Well, when I first got Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess, it was back in 2006 when I didn’t have a blog so after a nice replay for about two weeks, I finally can write a review. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess “continues” off in the path of the Adult Link from Ocarina of Time; you know when you have to return the Master Sword after defeating him? Well you don’t do that for this timeline. Twilight Princess was originally created for the Gamecube, but was ported over for the launching of the Wii, which proved to be a fantastic move by Nintendo. [my review is that of the Gamecube version, which is a mirror to the Wii version]
Story: Since the mentioning of the Adult Hero of Time timeline, centuries have passed and the sages had tried to execute Ganondorf, but only failed and had him banned in the land of Twilight. From here, Link is a simple village boy from Ordon, working with others being known as a jack-of-all-trades. In this game, you already have Epona from the get-go (so no hassles there for newbies) and you are supposed to drop off a new sword to Hyrule castle, per request for Russel. Before your journey, your childhood friend Illa captures Epona to give him a bath, in which you go to her to only find her being kidnapped and you unconscious. Now your journey begins, as you are set to rescue her (and your horse may I mention) only to be confronted from some strange wall of light. Being thrusted into the land of Twilight, you transform into a wolf, and are soon approached by an imp named Midna, who claims she will help you for something in exchange. From there, you meet Zelda, collect pieces of a mask called a “Fused Shadow”, venture Hyrule, and meet the person who is causing the lands to be covered in Twilight, Usurper King Zant.
Gameplay: Twilight Princess continues to use the formula built down from Ocarina of Time, which includes auto-jump, Z-targeting (L for the gamecube), and many other old features revamped. Many advancements have taken place though in Twilight Princess, starting first with sword-and-shield battle gameplay. Firstly, now you can direct your sword attacks from a thrust, to a vertical or horizontal swing (by moving the stick in said per motion). Next, you can learn new Sword Art Techniques, be it one of the ‘Helm Splitter’ to that of the back-roll and slice. This idea, was first put the Minish Cap handheld game, and was implemented for the first time in a home console.
Basic home-world traveling is the same, though days and nights last a little longer than they did in Ocarina of Time. Once you acquire Epona, you can see the real major change they placed in the game, because you can do so much more with Epona now. Not only can you use your bow-and-arrows but you can use all your items while on Epona, and even sword fight! (which plays a major role in your quest). This game also introduced the first time bombs and arrows can be combined in a home-console version, the idea of dashing while swimming, and the double hookshot (named Clawshots). One, last thing about Link gameplay is that of your character’s speed. You travel much faster than previous games, including your roll, and once you get later in the game you can warp to checkpoints, like the Bird did in Link to the Past.
Now, for wolf-gameplay. Wolf Link is generally simple, you don’t learn new skills, you are a wolf who can dash, dig, and sense. Although it sounds simple, Wolf Link plays a vital role in the beginning of your journey and is a key to many puzzles. Sensing is that of seeing areas where you can dig, checking for Poe’s, and lastly seeing what was there in the past. As weak as Wolf Link’s gameplay is, you need him on your adventure, especially his technique to attack all enemies in his ranged circle, it kinda helps against those Twili Beasts.
Music: The music is fantastic in Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess, although I feel most of the songs were rehashed and redone from Ocarina of Time. My favorites in the game include the Hidden Village, Hyrule Field, and Midna’s Lament.
Replayability: Well, while this was my second replay of it I am probably done with this Zelda game, but it does have a pretty good replay value considering all the mini-games that are available in the game, from snowboarding, to the clawshot game, to the collecting all 60 poe souls, or getting all the golden bugs. So the value is pretty high moderate or low-high.
Twilight Princess does everything you wanted to Ocarina of Time and more! From the addition of many new items, even the ball in chain(!), to just the masterful gameplay of you on Epona fighting hoards of enemies on Hyrule field, the additions are something to appreciate. Not only that, but the main world is much larger and there are many secrets to be found so this 25-35 hour game can keep you going for a long time!
Not only that if you remember this is my replay and the reason why I love this game a lot more was because I played after playing the trash that is named Skyward sword. My appreciation for this game, which I already enjoyed, had gone up further (as did most of the other Zelda’s…even Majora’s). While this game didn’t have the greatest bosses, it still far outclasses Skyward Sword in every way from gameplay to it’s dark story, to it’s great dungeons.
Michael Troina writes features and reviews Nintendo games for Analog Addiciton. When he’s not writing or playing games or sports, he’s out at his job at the Daily Bugle taking pictures as the web-slinger we all have come to love…either that or he’s getting sandwich saving one world at a time. Find him anywhere with this flavors.me/michaeltroina