Friday, August 29, 2014

Expect a New Zelda Edition Nintendo 3DS XL Next Year

No Majora's Mask 3D was announced today, but we know that Grezzo is working something. I'm still expecting Majora's Mask 3D in Spring 2015, it would be the perfect date. And we also know that a new Zelda 3DS game is in development (probably based on the A Link Between Worlds engine).

Whatever comes next for Zelda on the 3DS, you can be sure that it will come with a Limited Edition bundle for the New Nintendo 3DS XL. With a new model it's entirely possible and by now I think Nintendo is capable of asking the Zelda fans to buy a new Nintendo 3DS with each new Zelda title.

And knowing myself I would probably even buy it. The New Nintendo 3DS XL has everything that I expected the Old Nintendo 3DS XL to have two years ago. I wanted the second stick and the second shoulder buttons, the better 3D... I mean, they had to release a Circle Pad Pro XL, which was just ridiculous. All of this should have happened two years ago and now I feel like my beautiful golden 3DS XL is just some inferior product, which everyone probably should have skipped.

Also, note how the small New Nintendo 3DS has swappable covers, but the New 3DS XL doesn't. There's even a Limited Edition for the new Smash Bros. using the New 3DS XL (and interestingly enough the Old 3DS XL in Europe). So, Limited Editions are still a thing...!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

More Hyrule Warriors Ideas: Mikau, Yeto, Batreaux and the Crossbow

Well, the game has been released in Japan for a while now, there's tons of footage and I just want to share some ideas for updates. Some things from my pre-release wish list still stand, some don't, but let's see.

I still want Nabooru and Groose badly as characters from existing games. Also, I would like to see a Majora's Mask expansion including characters like Fierce Deity Link, the Deku Princess, Mikau and the Skull Kid. Not Darmani, however, because you could just give the Bongos to Darunia.

And I still think that additional troops would be nice like Zora, Deku, Gerudos, LD-301 Robots and Garo. But seeing how the troops are organized, the "Skipper" will most likely just be a stronger commanding unit, but not a playable character. More about that later.

We also got a lot more insight into weapon types now. For example the Skull Kid would probably have "mask" as his weapon type with the Skull Mask and Majora's Mask being different ranks. And with the exception of that odd 8-Bit sword in the upcoming update, there seem to be no joke weapon skins. The Chain Chomp together with the Power Glove is actually the best Gauntlet. And weapon types can be silly and not have to do much with the actual fighting like Agitha's parasol. So, a Fishing Rod would probably be its own type instead of a joke skin for the whip.

My rules for new ideas are not as strict as before. Not every character needs an "arch enemy" and the same stage can be home for multiple characters, while not every character strictly needs his or her own stage.

Batreaux



  • Weapon Types: Scythes (Shadow)
  • Stage: Skyloft

Yesterday I played some Skyward Sword again to prepare for an upcoming podcast about the game and I noticed, how nicely this guy could fit into the game. The scythes in his house could act as a nice weapon type and overall it would be interesting to have a dark demon fighter on the side of the good guys. He even might utilize bats in the same style as Gomess or those scary demon cats from Skyloft, haha.

He also could have his human form as an alternate costume... so far only Link, Zelda and Ganondorf got costumes and it certainly would be nice to have other characters with this feature. Another possibility would be that he normally acts in his human form, but turns back into his demon form during Focus Spirit. This might be even cooler.


Mikau



  • Weapon Types: Guitar (Lightning)
  • Stage: Pirate Fortress

While Darmani gets pretty much covered by Darunia, who could wield the Bongos as his second weapon type, Mikau still would be a nice addition to the game as a second Zora next to Ruto. Simply because he's a rockstar and the soundtracks is very rock heavy. He should be in the game for this reason alone.

He would fight with his fin blades on his body similar to Majora's Mask, but also use his guitar for combos and special attacks. The electrical barrier should also be a thing, probably even as his Focus Spirit, so maybe his fighting style is mainly Lightning based unlike Ruto's. He would appear on a Pirate Fortress stage, where you fight Gerudo troops!


Yeto



  • Weapon Types: Fish (Water)
  • Stage: Snowpeak Ruins

Seeing how Agitha can fight with a Parasol, I could easily imagine the "Fish" to be a fun fighting style for Yeto, where he not only smashes enemies with a fish, but uses his entire body. Actually the fish fist the weapon upgrade system nicely, where the Reekfish and the legendary Hylian Loach would be the upgrades. And naturally he would come with a Snowpeak Stage, which would be a perfect addition to Hyrule Warriors.


Linkle



  • Weapon Types: Crossbow (Fire), Whip (Water)
  • Stage: Outset Province (new area)

At first this was another case, where I want to see a specific weapon like the Scythe or the Whip, but don't really care about, who would wield it. The crossbow would be a nice nod to Link's Crossbow Training and with that it probably makes the most sense as another weapon for Link, but... today Koei Tecmo asked on Twitter about Linkle again, Link's younger sister. She wields the crossbow as her weapon and I would totally love that combo! And it wouldn't be the first time that in a Musou game a female character fights with a crossbow. Take a look at Lianshi.

The crossbow would be a fire type weapon utilizing Bomb Arrows. Because Bomb Arrows make everything better! And if they really add Linkle, they should give her the Whip as her second weapon! :D Oh, it would all be so perfect!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Link in Mario Kart 8

Remember my post about potential Mario Kart 8 DLC? Well, I certainly didn't see THIS coming:



Don't now, if I'm supposed to hate this or if I'm finally getting a favorite driver in Mario Kart...? It's not like this is a new idea and I'm glad that they're not making a "Zelda Kart" instead, but it's certainly not "Mario Kart" anymore. When Nintendo said that they're going to be less protective about their IPs earlier this year, they really meant it.

For Zelda this has become the "year of crossovers". The level in Sonic Lost World, the costume in Bayonetta, Hyrule Warriors, Super Smash Bros. 4 and now Mario Kart 8. Let's see, how they will jump the shark next.

But it looks like these Mario Kart 8 packs have lots of content (16 new tracks!) for a fair price. So, that's good DLC there! Definitely getting it.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Ghirahim, the Assist Trophy

Smash Bros. 4 does it again...


So, they basically compiled a list of the most wanted Zelda characters for Smash and turned them all into Assist Trophies. I just can't get excited for the new Smash and people wonder why...

Also, how terrible do they look? Both Link and Ghirahim look nothing like in the games. Link's face is so weird and Ghirahim looks very goofy, those are like parody versions... This is how they should look like:


Koei Tecmo can consider themselves lucky that Nintendo is doing such a terrible job with the new Smash Bros. All the more reason to play Hyrule Warriors instead.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Hyrule Warriors: Updates Coming!

I was actually expecting Hyrule Warriors 2 next year, but getting an actual expansion in the near future is nice news. Actually it seems like every Dynasty Warriors gets a "Xtreme Legends" update with a few new characters and game mode changes. However, those were new games instead of downloadable add-ons, so I'm not sure about this.

But I suspect that the first update(s) will still focus on Ocarina of Time, Skyward Sword and Twilight Princess and close some gaps here like Groose or playable Cia / Volga / Wizzro and maybe add some other fan favorites like Nabooru. Majora's Mask could be a nice separate update. And A Link Between Worlds together with A Link to the Past (Adventure Mode!) will probably be in Hyrule Warriors 2. But I'm ready to be surprised again. ;)

And according to Famitsu you can easily pump 100 hours into the game already. And considering that the Adventure Mode supposedly has 128 missions (one on each square of the NES TLoZ map), this might not be an exaggeration...

Monday, August 11, 2014

Why Hyrule Warriors got me so excited

I haven't been so excited for a new video game in a very long time. True, I have been excited for A Link Between Worlds and even The Wind Waker HD last year, but this goes way back. I realized that Hyrule Warriors is actually something I wanted for many, many years now. It has to do with ideas I had in the years 2000/2001 and 2005... the first has to with Majora's Mask and some things that I wanted to see in the game. The second is a game concept, which I recently rediscovered and which is not unsimilar to Hyrule Warriors.


Old Desires from Majora's Mask

Majora's Mask was actually the first Zelda game, which I got on day 1 and where I eagerly anticipated the release of the game, closely following its development in gaming magazines (no internet available). And while it certainly was my favorite game at the time, I had some complaints about it ...

The biggest one was probably Tingle. I was convinced that Majora's Mask would have been a much better game without this character. I grew to like his character later on with The Wind Waker and Tingle's Rosy Rupeeland, but back when Majora's Mask came out, I hated him. Well, I was 14 years old at the time and everything had to be "cool", so he simply wasn't acceptable. This doesn't have much to do with Hyrule Warriors, except for maybe how cool this game looks, but I thought this something funny to mention.

What has to do with Hyrule Warriors though are weapons. I really didn't like, how the transformation masks didn't utilize any items to fight. Except for Fierce Deity Link they all fight with their bodies, but I would have preferred it, if Darmani had used a hammer, Mikau a spear and if Deku Link had shot Deku Nuts instead of silly bubbles. Today I don't necessarily share this view, I like how the characters were designed, but for me Zelda always has been heavily item based. And even though I grew to like Darmani and Mikau in the way they were, it's still good to finally get a Goron, who's actually fighting with a hammer! I love that and Darunia will probably become one of my favorites in the game.

Also, with Majora's Mask I really liked the idea of playing different characters and races inside Zelda, but the game didn't fully satisfy me and then the Zelda series never really got back to it (save for the remote control sections in TWW). It was nice to be able to play with a Deku, a Goron and a Zora, but I wanted more. Even if this might sound totally ridiculous, but I wanted a Gerudo or a Garo Link as well. And with Fierce Deity Link I wanted to play with him outside of the boss chambers and fight normal enemies with his power ... I can't tell, how many times I replayed all the individual bosses just to feel Fierce Deity's might.

Well, Hyrule Warriors most likely won't let me play as Fierce Deity again or as a Gerudo woman, but there's still the potential to fulfill these old wishes in a sequel. In the least the first game will let you play with different characters including a Goron and a Zora.


Zelda Fighting Game Concept

I recently discovered an old draft for an actual Zelda fighting game based on Unreal Championship 2 - The Liandri Conflict (UC2). This game basically combined the action of Unreal Tournament with the 3rd person melee combat of a Zelda game. It even had the targeting system and is one of the most enjoyable console shooters I've played. Unreal Championship 2 is even one of my favorite games of all time, I bought and still keep the old Xbox just for this game, my only non-Nintendo gaming console. I still like to play it today every now and then, in fact I did so last weekend.

In the game you also get 14+ individual characters, where each of them wields their own melee weapon. Anubis fights with a staff, Apophis with an axe and the sexy Selket with dual swords. Sounds familiar, right? The roster was even made out of hexagons and had a similar shape and size to the roster of Hyrule Warriors. Here's a recent video of the game, where you can view the roster and see some gameplay:



When this game was released, I was obsessed with getting something similar for Zelda. I even made my own Zelda roster with the following characters:

  • Link
  • Sheik
  • Mikau
  • Darmani
  • Nabooru
  • Din
  • Ganondorf
  • Shadow Link
  • Lizalfos
  • Stalfos
  • Iron Knuckle
  • Gomess
  • Majora's Wrath
  • Fierce Deity

Each of them would have gotten their own special melee weapon. Link used sword & shield, Mikau a spear, Darmani the hammer, Nabooru dual scimitars and Din the Rod of Seasons. Some characters, especially the mini bosses, I only added for their weapons. Like Gomess with his scythe, Majora with its whips or the Iron Knuckle with the axe. In the arena you would find and use typical Zelda items like the Bow, Bombs or Hookshot, much like in Hyrule Warriors.

There was also a Horse Battle mode, where every character got his individual mount. Link had Epona, Darmani got Dimitri and the Stalfos was riding a skeleton horse.

In a way Hyrule Warriors is a nice implementation of this idea, which does things a lot better with the one man army system. It just suits Zelda more than only having 1on1 combats and allows you to do way crazier things with the characters. And the mounts actually could become a thing in a sequel, since there have been Warrior games, where you can use mounts

I also like, how Hyrule Warriors handled its weapon system. Everyone gets his own item to fight, just the way I like it, but they allow multiple weapons per character to chose from and they didn't go down a route, where they simply added a character for its weapon. But at least now you know, where my ideas have been coming from. And I also was too focused on the weapons, while you can have characters fight with magical items, which allowed female characters like Ruto or Lana to enter the stage and shine.

But besides the differences I'm actually amazed, how close this Warrior Zelda hybrid got to my old ideas. And it certainly feels satisfying to finally get my cool Zelda fighting game after so many years.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Hyrule Warriors - Loose the Groose!

Okay, the latest Famitsu gave us also some insight, what stage in the story mode of Hyrule Warriors unlocks what:


Unlike I thought in my previous chapter analysis, Agitha and Ruto don't actually join your parties. They only support you over the course of one mission and then will be unlockable in the Adventure Mode. Darunia gets unlocked after Death Mountain, Midna gets unlocked after the Twilight Lands stage and Fi gets unlocked after the Skyloft stage. Ruto supports you on Lake Hylia and Agitha supports you at the Twilight Lands.

Only the Skyward Sword branch doesn't have a support character. Or does it? I mean, come on! The Sealed Ground stage is there. In the middle of an Imprisoned Battle, where they even have the Groosenator ready. Why didn't they include Groose as a support character here, who later gets unlocked in Adventure Mode? Storywise it would even make sense for him to stay, where he is, because he has to take care of the Imprisoned.



So, Groose still feels like a big missing puzzle piece. Nabooru won't be in the game, Majora's Mask characters won't be in the game - I already accepted this (waiting for the amazing sequel). But I still believe in Groose! He would be a nice secret character for the last update.

Groose, Link's Whip, Lana's Portal, Midna's true form, Cia, Valga and Wizro ... sounds like a mighty final update, unless of course they keep the rest "secret". It won't matter anyway, in less than a week we will know everything about the game, since it will be released in Japan on Friday.

Hyrule Warriors - Weapon Element Count

So, let's check this again. Each weapon type is bound to an element. Some weapon types support various elements with different attacks, but still have a main element. E.g. Sheik's harp uses primarily the Storm element, but can also cause Shadow, Water, Light and Fire attacks. Or Ganondorf's Great Sword can cause Light, Fire and Storm damage. The main element also effects the color of the "Focus Spirit" mode.

  • Link's Sword: Light
  • Link's Rod: Fire
  • Link's Gauntlet: Storm
  • Link's 4th: ???
  • Lana's Book: Storm
  • Lana's Stick: Water
  • Lana's Portal: ???
  • Impa's Giant Knife: Water
  • Impa's Naginata: Fire
  • Zelda's Rapier: Light
  • Zelda's Baton: Storm
  • Sheik's Harp: Storm
  • Darunia's Hammer: Fire
  • Ruto's Scale: Water
  • Agitha's Parasol: Light
  • Midna's Shackle: Shadow
  • Midna's 2nd: ???
  • Fi's Goddess Sword: Light
  • Ghirahim's Demon Sword: Shadow
  • Zanto's Scimitars: Shadow
  • Ganondorf's Great Sword: Shadow
  • Cia's Staff: Shadow
  • Valga's Lance: Fire
  • Wizro's Ring: Shadow

Now the element count:

  • Light - 4
  • Shadow - 6
  • Fire - 4
  • Water - 3
  • Storm - 4

Quite the pattern! Water is one short, so I'm still pretty sure that Link's final weapon type will be a water based whip (with the Fishing Rod as a joke skin).

It seems like characters with multiple weapon types, get different elements with each weapon. So, for Link only Water or Shadow would be left. And considering that we already got six different Shadow weapon types and only three water types, I'm placing my bets on water. That and it would be weird to have the Hero fighting with dark magic, except for the Fierce Deity form, which they'll most likely save for the sequel.

As for Lana's Portal and Midna's 2nd weapon (probably used by her true self), I'm guessing that both will be Light based. I don't think Lana would use Fire (it doesn't suit her nature theme) or Shadow and the Portals don't look like they are Fire or Shadow based, so they probably make the most sense as a Light weapon. Maybe it's Storm, but she already has a Storm weapon. And with Midna it would create a beautiful contrast to have her use Light in her true form.

With that we would get an equal number of Light and Shadow weapons and the other elements all get four weapon types each. This would fit nicely:

  • Light - 6
  • Shadow - 6
  • Fire - 4
  • Water - 4
  • Storm - 4

Update:

Okay, with the Japanese release it turned out that Cia, Volga and Wizzro sadly are not playable and therefore do not count. Also, Midna does not have a 2nd weapon anymore. While Link's fourth weapon (which I won't spoil, but funnily enough they already showed it in the character trailer!) really is water based, Lana's portal is very different from what I originally thought and actually a fire weapon. So, we have a total of four weapons per element.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Oracle of Ages & Seasons ... hidden within Hyrule Warriors!

We all know that Hyrule Warriors used four Zelda games for their source material and characters: The Legend of Zelda, Ocarina of Time, Twilight Princess and Skyward Sword. And I'm thinking that the Oracle games also took a great part in that. Not as a direct material source, but as an important influence for their original characters.

I came to this conclusion thinking about the potential sequel (so sad, doing that already...), where naturally they would go for Majora's Mask and A Link Between Worlds first, but maybe also some other games. However, I realized that the Oracle games got mostly covered already. Lana is basically a mix of the three Oracles, while the three antagonists Cia, Valga and Wizro are quite similar to Veran, Onox and Vire. Let's take a look:
  • Farore: takes care of the Maku Tree and uses the Book of Secrets ... that's all Lana
  • Nayru: uses a harp to open time portals ... we already got Sheik's harp and Lana's portals
  • Din: wields the Rod of Seasons and likes to dance ... Lana does the dancing, but no Rod so far
  • Veran: sorceress in a sexy dress, who can cast Shadow Links
  • Onox: can transform into a dragon like Valga, Link already got the Ball & Chain
  • Vire: henchman, who likes to fight at distance ... it's Wizro with a devil skin
I'd even say that the villain designs in Hyrule Warriors are much nicer versions of the Oracle villains. And instead of adding the Oracle villains to Hyrule Warriors, they'd rather expand their own ones.

And Lana to me looks like a nice combination of all three Oracles. She has Farore's way of living and a magic book just like her, Nayru's hair and portals and Din's dancing. If they would add the Rod of Seasons as her 4th weapon, it would only complete the picture. If they add Nabooru to the game, we also got Din's visual type already covered.

The one character that's missing is Ralph. But as with the others they'd probably go for their own Ralph. Maybe some guy, who is into Lana and follows her around, while he's jealous of Link. It would create a cliche love triangle, but nothing the games hasn't already done.

There's also the question of rights. The Oracle games, much like The Minish Cap, were created in a cooperation of Nintendo and Capcom and it's not entirely clear, who holds what rights. Nintendo definitely has the publishing rights. But we know for a fact that the music is off limits. The Symphony of the Goddesses was not able to include songs from the Capcom Zeldas, because they hold the rights to the music. Super Smash Bros. Brawl got two stickers from The Minish Cap, but none from Oracles. On the other hand Hyrule Historia got all the artwork from these games ... so, we can't say for sure.

But most likely Koei Tecmo will just continue using the Oracle games as an inspiration, while focusing on Zelda games, which were actually made by Nintendo.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Lana = Female Link

That's just something I just realized, even though it might be quite obvious, but it seems to me that Lana is basically Koei's version of a female Link. She is the female protagonist of the game and also got the most movesets next to Link. Like Link from Ocarina of Time she grew up in the forest and she seems to be the guardian of the Deku Tree.


But as the opposite gender she also mainly fights with active magic combining various aspects of Saria, Farore and Nayru, while Link is more the brute weapon type. She's basically a good default choice, if you want to play as a female character, while Link is the typical default male character.

Cia then might also be the first real female antagonist next to Ganondorf, especially if Ganondorf is opposing her. We had Twinrova and Veran in the past, but they all were ultimately just henchmen of Ganon. Cia keeps her own henchmen, who follow her.

Hyrule Warriors - The Ganondorf Update

They updated the website with the images and infos from the Hyrule Warriors Direct and the final roster:


That's it, everybody. No more "Coming Soon" placeholders on both the character and the stage section. HOWEVER, there are still some things left, which most likely will be the bonus weapons and characters unlocked in Adventure Mode, which is what they said during the Direct. Also, the Prima Guides includes information on "over 15 playable characters" (source), so I'm guessing that Cia, Valga and Wizro will be available in the Adventure Mode as playable characters.

Ganondorf, Zant and Ghirahim seem to take a more important role inside the Story Mode, where they probably also oppose Cia and her forces. Cia, Valga and Wizro could be unlockable extras, together with some of the unrevealed weapons.

Lana's portal weapon, which spawns Cuccos, seems to be one of them. I'm guessing that this is some kind of joke/fun weapon only available in the Adventure Mode. We still haven't seen Midna's 2nd weapon, where I still expect to see her in her true form, which also will most likely be part of the Adventure Mode and not the story, assuming she won't get uncursed until the end. And Link's 4th weapon type is also an open question. It could be that we get another update next week and that Link's final weapon is actually something meaningful and part of the story mode. Since the Fierce Deity Mask wouldn't make any sense as a "weapon type", I'm still thinking that a water based whip would make the most sense, together with a Fishing Rod as a joke skin. Water is also the element that got only mained by three weapon types so far, the others all are used by four (Shadow has six users counting Cia and Wizro).

But there certainly won't be Nabooru or Groose or any character from Majora's Mask. I really hope that they will immediately start working on the sequel. Actually they released One Piece Pirate Warriors 2 one year after the first game with twice as many characters, where fans also weren't fully satisfied with the basic roster of the first installment. The same could happen here: Hyrule Warriors 2 in September 2015 with characters from Majora's Mask and A Link Between Worlds, but also some missing characters from the first three games. I basically could just copy paste my previous wish list to the sequel, but I will wait until everything has been revealed.

About what we get: I like, what they did with the Gerudo Desert here. This was actually a place from Twilight Princess that I wanted to see, but except for the Hero's Spirit there weren't really any potential characters for it. But they actually made it into a place from the world of Hyrule Warriors and Ganondorf's stage. Very good choice. Overall Ganondorf here is pure win. They did everything right with him.

I'm also looking forward to the Temple of Souls. If that's not the craziest idea for a final Zelda dungeon, then I don't know... :D

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Cia - Link's Fangirl #1

Okay, I'm really starting to like Cia here (not that I didn't already), but look at her Temple of Souls:


She keeps statues of different Links in her rose garden! Hahahahaha! That's so adorable and funny. Best Zelda villain ever. Imagine the situation here, where the heroes enter this area and get awkwardly confronted by Cia's collection. Also, she can summon Dark Link as one of her fighting moves:


Might even come in handy in her free time... I really hope, she will be playable after all. She's sexy and her obsession with Link is simply funny.

All Hail the Manhandla


They did a really nice job with the design here. It reminds me somewhat of the Four Swords version, but with the heads of a Deku Baba. I wonder, what's up with the different color schemes. I also would have liked to see more bosses from the first NES games, but it seems like there's one boss for each item in the game:

  • Gohma - Bow
  • King Dodongo - Bombs
  • Manhandla - Boomerang
  • Argarok - Hookshot
  • The Imprisoned - Potion (just kidding, but maybe...)

Yeah, the last one is a stretch, but his damaging waves can be really annoying, so you might need potions here more than with the other bosses. However, I don't expect to see any more big bosses next to these five.

Hyrule Warriors Direct Disappointment

Mhhh, as expected... :D

"Hey, Majora's Mask fans ... look! Look! We have the moon from your favorite Zelda! And you can hookshot to it! Great, right? Oh, I heard you like Fierce Deity Link? We made him into a badge! Awesome, right? Right?"

I was really hoping that this game would let me play with Fierce Deity Link again. But I guess I have to wait for the sequel... *sighs* If they make Hyrule Warriors 2 in three years or so, Majora's Mask, A Link Between Worlds and Zelda U will probably be the three big games in focus with additional characters from the first three games.

Ganondorf looks really awesome, I give them that. I like, how they combined all his incarnations into one. He even has the Lightning Strikes from Demise! So, there's no real need for Demise as a separate character and they could even give him as Demise costume. (Though I really hate, how they deal with the DLC here. Shameless.)

But it looks like Ganondorf, Zant and Ghirahim were the final three characters. That's so super lame, because we expected them anyway together with the other villains being playable and at least three more heroes. Instead those three bad guys seem to take the final slots in the roster and that's it. Or that's how it seems right now, but I doubt that they will surprise announce Groose or Nabooru at this point and I certainly can give up the hope for any Majora's Mask content. Also, the roster is mostly boring "characters you'd expect to see in Smash" material. Agitha is the only oddball here. And the only character, I really wanted out of this, was Darunia using the hammer. I didn't expect to get all from my wish list, but absolutely none of them...? So, my excitement for this game shrank significantly.

Of course the game isn't out yet and we don't know for sure, how they handle the villains... maybe Cia, Wizro and Valga will be playable after all. Maybe there will be three more hero characters including Groose and Nabooru ... but who am I kidding? Hope dies last, right?


Update:
Ah yeah, Lana's portals really are her third weapon! I'm looking forward to this. Also, we still haven't seen Link's 4th weapon and Midna's 2nd weapon, so there are still things to look forward to. And we got joke weapons confirmed. I really like the Chain Chomp as the Ball & Chain, expecting to see Bug Net for Agitha, Fishing Rod for the Whip and Skull Hammer for Darunia.

Update2:
Of all the cool collectible items for this game, we only get the scarf? I wanted the treasure box, the clock and the artwork... man.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Hyrule Warriors Direct - Predictions

In about nine hours we're all going to become a little bit smarter about Hyrule Warriors. Last weekend I was actually quite nervous about this. I hyped myself so much with my Final Five that I will be most likely disappointed with the final roster. I can completely see, how these characters would play and look like. And I simply feel like I would be disappointed not to see Nabooru with a Battle Axe, the Deku Princess with the Deku Pipes or Fierce Deity Link. At least I know exactly, what I want from this game, but it would feel awful to already wish for a sequel, when I haven't gotten the first game yet. I want Hyrule Warriors to be satisfying and not be the demo for Hyrule Warriors 2.

Well, I expect to be informed about the following things in the Direct:
  • the NES map challenge mode
  • playable villains?
  • that "not coop" online mode
  • pricing of DLC
  • availability of the treasure box set in Europe and NA
  • whatever gets revealed by the Famitsu

Okay, the last point is actually not entirely clear. It might be that they don't show any new characters at all, because Famitsu has the exclusive rights to revealing those or whatever. Won't matter in any case, because we will get first infos from the Famitsu half a day later. But overall I would like to see, what Link's final and Midna's second weapons are and what characters and stages remain, especially whether there's going to be any Majora's Mask content or not.

It's really not much fun to be a fan of Majora's Mask right now... which hopefully will change tomorrow. Best case scenario would be them teasing Majora's Mask 3D to be released early next year. And to pass the time until then, we get playable Fierce Deity Link on Clocktown in Hyrule Warriors. That would be awesome.

Ganondorf's reveal will be only natural at this point. The big question is, whether he will lead to playable villains or not. But I certainly hope so. They could also just announce playable villains without Dorf, but assuming the "Power" DLC pack is his, you'd think they show it, before they start selling it.

Man, I really hate, how this game already gets released next week in Japan. This leaves little room to announce new stuff, though I feel like we've only seen things from very early in the game. But so far they only announced 1-3 characters at a time, so I don't see them suddenly reveal 5 more heroes and playable villains in one rush... unless of course this is all part of the hype plan to make this game look really awesome right before release. It also could be that they won't reveal the last batch of characters until next week and split things up.

We'll see. Expect bursts of rage, sadness and/or joy tomorrow from me on this address ...

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Hyrule Warriors - Chapter Analysis

So, the latest demo showed us a portion of the game's early chapters including all the known stages. Let's take a look:


The game starts with Link at Hyrule Field, where Zelda disappears at the end and Impa joins Link. Then at Eldin Caves they meet Sheik and at the Faron Woods they meet Lana. The four heroes then confront Cia at Lanayru Valley. That's where her crazy magic happens and she merges all the different areas to one. The heroes decide to split up with everyone investigating a different area.

Impa and Sheik head to Death Mountain, where Darunia joins them. The three characters then visit Lake Hylia, where they meet Ruto. Lana explores the Twilight Lands, where she meets and recruits Agitha. She has the Butterfly of Guidance that could lead them to Cia, but then Midna interferes and steals it. Both girls then chase Midna into the Palace of Twilight, where they probably can free Midna from her brain washing.

Link's quest brings him Skyloft, where Fi is happy to find a first master for practice. They both then visit the Sealed Grounds, where it's more then likely that they will be joined by Groose. Otherwise this would be the only stage save for the Lanayru Valley plot twist, where noone gets recruited. And why shouldn't he be there? At this point they might also tease Demise as one of the final antagonists.

So, now let's think about, how my Final Five would fit in here...

Team Impa will most likely meet another sage from the Ocarina of Time era, Nabooru at the Desert Colossus. This is also the perfect timing to tease Ganondorf as an antagonist. And at the end of their arc they bring Goron, Zora and Gerudo forces (definitely the most productive team!). Team Link continues to the Sand Ship and recruit the Skipper and his army of little robots, who absolutely love, love, love Fi and would do anything for her, including heading into battle.

Team Lana might continue to Termina lands. I just don't see, how the Twilight Princess arc would continue after the Palace of Twilight - it's really the pinnacle. And meeting the Deku Princess at Woodfall would be a perfect fit for Lana and Agitha. Maybe not for Midna, however, here Majora's Mask and the Skull Kid will be teased as yet another scary villain. And Midna could be very interested in Majora's Mask, since it might be connected to the Fused Shadow! So, putting Woodfall at this spot might work nicely.

So, in each branch they recruit three new heroes and tease one final villain.

After these additional chapters in the branches, all the heroes meet again to join forces and to experience yet another big plot twist involving the already teased higher ranked villains. At this time previous stages will be reused to tell new stories and scenarios, like Midna and Zelda battling Argarok and Zant at the Palace of Twilight.

One of the late endgame stages will be Clocktown, where Link receives the Fierce Deity's Mask to fight Skull Kid. Fierce Deity Link will be the final "hero" character to be unlocked. And this won't happen until the final chapters, because his character will be imba.

Playable villains don't get unlocked until after you beat the campaign. They will be available in Free Mode in their own little roster.

Hyrule Warriors - 2nd Look at the Character Menu

I think I figured out, how the ingame character menu might work ... as I pointed out already, there seem to be only 13 slots:


Now, I have an idea, how it would remain at this size, but still give me all 15 characters I want. With alternates. You press a button (let's say the L button) and a character slot switches to an alternate. As soon as it gets clear in the storyline that Sheik is Zelda's alter ego, both will merge in the menu to one slot. You have Zelda there, but if you want to play with Sheik, you simply press L. That way there's enough space to fit in my final five.

Zelda would move to the left to all the original HW characters - she would probably take Sheik's spot. Then Darunia and Ruto would move up one slot, leaving space for Nabooru in the center. Midna and Agitha stay the same. Then on the right come Fi, Groose, Skipper and the Deku Princess. Then finally for Fierce Deity Link you simply activate the alternate on Link's slot. This would even create a nice effect, because you don't expect any more characters, but then there's still one more! :D

15 characters in total also work very nicely with the website, as I already demonstrated:


The alternate system could also be used to activate the dark versions of each character. So, let's say you want to play with Darunia, but as Dark Darunia for the evil side, you simply press L and it switches to the dark version. In free mode only.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Will Hyrule Warriors Unfreeze Zora's Domain?

If there's one thing that fans has irked about Ocarina of Time, then it's the fact that you cannot free the Zora people from their ice. Now I was thinking about this... In the chapter, where you meet Ruto for the first time, Zora's Domain is still frozen and Ruto is the only Zora, which you meet at the area.

Now similar to Darunia, Ruto will most likely add Zora forces to your armies. But for that you would need Zoras first ... so maybe later in the mission you actually get to unfreeze Zora's Domain to free all the Zoras? If that's not some ultimate fanservice, then I don't know what it is.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Hyrule Warriors Fake Roster

I made this just for fun today based on the official site:


One can always dream... ^^ But that would be 24 playable characters in total, 15 heroes and 9 villains. Also, exactly half of the roster would be female, although this is just mere coincidence and I wouldn't take it too seriously.

I removed the boss monsters from the right and made it a column with playable villains only. They could add a third area below for the boss monsters, maybe with two rows. With this I also expended my wish list with Twinrova as part of the playable villains, though she might be too large.

The final slot in the playable villain roster could go to whatever entity creates the Dark Links, Dark Zeldas, Dark Darunias in this game, probably some original character and another henchman of Cia.