The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D review
Somethings never get old
+ Updated Graphics
+ Easy to use gyroscope and touchscreen
+ Compelling Gameplay
- Can't resume a saved game in certain locations
- A few graphical glitches
I made a few changes to reflect the 3DS price drop.
The Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time 3D
The critically acclaimed Nintendo 64 game receives a makeover and makes a welcome appearance for the Nintendo 3DS. I have never played this game before picking it up when it was released for the Nintendo 3DS. So, there will be very little retrospect in this review. Here we go:
Graphics: This was a huge selling point from Nintendo for this version of the game – the updated graphics. I had to look at screen shots and youtube clips of the original to have an idea of what the game originally looked like. The biggest improvement is Link especially the facial expressions. Cloths look smoother, and the backgrounds have a little more detail. I would say the backgrounds are where the least improvements were made. There are some glitches in the graphics. Occasionally, when playing the game, you can see around walls or below the floor. The view is only slight and brief, but it is distracting. The other aspect of the graphics I found puzzling is that there are certain features such as a tree or a fairy that you can see in the distance, but you can’t see the characters until you walk closer. In comparison to other 3DS games, I don’t think the graphics are as good as some of the other title available, but they are not bad either. Overall, it is a solid effort on Nintendo’s part.
3D Effect: The 3D effect adds some depth to the backgrounds, but where the effect really shines is when you receive one of the three stones to open the temple of time or one of the sage medallions. The medallions really look like you could take it off the screen. If you have the patience, I recommend viewing the end credits in 3D. (3.8/5.0)
Gameplay: This version has three modes: Normal Quest, Master Quest, and Boss Challenge. In regards to the normal quest, we have all heard the saying, “Time flies when you’re having fun.” I found this to be the case when playing this game. As I was heading toward the end of the game, I decided to check my playtime via the Nintendo 3DS Activity Log app. I played this game for over 40 hours! I didn’t think it would be that long. Anyway, I would like to provide detailed comments on these aspects: hint movies, saving the game, motion controls, touch screen, and controls.
Hint movies are accessed through Sheikah Stones. Two are available to use: 1.) Kokiri Forest and 2.) The Temple of Time. These hint movies are helpful, but it should also be noted that not every puzzle is a hint movie. Therefore, there are few puzzles and items that players will need to figure out without help.
My biggest issue with this game is the save function. While you can save at any point, you resume a saved game at only certain points: Kokiri Forest, Temple of Time, and the first room of all dungeons. Imagine my surprise when saving and quitting in Kakariko Village, I resumed the game back in Kokiri Forest. That meant I had to travel all the way back to Kakariko Village. I’m a little annoyed you can’t resume games in places like Kakariko Village or Goron City or Castle Town.
Controls - The gyroscope is used in the game when using the first person view or a weapon that uses the first person view such as the bow or slingshot. I found using motion sensing quite naturally with a few situations where I used the circle pad. If the motion controls bothers you too much, you can shut it off in the option menu. Items, gear, and the map are accessed on the touch screen. Four items may be set to touch screen short cuts with two shortcuts also being physical buttons (X and Y). Items can only be changed in the items menu. It would have been nice to at least be able to switch items among the shortcuts such as moving the II item to the Y shortcut during regular gameplay. The d-pad is not used at all. The touch screen menu has three tabs: gear, map, and items. Each is easy to access and use. As far as the physical buttons go, I found holding both L and R on the 3DS to fight certain enemies a little awkward, but it is not a deal breaker by any means.
Once you complete the game, the Master Quest will be unlocked. When you press start, you will be given the option of a normal quest or the master quest. The Master Quest is a mirror image of the normal quest. Enemies deal out more damage and items are relocated.
Finally, the boss challenge mode isn’t what I was expecting. This is unlocked during the adult part of the game. You need to go to Link’s Kokiri Forest home and face the bed. Press A and choose “Relive a Fight”. Bosses are challenged individually where you try to beat the best time. There is a gauntlet mode, but you need to relive all the boss fights first for it to be unlocked. The gauntlet mode is where you can challenge bosses back to back. I think this option should have been available from the moment the Boss Challenge Mode became available. The final fight with Ganondorf is not available is this mode unfortunately. I enjoyed this game, and I liked seeing how elements of this game made their way to Zelda successors: Wind Waker, Twilight Princess, and Skyward Sword (I’m assuming here). (4.0/5.0)
Plot: Link, with the help of Princess Zelda, must remove the Evil Ganondorf from Hyrule. Link must travel from his childhood to adulthood and back again to complete his quest. Along the way, players will learn about the creation of Hyrule and the Triforce. Again, the game has influenced later Zelda games. I will say that stopping Ganondorf is starting to get old. (4.0/5.0)
Sound/Music: I enjoyed the music in this game. It is a very diverse range of music that captures a mood or a setting. Sounds are fine, although Navi becomes a little annoying(4.0/5.0)
Replay Value: Zelda games are known for having items, heart pieces, and Great Fairy blessings scattered throughout Hyrule for players to find. If you have never played this game, chances are you will miss something. Plus there is the Master Quest. The boss challenge mode is there, but as I mentioned earlier, it’s a disappointment. (4.0/5.0)
Bottomline: Should you buy this game?
If you own a 3DS but not a Wii – Yes! This is a great game.
If you own a 3DS and a Wii – The original version is available for $10 through the Wii’s virtual console. That’s a $29.99 price difference. Are updated graphics, the master quest and the boss challenge mode worth that much? I’m going to say yes, but I won’t hold it against anyone if he or she decides to buy the cheaper version.
(UPDATED!!)If you don’t own a 3DS – I have to say no in this case. This is a great game, but even with the 3DS price drop, I’m not comfortable telling anyone to spend $209.98 plus tax in this slow economic climate.
However, if you can find a good deal, go for it!
If you already have the original version – I will say no here also especially to owners of the GameCube collection series.
About the author
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