Game Review

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Spencer McIlvaine

Has the Hero of Time’s style withstood the test of time?

Twilight Princess is Nintendo’s last Zelda game for the Gamecube and also the first for the Wii. Although the Wii boasts technical improvements over the Gamecube in terms of its processor and graphics hardware, in this case the Wii version is essentially a port of the Gamecube game and offers basically the same quality of visuals, albeit in widescreen. Although the two versions were released simultaneously, it will unfortunately go down in history as the very first of a long line of ‘Wii-makes’ (recycled Gamecube games re-released with Wii remote controls). That being said, Twilight Princess features some of the best looking visuals published on the Wii to date.

The look is appealing not just because of raw graphical power, though; as we already mentioned, this game looks just as good on the Gamecube. Rather, the stunning beauty on display here comes primarily from the art direction. It’s no secret that other game consoles and the PC all have greater graphical horsepower than the Wii, but we think Twilight Princess surpasses the visual appeal of even most high definition games currently available on other consoles, and that is all thanks to the artistic talent of the game’s designers. All of that practice they’ve had with the other 3D Zelda games really shows with this release.

But in terms of gameplay, this familiarity is also a handicap: much of what is great in Twilight Princess we have seen before in other Zelda games. Longtime fans will no doubt have a much easier time solving the puzzles than newcomers will, because so many concepts are borrowed from puzzles that have been used before. Boss fights, though bigger and even more epic now, are somehow a little less scary as we often merely have to remember what we did before to defeat a similar foe in a previous game. Although one could argue that this formula never gets tired (and we partly agree), even so we must ask ourselves a very hard question: does Twilight Princess really offer anything new, or is it just more of the same Zelda experience we’ve had before but with prettier graphics?

One problem is that the game seems stuck in its late ‘90’s trappings. For example, the towns available to explore are rather like visiting a ghost town, with most of the doors locked with no way to explore inside. Although there are people to talk to, there are surprisingly few for an entire kingdom, perhaps even fewer than in previous outings, and many of the people you do see will not talk to you at all. There are apparently only a few dozen people to talk to in all of Hyrule, and that’s including Gorons and Zora.

Such a small number of places and people made sense on the Nintendo 64 because of system limitations, particularly the small storage capacity of the cartridges the game was stored on, but that excuse doesn’t work for the Wii, or even the Gamecube. Other Gamecube RPGs have included a far greater cast of characters, as do games on the even lower tech Playstation 2. The absence of a large supporting cast and the atmosphere and side quests that they bring leaves Twilight Princess feeling somewhat dated compared to other current generation games. Given the fact that there is no audio for the voices, the dearth of characters in the story is all the more perplexing as it would not have taken much space to store a few extra characters with a couple of lines of dialogue apiece. It can only be laziness on the part of the developers to keep the cast so small in a story that was billed as epic.

The Gamecube’s system limitations do present one significant problem: the enemy AI on modern game consoles has improved considerably over the days of the Xbox, PS2, and Gamecube, but the AI here is just good old-fashioned Gamecube AI. This means you can stab them with your sword, watch them grow tired of you and walk away, and then you can hit them again until they are dead. If you do manage to capture their attention, defeating them is as simple as blocking their attacks and hitting them repeatedly with your sword. The only challenge comes from large numbers of them attacking at once; most individual enemies will provide you with no real challenge at all. When on horseback, you will likely just run past them most of the time as they are not worth your time. Although this is par for a Gamecube game, for a Wii game in competition with titles on the Xbox 360 and PS3 one would hope to find better AI up to speed with other similar games.

Perhaps the biggest mixed blessing is the new Wii Remote control scheme. Some of the best work that Nintendo has done with the Wii Remote can be found here: the control scheme allows for easy selection of items from an inventory wheel as well as realistic arrow-shooting and fishing. Many onlookers observing the game in a store display remark afterwards that the fishing aspect alone is exciting enough to get them to play. Unfortunately, sword fighting is still not quite ready as it is too imprecise. Unlike the system pioneered by Ocarina of Time and still used in the Gamecube version of Twilight Princess, the Wii Remote control scheme does not require you to learn specific motions for specific attacks. Rather, most gamers will hack their way through the entire game without ever really getting a grasp on which swing produces what effect on screen. Due to the ease of simply flailing the Remote wildly and still producing a positive result, the game never rewards players for bothering to learn the controls.

The other problem with the control scheme is the loss of the second analogue stick. In Wind Waker and in the Gamecube version of Twilight Princess, the dual analog sticks provide silky smooth movement and camera adjustment. This was a vast improvement over Ocarina of Time’s camera, which, though groundbreaking for its time, today feels forced and less elegant. Taking a big step backward out of necessity, the Wii controls have no dual analogue capability and so must resort to a button press to re-center the camera whenever Link changes facing, just like in Ocarina of Time. Again, Ocarina of Time’s control scheme was the best available for its time: all modern 3D games owe a lot to the control scheme it pioneered, but Link has improved on this formula since then and it is frustrating now to have to go back.

Horseback riding is one of the exciting improvements. Although it was introduced in Ocarina of Time, there was really nothing to do but ride from point A to point B. Now, you can fight and ride at the same time, and possibly the most epic boss fight of the game requires you to fight swarms of enemies as well as a big boss while on horseback. Frankly, this fight is so good that it is worth the price of admission all by itself. The rest of the time you may still fight on horseback while riding around from point A to point B, but it seems to take a lot longer to kill enemies this way than if you were to simply dismount and hack them to death. So aside from the gimmick value, for most of the game you will likely still just use your horse for getting around. Since it is definitely a welcome addition to the game, we would have liked to see even more of an emphasis placed on horseback fighting.

The dungeons are about in line with what is to be expected from a Zelda game now. Many Zelda fans complain that the dungeons and bosses here are too easy, but we think it’s more a case of familiarity. Long time players are going to have very little trouble with figuring them out but newcomers will often be left scratching their heads, wondering how they were supposed to know to use a certain item against a certain boss, oblivious to the fact that the same solution to the same boss has been present in multiple games prior to this one. However the game does not offer any varying difficulty level and so old-timers and newcomers alike will have to face the same level of challenge.

We would have liked to see a second quest with new puzzles or greater difficulty in the grand Nintendo tradition, but sadly there is no additional challenge once you have finished the game. There are plenty of mini-games, though not as many on display as in Windwaker. However, compared to the average lifespan of the typical Wii game, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess is one of the most substantial and longest lasting experiences to be found on the Wii.

So there it is. We’ve said everything bad that can possibly be said about The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. We’ve presented every argument we can think of to knock this giant down a peg or two in your minds. But we know you’re going to play it and love it anyway…so why are you even reading this review? Twilight Princess is one of the best games on the Wii, and one of the best games of this generation. Although it fails to improve upon its formula and appears to have missed out on most of the previous eight years of game design evolution, its still a very fun game with great atmosphere and puzzles to challenge you for hours at a time. If it has a shortcoming, it’s that previous games in the series have set the bar so high and are also available for play on the Wii. As a result, a halfhearted effort (no pun intended) just does not cut it for this series, especially after making fans wait so long for its release.


The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess provides a deep action/rpg experience with beautiful graphics and rewarding game play. Not just a great successor to earlier Zelda games, Twilight Princess offers a lot of the same experience that has warmed so many Nintendo gamers' hearts over the years, but in so doing the game succumbs to the disease of 'lazy sequelitis' and offers an experience that is less compelling than its forebears and also less relevant to the modern gaming world. Make no mistake, it's still a great game, but there was a time when a new Zelda release could be called the greatest game of its generation. Despite an incredibly long development time, Twilight Princess fails to meet those high expectations.

From the web

Game Trailer

Subscribe to Nintendo Life on YouTube

Gameplay trailer from the upcoming Zelda Wii game

User Comments (164)



grenworthshero said:

I don't know...if you're grading this solely in line with the other games in the series, and what new things it brought to the series, I guess an 8/10 is justifyable, but as a game alone, TP is easily a 9. Great gameplay, dungeon crawling, and possibly the most involving story a Zelda game's had so far (IMO).



Edwin said:

Out of the 73 reviews for this game on Metacritic, only 2 of them were 80 or below. 8? Are you kidding me? This is easily a 10.



Philip_J_Reed said:

If you think anybody should take inspiration from Metacritic when assigning their own score, then you're expecting all reviewers to side with the majority, rather than deliver their own opinion. The fact that most reviewers love Twilight Princess doesn't mean EVERYBODY has to. Far from it. A game can get lousy reviews across the board and still be enjoyed deeply by a certain subset of gamers. (Wii Music, for example.) So why can't it be the other way around?

If anything, I think the review is too generous, but I'm not going to fault them for it. It's up to the reviewer to deliver HIS opinion. Not mine, not yours, and not Metacritic's.




This is MOST DEFINITLY a 10! Are you guys crazy? an 8? 8?!?!?!!?!? You might as well just stick a knife in me.



Damo said:

@Edwin - Pretty much all of the reviews on Metacritic were written at the time of release, when everybody was getting hopelessly swept away by all the Zelda/Wii hype.

Our review has intentionally been written with the benefit of hindsight, and as you may have noticed elsewhere on the net, people seem to rank this pretty low in the Zelda series.

8/10 still denotes an excellent game, but I think most Zelda fans see this as one of the weakest entries in the franchise.



pixelman said:

I think it deserves an 8. While still a great game, it presents nearly nothing new to the franchise.



Edwin said:

@ Chicken Brutus

Of course I don't think Metacritic should influence people reviewing a game. All I am saying is that since this review falls at the extreme low end of all reviews for this game, it should, perhaps, not be as trusted as reviews that fall in the middle of the spectrum.



Philip_J_Reed said:

So you don't think Metacritic should influence reviews, but you DO feel that reviews that don't adhere to Metacritic's majority aren't to be trusted?

I'm not trying to give you a hard time, I'm just not sure what you expect from a review. They are there to convey the opinion of the specific reviewer; not to deny or reinforce anything that anyone else might be feeling. It's an opinion piece; why "trust" a majority opinion over a minority one? Are they not both valid as long as they accurately reflect what the reviewer is feeling?



DaVeMaN99 said:

I loved this game. I would give it a 9, granted there are problems.
Still liked Wind Waker better.

Good review though, and a little late, aren't we?



Outrunner said:

TP is a 10 to me. It's the best in the series imho.
WW is a 9 because of edited dungeons and that Triforce hunt bit.



Megumi said:

Like a lot of people said, good game...but it was a bit easy. Hopefully this Wii Zelda game that was talked about at E3 will have some difficulty level or whatever. (or just make it harder, lol)

But yeah I enjoyed this game.



James said:

@Captain Jack Sparrow - take a step away from the keyboard and come back to this thread later on. I don't want a repeat of the Smash Bros. situation.



Noire said:

This game was pretty disappointing, especially considering all the delays we had to wait through. An 8 is generous IMO. I would have given it a 7 at most.



Twilight_Crow said:

Good score, but I don't feel like reading another review of this game, I liked it as much as most Zelda games, but being honest all these 3D Zelda games are awfully similar too each other, they're good and fun, but nothing really special.



Bassman_Q said:

WHAT? This is one of the best games ever! (imo) This game easily deserves a 1000/10 from me!!! Besides, I've never even heard of this guy who reviewed it! Who's Spencer!? Anybody know!?



Drizzt said:

I'm glad you're not afraid to give it the score it deserves just because it's a Zelda game.

Zelda's my favourite series, but TP sort of left me with a sad face. It was fun, but not quite as fantastic as previous games. Sort of a "been there, done that" sort of feeling.

8 is still a great score, and the review is pretty much dead on. Nice job.



Dazza said:

@Qwikman - Spencer AKA Gabbo is one of our regular reviewers, not some n00b we picked up. 8/10 is still a really good score so it's not as if Spencer has been too harsh here. I honestly couldn't say that this is the best 3D Zelda that I have played myself.



TanookiMike said:

A good, reasonable score. My problem with the game is it didn't have that same "magic" that Ocarina of Time always had associated with it, like when you first stepped onto Hyrule Field, and gasped a little in awe.

The whole Twilight Princess game was a little over-hyped.



Link79 said:

You give Twilight an 8/10? I don't think so. I'm a Zelda fan from way back and even I think it's easily the best game in the series. Sure it doesn't have the wow factor that ocarina had being the first ever 3-D Zelda but Twilight is better in every other way. I can't see how any fan could have been dissapointed. Also why is a three year old game just now getting reviewed? A little behind aren't you?



XD375 said:

@Captain Jack Sparrow "If this was reviewed by none other than Corbie it would've gotten a 9 PERIOID!!! "

Chill out, your post is an insult to the good community that is Nintendo Life. I think it woulda been given a 7 if Corbie reviewed it.

On a more serious note, that comment makes me really want to see Corbie come in and put his input in. What would you have scored it, Corbie?



Edwin said:

@ Chicken Brutus

I agree with you. I am not saying that reviews should conform to anything. There is nothing wrong with a reviewer giving a game a high or low score if that is what he really feels the game deserves.

My point is that for someone considering buying a game that they haven't played before, they will be best served by looking at the average reviews of that game. That's the whole point of Metacritic. The highest reviews and the lowest reviews are probably written by fanboys and overly critical people, respectively. By looking at the average of what everybody thinks, you have a better idea about how good a game really is.



Turbo_Genesis_64 said:

Part of me agrees with the review as it drags a bit with some of the wolf side quests and its more of an upgrade than a revolution, but part of me wants it to get a 9 because I think its highs are still higher than OoT's highs. TP had the best boss battles and dungeons of any Zelda game. Plus, I think the most intense Zelda experience is the Cave of Ordeals in this game.



WolfRamHeart said:

Good review Spencer! This may not be the best of the Zelda series but it is still a great game and I think your score here reflects that. An 8 is still a very good score and I think it is justified. Personally, I enjoyed Ocarina of Time, Majora's Mask and Wind Waker more than Twilight Princess but hey, that's just me!



Suikon said:

I think 8/10 is a very fair score. For me it felt like an 8 when I played it. That doesn't mean it isn't a very good game though, I couldn't put it down until I finished it, but still, it wasn't "perfect" (as in, a 10). So I support the reviewer's score.

Remember, this is all opinion. If you see TP as a 10, then that's fine too, by all means.



ND799 said:

This game was just so boring. Hell, most of the LoZ series is really boring, I don't know why people like it so much



Jonny said:

I agree with this score, while this game was solid there was nothing 'magic' that stood out, I daresay this is my least favourite 3d zelda yet for after completing it I have no desire to go back and replay it or even 100% it.



blackknight77 said:

I am sorry to complain about a score, but this game is no 8/10. At minimum a 9/10, but I would give it a 10/10. Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask are 10/10 and this game builds upon them greatly. So I will ignore this review.



Spoony_Bard said:

This game was over-rated IMO. It was still fun, but I didn't have as much fun as Zelda games on older systems. I would have given it a 7 or 8.



OldBoy said:

I think an 8 is about right when compared to other Zelda games.Compare it to anything else though and its still better than most.The main thing that bothered me with it was the fact that nintendo succumed to the pressure to make a mature looking Zelda title and personaly I don't like it.It's just not as fun or engaging as OoT ,MM or WW IMHO.



Pegasus said:

@RaccoonMario "My problem with the game is it didn't have that same "magic" that Ocarina of Time always had associated with it, like when you first stepped onto Hyrule Field, and gasped a little in awe."

Hm. All i remember of it was how desolate it seemed. That said, I didn't play that one until the VC release, so it doesn't get any extra nostalgia points from me.

I must say I've actually thoroughly enjoyed Twilight Princess. Even with retreading some old ground it made the adventure grander in scale than ever before. Sure it was a tad bit easy but I had good fun with it. Frankly, it's my favorite Zelda game.



Philip_J_Reed said:

That's fair. Thanks for expressing yourself so well; the discrepancy, I think, was just between the way you and I use reviews, rather than any fundamental disagreement.

Personally, I think "outlier" reviews are very helpful. I try to read as many "one-star" reviews as possible before I buy something, whether or not that's the overall consensus. It gives me an idea (usually) of the most potentially bothersome things about a title, and I can decide for myself whether those are things that would irritate me as well.

But you're right, there's a value in an average consensus as well. It's a fascinating topic, really.



cr00mz said:

i agree with Majora above this game was really dissapoiting considering what the previous console Zelda games have been. I actually really dislike Ocarina of Time but i can absolutley acknowledge the impact it has had being the first 3d Zelda and all. Majoras Mask took it a step further withe a sort of parallel universe and it's a great game. I really like the map alot how it is made symmetrically (maybe the wrong word i'm using) the whole mask thing was intresting aswell. Wind Waker my personal favorite zelda game EVER. I like how its so different from the rest of the games. it had a awesome intro compared to the other games with a little story, and totaly redfiend what a Zelda game could be. and now they "put" it back inteo Hyrule that is a real let down. Iäm not saying the game is bad because its not but as a Zelda game it feels lackluster after the marvelous Wind Waker. I was hoping that they would continue somehow on what they did with Wind Waker and come up with something new, maybe Zelda in space or Zelda in the future



ToneDeath said:

Though it may not be the best Zelda (I'd put it at 4th or 5th), TP is still in a class way above most other videogames. I'd give it 5 out of 5 (or 9 out of 10 on this site).



Expa0 said:

I certainly agree with this review. In my opinion the best word to describe this game is dull. The graphics, while good, are ruined because of the over using of the colours brown and gray (imo those colours are one of the curses of the games nowadays). After the refreshing colours of Wind Waker this was a huge letdown. Difficulty is far... far too easy and the game seemed to get even easier the further you got in the game, even the end boss was a complete joke. The game soundtrack was also very basic when compared to the likes of WW,MM and OC. Of course there were some great tunes in there but overall it was kinda meh. Also the lack of sidequests makes this game very linear and every time you seem to find something interesting it leads to a chest containing 20 rupees or a piece of heart the game never gave any surprises. I could go on forever with the negatives like, most of the items not being used after their correspondin dungeon, but I'm gonna stop here. In my opinion the game deserves 7.4/10 which in my books makes it the worst non-Cd-i Zelda ever.



ueI said:

The wii game actually came out first. I appreciate your honest review, Spencer. I would have given it an 8 myself.



Darknyht said:

This game should be a 9. The problem is that it has the weight of history on it. Wind Waker was a decent game, but the sailing made me want to kill myself sometimes out of boredom. Twilight Princess however offered a new take on the legend while sprinkling in the mythos of previous entries.

It did disappoint me in that the lantern and night did not play into the game more. I would have loved to see the game world actually get dark as woods or fields would be without electricity, as some of the pre-release shots showed. It would have been interesting to have the game require you to navigate into the darkness with only lantern light (or a magic item) to see with, or have some of the dungeons be dark until you relight the torches inside.



Kid_A said:

I'm a little confused over your control complaint: you don't have to swing a certain direction to get a certain onscreen action. You just shake the Wii Remote and he swings his sword-- which direction you're holding on the control stick and whether or not you press A determines your sword move.

Overall, though, I agree with the review. The game is fantastic, but not as good as the previous Zeldas. It's still one of the best games so far this gen, IMO.



Objection said:

I would give it a 9/10 because I see it as (prepare for blasphemy) Ocarina of Time for GCN/Wii only I actually liked it enough to finish (end blasphemy.) However, as a retro score and in comparison to other more 'inventive' entries (go, go Phantom Hourglass! ahem) I can see how the 8/10 came about. Nice review.



AlexSays said:

That score seems a bit high.

But we know you’re going to play it and love it anyway

Way off...



hylianhalcyon said:

I would give it a 9/10. I really liked the spinner and actually being able to swing your sword while on horseback. I was disappointed that the dungeons were easier then previous zelda games but I thought that Wind Waker's were even easier than TP's.



Stuffgamer1 said:

I'm not as disappointed by the review score as I am by all the people who say the score was too high. To me, Twilight Princess is one of the top 3 Zelda games ever (other two being the N64 titles)! I love the increased focus on dramatics storytelling, and while it doesn't add many new items to the series, what it has is AWESOME (referring specifically to the Spinner, my new favorite Zelda item ever)! I look forward to seeing how the next Zelda on Wii might improve upon Twilight Princess (maybe have a lefty mode? They'd better if they're going to use Motion Plus...).



IAmNotWill said:

8? what? Can somebody please explain to me why what this game didn't have that the other games didn't? A 9 at least. Sure it was easier than the other ones. But thats not a good reason. Second best Zelda.



Token_Girl said:

I pretty much agreed with this entire review. I'm not sure if it will be possible to ever surpass that "Ocarina feeling" though. I did play it for like 8 hours straight pretty much daily over winter break when I got this for gamecube, but I just wish it was a bit harder to beat. I think for gamecube, it definitely deserved a 9, but I agree that more could have been done with the wii.



Ricardo91 said:

<Sticks knife into ATRUEZELDAFAN>

If you ask me, an 8 seems like the perfect score for this, maybe even a 7. I've never been much of a fan of the 3D Zeldas (always preferred the 2D ones), but I found this game to be particularly mediocre. The art direction was nice (if a bit creepy at times), but it had way too much brown in it. It didn't play much differently than every other 3D Zelda in history, and many of it's "new" features were gussied-up versions of those found in older games (twilight realm=dark world, clawshot=hookshot), and the game felt just plain dull. I just recently dug the game out again after not playing it in months when I got lost in the Gerudo Desert. I just can't get into it again.

But I give it a 7, cuz the Wiimote controls worked well and were fun to use, and the minigames were fun.

Also, what took so long to get a review of this out?



theguitarhero said:

In terms of gameplay Twilight Princess is pretty good because it adds a lot of new weapons and stuff to the game.

In terms of story, however, it's pretty blah. Wind Waker, IMO, has a way more compelling storyline but seems to get crapped on because of the "kiddy" graphics, which is a shame.



motang said:

One of my first games on the Wii...and I loved it. I would also give it an 8 out 10, but it was an excellent game, the reason I would give it an 8 and not 9 is because it is after all a GC game and we are still waiting for a Wii Zelda game, hopefully next year.



Clayfrd said:

I love this game. That said, this (somehow) was the first Zelda I ever played, and I thought it was brilliant. I have to say, Ocarina or LttP are probably better, but TP is still great.



Marvelousmoo said:

This game deserves a nine or a ten. 60 hours of gameplay, beautiful music and an epic plot. best zelda game yet. Lets hope zelda 2010 beats it though.



toby_bob1 said:

????????????????????????????????????????this is a bull review it may not be as good as the rest but thats only buy a touch and i have played the previous games dont listin to this person see other reviews check out gametrailers,gamradar and g4 and how about the sposor above(metacritic)



citizenerased said:

I gues 3 out of the 4 Starfy games were better than Twilight Princess then, huh?

While an 8 is not extremely off the mark (I'd personally give it a 9 though), with the enormous amount of 9s that Nintendolife is giving to any game that's half decent, this seems a little odd. Almost seems like you're doing it to be controversial?



James said:

I completed it and really enjoyed it, and when I finished it I thought "ah, I'll go back through it and play it again now!", then when I did I remembered how horrible the wolf sections are when you can't switch at will.

I think when the next Wii Zelda comes out we'll see a fair downgrading of Twilight Princess in most people's eyes.



Bensei said:

I think 8/10 is just right. TP has a great story and graphics, but despite from the great cutscenes and their mimics, all the other games had far more character depths and the difficulty was too easy. I mean, why did they give us 5 Heart Pieces for one heart and then throw them technically away? This is the first Zelda I completed with all hearts. Also: Why are there keys? Room->chest with key-> next to it locked door.
I don't say TP is horrible, I just say it's generally overrated, and 8/10 is totally justified.

Plus: This game got not Oktoroks XD



MrPinguy said:

It's called opinion people!
It's like &%#holes, everybody as one and they all stink. :3



Wiiloveit said:

Lol, this is getting out of hand.

I myself was surprised at first, mainly because I thought this had already been reviewed, and also by the 8/10, but I haven't played the game myself, so I can't really say anything about it.




Respect your opinion mate but I am still a little shocked. Even reputeable sites throw the occassional curve ball with a bizarre revw once in a while...and that's MY honest opinion

Anyway, by this site's scoring system there is little doubt in my mind it should be given a 10/10. I would give it about 96%. That's coming from someone who's played Ocarina, Windwaker and Link to the Past etc....for what its worth...

This reminds me of when the odd reviewer on the internet was reviewing "World of Goo" as an 8/10. That would have shocked many on here and, I would estimate, on the nintendo life reviewing team.



City_Of_Delusion said:

If I came on here earlier, I would have said "You're going to get slaughtered for that", but I'm obviously too late.



ToneDeath said:

Ocarina of Time - 5/5, 10/10, 98%
Majora's Mask - 5/5, 10/10, 97%
A Link to the Past - 5/5, 10/10, 96%
Wind Waker - 5/5, 9/10, 95%
Twilight Princess - 5/5, 9/10, 94%
Link's Awakening - 5/5, 9/10, 92%
Minish Cap - 4/5, 8/10, 89%
Four Swords Adventure - 4/5, 8/10, 88%

These are the scores I'd give to the Zelda games I've completed. I prefer to give a score out of five because it keeps it simple, and means you don't have to worry too much about comparing it to ( or ranking it against) others.



Zyzzybalubah said:

8 is right on. The entire game is too easy, especially the boss fights.

All of the previous Zelda games offer much more of a challenge



calculon said:

I can't believe people actually wanted to finish this game. I barely got past getting the first three pieces of armor for Midna before I felt like I was in Dullsville. I loved Ocarina and Wind Waker (as well as Link to the Past) but this was without doubt one of the dullest Zelda games I've ever played. I'd say one of the best facets of the game was the fact that you could get the Homebrew Channel installed using it. Now there's freely exploitable methods even that doesn't work in its favor anymore.

8/10 makes sense for the majority - I wouldn't have put it past 7 simply because it's so uninspired.



SanderEvers said:

I've played every single Zelda game, but only completed A link to the past and The Wind Waker. These are the scores I give them (top 5)

The Wind Waker (10/10, I just love the cellshaded look and the story is awesome)
Twilight Princess (9/10)
The Minish Cap (9/10)
A Link to the Past (9/10)
Ocarina of Time (8/10)



Machu said:

An 8 huh, that's a shame. I really don't understand, on one hand you admit it's one of the best games on Wii and one of the best in this generation, and on the other you seem really keen to find any excuse for a point drop, which having been written in hindsight I imagine was fairly easy to do. A big fat 9.5 for me but what do I know.



Kirk said:

I'm happy the score doesn't so over the top and just give it a 9 or 10 simply because it's a Zelda game because imo it's actually nothing special and having played it for a few hours it never really drew me in or impressed me in any meaningful way. I actually found it a little bit "outdated" in terms of gameplay and stuff and a little behind the times.

A good game but nothing amazing imo.



JimLad said:

This game was essentially Zelda fan service after so many people (including me) kicked up a fuss over the the new cel shaded baby link.
On the surface it seems a very un-inspired Ocarina wannabe and in a couple of ways that is the case, but it still holds several traits that make it unique from other Zeldas such as: It has the biggest game world, it gives you precise projectile aiming (not wooden analogue stick controls), there is mounted swordplay, it has some of the best newly added items (dual clawshot, ball and chain, spinner) also the dungeons in my opinion are the best designed of any Zelda game.
I had loads of fun playing it. Maybe not as revolutionary as some of the other titles in the series but neither was Majoras Mask, yet a lot of people regard that as the best Zelda ever.
I would have given the game a 9, as tones of work went into it and at the end of the day it is a fantastic piece of entertainment software, much like every other Zelda game. It's only real shortcoming is the lack of difficulty (due to low heart drain) something that Wind Waker suffered from even moreso.



slambert215 said:

I TOTALLY AGREE. It brought nothing worhwile to the franchise and the wolf gameplay wasn't that great either.




i like this 1 better than majora mask mm is prob my least fav out of the series




Good review but the game is a 9 at the very least. One thing though. You have to keep in mind that the game went into development a long time ago for the GC and was limited in disk space and processing power. Nintendo slapped on some motion controls and called it a launch title. We can't now make a complaint that the game has missed out on game evolution since Halo and other last gen games were designed for more powerful systems with larger disk sizes. Let's wait to see what Nintendo has in store for the TRUE Wii Zelda game. With Motion+, it could set new standards in game evolution for others to emulate.



Sean_Aaron said:

I did enjoy this game, though the statue puzzle was pretty lame and required a walkthrough for me -- I'm trying to save the world for pete's sake, not play pegboard game! Side quests took me out of the rhythm and the mood of some impending tragedy facing the world (clearly it cannot be that big a crisis if I can piss away time fishing and looking for bugs -- wth?) so I skipped most of them.

From talking to others the game seems to repeat a lot from earlier games, and in that regard I think an 8 for this is quite generous -- it's definitely not a 9 or 10 because EVERYONE WILL NOT ENJOY THIS GAME! And that is the criteria that should be kept in mind.

Having played this I can safely say that unless the next Zelda has much different quests and a different story with a different antagonist it's doubtful I'll be checking it out.



Stuffgamer1 said:

If whether EVERYONE will enjoy a game is the criteria for getting a 9 or a 10, there's not a single game in existance that deserves the score.

I am truely astounded by the split opinons over this game! Were it not for this review and comment thread, I never would have known there were so many crazies (er, I mean people ) who don't like this game which is to me so very awesome!

I must agree that the sections where you can't change back from being a wolf kinda stink. I don't hate the wolf by any means, but I definitely prefer later on when you can change at will.



Sean_Aaron said:

Well, that's fair, but I cannot see many games deserving a 10/10; that really does mean everyone should check it out. 9/10 would suggest everyone into action games needs to give it a look and I'd say that is very much not the case with this game.



Noire said:

@ATRUEZELDAFAN: Blasphemy! Nothing can make Chuck Norris mortal!

And all the babies in the world can cry, it still doesn't deserve a ten. Though dead puppies may make me change my tune...



The_Indigo_Effect said:

That's about the score I would have given the game; it certainly had some great moments, but it really didn't push the envelope enough.



Bassman_Q said:

K I got ahead of myself, there (Sry, Gabbo dude). I just never heard of Spencer reviewing any of the games. This game still deserves a 10/10, tho. (Probably its because I beat this game before I played Ocarina)



Sylfi said:

I swear, I'm going to get all kinds of crap for this, but I think it deserved even lower than people have said on here. I'm not the average Zelda fan. I like the ones that people don't usually like. Minish Cap is my favorite, with OoT following (Okay, mainstream Zelda, but that's an outlier), and Majora after that. And I really want to play Windwaker. But considering all of these interesting things that the games I have listed have done, TP just feels absolutely boring and looks positively dreary. I think it deserves a 6/10. It brings absolutely nothing to the franchise, and it's made up of brown and gray. It's a tad overrated.



moosa said:

People who dislike modern Zelda games belong to one of two camps: those who think they're just more of the same since Ocarina of Time, and those who think they're way too different from Ocarina of Time. I sense a discrepancy.



Gamer83 said:

8 is justifiable, but I'd give the game a 9. It wasn't as good as Ocarina of Time or Link to the Past, but I'd rank it third in the series just behind those two. And it's easily one of the greatest launch titles of all time.



Betagam7 said:

Then perhaps the Edge should go back to playing in U2

Seriously, what an overrated game this was. This was Zelda by numbers and barely deserves the 8 it got here let alone a higher score.
I'm often critical of this sites reviews but in this case they did well in not getting carried away with the hype.



Mabbit said:

i named link Sausage. get it? sausage link! AHAHAHAHAHAHAhahahah ha ha ha ha...ha.......ha.... ok i know thats a terrible joke



linrek-1 said:

I allways get sleepy from this game I would go for a 7, still have a long way to go so can't really review it yet.



Xthlon said:

@briunj04 - =P I thought it was funny...I guess....

Im gonna say up front that I'd give this game a 6... Major dissapointment to the history of Zelda games...
Ive got every Legend of Zelda game ive ever heard of and finished OoT 14 times...

For me, I finished this game... and said to myself: useless
I am never going to play it ever again (it was pretty short too... the first 20 hr completed Zelda game Ive played)



Kadaj said:

People need to chill O.o Everyone has their own opinions, you can't fault eachother or the reviewer because they have a different one than you.

For me, this game was a 10. I thoroughly enjoyed the darker setting, the graphic style, and how the whole adventure started in the first place. It had a great story, much more fleshed out than the usual Zelda game.

I also loved WW, MM, and OoT. All 10's as far as I'm concerned. To me, a 10 is a game that challenges you and draws you in. And if I love a game so much that I want to play it again, that is a 10. I've beaten TP 4 times, and the other Zelda's (except Link's Awakening) several times, some even more than four.

TP was good times.



Tycoon said:

personally i think it should of got a higher rating because its a exellent game to play if you like adventure games i think it should atleast got a 9/10 or 10/10



Sylverstone said:

8? Are you guys serious?

I've ben looking through the reviews trying to see which game got a 10 star review and the most likely game to get 10 gets an 8?

I don't believe it!



theblackdragon said:

i can't believe I didn't comment on this before, but I will rectify that now -- a nicely detailed review and a very fair score IMO. anyone whining about how this game deserved a 10 needs to try and play it through a second time. OoT, I can play through over and over again with no lack of interest, but I couldn't stand to sit still for another go at this game for some reason. :/



NotEnoughGolds said:

Majora's Mask
The Adventure of Link
Ocarina of Time
Link to the Past
The Legend of Zelda
Wind Waker
Twilight Princess

These are my rankings from best to "worst" Zelda games. It actually makes me sad to have to put Wind Waker so far down at the bottom because I thought that game was excellent.
However, Twilight Princess is clearly deserving of its spot at the bottom of that heirarchy because it is clearly inferior to those above it.

I would still give it an 8 because I'm physically incapable of assigning a Zelda game a lower score than that. But this entry was far too linear and boring to even compare to the rest of the series.
"Yay, I beat a dungeon! What should I do now? I know, I think I'll beat another dungeon!" Bleh.

Even after upgrading my TV from a 25" CRT to a 32" LCD, I still haven't felt motivated to play through this game a second time. Maybe after I finish replaying Faxanadu, Battle of Olympus, Crystalis, Zelda, Majora's Mask, Super Metroid, and Metroid Prime 3, and finally play GTAIV for the first time, I'll make my way through this game again.



retlawian said:

How can you possibly give twilight princess an 8/10. It is better than ocarina of time and wind waker in almost every single way. Its the longest of any zelda game and it is larger than any other zelda game. Also you cannot criticise the game for being similar to past zelda games because there are so many people out there who have not played a zelda game,



koopa85 said:

This game tries too hard to be Ocarina of Time. This is a very good game, but doesn't offer anything new to the series. That said, I thoroughly enjoyed the game and I whole-heartedly agree with the 8/10 score. I hope that Eiji Aonuma gets a little more creative with the next entry in the series, like he did with Majora's Mask, Wind Waker, or even Zelda II for that matter. As much as I loved OoT I don't want another one. I want to play a Zelda game that grabs me by the balls, rolls 'em around in it's palm for awhile, then drops 'em right in it's mouth.



Knux said:

Wow, look at all those comments.

I absoulutely agree with the score and review. While the game is good, it is the WEAKEST 3D Zelda game yet. Wolf Link was unoriginal, and the game was laughably easy. The ending was also stupidly bad. I have only played the GCN version, but I might play the Wii version I purchase a few years back. Majora's Mask and Ocarian of Time are the best 3D Zelda games, and Wind Waker is better than TP.



Deviant_Mugen said:

Great review, and now that I think about it--I completely agree. I haven't popped in this game ever since I passed it back in '07, and when I did play it again (to help my younger cousin defeat a boss) it just wasn't as enthralling. Honestly, this is the last 3D Zelda game that I'd replay...



nasachi said:

it may not be a second Ocarina of Time, but imo Twilight Princess deserves a 10/10, by far the greatest actionadventure of this gen on any platform imo, can't imagine any other actionadventure beating this except the new forthcoming Zelda

Nintendos gamedesign and attention to detail simply is unmatched by any other developer



pixelman said:

Honestly this is another one of Nintendo's games that I'd give a 7-ish score. It's just a very boring and uninteresting game.



WiiLovePeace said:

I've beaten this game once & simply didn't like it (back in 2008 I think). In heinsight I realise that the reason why I didn't like it is because I held my expectations too high. Now I'm playing through it a 2nd time (trying to get 100% too) with lowered expectations. It will enable me to enjoy what is a great game, without the disapointments of what "should" have been included within the game. Anyone who played it the first time & were dissapointed I recommend that they play through it again & forget about any expectations they had the first time around. It is actually a rather good game.

As for the next Zelda, what will we get from that? A first person view game? A 2D game? Will it come this year? So many questions, but at least we don't know what to expect!



NiC said:

I would have given it a 9. I thought the lenght of the game was good as well as the style od the world, the dungeons and the new items. Ok, After playing it through one time you don't really do anything with it again, but it's still great when playing it through first.



Rensch said:

While being the largest and one of the most impressive games in the series, I prefer other 3D Zelda's over it because this one isn't quite as revolutionary or innovative as Ocarina of Time, Majora's Mask and Wind Waker were.



Cia said:

Fragile Dreams got the same score: 8/10. Come on, Zelda is lot better, you can't even compare the quality of these games. Twilight Princess should get a 10, easily.



HanuKwanzMasBif said:

And then there was Zelda Wii. Twilight Princess, while a good game, preceded to get owned by pure awesome. I hope that happens.
EDIT June 26th, 2010
2 weeks ago, that happened.
Anyway, I don't mind the no-voicing, I play with all my younger siblings huddled around me and the TV, and I love voice-acting, so I just act out the characters myself.



Simon_Deku said:

Did you read my comment on the new zelda? If you didn't, read that one first. This was one of the 2 games I hated.



SuperMarioFan1995 said:

Good game.


Why are you trying to tell people to read your comment first? Doesn't that really make sense to your opinion, or what?

EDIT: [May 24 2010]
Besides, in my opinion, this is definitely one of the better Zelda games available on Wii/GCN. The bigger hub world system and tremendous replay value is worth it, this is truly an amazing game.



HanuKwanzMasBif said:

@2 Me and my friend made up a ratings system based on that. "The Zelda Scale." For instance, take Phantom Hourglass. I haven't played it, but my friend says on the normal scale, it would get a 7, but on the Zelda scale, it would get a 3.



SuperMarioFan1995 said:

This is still a brilliant game! It shouldn't of got at least a 9. I finished the whole game 100% and played for over 100 hours (according to the Quest Log save file). I am a huge fan of the Zelda games and am still enjoying them. Plus, I bought a Wii console back in October 2008 and this game in December last year (2009). This is still my favorite game of all-time and hoping Skyward Sword will be better. You need to re-review this.



SilverBaretta said:

An 8 is very fair for this game. While it's still a great game in it's own right, it really didn't bring anything new to the table like the other 3D entires in the series did: Ocarina's set-up on the play style, Majora's 3 Days system, Wind Waker's cell-shaded graphics and sailing, Twilight Princess's.......what? While some people would argue the Wolf gameplay is something unique, it wasn't really fleshed out enough to truly be seen as unique. The part(s) where you're forced to play as Wolf Link should have been the fleshing-out part of the game, and yet it didn't really deliver.



SuperMarioFan1995 said:

I don't care what anyone says this gets an 8. I'd give this game a 9/10. Also, you should not compare it to other past Zelda titles. And of course it doesn't really bring anything new other than just the Wolf Link gameplay in its own right. The dungeons weren't actually that bad to me, and finishing the whole game took me about 3 or 4 months to do but it really was worth it! The Cave of Ordeals was probably the only thing that frustrated me until I finally reached the 50th floor. What SilverBlacktail said above his post, it's still a great game.

I know this will get hate posts, but I thought the Wolf Link gameplay was great.



ShadowSniper7 said:

Wow... what the ****!? Too similar? I guess Super Mario Galaxy 2 should have gotten an 8 as well then, right? I agree with some of the above posters, this needs a re-review almost as much as I need a 3DS. I mean seriously... look at all the other 8's nintendo life has rewarded. Is this game really comparable to Boom Blox, Blast Works, and De Blob? I usually agree with your reviews but I'm thinking someone might have been high or under the influence while writing this review. At the very least, lower most of your other 8's! Just because you have such high expectations for a game, doesn't mean you need to lower the score just because it didn't meet your expectations.

Ghost Squad 8/10
Endless Ocean 8/10
Lego Indiana Jones 8/10
Mario and Sonic at the Olymic Games 8/10
Madden NFL 10 8/10

I rest my case



Mr_Nose said:

Best game ever made.

I didn't do any gaming for days after finishing it, and it was on my mind constantly.

I doubt even Skyward Sword can match it.

Ninty's greatest achievement, as far as I'm concerned.



Big_A2 said:

You can't balme Nintendo for not trying something different. That's what they did with Wind Waker and heaps of people and moaned about that game. Now they make a game similar to Ocarina and people say it's too similar.

I really liked this game. It was more than worth my time and money.



Marvelousmoo said:

Its funny how IGN's review is really generous towards the game and continuously says good things about it, when NintendoLife is really critical towards it. The differences are so wide (IGN praised the motion controls, while Nintendo Life pounded them to the ground). Although I agree that the game is certainly not perfect and that it is quite similar to the previous Zelda titles, it holds true to what makes Zelda great. Nintendo doesn't like to change their formulas up, because they want new gamers to appreciate the same thing. I was new to Zelda when I played Twilight Princess, and I have rarely felt so engrossed and interested in a game since... Okami. I have to agree with IGN more on this one.

@106 (theblackdragon) To each his/her own opinion. OoT is so boring to play twice, but TP captures me thoroughly. Maybe that is because I love games with great stories. TP beats all other games in creating an interesting plot and atmosphere that add an entire new dimension to the series. In OoT, you just run around beating the temples, without any real reason to, other than obtaining the six seals that no one cares a bit about. Oh hey, Ganandorf's dead! Now way! When did that sneak up on me? I felt no emotional attachment to OoT. I know it had more limitations, but that still doesn't make it a better game.

(I guess this game and discussion are long past, but I felt I had to add to the minority opinion.)



ShadowSniper7 said:

I have a few more things to add. These are things taken from the review that I'm sure 9/10 gamers would disagree with.

"the game succumbs to the disease of 'lazy sequelitis'"

I just find it hilarious that this was brought up because its "too similar" to previous outings. Yet, SMG2 is more similar to the first Super Mario Galaxy by far and that got a 10. Pokemon anyone? Those are even more lazy sequels that scored higher. On a side note, lack of side quests and lack of AI to talk to is excusable with a 50+ hour epic adventure.

"but there was a time when a new Zelda release could be called the greatest game of its generation. Despite an incredibly long development time, Twilight Princess fails to meet those high expectations."

So it gets an 8 because its not the best game of its generation? This statement really showed off the bias this reviewer has toward the game. I swear if this game didn't have the zelda tag or link, NL would have probably given it a 10.



thesignpainter said:

the only problem i have with this review is that it didn't tell about all the new things about TP like wolf link, or any of the new items like the spinner or any other improvements.



gabrielwoj said:

I just love this game, it's so great...
It's have been a long time that Nintendo was making it...
For me, it's 10/10, it has a great story and an awesome soundtrack...
Even having much glitches, it's a enjoyable game... Just like Ocarina...



hYdeks said:

I own this game for the wii and I played it on both wii and gamecube and this game deserves minimal 9/10



Pete_Stooge said:

Hi NL, the first time i played it around on GC i thought it was a 8, because i didn't like the view of the darker parts. Replaying it 3 years later on Wii i feel this an underrated game. It's almost as good as OoT (or Windwaker, which i enjoyed a lot). The scenery in TP is gorgeous. I'd give it a 10. Can't wait for Skyward Sword.



JettiBlue said:

only an 8... lol
what a huge misstep NL. Ok, fair enough, everyone can have their opinion. But you should know better than give this game an 8. It's a master piece of game creation to which most of the rest of the industry only can look up in wonder.
While I do agree partially to the criticism given in the review, I do not think that those are enough reason to cut 2 points off.
You make this game stand alongside other games that got 8 or 80%. no disrespect to those games, but the magnitude and scale of TP is so much bigger you simply cant put it in the same range as an 8.



Varia01 said:

Jealous... jealous.... The game looks awesome and I never got to play the Wii version. The exploration seems hugely (Both literally and not literally) impressive, the combat looks impressive, and it even shows some even more awesome power in the Wii! Jea-lous!!!



Varia01 said:

I got this today, but It is my bro's turn! I'll tell you my review for the game in hour or so, I waited so long for it, I guess I have to wait a little longer....



Varia01 said:

Ok actually never mind about that hour thing... I meant a few days... So far so awesome.... The combat system is very good, most of the controls are very responsive, and the aiming is very precise. Though it does have flaws, the wolf combat is still extremely entertaining but it so fierce that you may fall down a nearby abyss, then I hate the lack of a checkpoint system; sure saving keeps your data and all,but no matter where you save in a dungeon, it brings you back to the begging, then howling a song with a wolf is a little tricky like having to hold the stick up or down given the speed of the notes, and the one other thing I don't like is the the only unresponsive move: the spin attack, you have to really flick the nunchuck making it tricky. Other than those minor problems the game is still doing great through the time I've played. 9.0/10



Varia01 said:

No no no, 9.5/10. I've actually got better at using the spin attack and I need to get use to howling. But the dungeons lacking a checkpoint thing still gets on my nerves. I am really starting to agree with the stupidity of this review. I actually enjoy the flailing fun, and in the castle town, those houses may remain pointless to explore while those NPCs that cannot be spoken to may remain pointless to talk to. This surely has a minimum score of 9.5/10. You hear me? Nothing below 9.5! You guys don't mind all these comments, right?



Varia01 said:

I am starting to see that the checkpoint lacking system was even in the other Zelda titles 'til Skyward Sword. So this may certainly be a 10/10. There was 23 100's on the Metacritic list! And Wolf Form IS handy with a good idea for sensing and very fun combat. Though I can't help but admit I was partially bothered by the same twilight objectives to restore the light spirits. But, like NL said on their scoring policy, no game is ever truly perfect.



NintendoCat14 said:

SERIOUSLY? New Super Mario Bros 2 got a 9, and this gets an 8? Seriously, you guys think that's better than ANY Zelda game? I call for a second opinion.



armoredghor said:

Its interesting that I can go onto this site and see a same console sequel praised at 10 out of 10 but a long anticipated game get an 8. I would give it a 10 and it is in my top 2 games of all time. This game was well written, had beautiful music and new purposes for old items (dual clawshots, gale boomerang, & magnetic Iron boots). (Correct me if I'm wrong) it was one of the first if not the first Zelda game with a variety of sword techniques; it finally became a standalone weapon. Each new temple enemy test your new technique and became proved the value of this technique. The NPCs were less frequent but not many of the NPCs in the previous games actually added to the game. Horseback riding is now a capable way of doing combat. Its quick and you can fight with enough of your weapons to make it valuable. The game added a level of polish not seen other games for a long time.



pukka-pie said:

I would easily give this game a 10. It far exceeds OoT in almost every department. I admit I didn't enjoy the first 15 hours or so, it didn't seem as polished as I would expect from Nintendo but after that it kept getting better and better. Sure we've seen most of it before but the same can be said of any Mario or Zelda game. There is much more of a plot here, it isn't simple as 'princess captured: Link to the rescue'.

The art style is wonderful. Hyrule Field is much larger and much more fun to explore. The dungeons are all seamless. The boss fights are always very fun. Playing as a wolf never ever feels gimmicky. TP does literally everything well.

I know it's taboo to say so but OoT is overrated. TP is underrated. An 8 is a joke.



epicdude12302 said:

Me while reading this: Well another Zelda game. Gues this will be an automatic 10-- WAIT WHAT?!?!? 8/10?!?!? heart attack Later... Nurse: "Sir,you've been in a coma for 3 years!"



Cookieman336 said:

I can understand where they were going with this but, to me, an 8/10 is pretty harsh. I would definitely give this game a 9/10. The soundtrack is wonderful, the story is brilliant (and at some stages, touching) but what really let this game down for me was the visuals in the twilight parts. Sometimes it looked kind of blurry.



schizor said:

This game is, for me, the best Zelda game in the series... But in terms of "the most important Zelda game"!!! That has to be ocarina of time But what the H**L guys. All Zelda games or pretty much AMAZING!



Miss_Dark said:

no offense but which idiot gives this game an 8? easily 10/10, one of the best zelda games out there (even though it was too easy)

Leave A Comment

Hold on there, you need to login to post a comment...