Sunday, December 21, 2014

Hyrule Warriors: Majora's Mask Pack Speculation

One of the most fun to have with Hyrule Warriors besides playing the game is speculating what the game might offer in the future. We have two more DLC packs left. The last one will include two new game modes and isn't that interesting (yet), but the Majora's Mask pack certainly is, especially since it's accompanied by the 3DS remake later next year. Early 2015 will be all about Majora's Mask.


Well, the Majora's Mask pack will contain two new characters, three new costumes and a new Adventure Map. While I don't like the lack of integration of the paid DLC characters, they are still the most interesting thing here. And I narrowed it down to five likely candidates:

  • Fierce Deity Link
  • Skull Kid
  • Tingle
  • Happy Mask Salesman
  • Deku Princess

Each of these have something going for them and against them. Right now I still consider Fierce Deity Link and Skull Kid as the best choices. In some of my previous posts I had the theory that they might aim for less significant characters with the DLC, like Yeto or the Deku Princess, but that was obviously not the case with Twili Midna. They go for the big fan favorites here and those are certainly Fierce Deity Link and Skull Kid. After all they are the ones represented as First 4 Figures from the game! And with them all F4F would be playable.

With Fierce Deity Link there is a chance that he might just be a costume for Link and nothing else. He also could be both a costume and a character. They could make him a separate character, but also give Link an unlockable Fierce Deity color swap on the new Adventure Map just for fun. Or even a full costume, since they simply could reuse and downscale Fierce Deity Link's model as a costume. I already made several arguments, why he should be his own separate character, but this only applies, if they plan a moveset. And I think both Sheik and Twili Midna already made this clear that these kind of transformed characters get their own slot and won't just be some costume or weapon.

In a way Fierce Deity Link is actually very similar to Twili Midna. Both only appeared at the end of a Zelda game, but have a cult following amongst the Zelda fans. From Aonuma's message about here on Miiverse:

When I was developing Twilight Princess, I thought it was such a waste to let a beautiful princess like her only appear in the ending. Now Koei Tecmo Games has made my wish to see more of her come true.

Something similar could be said about Fierce Deity Link and I actually hope that they give him more to do in Majora's Mask 3D, maybe like a Cave of Ordeals, where you can play as him. It's just so much fun to use him. But Hyrule Warriors is the perfect chance to give this character more action and he's predestined to be in the game. Fierce Deity Link was the biggest power rush in the entire Zelda series and he makes a great fit for Hyrule Warriors, which is a all about overpowered fighters. And seeing how powerful they made Twili Midna, I don't see an issue with Fierce Deity Link being more powerful than Link. The DLC characters are separate after all, so it's not like he's going to make the game any easier.

Also, with Twili Midna they recycled lots of Cia's animations, which they haven't done with any other character yet. All of them got unique animations. But that probably happened, because they are to get the DLC characters done. And with the Fierce Deity Link they could recycle lots of assets, including the voice and some animations, from Link. That way they have more time to get one fully original character done. Though even Skull Kid for example would probably recycle some things, like the special attack with the moon.

Skull Kid is easily the poster child of Majora's Mask and he's also the humanoid helper villain much as Zant or Ghirahim, so there's a good chance that he will become playable with the DLC. Majora fighting Fierce Deity might also be a theme for the new Adventure Map and it even could make sense, if they need each other's materials. Koei will probably add a Challenge Mode mission, where you can fight both characters, so that you can get their materials without buying the new Adventure Map. Or it works like with Twili Midna, where she simply drops Midna's materials. This could work for Fierce Deity Link, but not for any other new character.

The big argument against Fierce Deity Link and Skull Kid is that they most likely would add even more darkness type weapons to the game, while we already got eight. While the element balance already got screwed with the Twilight Princess DLC, it still would be weird to completely ignore all other elements over the course of two DLC packs. And this is where the other characters come in.

I often see the Happy Mask Salesman named by fans and he certainly would complement Skull Kid as well as Fierce Deity Link would, if you want to characters with a connection, where one needs the materials of the other. But I'm personally not a big fan of this character idea for two different reasons. One is that he never takes action. He's this mysterious background character, who lets Link do his deeds in all of the games, where he appeared. Him taking action would feel as weird to me as kid Kafei suddenly slaughtering thousands of enemies, while he originally couldn't even fight Sakon. Still Koei Tecmo could make him work with a moveset, where he utilizes different ability masks, but I fear a moveset like that would feel very gimmicky, which is the 2nd reason.

We know that Tingle was already in development (see here) together with a Tingle Balloon weapon. But that doesn't have to mean anything. Like Midna's "Hair" weapon, he simply could have been scrapped. Maybe even Aonuma told them not to include Tingle, since he's not very popular in the west. And with the DLC there's now the problem that you can preorder everything without knowing what characters exactly will be included. So, it should better be something that doesn't disappoint the masses.

Also, Tingle is a recurring character like Impa or Ganondorf. And like these two he should get his own Hyrule Warriors incarnation and not be specifically from the world of Termina. So far all the characters taken from specific eras like Fi or Darunia only ever appeared there and nowhere else. While this also wouldn't apply to the Happy Mask Salesman and Skull Kid, these two at least had their only main role in Majora's Mask. So, it still makes sense to use their Majora's Mask versions. Tingle on the other hand probably had his most important role in the Wind Waker, but he even got his own games. I think Tingle would make the most sense as a character in the sequel, where he appears as part of the world of Hyrule Warriors. And in a potential sequel they have the room for more silly characters like Agitha, while in the DLC they want selling characters. However... we know for a fact that they already were working on Tingle, which is why he's still a very likely candidate. Either he got scrapped or he gets finished up for the DLC.

The Deku Princess is also more likely to appear in the sequel than in the DLC. In my previous post I gave several good reasons, why she should be an addition to the game. It would be important to have a Deku next to a Goron and a Zora to complete the Majora's Mask race trio. She would add another (much needed) water weapon and could come with a Woodfall stage, Deku troops and maybe even an Odolwa boss. However, seeing how the Twilight Princess Adventure Map didn't have any new content AT ALL, we're lucky to get a Clocktown Stage, if anything. So, my ideas were probably too optimistic for the DLC and it's more likely to have all these things in the sequel together with a Deku character. And while I still think that the Deku Princess would be the best Deku representative, she is certainly not Twili Midna level of popular to be hot cake DLC.

I should also mention Mikau, since he would be an awesome addition using the guitar as his weapon type and playing with electric attacks. He's a rockstar and the perfect fit for this Zelda rock music game. However, since we already have a Zora character, he's more likely to appear in a sequel as well.

Adventure Map

We can already listen to the 8-Bit Clocktown Music of the upcoming Adventure Map, so it's probably going to be an 8-Bit version of Termina. I thought the Twilight map was well made visually, though it lacked any new content. I still have the hope that they at least might make a Clocktown stage for this. Maybe they even create a free new scenario for Legend Mode in the 1.5 update, where the heroes got side tracked in Termina and where you're able to face the new characters without the DLC.

However, I thought the difficulty level of the Twilight map was a pain. It's not so much about the damage output, which totally makes sense for characters, who can have up to 40 Heart Containers by now, but about the A rank and 2nd Skulltula requirements, where you can't take more than 10/25 and 4 hearts of damage. It only results in a pure "All Attacks are Devastating" playstyle, where I use the Item Power-Up mixture to kill everything with the Sacred Bow at a safe distance. And that's not much fun.

So, if they really have to keep the same silly A rank and Skulltula requirements for everything, I hope that they will aim at a different difficulty level for Termina Map. The Master Quest Map was overall easier, but had the rules. The Twilight Map was very hard, but it gives double material drops. Maybe the Termina Map will aim at time limits, but you can use Ocarina item cards to get rid of them. So, this would be similar to the Twilight Zones on the Twilight Map.

Overall for the item cards they could use different masks. Use the Mask of Truth to read Gossip Stones and reveal enemies. Or use the Postman Hat to look into post boxes and unlock rewards. As for the rewards, those will probably have 8-Bit variants for the remaining six original weapons. I really liked the Power Bracelet + Raft combo and the 8-Bit Keys for Ganondorf, those were cool choices. Let's see, how the remaining 8-Bit weapons could look like:

  • Great Fairy: 8-Bit Fairy
  • Naginata: 8-Bit Bow
  • Portal: 8-Bit Compass
  • Baton: 8-Bit Recorder
  • Hammer: 8-Bit Food
  • Scale: 8-Bit Heart

Those are different from previous ideas, mainly because it seems that DLC characters and weapons are not getting 8-Bit variants. I used the Food as the Hammer because of the shape and because it's a reference to the Rock Sirloin from Majora's Mask, which was a Goron item in the game. The only other major items would be the Bombs and the Magical Sword. But it could be that Darunia is using the Bombs as his Hammer. The 8-Bit Hammer from Zelda II was also a nice idea, but it seems like they only use items from the first Zelda game.

The Magical Sword is a bit iffy. It could be used for the Naginata, but I guess it's also possible to have an 8-Bit alternative to the Master Sword, which works exactly like the Master Sword. And I also heard that someone met a Wiizro with an 8-Bit Blue Ring in a Network Link battle. Can't confirm this yet though. But the same guy also spotted Agitha with the Rupee as her Parasol.

And yes, I want to see a huge 8-Bit Fairy... lol. She would probably even carry an 8-Bit Potion around as her bottle.


Next to 8-Bit weapons there should be 16 more recolored default costumes, but also three new full model costumes. If Fierce Deity Link is not a playable character, he at least should be a full costume, which models the armor based on the artwork and every detail. A cheap color swap like in Super Smash Bros. 4 would only be acceptable, if he's also a playable character.

But since Link already got so many costumes, they should try to give other characters something here. So far only Link, Zelda, Ganondorf, Lana and Cia received real costumes and it's time for some other characters to get some costume joy. Here are some ideas:

  • Goron Link costume for Darunia
  • Garo Ninja costume for Wizzro
  • Cremia / Malon costume for Lana or Zelda
  • Tingle costume for Volga

Goron Link is a no brainer. Darunia would get Link's hat, the gloves, the pants and the necklace, so that he looks like Link transformed into Darmani. This would be different from the Ghost Darmani costume, since it requires a modified character model and it would be based on Goron Link.

In any case it's weird that Darunia and Ruto already got Majora's Mask color swaps on the Master Quest Map. You would have thought that they save this for the Ternina Map. Or maybe they get Majora's Mask themes here as well. For example Ruto could have a Mikau reskin, where she has all his tattoos. Not sure about Darunia though...

I've always been a fan of the Garo race in Ikana and it would be nice to have a full blown Garo costume for Wizzro, since he's kind of the playable representative of all ghost beings. He also could just get a Garo Ninja or Poe Collector color swap on the Adventure Map, but I'm personally not a fan of color swaps, which could have been real costumes (like Skyward Sword Impa).

If Tingle's not playable, he could also be a ridiculous costume for someone. Volga in a Tingle costume would be fun, but I guess it's also a possibility for Link or even Darunia. But I hope that they give costumes to characters, who haven't received any special costumes yet. Link, Zelda and Ganondorf already got lots, Lana and Cia got a nice costume in the first pack and the Majora's Mask pack should have something in store for others. Impa or Sheik might be candidates as well. Maybe we might just get their Ocarina of Time costumes.

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