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Review – Zelda: Wind Waker

posted on December 16th, 2005 by billy

Zelda: Wind Waker
Developed by Nintendo
Published by Nintendo
Released 3.24.03

Sexy pose
Mr. Link, you’re trying to seduce me, aren’t you?

I grade games on a 100 point scale broken down into several categories. Each category gives a maximum of 20 points. The combined total is score of the game.

A 100 = perfect.

Graphics: 20

Music: 20

Game play: 20

Plot: 10

Replay ability: 10

Total Value: 80%

What can be said of The Wind Waker? Gorgeous! Smooth! Colorful! An auditory pleasure! No plot. As with most game of the Zelda franchise the story is rather dull if not redundant. Collect your power up items (Triforce parts and weapons) kill the bad guy, and make sweet sweet underage lovin’s to the princess.

Plain wall
The environments are a little underdetailed but extremely sharp and clean.

On the surface you’re probably saying, gee isn’t this basically just a remake of the 1 st Nintendo Zelda I fell in love with back in 1987? Well yes. Yes and no. The premise is essentially the same, you have to go into a number of dungeons and collect power up items and maps then you have to collect parts of the triforce of courage. Face off with Ganon and save the princess. This new version however incorporates some of the features we really started to love in the epic N64 game Zelda: the Ocarina of Time, namely the dungeon, boss, weapon, repeat process. Not to mention the over world travel. In the N64 you had Epona. In WW you have a talking ship that’s possessed by the ghost of the King of Hyrule. The storyline is basically supposed to take place long after Ocarina of Time and the spirit of Link and Zelda have been reborn into new people and Ganon has found a way to resurrect himself. The world has been flooded with water and yet there aren’t any Zoras anymore. Which was confusing. Anyway. On with the review.

Graphics

If you played WW you know what I am about to say. The graphics were probably the smoothest, slickest and smartest of any videogame I have ever played on a console. I couldn’t believe that they could be so flushed out and beautiful. The artwork while stylistic and a little childish doesn’t turn off older players though. It just works the way its supposed to. There is still a debate raging over the kiddy graphics but I say fuck the debate. It’s Nintendo, get used to kiddy stuff. I gave the graphics the full 20 points, because I honestly don’t think I ever had the pure and unbridled pleasure of seeing a game like that before I played it. Its done in 3D cell shading, which is kind of an unused if older style of building your design. But the way its done, it truly makes the world of Hyrule flow with life, right down from Links yawning to the water violently lapping at your boat while sailing around a terrible squall.

Rope swing
It’s just Jungle Hunt with a bajillion polygons and colors.

Music

The music is great. I also gave this category the full points because it was done very well. From the creepy pirate themes to the high seas adventure music this screams quality. I also loved the addition they added in the beginning to the original Zelda theme which really flushed it out. It actually tells a story in your head if you listen to it, the way all great music should.

Game play

From the camera angle control to the sword combonation attacks this game plays smoothly. I never got burnt out on doing crazy sword techniques to knock out some moblin. I felt at all times in control of my character and never felt I had to leave it up to chance. The controls are well laid out and easy to remember. I gave this full points.

Plot

Here is where the game took a huge hit in the ratings. The music graphics and control was great, but it never really goes beyond that. There were a few cool plot turns, like when you find out that some evil villain is still alive…let’s call him Mr. G., and I liked who Zelda turned out to be. And getting to go back in time to see portions of old Hyrule castle was great, but those deal more with nostalgia rather than solid story line. Essentially you are forced to play and make up your own story line, but I never really cared much for my character because there simply wasn’t enough done to flesh him out. I get it. I am the reincarnation of Link, but what am I feeling? Who do I have relationships with? For such a tiny island I am supposed to come from, people don’t seem to make much of an impression.

Sadly I had to give this category a 10. This is usually the case with all Zelda games, with the exception of Link to the Past which at least tried to reinvent much of the game.

High five!
The imagery represents omniscience and omnipotence, or a raising of the metaphoric roof.

Replayability

Part of replay ability is in if the game is fun and if it has a lot of different things in it you can breeze by at 1 st but discover later. For example Final Fantasy VII for all the hype and vitriol had great replay ability. Because there was Chocobo breeding, and lots of extra spells and characters you could find somewhere. WW has a really lame photography contest thing you can do. However it isn’t nearly enough to get you to play again. I played through this game one time and when I was finished I moved on. I was never really interested to do it more than once. I gave this category a 10, because I figure I might pick it back up somewhere down the road just to play through again for the graphics and music.

In closing I think the game is a solid, but I found some of it lacking. It had a great engine but never really delivered the goods story wise to make me a fanatic. Remember the best graphics and music does not make the best game. Lunar Eternal Blue taught us that.

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