Review by Soulofweewee

"The Legend returns, and holds up exceedingly well."

Introduction

In 1998, we received a game for the Nintendo 64 called The Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time. The definitive RPG, with elements that made the game fun, memorable, and created a legacy that lives to this day that is found within any game that utilizes the features that Ocarina of Time was the first to use. Thirteen years later, it was re-released for the Nintendo 3DS with improved graphics, 3D capability and a brand new interface. The game is as fun and interesting to play as it was all those years ago, and in this review I'll tell you why.

Gameplay

Ocarina of Time introduced the first mechanics of a 3D Zelda game which has been used in games since. It features simple lock on targeting, sword combos, and a myriad of abilities and weapons for you to use as you collect them throughout the game. Some of this things include a boomerang, the classic sword and shield, as well as bombs. Most of these are assigned to the touch screen and the buttons by the player, and be configured to their liking. Not only can these be used as weapons, but they are incorporated into the game-play and are used to complete dungeons and solve puzzles. As you progress more through the story, you will find other ways to upgrade Link, the main character, such as increasing health and currency capacity. There are a number of different ways in which these upgrades are obtained and it is up to the player to find a way to get them.

The design of the dungeons, puzzles, and challenges in this game are flawless and genuinely engaging for the player to experience. The game-play is smooth and never leaves you stuck for too long on one puzzle or finishing a dungeon with laughable ease. Because of this, the game progresses at a steady rate and will always keep you excited to see what is in store next. The difficulty of the game can be between easy and medium for anyone new to the game - playing their first file. The difficulty can be adjusted according to how the player wants to play the game. Are you a perfectionist? You can try to collect all the health power-ups and collectibles scattered throughout the game world. You will be unstoppable. Do you want a bigger challenge? Beat the game once and play the master quest (a much more difficult version of the main quest). You will get your challenge.

Anyway you choose to play it, you will have a great time playing this game and it is bound to keep you interested with it's wide variety of tasks and the way these tasks are to be carried out.

Story

The story of the Ocarina of time begins Kokiri forest where you are introduced to a young boy, Link, who is the protagonist. As he realizes the quest given unto him, he proceeds out of the forest and then the game opens up to the land of Hyrule, where the meat of the game picks up. As humble as this premise is, it quickly expands into an entirely different world as you explore Hyrule and meet it's citizens. The story of Ocarina of Time is a charming one, with a deep lore and many different characters you meet along your journey. The characters do not have voice actors, but you will find through sharp dialogue and the way these characters interact with the world that they are much deeper than they appear. The characters you meet will develop solid personalities, and you feel like you can really get to know them through talking to them and receiving their help on your quest.

Ocarina of Time is filled with magical moments that immerse you into the world of the game and can even tug at your emotions at major events of the game. The story is experienced more through game-play than cut scenes, assuring you that you will feel right there in the struggle for the fate of Hyrule. In the end, it has very memorable events, places, people, and is put together in such a way that it leaves you with a good feeling after you have completed the game.

Graphics

For the Ocarina of Time 3DS, the graphics were ramped up - but to be perfectly honest, they aren't very impressive for today's standards. The textures can often show age, and the game can have the occasional drop in framerate if too much is going on at once. It does improve on the special effects, such as fires and spells. and the particles look simply beautiful in this re-release. 3D is of course featured. This not only makes the game playable in full 3D, but also makes the game look a little bit sharper. This is the highlight of the graphics for Ocarina of time. If only traversing the game world, the graphics can be underwhelming.

Sound

The Ocarina of Time features an incredible soundtrack and every song in it fits the mood of the events at whatever point in the game you're on. It is used to highlight disaster, victory, awe, and sadness. They have not shown their age, and are still a joy to hear whenever you turn on the game and start playing. The only bad thing I can say about the music is that some songs can get stuck in your head.
The sound effects for the most part were just taken from the N64 version of the game. Some sound effects were removed, but not too noticeable. Some ambiance was added, but again, this is barely noticeable when playing the actual game.

Value

The main story will take about 20 hours to complete, if you are new. This can greatly vary for those who want to get all the collectibles, or if you are trying to get through as fast as possible without experiencing all the little details the developers put into the game. The replayability is easily high. There are a number of different ways to play this game, and when you have completed it the Master Quest still awaits. Sidequests and mini games are also thrown into the mix.

Final Recommendation

8/10. The game holds up well compared to the N64 version, which I give a 10/10. If you like any sort of fantasy RPG, this game is the game for you. If you have not experienced any Zelda game before, this will be worth it. The game is one of the most unique and incredible experiences in video game history, and the feeling of being immersed into the world of Hyrule with flawless game-play and a deep story is one of joy that any fan of the game can attest to.


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 07/19/11

Game Release: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D (US, 06/19/11)


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