Thursday, February 21, 2013

Oracle of Secrets

I was working on this article about the potentials of a virtual release of the Oracle games, however, with today's news I'd better finish it now. If you didn't know yet, the Oracle games are slated for February 27th on the Japanese eShop. They are also offering the games in a cheaper bundle for a while.

Well, they could just dump the ROMs on the eShop and they'd probably still sell, they are good games after all. But they could also make some additions to them to make them more awesome.

First part is the linking system. Originally you had two ways of linking your game, the Secrets and the Game Link. The secrets were weird passwords that could be entered into your game, while the Game Link actually used the link cable. If you had two GBCs or maybe a GBA and a GBC, you could connect both games with a link cable and trade data that way to create a new game and/or transfer your rings.

Naturally the latter option wouldn't work anymore with the 3DS. However, both games are stored on the same system and just could communicate with a shared savegame. So, instead of the old Game Link feature they could just make it so that everything works automatically. When starting a new game in Ages, you get the option to connect it to a finished game from Seasons and vice versa. Everything then happens automatically, so you don't need to type in any passwords. For example when you talk to the Blue Snake at Vasu's, the rings would get updated automatically. The games would really benefit from such a system.

Of course the old secrets should remain. For example if you only got one of the games back then on the GBC and now you buy the other one on the eSHop, you'd still want to be able to connect the two. Or ff you want to use your old Hero's Secret and your old Ring Secret, you should be able to do so.

The Hero's Secret was used to start a new game (not a linked game!) with a few differences. The savegame file has a Triforce on it, you have an additional Heart Container (which would be missing if you start a brand new game) and the Victory Ring in your inventory. And you get to transfer all your old rings right from the start, which was the only way to complete your ring collection.

If you still have your old Hero's Secret and your Ring Secret you could basically start a new game with all rings. (Or you can just use this password generator.)

My second thought was about a potential third Oracle game that could come with the two. Obviously this is not going to happen, but I'd still like to talk about this idea a little bit.

Well, it would be a job for GREZZO, similar to the Four Swords Anniversary Edition. They game would use the original GBC graphics and sounds and take place after the events of the Oracle games following Link's travels (before the boat gets sunk in Link's Awakening). Naturally it would star Farore as the main damsel, but the main idea of the game would be providing a challenge for longtime Zelda fans. Picture it as a full game Hero's Trial. The GameBoy Color was not able to calculate many monsters at the same time, the 3DS on the other hand is. It should be a short (maybe 4 dungeons), but tough game full of evil traps, hard fights and mind breaking puzzles.

The Hero's Secret (which you get after beating both Ages and Seasons) could be used to get some advantages, mainly access to the Biggoron's Sword, Bombchus, other upgrades and all your old rings. If you play without the Hero's Secret the game gets a lot tougher.

Something like that wouldn't be hard to make (it's 8bit), longtime Zelda fans would love it and it would also boost the sales of the original Oracle games on the eShop.

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