Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Drought Force Heroes

I haven't played Tri Force Heroes in a while now and if the GameFAQs board is any indication, it should be pretty hard to find people these days. This was to be expected by the nature of the game and I personally can't really complain much, because I essentially got what I wanted from this. I wanted an online Four Swords game for a long time and was having a blast playing this with different people from different Zelda communities, even sometimes with random people. I've even spent more than 200 hours with this game, which is a lot for a new Zelda.

Still... I wish that they would have tried something more lasting. For the next months I will probably keep playing Hyrule Warriors: Legends and easily top those 200 hours, because this game just has lots and lots of things to do. Adventure Mode is for the most part thrown together mass missions, but if you're enjoying the gameplay, you won't mind this too much. And maybe they could have gone further with the challenges and material collections in Tri Force Heroes to keep people playing a little longer like that.

Of course it's in the nature and structure of a Zelda game to be finite, so even with more challenges and outfits it would ultimately find its end at some point. A different approach would have been needed to keep people playing, e.g. an online highscore system. Assemble teams and try to beat the levels and challenges as fast as possible and with as little damage as possible. The key to a healthy multiplayer is competition, even in team games, and I did put many thoughts into the Coliseum mode for the same reason...

But there are also probably many people out there, who haven't done all challenges and haven't gotten all the outfits yet. They just lost interest over time. Here it would have been important to keep attention on the game with regular updates, like they did with Splatoon. It was discovered that they had four more outfits planned and even another area... Where did this content go?

Well, my theory was that one of the major updates will be linked to the 30th Anniversary as a free gift, similar to the Four Swords Anniversary Edition. However, Nintendo didn't touch the subject of the Zelda Anniversary yet, where they might do so at E3 and then release another update of Tri Force Heroes afterwards as part of the celebration. But this will be very late and they should have released at least two updates in the meantime to keep the game relevant. Even minor updates count, e.g. having one or two new outfits to try. It would also be easy to add new things to the arena or new challenges to existing stages. By just adding one challenge to each stage, dedicated players like me would go through the entire game again! I'd be happy to.

It would also keep the sales coming. It has sold over a million copies worldwide, which isn't bad - it already did better than Four Swords Adventures. But some small additions now and then would keep the game in the news, keep people playing and with that generate more sales, because more people want to join the fun. So, right now the drought feels like a missed opportunity and I hope that Nintendo didn't already abandon this gem for good.


Eduardo Jencarelli said...

I'm still playing through the game, and I know what you mean. It took me forever to grind 30 Hero Points to improve that costume (I know you don't enjoy that upgrade, but still...).

Finding enough willing participants in these drabland levels have been a bit of a chore, and that's not counting the trolls who decide to spend Sky Realm's 3rd level hitting that annoying switch instead of actually playing the level.

Speaking of Triforce Heroes, here's a doubt. When you clear any level or challenge, you're awarded with the Triforce symbol as proof of completion. I've just cleared the Den of Trials and despite winning the Fierce Deity Costume, I didn't a get any patch or Triforce mark on it.

Is that the case? You don't get a triforce mark at all? Because the only other way of knowing you did the challenge is if you check that wall inside the Den of Trials area with the colored markings.

TourianTourist said...

I got over 150 Hero Points... I didn't like the upgrade of the Bear Minimum, but I certainly enjoyed helping people and scoring points for that. So, the Hero Points update, even though it was just a "small" feature", really kept me going even longer.

The Den of Trials doesn't have any checkmarks. The Fierce Deity armor is your proof that you did it. I also found that weird, but it also means that completing it once is "enough" and you don't have to clear it in both singleplayer and multiplayer (though I did that anyway). And who knows, maybe they'll add it on the board later together with a 2nd new area, if there really are still updates left...