Posted on January 06 2015 by Nathanial Rumphol-Janc
The Oracle series marks a very unique twist in the Zelda kingdom. While releasing two games that connect in some fashion isn’t new at Nintendo (the entire Pokémon series comes to mind), it was entirely new for the Zelda series. It also didn’t come out of Nintendo directly, as these games were crafted by Capcom.
Another odd twist is that there was supposed to be three games, but due to various reasons they cut it down to two with a special ending that could only be had by owning and completing both games. Due to the nature of these games getting released at the same time and having a lot of similarities, along with a combined overall ending, I have decided to group them together in this special case of figuring out why someone may prefer these titles over all of the rest in the series.
As always, remember the goal isn’t to tell you which game is the best in the series, but to rather dissect the games based on my own experiences and try and explain why someone out there may find them to be the best in the series.
Two is Better than One
Do you prefer 2D Zelda games? Alright, so this checks that box. Do you like classic Zelda gameplay with double the dose? The Oracle of Seasons/Ages combo provides this as the only two game release in Zelda franchise history. While the three game arc was scrapped, the fact you get twice the amount of Zelda gameplay is rather impressive, as is the fact there is a combined overall ending.
This may seem like a simplistic reason, but no other game we’ll be talking about will be able to lay claim to a two game release, and that alone may be more than enough to put this over the top. Twice the content, arguably twice the fun.
Puzzle and Action Experiences Among Best the Series Has to Offer
What’s really unique about this two game approach is that since its two parts of the complete whole, both games were treated differently. One game is extremely action oriented, while the other focuses mostly on puzzles. Because of this it really caters to two different crowds. If you love fast paced 2D action, this combo delivers it in high doses, even higher than other 2D offerings. If you care strictly about puzzles, this combo also has high marks, with several all new puzzle designs, some of which will baffle you time to time.
Obviously, this could be twisted as a negative, especially if you prefer more balance in your experience. However, should you really love one of those two aspects; this combo gives a game directly catered to you.
Interesting Endgame Plot Twist
Okay, so plot twists happen a lot in the series, but if you’re really into the story telling aspect of the series, the combined ending of the two games has one of the best plot twists in the Zelda kingdom. Sure, the bad guy is exactly who you would expect it to be, but why he’s there and why you have to defeat him will likely catch you off guard.
This is also an understated point because few have actually experienced the joint ending. The thing is, both games 100% stand on their own as solo experiences, but the uniqueness of the combined ending twist will really be a plus for many.
Covering these two games was a lot more difficult than anticipated. That’s not because they aren’t great experiences that may be at the top of someone’s list, but it’s because of how fresh the idea of two games is, and the neat concepts and focuses that Capcom was able to accomplish because of it. I didn’t want to overly look at one game over the other, because I feel that gets too far into personal preferences and may end up showing my own favoritism – but I wanted to show what makes these games great together as a pair, and what they do that other games typically can’t compete with because of it.
As always, remember this series isn’t about telling you what game is the best, but arguing for why a game may be the best for someone, hopefully shedding light on titles that some fans may not have hold in high regard.