Saturday, August 13, 2016

Replaying Ocarina of Time 3D Master Quest

Sheikah Slate Required. Access Denied.

Mirror, Mirror on the wall, which is the evilest dungeon of them all...?!

In a twisted world, where everyone is left-handed but Link, my journey of re-experiencing various Zelda games for the 30th Anniversary continued. After replaying Majora's Mask 3D it kind of was weird to return to Ocarina of Time so shortly, because it feels like a downgrade. Majora's Mask simply has the richer game world and a much more interesting selection of items thanks to the masks. It's just more interesting to play this game, but what Majora's Mask doesn't have, is many dungeons, and this is where Master Quest came in with a total of 12 completely re-arranged dungeons. It's what kept me going and ultimately puts Ocarina of Time on par with its successor.

What makes the re-arranged dungeons so good is that they don't bother you too much with stuff that you already did in the original game. Like for example there are no rolling boulders inside the Fire Temple. And a majority of the dungeon is completely optional. Or the Eye of Truth sees little to no use inside the Bottom of the Well. Instead you often get a tougher selection of enemies and some crazier puzzles that require out-of-the-box thinking. It's all very refreshing and makes this "2nd Quest" worthwhile.

On the 3DS version you also get the mirrored game world and that really feels like a totally different game, which is weird. All you basically have to do is flip right and left in your head, but the world just looks very strange and unfamiliar, even though it's the same places. I still would have liked a similar game mode for Majora's Mask 3D, because this can offer a quite unique experience, even if it's confusing and keeps being confusing.

There's also the double damage, which is only really an issue early on and with some tougher enemies. In fact I tried to get some fairies for a bottle as early as possible, where it seems like holding a Deku Stick next to butterflies is the earliest chance of finding one. That trick takes some patience and I remember that in the past I even thought it was just a myth that this really works...

I was also taking my time and doing some silly things like showing the first four masks to Zelda, where some of her reactions weren't really what I expected...

She also really likes that Spooky Mask, but at least that fits with the ending sequence, where she just calmly passes a Redead. As a kid she probably sneaks out to the graveyard at night just for fun.

Apropos fun on graveyards... of course this was a 100% run and of course with that you have to get through Random Dampé, who was giving me a hard time as so often. But I had an unusual experience here. After many unsuccessful tries I was running out of Rupees and leaving the graveyard, but that's where the bushes near the entrance would suddenly give me Red Rupees, so I could try again. And then I just got the Piece of Heart on my first try on the first soil. Weird. But maybe there's some mechanic here, where you just get the Heart Piece after a certain amount of failures.

Anyhow, here is my order of dungeons and important places after the Deku Tree and leaving the forest:

  • Dodongo's Cavern (Bombs)
  • Jabu Jabu's Belly
  • Dodongo's Cavern (Boss)
  • Lon Lon Ranch (Epona)
  • Gerudo Fortress
  • Ice Cavern
  • Water Temple
  • Forest Temple
  • Bottom of the Well
  • Fire Temple Entrance (Megaton Hammer)
  • Spirit Temple
  • Gerudo Training Grounds
  • Fire Temple
  • Shadow Temple

This looks very chaotic, but I did a similar run before, so it's not that extraordinary. When becoming an adult, I like to cover as much ground as possible and get as many things right away as possible. And here it's nice that you can get both the Hammer and the Longshot very early in their corresponding temples. It's quite reminiscent of the 2nd Quest in The Legend of Zelda, where in some of the dungeons you can also find the crucial item early on. Then you might just want to grab them and leave the rest of the dungeon for later, which is what I did with the Fire Temple. And it looks really nice to have the Mirror Shield in the rest of the Fire Temple later on:

In any case, what you want to do first as an adult is getting your horse and then right straight to Lake Hylia and get that Scarecrow's Song. It really annoys me that you have to talk to Bonooru again, before you can actually summon Pierre. Because it's useful in the Sacred Forest Meadow and even required for a Piece of Heart at the Gerudo Fortress, which is why you want to have the scarecrow ready, when you go to these places...

What else was there to talk about? Ah, yeah, the fishing is especially horrible after playing the same minigame in Majora's Mask 3D. I kept losing fish and after all these many years I still haven't fully figured out, when and why that fish breaks from the line. It's just annoying and doesn't happen as easily in Majora's Mask 3D.

Probably the toughest part was the Boss Gauntlet, because one hit here can potentially kill you, but it went rather well, where I finished the thing on my 2nd attempt. And it wasn't Bongo Bongo, who gave me trouble this time. First I died to Phantom Ganon's lightning strike, who came in from behind me, where I wasn't fast enough with shooting him. Usually the lightning bolts go into the corners, so you're safe in the middle of one of the cordons, but not this time. Also, Twinrova nearly killed me a the end, because Koume's fire beam wouldn't connect with my Mirror Shield and just fry me. Luckily I found two extra Heart Containers at beforehand or else my run would have ended at that point, probably leaving me quite frustrated.

You might also want to try killing all Redeads on Hyrule Market and then asking out loud "Anyone else want to complain?" - there's a good chance that Navi will "hey" you at that very moment. They really should have added an option to mute her in the remake...

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