very good game with lots of content but it had a shift in its formula, from an action-adventure style to puzzles and chores to do. While it introduced many interesting changes, it also was the start of the "aounuma style" zeldas and with it, its decline. Good game but not the best."

7/10 - DK-Fan 64

"For my thirteen-year-old self Ocarina was a milestone in my life as a gamer. Sixteen years later it has lost little of that original sparkle. That the core design has hardly aged is testament to Nintendo and Shigeru Miyamoto's absolute mastery. The world of Hyrule, though simple by today's standards feels complete. Everything is measured and meaningful. A wonderful adventure and a true masterpiece."

10/10 - mookysam 64

"Ocarina of Time is often said to be the best game ever made. While O disagree that it is even the best in its own series, OoT is certainly worth much of the praise it receives. The first 3D Zelda had a lot of expectations on it in 1998, and OoT exceded them in almost every way possible to create a stunning, memorable experience."

10/10 - bizcuthammer 64

"Regarded by many as the greatest N64 game, regarded by more as the greatest game ever, Ocarina of Time is the definition of a masterpiece. Perfect scope and scale, balanced difficulty for veterans and newcomers alike, exceptional soundtrack and design, innovative mechanics and an all around phenomenal game-feel make you think this series has been in 3D all its life. A true timeless classic."

10/10 - GreenGaming 64

"A classic, no doubt, which broke the mold for third-person action games to this day. However, not only has it aged somewhat poorly, pretty much every element of the game has been improved upon by subsequent outings in the series. It's hard to do anything but roll one's eyes at "best game ever" sentiments, when it's not even the best game in the series."

9/10 - Solid_Stannis 64

"10 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 1010 10"

10/10 - JetForceSetGrind 64

"This was my first zelda game and it will always remain one of my favourites. When i first walked into Hyrule field I knew I was into something special, this was one of the first 3d games to work perfectly. The dungeons in this game are so amazing and so are the bosses. This is tied as my favourite zelda game with Wind Waker."

10/10 - darkslayer11 64

"In its core, Ocarina of Time is just like Super Mario 64: a perfect transition from 2D to 3D. The revolutionary camera, the atmospheric world, the grand adventure all add up to a very good game. Unfortunately though, it's slow as hell (console limitations probably), playing the Nintendo 3DS version is highly recommended now. Either way, it's not a game that should be skipped."

7/10 - Truner 64

"There have been a lot of 3D third-person games during the N64's lifetime, but only a select number of them worked well. Out of those, Ocarina of Time is the best of them all. Controlling Link is fluid, the story is engaging, and the sidequests and item hunts inject a lot of fun in this game. This is the quintessential N64 and Zelda game."

10/10 - GloryQuestor 64

"A legend on it's own right, the monstrous task of moving Zelda from 2D to 3D had me worried the most. But all my fears where put to rest just a few minutes into the game, it's simply beautiful. A whole new world to explore with clever dungeons to tackle and perfect controls. A N64 without Ocarina simply isn't worth owning. Shut up, Navi!"

10/10 - Shiryu 64

"This was my first N64 game. I'm wearing a Link hat as I type this. Link will forever be a role model to me. I found myself and who I wanted to be from this game when progressed. My parents divorced at a conscious age and it wasn't until Ocarina Of Time that helped me see the light and hope in the darkest sides."

10/10 - siouxrunner15 64

"This is the experience that defined 3D gaming and paved the way for polygons to coexist with sprites. From the earliest images in Nintendo Power, I was hyped for this game. So much so that I preordered it without owning a Nintendo 64! Thankfully a system was not far behind. I locked myself in a room on day one and experienced video gaming bliss."

10/10 - artofmana 64

"OK, I am going to be the killjoy. Ocarina is a fantastic game, but it is far from being the best. The storyline is very basic (although it was that way for newcomers) and only a handful of good dungeons - JabuJabu and the Water, Shadow, Spirit Temples are good; the others...... not so much. A worthwhile game to own, but not a perfect game."

9/10 - SyntheticPerson 64

"One cannot forget the first time Link stepped out onto Hyrule Field, after bidding his friend Saria farewell at the Kokiri bridge, commencing his quest to save the landbittersweet tenderness leads to breathless anticipation of unparalleled liberty, duty and resolve. Structurally chaotic though cohesive, melodically majestic and integral, graphically groundbreakingOcarina is intelligent, involving, influential, and incomparable. The magnum opus of video games."

10/10 - FritzFrapp 64

"It's the classic transition from 2D era to 3D. How well did Zelda manage? Titles before had secrects in just about every screen. 3D Hyrule Field is so huge but empty. It's still a wonderful experience when you reach it the first time. Dungeons and are better in every 3D Zelda after this but OOT was an amazing start for the 3D Zelda games."

9/10 - Luffymcduck 64

"Ocarina of Time while a fantastic game for certain, is one that has not aged well. The graphics are blocky, the camera is flawed and the story is not memorable whatsoever.That being said, it is a perfect transition for its time and does everything right it could've given the technology of the N64. But in the face of its successors, it falls very short."

6/10 - Seananigans 64

"What Mario 64 did for the transitions from 2D to 3D Ocarina of Time took it one step further. This was the Zelda game Zelda fans were waiting for when they first heard of 3D game worlds. The story is one of the best in the series. I still get goosebumps everytime I go out in Hyrule Field and hear the Zelda overworld theme."

10/10 - Tasuki 64

"It's unarguably one of the best games of all time. It changed the entire landscape of 3D gaming and its influence cannot be denied. While some call it basic, I call it perfecting the familiar. While better Zeldas may exist, such as Majora's Mask, Ocarina of Time will always be the one remembered for its long nights of wanting to get one step further."

10/10 - MasterGraveheart 64

"Best game ever. My first Zelda, and the first adventure game I ever played. Totally different from the platformers I played all the time. Got me stumped pretty early on, because it required a different way of thinking. Puzzles, cool items, great bosses, a big world, I loved it. It didn't have the best graphics (Banjo Kazooie looked better), but it looked nice alright."

10/10 - Henmii 64

"+introduced dozens of innovative features that greatly influenced the industry +memorable dungeons, bosses, and environments +can switch between two different times +Z-targeting and auto jumping simplified the transition to 3D +stellar final Act +fun mini-games that made sense for the world, such as fishing -overworld not as varied as A Link to the Past -basic storyline -realistic art style looks more dated than others"

10/10 - VGScrapbook 64

Comments (58)

sgotsch

I like the backplay of music on this one!

Jim_Purcell

And yeah, if any game is going to last up. Its gonna be this one.

What a great feature this 64x64 thing has been. N64 was probably the second most important console I ever owned behind my NES. It was the first console I got on release month (Christmas 96) and I followed its releases pretty rigorously throughout its lifetime. I still have all my original games, plus a whole pile of new ones I had missed. I still play it pretty often. Its library is often underrated compared to what the PS1 was putting out at the same time. But at the same time... it was so much more exciting then Sony's offerings. Maybe if its was a disc based system it could have edged out in the long run, but game carts have their own strengths (no load times here!).

A great console, from a great generation of gaming.

Pinemeowth

I'm gonna miss 64x64! It's been great.

toejam78

What happened to the gold box?

Drawdler

Truly deserves its legacy. The story and lore behind this game is magical unlike any other game I can think of and its design has hardly aged. I don't replay it that often, but when I do, it amazes me.

SyntheticPerson

Good game but the first two kid and first two adult dungeons are horrendous. Majora's Mask and Wind Waker surpass Ocarina in every way.

Still fun though.

ajcismo

A 10. An 11 really. One of the few games of any console of any era that I do a play through once a year on.

Kaze_Memaryu

Ocarina of Waste-your-time. It's pretty much an unspoken law that you'll be universally hated on the internet if you dare criticize it, or even dislike the game. But what do I care about reputation...

Ocarina of time was a good game when it came out. It set standards, overwhelmed, impressed, and entertained like no other game of its time. Critics and gamers alike loved the game, and many of them still do.

But calling it a timeless masterpiece is just plain wrong.
Drawn out battles, repetitive puzzles, floaty controls, meaningless running-around-for-a-sliver-of-progress.
Like it as much as you want, it has aged terribly, just like almost every other N64 game, no, like the majority of the 5th Generation of video games in general.

Nowadays, the appeal mostly just lies in the nostalgia it provides people who played the original when it was still new. But when looking at it critically, it was never designed to be an eternally good game - because it utilized the modern technology of its time, but this technology was bound to advance at some point, with everything relying on previous iterations turning outdated with a fingersnap. But that's how it goes when the only interesting difference is the jump to 3D itself.

Nintendo_Ninja

Legendary game that surprisingly aged fairly well (when looked at on its own). Very revolutionary as well. If you were going to end it on any game, it should be this one. Come up with another series of short reviews!

Dpishere

I guess this is no surprise seeing as this game happens to be one of if not my favorite games ever! Revolutionary for its time and is still an absolute joy to play today!

antdickens

@Kaze_Memaryu hmm, you could kind of take that view on any game from the past. Many gamers still enjoy this game, me included, regardless of nostalgia. It does seem that some people can't judge it based on what was available at the time though.

drewb0203

@Kaze_Memaryu Your basically saying then. that no game will ever be considered a timeless masterpiece. Shame.

Kaze_Memaryu

@drewb0203 Not really. Some games truly have design so unique and clear, that they become truly timeless (Super Mario World would be an example).

@antdickens I'm just countering the general mindset of OoT fans nonsensically proclaiming that no Zelda game would ever be as good as Ocarina of Time. Besides, I'm not saying that people only like it because of nostalgia, but that this nostalgia is the main reason it comes off as good by todays' standards.
Also, in case you missed it, I clearly stated that it was great for its' own time. That doesn't mean it will be comparable to other Zelda games that came after it.

antdickens

@Kaze_Memaryu you didn't mention anything about it being compared to other Zelda games... and I would agree that 'won't ever be as good as...' is a pointless statement. I believe in judging games for their time and what else was available at the time, so saying its not good by today's standards is somewhat irrelevant. I strongly hope Nintendo can release a Zelda game that takes it crown Zelda Wii U certainly has a chance...

Giygas_95

There's something surreal about seeing all those 10/10 reviews while listening to this music...

FritzFrapp

@toejam78
That's the European PAL box. Down under, you guys got the same box art as North America.

daniruy

Guys, this series was amazing. You should do a 128 Gamecube and a 32 SNES now (even better: because it's SNES, 246)!

Seriously, I loved this series.

Zapkido

@antdickens The problem with judging games for their time is that many Ocarina fans still declare it the greatest game of all time. Many say, "Oh it was revolutionary back then," but then state it's better than games today as if that justifies it. You know what was revolutionary? Pong. Why isn't Pong at the top of lists? Because people look at it objectively and compare it to what we have today. But many Ocarina Fans fail to do such a thing, and don't compare it to what we have today.

I'm not trying to attack you nor am I mad at you, I'm just saying. After playing through Ocarina today with no bias, I can say that it is great for its time and still pretty good now, but in my opinion, other Zeldas do what it does better (except music. Oh yes, that music!)

antdickens

@Zapkido sure, and in my opinion the following zelda haven't bettered it as a package. If anything I have battles that LTTP is the best of all - so far - but always hard to compare games from different generations. I think we're all on the same page, just have different favourites

Spoony_Tech

Words can't describe the feeling I had playing this for the first time. I still get chills whenever I load the game up. The 3ds version is definitely the definitive version of the game. This is probably the only game I've beat 4 or more times! 10-10 and a timeless classic.

Jacob717

When I get a 3DS, this will be the first game I play.

MussakkuLaden

I believe that from today's perspective, Majora's Mask is the better and the more original game. But I still find the last sentence of NL's review somewhat unfair. At the time of its release, OoT was at least as ambitious as MM was about 2 years later. Only many things it introduced have become so common now, whereas MM remains fairly unique. But this is nothing you could blame OoT for.

mookysam

As per my review I think it's a brilliant game. I play a lot of older games and find that dated graphics and whatnot are not an immediate deal breaker for me unless they horrifically affect the playability. There have also been big advances in game design thanks to technological improvements, but that doesn't mean older games can't be enjoyed on their own merits.

RaphaBoss

Wait, one of the reviewers gave it a 7/10... SEVEON OUT OF TEN!? Are you kidding me?! This game is master piece.

SphericalCrusher

My favorite Zelda game, no doubt. My favorite game on the N64. And one of the best games of all time. Lots and lots of fond memories of this game, even now as I replay it frequently and watch various speedruns for it from Cosmo, Jordenstone, and Insomniatwo.

N64Memories

@MussakkuLaden I think the 64-word limit has left my final line a little ambiguous. I felt the storyline of OoT wasn't as ambitious as MM. Not the game as a whole.

HP_3

Best N64 game hands down! And it still remains in my opinion the best Zelda game.

Krambo42

On the feature for Shadows of the Empire I had said that it was one of only two N64 games I loved. Well, here's the other one. Everything about it just feels right.

TantXL

One game to link them all.

Luffymcduck

This was a great feature, to go trough all N64 memories. what's coming next? Gamecube memories, Nintendo128x128?

Dpullam

As much as I love to play Ocarina of Time, I can't really appreciate the game like I could back in its launch period since I've already played through it to a ridiculous degree. I still love the game and believe it's one of the all time greats. I just can't appreciate it like some of the newer Zelda games that I haven't played as much.

Kaze_Memaryu

@antdickens Well, that's true. And it's something I and quite a good number of critics/reviewers need to step back from to a certain degree, especially when it comes to games just like Ocarina of Time that were meant to appeal towards the demographic of its era, and did so quite admirably.

GloryQuestor

btw, if you are an N64 collector, there's plenty of reasons to get your hands on the gold limited Collectors Edition of the game more than just being the first-run copies. The gold carts still contain the content that was later cut in the gray cart, GC, and N64 re-releases (like the crescent symbols on the boxes and some changes in music). It's Ocarina of Time as it was intended to be, not as it turned out later.

10-zx

I like Link to the Past better. SNES DOMINATES ALL, TIME FOR A 16x16!

@Zapkido Pong is the bomb.

JakeOfAllTrades

This game is overrated. Majora's Mask was MUCH better, and the over world had THINGS TO DO IN. Hyrule field is SUPER EMPTY!

Deanster101

The only game I have queued outside a shop at midnight for, I remember fighting desperate tiredness just so I could get an hour in before I pass out. Completely lived up to its hype and then some, possibly one of the greatest games ever!

Seanmyster6

Though it's been surpassed on a technical and even objective level, the magic of Link's first 3D outing has yet to matched. Lot's of "growing pains" to be sure, but without the brave efforts of OoT, we likely wouldn't have Wind Waker and we definitely wouldn't have Majora's Mask.

Storytime7

@JakeOfAllTrades Ha. The overworld in OoT is not just Hyrule Field, and MM had to have plenty of sidequests considering the pathetically small amount of dungeons.

ZenTurtle

The most overrated game in the Zelda series. A considerable number of people say it's their favourite, usually because it's likely the only one they have played.

ZenTurtle

@Storytime7
I would say it's good, but not "the best game ever made" as some people say. It has enough flaws to detract from the experience.

Storytime7

@ZenTurtle There's plenty of games that are hyped up to be the greatest ever made. I don't see why people get so worked up over others enjoying some games more than others.

Solid_Stannis

Why is it that Ocarina is so impervious to in-depth, objective criticism?

Henmii

Ah, the title music! Best game ever, in my opinion. As for this project, sadly no Glover. But that may be because it was mutiplatform. Anyway, that was a very fun (and original) 3D platformer.

3MonthBeef

It was a great game but it also was a sign of what the cartridge based format was limited to. FFVII had luxurious rendered cut-scenes where OoT did not.

YoshiTails

Dear Nintendo Life,

You made Yoshi cry because you neglected to tell his bedtime story. I hope you're satisfied with yourselves.

Sincerely,
A distressed Yoshi fan

Yellowtails

Definitely one of the best games....... on the Nintendo 64. Graphics were good for the time, but now it's not so good. The gameplay is good. The music was good and the atmosphere/feel of the game was amazing. Overall, it is worth playing, even though some of the later zelda games are much better.

Yellowtails

@YoshiTails Lol. And also no Mario Party 2 and 3, which were much better than 1, and no Pokemon Stadium 2.

Neferupitou

I used to spend most of my time inside Roayl,s family tomb fighting redeads and being lika a king, the best game ever made, it,s right here man.

SahashraLA

Bettered by the 3DS version, but still the most playable 3D Zelda available.
Maybe Majora has the best story and Wind Waker the more timeless art atyle, but OoT has the pick up and play style and a real sense of folklore about it.
Regardless of the age or experience of the gamer, I find the simplistic story to be the most endearing.
Outside of Link's Awakening or a Link to the Past, Zelda games were practically devoid of story, something Ocarina not only directed but perfected in it's time.
As a game, later entries refined the format, but never managed to do for their console nor their genre what OoT accomplished.

siouxrunner15

This was my first N64 game. I'm wearing a Link hat as I type this. Link will forever be a role model to me. In a way I found myself and who I wanted to be from this game. My parents divorced at a conscious age and it wasn't until Ocarina Of Time that helped me see the light and hope in the darkest sides. Majora was a beautiful tie with Ocarina Of Time because it felt that you exercise your own personal good will unto the game when helping others out. There truley is a different feeling when you dedicate yourself to helping something you think is real. And in the end it always will be real, Link gives us courage.

69/10

MC808

I just don't understand why you never have any screenshots on these N64 articles....?

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