logan j. fowler finally gives his thoughts on the newest Zelda installment …
It’s been what, two months now? Two months since Nintendo dropped the biggest game in recent memory? Yeah, that’s right. I apologize for being a bad geek gamer, but I wanted some time to get into the world of The Legend Of Zelda: Skyward Sword before I gave it an in depth review.
I should’ve had that review at least a month ago, considering my love for this series. However, I didn’t really progress a great deal in the game until very recently, so I think it’s about time I tell you my thoughts.
Skyward Sword is amazing.
Ok, now let’s define that word: amazing. What’s so amazing about it? Well the truth is, as the first Zelda game built from the ground up for the Wii, the motion control specifications utilized to slash your sword, shoot an arrow, or fly on a bird makes all the difference in the world. I never want to play another Zelda without these types of controls again. You swing your hand, Link swings his blade. The correlation just feels right.
There are some changes found in Skyward Sword that deter a little bit from the Zelda series. What I’ve noticed is the upgrade system primarily, as this option hasn’t been available in past installments. You collect items to tune up your gear or potions, but this isn’t mandatory, which is nice, as I still can’t find some bugs (yes, there’s a bug catching element) to help with some upgrades.
Skyloft (the beginning area for Link and Zelda) acts as a hub to all your destinations. The dungeons become available to you as the game progresses, and you use your winged crimson colored bird to fly to these spots and dive off into the world below. It kind of is like sailing in Wind Waker, only much less time consuming.
On a negative note before I gush some more, there is a fair bit of backtracking in the game, revisiting previous dungeons or landscapes, and even beating the same bosses several times. However, I kind of let this gripe go after a bit, because what is important about the game is that is the official start of the Zelda saga. These events put into motion everything after, so while I still was bothered by the back tracking a bit, I took it with a grain of salt, only because I want to see how everything plays out. Hopefully that makes sense.
While the text-based dialogue and narration still exist, Skyward Sword provides its cast with amazing facial expressions. Also, there is a REAL story here, as being the starting point of the franchise, the characters have more to them than just a simple “go and save the princess.” Zelda and Link actually start out as best friends, and when she disappears, you feel for Link, for her. There’s actually a scene later on in the game that’s sincerely emotional, and it’s a credit to the writers for making it so upsetting. Closing that part of the review up, the story here works well, giving the player characters that they will give a damn about.
Graphically, Skyward Sword falls between Wind Waker and Twilight Princess. It has a watercolor type of look, and I found the game to be beautiful in general, but some elements will take your breath away.
The music is not as epic as one would hope, but it’s still awesome. It’s a fully orchestrated soundtrack and let me tell you, it makes all the difference. Just like the motion controls, no Zelda game should be without this feature.
So the final verdict? If you own a Wii, you need to own this game. The Legend Of Zelda: Skyward Sword may have been five years too late, but the game finally delivers on the motion controls in a grand way. You’ve never had the experience before of being so in tune with a game before, and being able to control Link in this way adds a huge plus to the events. The characters are finally fleshed out (except for the hero of time, he’s still pretty mute, except for his grunts and groans), and the text draws you in with clever, funny, and memorable dialogue, the best I’ve seen in any Zelda game. Visually the game is very easy on the eyes, and the music is more than solid.
Before playing this game, The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time was my favorite Zelda game, and my favorite game period. However, with Skyward Sword, I must finally say that Ocarina has been knocked down a spot. This game is amazing in every facet, and it stands tall and proud as Logan’s current No. 1.