Review by KingContributor

"A great sequel to a golden game. Majora's Mask reflects the genius of Ocarina of Time, but it does not surpass its greatness."

Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask is the direct sequel to the golden treasure Ocarina of Time. Many fans eagerly awaited another great Zelda game, and they went nuts when they found out that Ocarina of Time was going to have a sequel. On October 25, 2000, many fans bought the much anticipated Nintendo game of the year. Upon playing it, many fell in love with its unique game play and design, but some didn't feel it deserved to be the sequel to Ocarina of Time.

Story
This game is one of the few Zelda games that stray away from the main story. Most people define Zelda as the game where a young boy must stop Ganondorf from getting the Triforce and save Princess Zelda from his clutches. Well, this game is not related to that story at all.
In this game, Link is thrown into a parallel universe to Hyrule called Termina. In this land, the moon will fall in three days time and destroy the world if Link does not get Majora's Mask back in time.

There are many things about this story that set it apart from the traditional Zelda one and make it unique. First of all, Zelda and Ganon are not in this game at all. There is a temporary flashback where we see Zelda from Ocarina of Time, but that's the only hint of her in this game. As for Ganondorf, there is no cameo of him at all. No flashbacks, no dreams, no scenes that portray the beloved king of evil.

Furthermore, it introduces a new villain and concept to Zelda. The villain is a weak little imp who ends up getting some amazing powers from Majora's Mask. However, the game has a major turn to the story that will awe you and shock you. You will be surprised at the true genius of the new villain. A game that strays away from the original story and pulls it off deserves to be recognized, and Majora's Mask is one of those games.

9/10

Controls
Controlling the characters in this game is so simple. You have really easy and basic and basic controls that make the game run more smoothly. There are some gimmicks to the controls that are kind of hard to control.

In this game, Link can turn into different characters. Some of his forms are hard to control, but it isn't so annoying or hard to do that is makes the game unplayable. You will have to get used to controlling the bodies of the characters you become, but you'll be able to master it once you've had a bit of practice. All in all, not too bad, but you'll need some practice to get past the gimmicks of the controls.

8/10

Graphics
For an old system, this game has some amazing graphics. They aren't as good as Ocarina of Time's, but they are really good nonetheless. The worlds will done nicely, and the bosses were designed well. The dungeons were superbly done and really cool looking. For such a high expectation in graphics, Majora's Mask does an adequate job. Remember, Ocarina of Time was the first 3-D Zelda to use these types of graphics, so you can imagine the pressure to sustain the graphics. Not as good, but they did a great job with them and definitely lived up to the 3-D era.

8/10

Music
This game had an incredible sound track and very memorable tunes from the game. Majora's Mask strayed away from the traditional Zelda tunes and added an a new mix of sounds. While it used some of the popular Zelda tunes, it added in more original pieces and made the game sound great. In fact, the music is much better than Ocarina of Time's. You'll find many more memorable tunes for this game than you did in Ocarina of Time. They both have very good music, however.

9/10

Gameplay
This is where the ups and downs of the game begin to show. We have great mechanics as seen above, but now we get to the actual content. Majora's Mask is much different from any other Zelda game because it implemented the use of a time system. This was the first Zelda game to put a limit on Link's adventure.

You have three days to beat the game, and if you fail, the moon will fall and destroy the world. You might feel rushed as this isn't a lot of time, but you will hardly ever feel this way, as you can reset the time back to the first day. You'll have plenty of time to explore and get through dungeons unless you are really really slow. However, there's a major drawback to resetting the time limit. When you go back to day 1, you lose all fairies and major items go to 0 in the inventory. What I mean is, say you have 20 arrows. You go back to day 1, you have 0 arrows. Your rupee count is also set to 0.

Another drawback is that the game is considered really short. There are only four dungeons to go through and then the final one. However, there are tons of sidequests to do to keep up the time. The thing that bugged fans of the Zelda games was that it was more sidequest fillers than actually dungeon exploration. However, the game is filled with content, so you shouldn't worry about being cheated out of time on this game.

A positive thing about this game was that it added a new element to the series. The use of transformation masks. Every wonder what it's like to be a Deku, Goron, or Zora? Well, in this game, your curiousity is fulfilled. You get to become a Deku, Goron, and Zora and play as them in some awesome levels. You will be satisfied with this new feature. It makes up for anything bad about the game's content.

7/10

Replay Value
This game is packed with tons of replay value. There is much more to collect in this game than there was in Ocarina of Time. You have 20 Happy Masks {not including the four transformation masks for a grand total of 24 masks}, 20 pieces of heart, fairies, and items.
You'll have plenty to do in this game, and you'll get an average of 20-30 hours with this game. In fact, this is one of the highest replay value games for a Zelda game, next to TP and Wind Waker.

10/10

Fun Factor
This game is really fun, but it can be frustrating and aggravating at times. The difficulty level is really challenging, but you can do it. It is very possible to beat, but you'll have a tough time of it. Still, this game is super fun due to the mask transformations.

8/10

Rent or Buy?
You should buy this game and add it to your Zelda collection. It is a great game to have and is an absolute must if you are a die-hard Zelda fan. You won't be disappointed, and the game will last you a long time. You won't have enough time to beat this game in a rental. Plus, you have some extras to get.

Overall
Majora's Mask is a great sequel to a golden game. You'll love the unique qualities to it, and you might hate some of the gimmicks; however, it is a satisfying Zelda game overall. Mechanics are spot-on, but the content and overall presentation could have been a bit better. Other than that, this game gets a thumbs-up from me. I'm giving Majora's Mask an 8.4 because it is not quite deserving a 9; however, good nonetheless. You are starving yourself of a great game if you do not play this game or at least try it.

Recap
Story-9/10
Controls-8/10
Graphics-8/10
Music-9/10
Gameplay-7/10
Replay Value-10/10
Fun Factor-8/10


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 08/01/08


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