This could widely run as one of my controversial game reviews ever, and for very good reason. On one side is The Legend of Zelda – The Ocarina of Time. This game has won countless video game awards and usually more often than not on the top of the tree as considered to be “The Greatest Game of All Time”, and with strong credentials. Magazine scores were in the high 90%’s, in Zelda’s first foray into gaming in 3D, and probably 99.999% of the people who played it decided it was the greatest game ever, and the other fraction of a percent game away satisfied.
On the other side is me, the writer of this review for Retro Garden, who up until a week ago had never played this game.
I had my first request for a review last week – which was this game, and have been trying to get a week’s worth of gaming from this game to do it justice. I have, so forgive me if I don’t do it justice.
You begin the game as a child version of Link, who has to break the town’s guardian from a curse. With a trusty sword and shield, you end up breaking the curse. Nevertheless, the tree still withers and dies. From there, you head to Hyrule castle to meet Zelda, who – after a few tustles and hours of gameplay, ends up like all good princesses and kidnapped by the series perennial bad guy Ganondorf. Before the kidnapping, Zelda throws the Ocarina into the Hyrule Castle moat, and then you travel through time to help rescue Zelda, reuinite the triforce, and save the world.
The main item in the game is the Ocarina, and you have to use it to learn 12 melodies. These melodies send you through time, allowing to solve musical puzzles, and teleport to various parts of the game. This is a fine and wonderous thing as the game is vast. Plus it’s rather fun learning the tunes as you go through the game.
The games real beauty is the expansion. It is huge, with sub quests, whole areas of the game where you can skip completely, or complete to maticulous detail. You can become a fisherman, mask seller, both or none of these. This game has fantastic depth, something that this review really cannot do justice. One week’s solid play got me about a quarter of the way through the game.
Is this game brilliant? Absolutely. It is a absorbing experience, the storyline, which is perfect for an RPG game, is not overbearing but still sucks you in. But, is it the best game ever made? I doubt it, and here’s why.
Whilst I love the Zelda games, a friend of mine doesn’t. He just cannot get into them. He helped me write this review, which I will echo what he said:
“It’s all well and good, Zelda is an artistic triumph, but I wouldn’t say it’s the best game ever. The best game ever transcends genres. For a game to be the best game ever, it must be a game like Bomberman, which anybody and everybody can play and enjoy. Maybe not Bomberman, as single player is a bit weak, but a single player bomberman game that’s engrossing. That’d be the best game ever.”
In a way, I do agree with him. Zelda is an art. It worries not about what people who don’t understand it think, it pleases those who do.
Thankfully, I understand it, and therefore I love the game.