The Legend Of Zelda Part A
Now, as I play it, I'm at a standoff of which Zelda game, of the four 3-D ones released, is the best. OoT, MM, TP, or WW.
So I'm gonna have a four-part blog series about each game, and my personal rants on them.
TWILIGHT PRINCESS -
Twilight Princess was truly enjoyable, but one of its two biggest downfalls was the dark storyline, while appealing to older fans, made me have to send my nieces out of the room and made my parents, as well as I, uncomfortable with the game. I ended up skipping past the part after restoring Lanayru, the most story-crucial part, as well as the creepiest by far. This game is the first game where the Zelda universe really becomes dark.
Another was the convenience. Twilight Princess was the easiest Zelda I've ever played. Puzzles were incredibly straightforward, and there was no confusion about where in the world to go next. Midna guides you very specifically, taking away a lot of the problem solving aspect. Bosses, indeed, are challenging in the sense that they are extremely specific in the way you must damage them, but they are a cakewalk in the sense that they rarely attack, and when they do, it's something very easy to dodge. Whenever you do die, which is very rarely, you don't start up at the begining of the entire dungeon, you start off directly where you were, in the current mode of that boss. Death no longer has any real penalty. Plus, you eventually gain the ability to warp to about 20 locations in the world, which really does make sense but never gives you a chance to experience riding Epona accross Hyrule plain unless you absolutely want to.
I encountered really no frustration whatsoever in the game, except for a few parts where boredom was more like what I felt. As much as everyone hates the Water Temple and that fight with Dark Link, and as many times as you throw your controller down and shout at the game, and how hard it was to survive against those bosses like Bongo Bongo and King Dodongo, those were the parts I loved. Those were the parts I felt accomplished at beating, the parts I remember and talk about. Nowhere in Twilight Princess did I honestly feel accomplished, or like I achieved something.
Not only the darkness and the easiness, but there are many atributes which don't feel like they rose to the bar Twilight Princess seemingly set. Many classic Zelda aspects felt forgotten, classic enemies, clasic items, and unless I'm mistaken, there is no real major sidequest. And the musical quality, while great for the trailer, wasn't orchestral like I hoped. I think this is what disappointed me the most, is that I had presuppositions of what to expect, especially concerning the Temple of Time, which is stunningly creative and awesome and nostalgic, until you get to the actual dungeon part of it.
But for the upsides - TwiPri feels the most like a real roleplaying game. While characters don't have as community-revolving roles as in MM, the characterization of everyone is amazing. From Telma to Malo to Midna, each person has detail and emotion and personality that the previous games couldn't supply. The game feels like you're following a story. You don't just have some fairy tell you, "Go to that place next!" You have clues to follow, giants to joust, carriages to escort across the country, bugs to hunt and entire regions of Hyrule to bring back light to, before each of the first three dungeons can be accessed. There is no dull moment in the first half of the game, it's the second half that doesn't fulfill what the first half led up to. But this is about the pros.
While you don't have a Pictograph to collect photos with or a Biggoron Sword to claim, or any of the fun side things to keep you playing after you've beaten it, and lots of the enemies missing like Octoroks, and no Deku, there are certain aspects that will bring much nostalgia, particularly to the older crowd, from the original three games. The area of music is the most noticeable. In Hyrule castle, they use the same tune from the original, as well some Link to the Past themes in many cut scenes and dramatic moments. The game feels more like an upgrade of those, rather than of OoT or WW. Indeed, most classic ideas in Zelda games from before have been reintroduced with entirely new concepts. You know how you always have to go through rooms that represent the elements of the dungeons in the game, during the final dungeon? They took that concept, and used it as a boss battle instead with the main, though becoming the secondary, villian in the game.
Speaking of villian battle, the fight with Ganondorf is awesome (excpet the wold part, in my opinion). They re-use concepts from the classic Ganondorf ping-pong fight, the painting-travelling Phantom Ganon, and the duel from WindWaker, with totally new twists. The fight goes from human to wolf to horseback to human again, ending with a far more spectacular finish move than ever seen before.
Final evaluation: Twilight Princess is a great game, and an excellent addition to the Zelda series. It went far in depth to story, characterization, and the landscape of Hyrule. But the easiness defeats the purpose of it targeting an older audience.