Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Hyrule Warriors Legends: Master Quest Map Impressions

Just in time for the upcoming Master Wind Waker Map I'm about to be finished with the Master Quest Map. I unlocked all squares, got all weapons and costumes, as well as all fairy rewards. There are only a few Heart Containers missing, as well as some Golden Skulltulas. The latter I will get, while unlocking the first seal on the Master Sword at the same time, which freshly got uncovered after I got all Level 3 weapons.

Some time before that (when I got the Level 3 Great Fairy) the game also started to give me Legendary Seals, which are still locked. Seals for Augment Skills started appearing right after collecting all Level 2 weapons, where I finally got "Hasty Attacks" for Cia, my main character. And you really can "main" someone in this version of the game, because it often lets you chose a second or third character, even for some of the Level 3 weapon missions, where normally you're locked to the corresponding weapon type. But e.g. "Artillery Fire" with Zant was always an awful mission, but here I could just breeze through with Cia. In addition she got many missions for herself on the Master Quest Map, so I was able to play with her quite a lot. She's Level 90 right now, way ahead of Link, who's at Level 75. All other characters are between Level 30 and 50, which means that some of them are heavily under-leveled, but you can usually compensate this with Shade Fairy Magic.

When the Master Quest Map was first released for Wii U, I really enjoyed it, because it introduced the nice "Rack up your K.O. count" missions. Especially the bottom left corner of the MQ Map is very nice for leveling your characters, but here they increased the difficulty somewhat. On the Wii U even with a Level 1 character you could easily kill the Giant Bosses in one go, which now requires some more levels for the same mission. But it was my first goal to get there, where I faced little resistance on the path.

Anyway, what makes the Master Quest Map special, are the Master Rules on each mission. Most of them can be easily ignored or even make the game easier. "No Healing" doesn't matter, because you want to have the A Rank anyway. It's the same with "Speed Run", where you now have 20 minutes on the clock. Again, that rule never really matters, because the A Rank turns all battles into "Speed Runs", in fact it's even handy to have a clock on the screen for that. And "No Blocking" makes the game even easier, because it takes away the damage requirement for A Ranks. I heavily enjoy these missions.

"No Item Attacks" usually doesn't prove to be a big issue, they even removed some more unfair scenarios with this on the 3DS. Only "Don't Get Hit" is a real problem and that one luckily is rare. I still hate it, but luckily there's now the "Water Wall" Rental Skill, which allows you to get hit a couple of times. It doesn't work with the "All Attacks are devastating!" missions, but the only real problem are the "Don't Get Hit" Adventure Battles anyway. Thanks to the Fairy Magic it became a lot easier on the 3DS, though.

They also added Owl Statues to some missions, which they curiously didn't do at all on the first Adventure Map. They are very scarce on the Master Quest Map, but still a welcome addition. Especially Owl Statues near Skulltulas and your base can be a huge help. In general everything feels "fresh" enough that I don't mind replaying Adventure Mode that much. It took a long time on the Wii U, but thanks to the changed rewards and character requirements and the more balanced difficulty I don't feel like dragging myself through the exact same thing again. I'm also making progress at a much faster rate.

Still, what really annoyed me on the Master Quest Map were the Item Cards... again. They were well done on the Great Sea Map, but here you constantly have to repeat missions to get the necessary item cards for rewards and making enemies appear. You especially need a lot of Bombs and the Compass is required more often than usual. On the other maps the Compass is rarely useful, but here the hidden spots are often in the middle of nothing. Though with the Recorder you can't actually use it on a wrong spot, so you can essentially just try until you find the right place. Bombs can be misplaced, however, and there are two spots right above the two screens at Death Mountain with rows of Armos next to each (where you would find the Power Bracelet in the NES game), where the cave entrances are one field next to where they originally were on the NES. That oversight was already there on the Wii U version and if you're using a map with all secrets from the original game, it might mislead you. And you're not getting enough bombs on your way, which is why you have to repeat the same missions over and over again.

The map also didn't feel as rewarding, which is weird. It has the Level 3 weapons and those are beautiful to have. One the Wii U those were the most important unlocks and here you have them all on one single map. This should feel like an amazing achievement to get it all, but they added the superior "Plus" versions to the game. They look the same, but offer more power, so you're not done with upgrading your weapons and can't get started building good weapons just yet. They are just another intermediate step before the real deal. Also, the Fairy Clothing for the most part was just Skyloft stuff, which got boring pretty quickly. I still need Fire head gear and Darkness make-up, where the Master Quest Map didn't provide anything... It was just differently colored Skyloft Shirts and Pants everywhere. Yikes.

Well, both the Termina and Twilight Maps got unlocked next, but I will go for the Master Wind Waker Map first. Hopefully, it will still be easy enough and not require all the Level 4 weapons already. But since the original Master Quest DLC map was also quite easy, I don't think that this will be the case. I just want something new, before I go at the dreadful Twilight and Termina Maps again.

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