Posts in category: Editorials

My Zelda Story: Kevin O’Rourke, The Real Legend

IMG_0595What is the Legend of Zelda to you? Is it simply a game that you enjoy to pass the time with, or is it something more meaningful? Have you been enjoying journeys through Hyrule for most of your life, or have you only recently tried you hand at your first adventure as Link, the hero in green? We all have our stories, playing these games, finding inspiration from them and always wishing for more adventures to enjoy on the latest Nintendo hardware.

The Legend of Zelda series is such a staple in Nintendo’s history and has had a long run of unique games across all of Nintendo’s consoles. Everyone who has played a Zelda game has a different opinion, whether they enjoy 3D or 2D, handheld or console. These reflective articles aim to offer gamers from different paths, ages and backgrounds opinions on the series and their own memories with the series. My Zelda career started with Ocarina of Time and before the dawn of the Internet as we know it. My Zelda Story transforms from a player with minimal investment into one of the casual speedrunners for the Zelda Dungeon Marathon team.

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Imagining the Legend of Zelda as a Real Time Strategy Game


The Legend of Zelda series has recently expanded into other genres and Nintendo has been more open with their prized intellectual property in terms of who can work on their storied franchise. Hyrule Warriors takes The Legend of Zelda into the gametype of Dynasty Warriors. While not a true ‘Legend of Zelda’ title, it features a huge cast of characters from The Legend of Zelda series and could be the stepping stone for Nintendo to create a new game in a vastly different genre.

This article can be considered a companion piece to the previous ZD Talks which asked our news staff which asked which game genres could The Legend of Zelda series follow. Hit the jump for more on how Zelda could expand into the RTS genre. Read more…

Revisiting Phantom Hourglass: Prelude to the Temple of Courage

salvage_armWelcome back to Revisiting Phantom Hourglass, the series in which I go through this oft-forgotten DS title with a critical eye, looking for not only why it was forgotten, but why it should be remembered. In this installment, we make another trek through the Temple of the Ocean King, yell at an elderly gentleman, and spin some statues on our way to the Temple of Courage and, with it, the final spirit we need.

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Gossip Stone: Will Nintendo Remake Link’s Awakening?

la The same way that Majora’s Mask somewhat lived in the shadow of Ocarina of Time, Link’s Awakening had the task of following up A Link to the Past. On top of that, it was the first game in the series to appear on a handheld gaming console. These conditions made Link’s Awakening a game that slipped through the cracks, in my opinion. It’s one of my favorite Zelda games, and usually I don’t love classic Zelda titles so that’s saying something. Its gameplay was challenging, but not too difficult, and oh its plot, themes, characters, and setting! The Island of Koholint and its songstress Marin made this game an unforgettable and unique experience. So should this diamond in the rough be remade?

With Marin entering the fray in Hyrule Warriors, I’d say it’s about time. But realistically, will we see a Link’s Awakening remake anytime in the foreseeable future? I’m not so sure.

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Link May Want to Save the Day, But Do You?

aryll-kidnappedAt any one point during your adventure throughout Hyrule, would you say that you actively think back to what you are fighting for? Sure, you may be busy thinking about solving a puzzle or fighting some monsters, but in the back of your mind, you should be able to recall just what all the adventuring is for. You should be able to, because a good adventure game should make you feel like it’s all worth it. Zelda is no exception, but sometimes, I believe that there could be a bit more… motivation. Not for Link. He seems ready to go at any point. I mean for the player. You should see a giant boss, and think, “this is scary, but I’ll beat it for…” something/someone. Right? Some Zelda titles have certainly presented some major purpose behind Link’s journey, but others… well, perhaps there is room for improvement in the motivation department.

Hit the jump for some examination of the series’ various reasons players are given to fight, whether they feel truly worth it, and what could be used in the future as better player incentive. Read more…

Gossip Stone: Should Link’s Upcoming Companion be from One of Zelda’s Common-Races?

Over the years Link has had plenty of companions, but most of them are fairies, imps, or even hats! Though he’s had interactions with characters from common-races (like carrying Princess Ruto around in Jabu-Jabu’s belly), Link has never had a full-length game companion that was either a Goron, Deku Scrub, Zora, or any alternate races extended from those. To have a small floating fairy companion makes sense for functionality, but would a more humanoid companion be additionally useful to Link or better for players to connect with?

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Revisiting Phantom Hourglass: The Wind Temple (At Last)

ph wind temple 1After an incredible amount of, *ahem*, “build-up”, we have at long last reached the Isle of Gusts. Join me in this installment of Revisiting Phantom Hourglass as I tackle the Wind Temple in order to get the second of our three spirits. On the way, we finally get a bomb bag of our very own, have to tackle some very strong winds, and talk about introducing dungeon mechanics before the dungeon.

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Women of Legend: Midna
With the release of Twilight Princess HD, many of us will once again embark on a journey into a version of Hyrule that is shrouded in darkness. And what better way to do that than with the help of the Princess of the Twilight Realm; there’s no better guide (and in my opinion, no better companion) in all of the Zelda series. Midna is one of the most inspiring female characters in the lineup. She’s strong in terms of both power and confidence, and while she’ll do anything to save herself and her people, she is loyal to anyone who can prove their worth to her. Our mischievous little Princess is full of attitude and riddled with trust issues, but she comes around, especially to Link. After the jump we’ll discuss what makes Midna the memorable and influential imp she is.

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Revisiting Phantom Hourglass: Handling Explosives

phantom hourglassWelcome to the third installment of Revisiting Phantom Hourglass. With the the first dungeon of Phantom Hourglass completed, we make our way to the Isle of Gusts, where the Wind Temple lies. Along the way, we return to the Temple of the Ocean King, discuss bomb controls, and get totally and completely lost in fog.

Hit the jump for another delve into this DS classic!
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My Zelda Story: From A Link to the Past to A Link Between Worlds

The-Legend-of-Zelda-A-Link-Between-Worlds-vs.-A-Link-to-the-Past-46 What is the Legend of Zelda to you? Is it simply a game that you enjoy to pass the time with, or is it something more meaningful? Have you been enjoying journeys through Hyrule for most of your life, or have you only recently tried your hand at your first adventure as Link, the hero in green? We all have our stories, playing these games, finding inspiration from them and always wishing for more adventures to enjoy on the latest Nintendo hardware.

For me The Legend of Zelda has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. I was born into it more or less, and I have vague memories of watching family members playing A Link to the Past, and later on, Ocarina of Time as I grew up. But I was around 7 years old when I played my first Zelda game. My family wasn’t exactly wealthy as I was growing up and I have a lot of siblings. So when my parents found an SNES and a few games at a yard sale, my siblings and I were on cloud nine. A Link to the Past happened to be one of those games. It’s funny, the cartridge already had two save files that were pretty far into the game, and, as any normal person or gamer would do, I deleted those games so my siblings and I could have our own save files. However, for some reason, two of my brothers got so mad at me for deleting those games and making them start from the beginning. This is the moment that I first experienced Zelda for myself, and it’s a fond, silly memory. That said, though, my Zelda story is actually a rather short one. Even though 13 years or so followed that memory and I had played the majority of the Zelda games released over that time, I had never really considered how much the Zelda series meant to me then. At least, not until A Link Between Worlds was released.

Make the jump to hear my Zelda story. You can also check out Jon and Mark’s Zelda stories, and be sure to be on the look out for more of the staff’s Zelda journeys.

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Gossip Stone: Does Link Suffer From Selective Mutism?

cat The Hero of Time is a rather silent savior, he doesn’t speak casually but we do see him gesture and make mouth movements as if he is speaking to someone. Though we are not privy to these conversations and we rarely hear our hero’s voice, it is clear that at times he is capable of speech. Selective Mutism is a condition that often occurs due to genetically predisposed Anxiety Disorder or Sensory Processing Disorder which results in children not being able to speak comfortably in a majority of situations. Only with certain people or in familiar settings will children with this affliction speak, and these children are usually socially impaired otherwise.

Many Links seem to me to show the symptoms of Selective Mutism, after the jump we’ll see which Links we can diagnose and how this illness has affected their heroics.

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What Makes a Dungeon a Dungeon?

I don’t think any real Zelda fan would say that a dungeon is a dungeon is a dungeon, right? When you walk into a dungeon, you know that’s what it is, but they are always different, in every new game. How do we know, though? When you think about it, beyond a short sweeping intro shot, or a visible title, there is little that definitively indicates that you are in one of Zelda’s staple dungeons. Sure, you almost always end up finding a new item or two, and there will likely be a boss waiting for you, but what about the smaller details? Is it the architecture? The puzzles and traps? The monsters fight? Personally, I think there are some subtle aspects that are much more worth noting – aspects that are perhaps even worth deviating from. Is there a certain constant feature of these places that you always see, but have never really thought about, and what kinds of innovative styles for new dungeons could be born from defying the conventions of past games?

I may have a few ideas. Hit the jump for my thoughts on the matter. Read more…

My Zelda Story: The Perspective of a Young’un

a_link_to_the_past_3What is the Legend of Zelda to you? Is it simply a game that you enjoy to pass the time with, or is it something more meaningful? Have you been enjoying journeys through Hyrule for most of your life, or have you only recently tried you hand at your first adventure as Link, the hero in green? We all have our stories, playing these games, finding inspiration from them and always wishing for more adventures to enjoy on the latest Nintendo hardware.

Well, Jon might have said that his Zelda story started late, but he had no idea what late really meant. My Zelda Story begins two whole handheld systems after his, with perhaps the most despised non-CDI game in the series: Phantom Hourglass.

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How Would a Zelda Game Where Both Link and Zelda Are Playable Work?

Zelda's WinkHaving Zelda, or any female character for that matter, playable in a mainstream Zelda game is a wish that a notable number of Zelda fans have held for quite a while. Opponents to this have a number of arguments: that Link is the main character, that he has been defined as male throughout his various incarnations, that making him female would come at the cost of Zelda as a character, that Zelda was already playable in Spirit Tracks, that the last time Zelda was playable the games she was in were horrible and a number of other arguments. While I agree with a number of these arguments I believe there is a compromise possible: have both Link and Zelda playable at the same time. But how would such a game work? Join me on this thought experiment after the jump!

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Women of Legend: Skyward Sword’s Impa (Part Two)
Skyward Sword was a game focused on awakening and redemption, and Impa was one person whose personality and actions reflected the major growth of her character. As a young woman, Impa was intensely focused on the task assigned to her by the Goddess. But as the years ticked by, her demeanor changed to a much more relaxed and confident in both herself and those around her. Though she is still the same Impa she was during the Ancient Battle, the change in her is striking and the change she elicits in others is all the more. Hit the jump to read about the importance of old Impa and the legacy she leaves behind! (If you missed part one on young Impa, read it here.)

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