Though it's a sore point for me, I'm now the wrong side of 30, and all of the gripes and complaints I dismissed from others in the past actually feel true. The grey hairs are coming, I can feel my body saying "nah, we're not doing that" at endeavours it would scoff at a decade ago, and I look at the some aspects of web culture and realise that I have little clue as to what's going on.
There are benefits to getting older, and to be honest every age group has its perks; another part of me that's changing, I think for the better, is my approach to gaming. Not so long ago I wanted all of the intensity and tempo I could get in games, whereas now I have an expanded appreciation for strategy games, and any experience that allows me to make progress at my own pace. I know, I sound like I'm already spending my evenings wearing slippers and smoking a pipe, but I've not gone that far yet.
I find myself seeking out joy in games, too, flickers of colour and extravagance as opposed to crushing realism or dark fantasy. These inclinations simply draw me closer towards Nintendo and the PC Indie scenes, in particular, and it's in playing The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD that I've remembered why that series - which turns 30 on 21st February - is one of the most important in the adventure genre and gaming in general.
Adventure games, including those where you can throw 'RPG' at the end of its description, are more diverse and technically accomplished than ever. That diversity is a good thing, and in the modern day we have plenty of titles (mainly on non-Nintendo hardware) that are as involving and complex as anyone could desire. A good example is The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, which is packed with levels-upon-levels of menus, attack options, upgrade trees and more quests than you can shake an enchanted stick at. It's also mature, with dark storytelling, sex and a lead character that's so masculine that he would take on a wild boar with nothing but his fists.
Like so many games of this era, it plays into mature and serious sensibilities; yes, it's a fantasy setting, but it's not there to uplift your spirits, but rather to challenge you, engross you and immerse you. We can add the likes of Xenoblade Chronicles X on Wii U to that, too, which is wonderful but also incredibly deep and demanding. Even games that are monumentally daft like - dare I say - Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, which I loved and played to completion, are packed full of various systems and mechanics that take a lot of time to master. For so many of these games the quest isn't simply down to picking up a weapon and setting forth, relying on the kindness of strangers and your wits against the enemy - they're about detailed economies, systems and layers of design that require mastering.
What The Legend of Zelda continues to bring, more than any other franchise, is a simple tale of a young hero who starts with basic tools, and through a combination of endeavour, courage and the kindness of allies he becomes stronger and eventually ready for an ultimate showdown. It's such a simple narrative arc that pervades the entire series, for the most part, and that's part of the joy to be found.
Playing Twilight Princess HD I've found myself falling back in love with the series after a brief wobble of doubt. Though I gave The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes a 6 in our review, my personal non-professional score was lower, probably a 5 for 'average'. It felt like the engine for A Link Between Worlds bolted onto a sloppy B-list release, and though it attempted a sense of adventure its poorly implemented online structure emphasized that it's really - in my opinion - just a bunch of dungeon puzzle levels thrown together, with little context or relevance to each other. The dungeon designs weren't even as strong as in previous 2D titles, in my view, and I was personally disappointed that the spin-off had happened - when all was said and done.
And so revisiting Twilight Princess reminded me of what I love about the series, and why I've eagerly bought and played through the many releases this generation - there have been a lot, too, with the two N64 remasters on 3DS, Wind Waker HD and the aforementioned ALBW. You play as a young hero who has a simple quest to fight evil, right wrongs and save his world.
Key to all of these releases is the structure and prioritisation of the quest over all else. Though Link (or whatever you call your hero) travels far, meets a lot of characters, completes side-quests and accumulates a sizeable collection of items, the process isn't complicated. If you want to buy something, use some of the rupees you've been accumulating; you need help or an item, then do someone a favour. There's no meter for your loyalty to a particular group, and if you're buying items you're typically choosing from the same handful of options. The closest the series has come to breaking its own vow of simplicity was perhaps in The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword with its potion brewing and weapon / item upgrades. I think it avoided the fate of getting too carried away, just by virtue of being generous in pick-ups that served as currency, and basic potion brewing or item acquisition have been prominent in other entries too.
Even when Zelda games do add these layers of in-game economies and systems (such as in A Link Between Worlds, where I rarely bothered 'renting' a weapon and just accumulated money to buy them), they're still mostly optional and unobtrusive, allowing you to use them as you see fit. A tendency in some adventure games is to make trading and item management more complicated than applying for a mortgage, apply character levelling that demands grinding, or to place key story progression slap bang in the path of tasks more demanding than 'work your way through a dungeon'. Again, that's absolutely fine, but The Legend of Zelda is a welcome counter-point to a number of these modern trends in game design.
More important that all of this, for me, is how Zelda titles retain a surreal charm, and often simplify key story moments by rooting them in humanity, or simple emotions like loyalty, friendship and faith. A common trope of these games is that many characters meet Link and willingly accept him as a hero, judging him on his deeds and courage alone. Relationships between characters evoke touching friendship without long-winded conversations or levelling up a buddy rating - Link and his companions help each other because it's the right thing to do and they instinctively trust in their united goal.
Some of the interactions between Link and Midna - in Twilight Princess - are lovely to watch simply because of a playful smile or a reassuring nod towards each other, and all that the gesture entails. Skyward Sword went further, in which Link embarked on an extraordinary adventure, fearlessly taking on any foe, in order to save and be reunited with his closest friend. Some of the cinematics in that Wii title reminded me of how technological advances in graphics can add a lot to storytelling in games.
This approach, this continual focus on light and dark, friendship and courage, bring me back to the simplest and most memorable narrative arcs and tales from childhood and beyond. It's easy to like the idea that a noble purpose and a good soul is enough to inspire the confidence and friendship of others, and provide enough strength to face the most daunting of challenges. They're the simplest of ideas, stories that have been told for as long as humankind has conceived of them, and those core tenets often shine through in The Legend of Zelda games.
The world is a very complicated, dangerous and at times dark place, while also full of wonder and joy. The Legend of Zelda games have the gift of portraying those realities with brightness, subtlety and clarity.
Sometimes it's nice to be a hero setting forth with little more than a sword, shield and an optimistic spirit.
Hands down Twilight Princess is the best 3D Zelda. Cannot wait for the HD redo. Day one digital purchase for me.
I would love to see the new Zelda have a similar open world experience as The Witcher III. One thing that bothers me about the Wii Zelda titles is that a game mechanic got in the way of the traditional gameplay I fell in love with in previous Zelda titles. The recent Link Between Worlds had a minor puzzle solving mechanic of becoming flat but the core gameplay was still there. A perfect balance in my opinion.
The kid-friendly appeal of the Zelda series has always been there. It's when the series started to take itself too seriously that I lost interest. That's not to say the new Wii U title won't impress... I'm just hesitant and will wait for reviews
Very well written editorial. I myself, turning 32 soon, am finding myself drifting more towards old nostalgic video games, TLOZ being the front runner there. Maybe it has to do with my Son turning 5, Daughter turning 2, wanting to show them games I grew up with too, and with being an adult, simply being too busy for anything too big, (IE The Witcher).
Anyone else on here simply just stick with Nintendo because of its simplicity?
@xoIrishWxo Definitely. I'm 31 with two small children as well. The real world is hard enough, and video games should be a total escape. Nintendo always provides a lighthearted escape and rarely releases anything I can't share with my family as well. They are the Studio Ghibli of video games.
@gatorboi352 That and Ocarina for me.
@jwfurness It's nice to know someone can relate. Do you have any systems besides Nintendo?
Great article. It makes me wonder how complex this open-world will end up being in Zelda Wii U. Hopefully it still retains the simplicity that makes the series such a delight to play.
Very well written and argued. I do love the variety of styles we currently have in certain genres. Think about how similar The Witcher, Dragon Age and Zelda would look to a layman who knows nothing about video games. But then think of how magnificently different they are. This is definitely a variety that has expanded as the games industry has grown wider.
And don't give us that rubbish about "I can't move as much now I'm over 30" rubbish Thom. That's habit and coformism more than anything. Get your lazy ass out there and run up Snowden and back.
You know what would make Zelda even more whimsical? Being able to choose if you want to play as a boy or girl.
Simplicity is fine but after having been spoiled by witcher 3's branching quest lines, choices and the general quest quality (almost every quest have a lengthy substantial story and voice acting) i can no longer go back to just being simple.
It's a well written editorial and I agree with many points.
Though one of the biggest complaints from the West, is how Zelda is aimed at kids and "casuals" instead of making it "mature"/"hardcore".
Oh man The Witcher 3. Such an amazing game. It's quests were fantastic,the lore was amazing as well. Man i wish Zelda was like that.
I don't think that header image, which shows how Twilight Princess is the very embodiment of "Real Is Brown" rather than "youthful and optimistic", fits the tone of the article.
Well written editorial. I appreciate the simplicity Legend of Zelda brings to the adventure genre. That appreciation goes back to my Super Nintendo days, when I played A Link to the Past right after finishing Final Fantasy II (now referred to as FFIV). It was a simpler game systematically, but still allowed me to explore an entire world, battle monsters, and experience a tale. My mind naturally goes to the development of the next Legend of Zelda on Wii U - will the game developers continue to evolve the series by including more RPG elements, or will we remain in the sword-wielding, item-earning roots of the NES classic?
EDIT: I'm 39, and I've given up on my hair. I started going with the bald look two years ago.
@Xenocity Has most "mature"/"hardcore" gamers actually played Zelda? It might be easier then say The Witcher III, but it would be hard to call it "casual gaming". Don't even know what players mean by "hardcore" or "casual". I-for-one just play games if I hear good things about it.
@jwfurness EXACTLY what I was thinking too (about Nintendo being the Studio Ghibli of video games)!!
'Though Link (or whatever you call your hero) travels far....'
LOL, I, for some reason, over the years always call my 'Link' character 'Cockrod', no idea why, buy I always get a giggle when another character talks to me
Edit: by the by, I'm 34 and love my gray hair and beard. Embrace the older sharper looking gentleman, who loves his video games
"Casual" and "hardcore" have no universal definition. Those who think otherwise are fooling themselves. It's like defining "normal".
"Fun" and "Not Fun" are the only two labels that should matter to anyone. And you're the only person who can set them for yourself.
Thomas, you are an excellent writer, and this piece was exceptional! I'm on the wrong side of 35 myself (let's leave it at that), and your editorial really help explains the appeal (and lack thereof) of certain games to me. As an adult gamer, LoZ: A Link to the Past was likely the most RPG-esque game I've ever enjoyed to completion, and I think its appeal was exactly for the reasons you discussed, simplicity (particularly in gameplay), joy and the overall notion of being an optimistic hero. Thanks for those observations!
And here's to Twilight Princess HD giving all of us that type of experience again.
This article is so relevent and correct for me, even down to his age, I could have written it word for word myself. The idea expounded on here is exactly why I started gaming with Nintendo as a kid and exactly why I have revolved back around to them. Especially with kids now, Nintendo is all I need for gaming and after Final Fantasy bit the dust (hard), Zelda remains the one and only game franchise in my mind that is still pure and better than ever, Skyward Sword being the pinnacle of the series for me to this point. Happy birthday to the man in green in a few days!!!
@xoIrishWxo My brother-in-law just recently gave me a PS3 and I struggled to find a handful of games that I was both interested in and that didn't have any profanity or gratuitous violence. Ended up selling it (Ico/Shadow of the Colossus will have to remain a fond memory). We are a Nintendo only family, and plan to stay that way.
I don't think it has get a leveling-up system or complex equipment mechanics, but I do believe the Zelda series deserves to be more than it currently is. Especially story-wise.
I think Nintendo fans who only play Nintendo titles would benefit greatly from playing a game like Witcher, Fallout, Mass Effect, etc. There is an entire dimension to what games can do that Nintendo rarely touches on, and I'm not sure for good reason.
That said, the inverse is sometimes also true. That is to say, Zelda games (and nintendo games for that matter) are profoundly contained to a singular tone, almost like a fairy tale, and far less like a complex game using video game logic. It's really pretty remarkable, and that impact is lost if you only play specific titles.
Twilight Princess is lower on the totem pole for me as far as Zelda games go. It apes Ocarina of Time a little too much, never really gaining its own identity. But it does feature some stunningly fun dungeons, and I'll always be washed in nostalgia when I hear the little subtle tings of its gameplay: Midna's concerned grunts, the wolf coming over the wiimote, the sound of the twilight realm opening...2006 was a great year!
"Relationships between characters evoke touching friendship without long-winded conversations...."
Did you get all that?
All joking aside, this was wonderfully written, and brought up a couple of key points that I've also observed.
People will never be happy whatever games are being released. Skyward Sword was awesome when it released but in the end, now people hate every moment of it. Release something like Phantom Hourglass and people despise it.
I wish I can satisfy everyone and I'm sure that's what game developers would want but unfortunately, that's never going to happen because games are a subjective taste just like everything else. Its sad that no matter how much developers do, they can't satisfy the audience in anyway possible.
Great editorial, and I wholeheartedly agree with it! The opening segment too.
It wasn't long ago reviewers were saying the same sort of thing about Windwaker HD.
When all said and done these are old games with a new look. Playing again is never the same as the first time.
The only reason this is getting so much attention is because there is nothing else to talk about.
I remember back when Skyrim came out and was so popular. I played it, and thought it was so depressing. There was hardly any humor or emotion. Just darkness. Zelda though mixes it up throughout the game. There are sweet moments, sad moments, and even funny moments.
Then there were the dungeons. Skyrim's dungeons got so boring and repetitive to me. Zelda has well thought and designed puzzles and items in the dungeons.
But some people wouldn't give Zelda any attention, because it wasn't open world or it didn't look realistic and gritty. If people only knew what they were missing. To me Zelda is incredible. TP is probably my favorite with Wind Waker HD close to it.
And if you are curious I've been visiting this site for a while. I'd say a year or two. I go to IGN, but this site has much better Wii U coverage. Today is the first time though that I actually signed up and posted here on NintendoLife. I'm excited to talk Nintendo games with people passionate about Nintendo games. My favorite two game franchises are Legend of Zelda series and Halo (yeah I game on Nintendo consoles and Xbox consoles). Also a big Mario Kart fan. Especially 8. Nintendo has some of the best games. I mostly have the Xbox for Halo and Madden. To me Zelda is the best adventure type game. And a side note: How come no Animal Crossing on Wii U?
A variety of games is great. There's plenty of brilliant games on Nintendo consoles, but other consoles also have fantastic games.
There's something about Zelda that makes it unique, so hopefully there'll be plenty more of them to come.
A huge part of what makes TWILIGHT PRINCESS so important is Midna. She added so much depth, charm and emotion to the situation by giving an authentic voice to the narrative whereas we're usually meant to interpret the view of what's going on by way of Link, the ever silent protagonist. I think if Nintendo wishes to continue the series with Link staying mum, then introducing more partners like Midna would probably be a good idea.
Off topic ish... but BBC radio 4 is about to have a feature about Zelda on Front Row any minute!
To me Zelda is a game, whereas I feel many other modern games are films with a bit of gameplay and complex menus bolted on top.
I game to get away from reality (not that there's anything wrong with my life!), so these gritty realistic looking games have never appealed. I even find Xenoblade Chronicles X too complicated with too many menus. I just want to get out there, attack some enemies and solve some puzzles. Or take my time planning my next move (Fire Emblem).
I'm worried the new Zelda might get too into this open world fad, but I'm sure Nintendo have my back.
While a bit more lighthearted than other games in its genre, The Legend Of Zelda is FAR from "kiddy".
Case in point: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/NightmareFuel/TheLegendOfZelda
However, @ThomasBW84, don't worry, you'll always be our kid. You're not old by any means!
"The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes... felt like the engine for A Link Between Worlds bolted onto a sloppy B-list release"
That's because it was.
@AlexSora89 Except for Skyward Sword, which is the definition of kiddy. It treats you like you're a kid too stupid to handle critical thinking and problem solving, and just gives you an obnoxious helper character that tells you the solution to everything so you don't have to think. What an awful game. I hope Nintendo gets back to making games for all ages instead of game for kids soon (Mario and Luigi Dream Team also suffered the "we will hold your hand because you must be a kid who's too dumb to think" syndrome and was awful).
Ironically, A Link Between Worlds gave me the "fun in getting lost" that Aonuma was so committed to deliver: I rarely used the guide, solved most of the puzzles myself, and had a lot of fun doing so. Coming from a rather spoiled gamer who started off in the late nineties, this is kind of a big deal considering I hate getting stuck in games.
Man TW, you need to get over the age thing, the 30's were a great decade for me (from what I can remember that long ago) embrace 30, it's the prime of life. If you're this concerned about turning 30 what's going to happen w/ 40, 50, 60? Life is long.
Just spent about 30 minutes in the car w/ my kids discussing Zelda U and the one thing we all agreed it really needed was voice acting. It doesn't have to be dark, and it doens't have to be mature, but we all agree no matter how frikkin' annoying Tatsu is, his rapport with Linly just wouldn't be the same if we had to read it all. And Vandham just wouldn't come across the same w/o his manly attitude. I'd say there's a strong chance we don't get it w/o voice acting. And to all the people who say voice acting in video games always sucks, tell that to Troy Baker.
We're ok w/ silent Link, that's pretty much a given, but the rest of them need to be voiced. Starfox Adventures is now 14 years old, and that game was almost entirely voice acted. Still the best merchant ever (Darksiders pays homage)
Good piece. I never understood conflating a "mature" approach to storytelling with dark fantasy, violence and whatnot, though. Horrible things are a fact of life, but so are, as you point out, joy and wonder, and it makes no sense to say that only one of these areas of life is appropriate for adult games
Wonderfully written. I found myself nodding along practically ever paragraph.
@GravyThief "To me Zelda is a game, whereas I feel many other modern games are films with a bit of gameplay and complex menus bolted on top."
Man, THIS. So much this.
Don't get me wrong: last year I played The Witcher on PS4 and loved every minute of it. I'm currently doing the same thing with Xenoblade X. But at the end of the day I like my games to FEEL like games, even if they're sprawling, multilayered adventures. This is precisely why Zelda games remain immensely more appealing to me than those franchise: it's a Game, with a capital G, and it isn't ashamed about it.
Great editorial. Love LoZ and look forward to all innovations coming to Zelda U. However, my conservative, nearly 30 year old self hopes that it won't be too different from what we know and like best.
Excellent article. You just nailed it man.
This is one of the reasons I prefer Japanese games over western games. They keep the joy and sense of doing something good like saving the world, good winning over evil, saving the princess, etc. wereas western develop games like the drama, shock value, etc,,, "you die,,, your character fails at the end,,,, the main character has 2or 3 terrible choices (I am looking at you Mass Effect 3)"... plus Japanese games have the best music and characters overall.
Don't get me wrong, I do play some western developed games, like Mass Effect, or GTA, but they kinda lack that joy of doing something right (except the first 2 Mass Effect games which keep it simple... SPOILER ALERT......... You win, you save the day......END OF SPOILERS) and I am starting to get tired of them.
Western developers need to relax and remember,,,,, these are GAMES..... Not movies,,,, not TV shows... You are participating by controlling a character,,,,,,, winning, living and saving the day should be the first option in a game (AKA Best ending).
I consider most of the "mature" stuff to mostly mean "pandering to the 14-25 male demographic"...
I played some of The Witcher 2, and I was stunned by how cliché and gratuitous the situations were. Many games leave me feeling this way.
Some notable exceptions were Bayonetta 2 where I felt immersed in a highly stylized hyper violent work in the vein of a Tarrantino movie on acid, and the Tomb Raider reboot where the player watches Lara change from a victim to a hero over the course of the game.
It's also nice to see competent female protagonists in a world of generic, invincible, uber-macho power fantasy simulators.
@xoIrishWxo I can definitely relate, although I would like to replace the word simplicity, which has a negative connotation, with straight forwardness.
In Zelda games you have the hero, the bad guy and the damsel in distress, and there's a path towards rescuing her that is full of puzzles and obstacles and although it looks different every time, you know beforehand what to expect and that is also what makes it feel like coming home to me; the familiarity of it all, and it's a cozy feeling...
So there's that and then there's the pure, unadulterated fun that only Nintendo is continuously able to deliver with any number of its franchises.
I'm 45 years old myself and still they are able to plaster a face splitting grin on my face every time I get to see what they have cooked up next, be it a game or a piece of hardware.
But the games are king. They bring me back to a bygone age when games were indeed just meant to be fun and a hobby, where nowadays you have to be casual or hardcore and you get into online discussions about why your opinion matters most and why your console of choice is the only one that matters.
And we even have world championships in gaming where some serious money is concerned. There are some exceptions, fortunately, but to me a considerable part of the gaming community has become a whole lot less enjoyable.
Maybe it was considered silly or geeky back in the day to like playing video games, and maybe some parents hoped it was just a phase that we would 'certainly' grow out of once we would reach adulthood ourselves, but unfortunately for them it didn't quite happen that way...
I for one am sometimes still very surprised at how much I still like gaming, since I did expect the interest to diminish for several reasons (not because of the parents, to be clear) but somehow where gaming is concerned, time is standing still for me, and I'm still as interested as ever when something new is released and I'm still excited for every E3 and what will come next, so I don't expect that to change anytime soon.
Because of this my only worry is that at a certain point I won't be able to play certain types of games anymore, because of the slower reflexes that will inevitably come with growing older, but maybe I'll surprise myself again...
I know exactly how Thomas feels, very well written article.
@DarthNoctunal Totally true. I really hate when people say "OMG you play baby games! COD and Halo are soooo much better. You're a casual for playing casual games". Seriously. People who say that kinda stuff probably have never played Battletoads or Contra. Beat that for "hardcore".
@OneBagTravel Minor puzzle solving? I think it was a very good core mechanic and constantly changes up the way to think of the solution of a puzzles on a 2D/3D game
I spent part of this past fall playing Fallout 4 and felt SO OVERWHELMED I gave up. Plus, every time I booted it up I felt anxious and nervous roaming through the Wasteland. Nintendo is comfort. A company that can give the adventure of Zelda, the strategy of Fire Emblem, the hilarity of Animal Crossing, and the sheer joy of Super Mario is and always will be my one true love.
And thanks for the editorial! Nice work Thomas.
I feel similar about Fallout 4. I tried to give it a fair chance, but just couldn't get into it. Maybe it IS because it feels too overwhelming at times. I have a cousin that plays it almost every day, but I just can't get into it myself. :/
@Jetset Totally agree. After Nintendo's poor showing at E3, and (in my opinion) Playstation's great one, I bought a PS4 in addition to my Nintendo systems - it's my first Playstation since the PS1! But while I enjoy games like Star Wars Battlefront and Shadow of Mordor, I definitely still play Nintendo games more. And I'm like Thomas - I'm just past 30 now and still can't do the "adult" gamer thing. I never really could. And I still can't. More power to those who can play games like Fallout 4 over and over, but it just isn't for me!
I've purposefully avoided Witcher and plenty of other games because a lot of them go for a super dark, gritty feel, and usually feature some hugely masculine hero dripping testosterone. ugh.
Zelda on the other hand feels like an adventure and a fairy tale. And even though there's a lot of danger to the world and its inhabitants, it never loses its charm because there is a real feel to the world that it is populated by people who are "good" people, even if they end up doing something bad or questionable.
I love Hyrule and I would give anything to live in that land (if it existed). (T-T ) Can't wait for Twilight Princess.
@TheRealThanos Do you only game on Nintendo?
@HyruleHero hey! Welcome to the user-side of the site, haha : -)
Yeesh, I'm 17 and I usually feel the pressure from other people (like my older brother or my dad) to stop playing "kiddie" games, like games on 3DS or wii u. It really kind of sucks because now I often hesitate to express what I like around a lot of people, for fear of being judged for it. I love playing Nintendo games, because they're fun! They're really well-made and they always have a light-atmospher that can just take me to a better place if I need. I hate the notion that I should play certain things or act a certain way so that people won't look down on me. I just wish I could do a better job with not being so afraid to show it, since I'm nervous in the future if I ever get married if I'll ever get the courage to share with my partner what I really like, or if I'll just shove that part of myself aside for fear of being hurt. I'm not obsessed with games, and I often put other things higher in terms of priority, but I know I never want to just quit playing games, and I always want to play Nintendo. Especially Zelda, it's always given me that amazing sense of fun, emotion, and adventure.
People respect confidence. Trust me in this.
If you act "ashamed" and tempted to conform, they'll just keep it up. But if you confidently tell them to grow up, and that only kids are worried about playing mature games to "appear mature", and then give them the crazy eye like you're surprised they could still be so immature, then brazenly throw in whatever game you enjoy and tell them you don't have anything to prove cause you KNOW you're mature (and you are mature for not falling into that trap like they have), they'll probably start respecting you for it.
Show them you are not ashamed and they will lose any desire to shame you.
Depends on the game. A lot of gritty AAA games lose my interest pretty quickly.
Some hook my interest to the end- Tomb Raider and Rise of the Tomb Raider, Dragon Age Inquisition, Monster Hunter 3/4 Ultimate, Bayonetta 1/2...
But Nintendo games, Idk, something about their simplicity that keeps me interested. The games are uplifting. Even in Xenobade X, perhaps not uplifting but it inspired awe and wonder, in a fantastical sense. I finish a far greater number of Nintendo games despite out-buying them 2 to 1 with AAA games on PS4/X1.
Zelda is nice because it actually requires you to think and solve puzzles. In the Witcher 3, it feels more like you are just being guided along an adventure and rarely do you have to use your noggin. It is much more story driven but with mediocre gameplay. In Xenoblade X and the Witcher 3, I didn't really see the need for some of the complexity that they provided. It just feels like stuff that a small minority of gamers enjoy solely for personal satisfaction. Did the Witcher 3 really need a card game? It just feels like there are a lot of features tacked on without serious thought of how to integrate them into the game.
@JaxonH Thank you. That really does put a spin on things, I'll try that, and I'll make sure to keep your words in mind : -)
I've not long had a PS4 and it's exactly the same -.- there are a couple of good gems like journey, Everyone has gone to the rapture and the witness is supposed to be very good. But I find myself having to search for stuff I want to play far more than I do with Nintendo.
Great editorial, really well-written. It pretty much details why the Legend of Zelda series will always be my most favorite videogame series.
I do enjoy the more involved games like Witcher3, but nothing beats going back to the basics, can't wait to play through TPHD in its entirety.
It seems this article will be as close as we get to a 30th anniversary celebration this Sunday. Oh well, I'll be playing nothing but LoZ :]
I want less story in Zelda games. A Link To The Past and Link's Awakening had the perfect balance of story / gameplay for me. I don't want a completely empty world like in the original NES Zelda, nor do I want the story to disrupt the gameplay like in the recent games.
I think the biggest mistake people make about fans of Nintendo is they want to play 'kiddie' games. Although Nintendo do make games for the family, I think the real draw for Nintendo fans is Japanese gaming culture in general. Japanese games tend to be colouful, extavagant, slightly bizarre, and for the most part (though Capcom and Sega have been letting the side down lately) finished products with good controls. Most Nintendo fans love Final Fantasy, they love Mega Man, they love all those obscure PS JRPGs, because there is a certain product the Japanese create. Bayonetta is a hit with Nintendo fans despite being for a little more mature audience, because it's about over the top situations like 100 ft Dragons being beaten up by a sarcastic witch with the camp turned up to 11- this is the same sort of thing we used to do in games like Disgaea or Castlevania- it's just a different genre- but still so Japanese.
A lot of the time when I've tried a Ubisoft or EA game, there is something about the feel of the game from the responsiveness of the controls, to the look of the world, to the general humour of the game that I just don't like. Even Rayman didn't feel 'solid' like a Japanese produced game for me, and this isn't the sort of game I grew up on. Admittedly I love games like Arkham and Broken Sword which have the humour and are sturdily built, but perhaps thats because the have a very British feel to them.
When people say we need to be able to edit Link's identity in LoZ; or want a more mature story or graphical style, or to cut out the series jokes like Tingle, or have Link talk they really are missing the point. That is Loz's identity, and if you tinker with it, you won't have LoZ- you'll have another non descript western wannabe sandbox.
In 1987. Its not 1987 anymore. Its like wanting movies to remain silent movies just because thats how they were when they originated.
@MrGawain I'd argue Bayonetta only became a hit with Nintendo fans because of Smash and the sales of the 2 games on Wii U before and after the Smash announcement is evidence.
Any chance of a Zelda Direct this Sunday..? U_U,
I liked the article. And I feel the same in many ways, for example about getting older and liking Nintendo/PC indie scenes more and more!
As much as I liked the recent Witcher 3 and MGS V, they tend to get a bit complicated and tiresome. Sometimes you just want to adventure away. I hope that the open-world in Zelda U is done well.
Well, the reason why this setting for a game is not so common anymore is because it was done to death in previous console generations. We've been there, done that. The only place left to go using this setting is towards more breadth and artistry, which if you look for them, those games are out there. Zelda isn't some lighthouse in the middle of a stormy sea, it's just one star among many.
@Project_Dolphin Well, everything works in cycles in this universe. The previous trends that this article is talking about lasted for at least 20 years, so yes, the current trends have been conducted for over 10 years, but that's still not yet as long as the previous trends lasted. There's always been something cashed in on to flood store shelves, too.
I wouldn't throw The Witcher in with CoD and Madden, or even Fallout, though. The way Witcher is handled is a completely different beast from your point. It's certainly not been done ad nauseam. In fact, it seems like the new Zelda is going to take some pointers from The Witcher 3.
Both series have a new entry converted from a relatively linear setting into a more open ended setting. The Witcher 3 aced the transition, so I hope the giant Nintendo can at least match the efforts of a single Polish studio.
I've always tried to get into Zelda games, but they never really click for me. I think it's because I'm just not much of a fantasy game guy. It takes a LOT of work for a fantasy game to grab me. Hopefully Zelda Wii U will change that around!
I put Majora's Mask, or heck even Wind Waker, above TP in quality, honestly.
Compared to even the Great Sea, which had items, enemies, and events popping up left and right as you traveled, TP's vast, open fields just felt uninspired and bland, for the most part.
There was a bit of horseback combat here and there, but outside of that, all you did was ride through those areas, stopping occasionally to catch a bug or to investigate a side area away from your steed.
The overworlds in WW and Majora just felt much more fleshed-out and event-filled.
@xoIrishWxo No, I don't. I have a mid-tier gaming PC mostly used for playing Pro Evo and RTS games, and besides that I own a Sega Dreamcast and an Xbox360 and quite a few models of Commodore Amiga but Nintendo is the brand I own the most systems of; both consoles and handhelds. I haven't joined the current gen of consoles yet because of various reasons, so the Wii and 3DS are my latest purchases in that regard.
Nice article, thanks buddy., Im a zelda fan since the #nes days and when played #ALinkToThePast in 1992 just re-confirm that I was already a zelda fan & nintendo fan as well!
Since then I have played all zelda games and have love them all., My fave #Zelda game of all time is #ALinkToThePast
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