Saturday, December 6, 2014

The Legend of Zelda U - Game Awards 2014 Footage

Watch it here.

Impressive. I wasn't all that excited about the E3 footage, but that's more like it. It overall reminds me a lot of Far Cry 4, just more beautiful. But it has a lot of similarities like the large mountain areas, the towers and parachuting around the area. Actually they even made the first Skyward Sword trailer finally come to life here, where Link jumps off a cliff and skydives into a landscape. That never happened in the actual game, but is now part of Zelda U. It's also reminiscent of the well know artwork from the first Zelda game:

28 years later their original vision of The Legend of Zelda now comes to life.

In general I have the feeling that this might be the next milestone for Zelda after Ocarina of Time. Zelda on the N64 was the big game of its generation and ever since Zelda only has seen experiments. The biggest game during all these years was Twilight Princess, which evolved from Ocarina of Time, but also made several steps back like with the very linear game world. I personally enjoy having an open world in Zelda more, because for me exploration is really the most important part of a Zelda game. It also adds to the replay value.

So, naturally the new Zelda game fully appeals to me. But with games like these, there's always the same problem: having empty worlds. Even The Wind Waker and Twilight Princess already had this issue, where they filled the world with repeating elements like having the same towers and islands all over the ocean. While the landscape here looks rich and natural, there isn't much to catch your eyes. And for a Zelda game it's important to have something interesting in every corner. It already lacks the enemies, Aonuma took even a while to find some during the video, which is a bad sign. Or more enemies come out at night, since this game brings the day cycle back, you even have a digital clock on the map:

You can spot quite some interesting things here, but not many. What I like is that the maps looks really natural with its river courses and lakes. It doesn't have the artificial vibe of past Zelda games, where the world usually was made from chambers.

In the northeast you can spot something that looks like a lake in the shape of a skull and might be related to Death Mountain, maybe you even have the classic Spectacle Rock there. There's also some spiral formation southeast of it.

In the southeast corner of the map you can see something, which looks like Crescent Island. And maybe it is. It would be interesting to have a world here, which also connects Labrynna and Holodrum to Hyrule. But I doubt that this will be the case, though it's entirely possible that this is named "Crescent Island" as a reference.

And in the southwest you can spot something, which appears to be a tower above clouds or snowy mountains. All of these and the mountain top in the south, which is shaped like a fairy, are the landmarks catching my eye right now.


Katrin said...

I'm still sceptical, but I was positively surprised, too! :) I just wished that in the game play video they would have features the screen in a bigger way insteas of Miyamoto and Aonuma sitting and chit-chatting, haha. :D

K2L said...

That landscape was ecstatic. It reminded me a bit of the grooves in the frontier area of Assassin's Creed III. Can't wait to play it!