Spirit Tracks Box ArtworkSpirit Tracks has really settled for most Zelda enthusiasts with many of us having already completed the game several times. Many Zelda fans were disappointed with Phantom Hourglass, yet they viewed Spirit Tracks as a form of redemption for Nintendo. One of the guys over at The Kartel has a much different approach and feels that Spirit Tracks was a big step back for Nintendo after what he thought was a very successful Phantom Hourglass.

“An optimistic view of Spirit Tracks might see it as nothing but a sophomore misfire. Hourglass taught that Stylus-driven Zelda can be great, and Tracks warned that it’s not inherently great. Hopefully the next DS Zelda installment will take the innovations of Phantom Hourglass and use them to craft an adventure that avoids the plodding mediocrity of riding the Spirit Tracks.”

During the first several hours of Spirit Tracks, I was very immersed into the game. It had the same great controls of Phantom Hourglass and a brand new cast of characters,. Along with tons of new enemies, several amazing new dungeons, and a very well done soundtrack, the game was very intriguing. Yet as I got further into the game and especially after completing it, the things that stood out most about Spirit Tracks were not the things that I loved, but rather, the mistakes that I thought the game had made. The slowness of the Spirit Train being first and foremost, with the empty storyline not far behind. Now that the game has settled in with the rest of the Zelda titles, I can honestly say that the game was just not as satisfying as Phantom Hourglass was. I can say with a degree of confidence that Spirit Tracks is my least favorite handheld Zelda title to date.

That being said, I hardly feel that this is a sign of the fall of Zelda. Spirit Tracks, minus the several nuisances, was an amazing title and is still one of the best titles on the Nintendo DS in my book. I don’t think it was a big step backwards as the author of the article describes, but rather, a solid step forward that could have been even better. The game was enjoyable and I think its legacy will still play out nicely when we look back at it years from now. Perhaps at the lower part of the totem poll of the Zelda series, but hardly something that we are going to look back and frown upon.

What do you guys think of the article? Do you share the authors sentiments about Spirit Tracks? Is he part of a very rare group of people that actually enjoyed Phantom Hourglass more than Spirit Tracks? Let us know in the comments below.

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