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We’re back for another week with a very special episode, one that we’ve been looking forward to for a while: analyzing the world, characters, and themes of Studio Ghibli’s 1997 masterpiece Princess Mononoke and seeing how that movie made a lasting impressing on the Zelda series, and Breath of the Wild in particular. We compare Link and Ashitaka, Zelda and San, Lady Eboshi and the citizens of Irontown to the fabled Sheikah clan, analyze the similar themes of nature versus…

For Zelda fans of a certain age, nothing tops the nostalgia of the franchise’s first and only 16-bit adventure: The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. Considered by many to be the rare perfect game, the SNES classic dazzled fans with a fully-orchestrated soundtrack and a shocking leap forward in graphics. After the bizarre and controversial foray into side-scrolling RPG action, the franchise returned to its roots with a top-down adventure and defined the Zelda experience for a generation. In…

Despite vast differences in geography and culture, Hyrule and it’s neighboring realms share a universal currency; the almighty rupee. While some of the economies in these lands operate strangely, flooding Link with cash and offering little to purchase, trading and transacting with merchants is a key component of most Zelda adventures. Thanks to the frequency of their interactions and their unique personalities, these entrepreneurs are often among their respective game’s most memorable characters. Which one is the most unforgettable? Beedle is easily…

I am a big, big fan of 80’s inspired synthwave music. Something about the way the music conveys a sense nostalgia while at the same time manage to sound futuristic is something that’s always hooked me about that style of music. Perhaps it’s that futuristic slant that serves as the reason why you don’t hear it in a ton of Nintendo games, however, which I’ve always thought is a shame, as when Nintendo has used electronic, synthy music in its…

Sometimes video games just don’t click right away. Even in our favorite franchises, a new release can occasionally disappoint. This can happen because of a different style or bizarre gameplay mechanic, but it can also be brought on by the fatigue of repetition and familiarity. It’s always worth giving games another try, however, as a different mindset or approach can often tease out an appreciation for titles we were previously lukewarm on. I know this has happened for me many…

Hot chocolate “bombs” have gained popularity over the last few years due to their convenience and tastiness. Essentially, they are chocolate molds with a hollow center that are sometimes filled with mini marshmallows or edible glitter. However, if you have a creative itch, you may find a way to put a Zelda spin on it. YouTube’s Once Upon A Workbench recently released a quick six-minute video detailing the creation of their own Breath of the Wild-inspired hot chocolate bomb. Not…

While Zelda fans will no doubt classify 2022 as the year that Breath of the Wild 2 finally comes out (we hope), fans of Nintendo in general might instead classify it as the year that a lot of games come out that look a lot like Breath of the Wild. While you wouldn’t find very many people who would claim the 2017 masterpiece invented open-world gameplay, there do seem to be more than a handful of titles coming out that…

The ending of most Zelda games are pretty standard; you go through the final dungeon, defeat the boss, and then credits roll. There are a few Zelda games where you can unlock a complete ending or secret ending; i.e Breath of the Wild when you collect all of the memories and Link’s Awakening if you don’t have a single death on your save file. Those are just some examples of alternate endings, but what if a Zelda game had more…

Storytelling in video games has evolved significantly in the last 30 years. The Zelda series is a perfect example of that evolution, particularly in the endings — gone are the days where Link saves the princess, she thanks him, and then the credits roll. Ranging from heartwarming and heroic to bittersweet and hopeful, no two endings are alike, and it makes each game memorable and distinctive. Concluding a story is no easy feat in any medium, so for the Zelda…

For all of its outstanding contributions to the Zelda franchise, Breath of the Wild has made a greater impact on the modding community than any of its predecessors. Games of this enormous breadth and scope, such as those from series like The Elder Scrolls or The Witcher, are popular subjects for modification. The abundance and malleability of their content makes them perfect for fan alteration or rearrangement, breathing new life into games whose official content has been exhausted. Multiplayer mods are among the most prominent examples,…