The Legend Of Zelda: Twilight Princess Review Page.
Genre: Adventure / RPG
Whatís this Sega nut doing with a GameCube and one of the Zelda games? You may be wondering. Itís a long story, but Iím really into this game, and even though Iíve heard in other reviews that some of the things have been done before, this is all completely new to me, so my review will be based purely on this game alone.
When you start out, youíll be in Linkís home town of Ordon, and you pretty much have nothing in your inventory. Some of the 1st simple missions will test your common sense, as you knock down a bee hive, return a basket with a baby and get a cat back to the shop it belongs at. Money is in the form of rupees, which appear as various gems, from basic green ones worth 1 rupee, to silver ones worth 200 I think. But they donít really show up until a lot later in the game.
Your 1st big mission is to bring a wooden sword and shield to Princess Zelda in Hyrule, but everything goes pear shaped when you come across the twilight looming up on Ordon. Inside the twilight Link turns into a sacred wolf, and is dragged off to the dungeon in Hyrule Castle. In the cell youíll notice that youíre chained up by your paw. Luckily you are rescued by Midna, a cute sort of girlie Twilight being (without giving too much away). She breaks the chain for you, and using your senses, you can then dig your way out. Midna then jumps on your back and rides you like the wind! Or something. From there you make your way to meet Princess Zelda before making an escape. But not back to your human form just yet.
From here youíll be on quests to restore the light to various areas of Hyrule by defeating these insect things as your wolf form. Each time you complete this youíll turn back into your usual self. Although between these events, you will go into various areas that have a boss that must be defeated in order to retrieve a fused shadow - something that Midna wants. A lot of the dungeon regions are really well thought out, with you needing to use some logic to progress through. This applies to the bosses aswell, and once youíve worked out their weaknesses, you can take them down quite easily. Usually Midna will give you hints also.
Now letís talk about the sexy graphics. Every trick in the book has been used in this game by the looks of it. Youíll see some delicious refractions on water and above flames from the heat. Water splashes spread droplets that also make impact marks in the water nearby, and when Link gets out of the water, he actually looks wet, leaving moist footprints behind for a few moments before drying off. Thereís also some amazing cloud shadows, which make you just go Wow! Look at that! especially when youíre in one of the areas of Hyrule field, that has a huge draw distance, and you can see for like ages. Thereís some brilliant lighting and shadow effects that change to the environment youíre in, as well as heat haze in the Gerudo Desert, lens flares in nearly all locations that you can see the sun, motion blurs when Linkís going faster on Epona, full scene glows which take effect mostly stunningly in the twilight areas and plenty of particle effects aswell. Later in the game there are some impressive reflections also, on the Mirror Of Twilight, and on the floors in the Snowpeak Ruins, when you take on Blizzeta and various rooms around the mansion.
Apparently in the Wii version, someone stuffed up, and Midna ended up being a mirror image of herself, with her visible eye on her left, instead of the right.
One thing that frustrated me was that when you saved, it didnít save your position. You had to start back at the beginning of dungeons, even though certain tasks were still saved as completed.
All up though, as my 1st fully Nintendo made game, (not including F-Zero GX, since Sega had a hand in that,) and my 1st Zelda game, I was very impressed. This was pretty much all I played while I played it, and my GameCube was dedicated to this alone for the duration. So I guess thatís one for the books.
Riding through the wide Hyrule Field.
Yummy refractions. Mmm, unprocessed fish sticks I mean, mmm, graphical.
Midna. Sheís sorta hot in a bizarre kinda way.
It might be a bit hard to see, but I had to do this Prison Break tie-in. Yes, itís Link In Burrows.
Graphics: Every possible effect you could imagine has been crammed in here. Really. From heat haze to refractions on water, full scene glows, nice particle effects, lens flares, fog, reflections and so on. Pretty close to perfection.98%
Animation: Mostly itís really smooth. On 50Hz mode it shows a bit of a jerk here and there, but on 60Hz, itís fine. Thereís great rippley water, those black floating particle things from the Twilight, grass that blows about in the breeze, great character movement, especially Midnaís mouth, which seems exceptionally fluid and believable. 92%
Sound: Really great themed music, excellent footstep sounds on different surfaces and various other neat ambient effects from time to time. Not really much speech as such. Midna says some stuff though, not that you can ever understand it, and that other research dude whoís interested in the City In The Sky mutters some gibberish. I like the music for the Goron Mines aswell. It sounds like the heat buckling the metal. 90%
Playability: Some parts of the game can become rather frustrating when you donít know what youíre supposed to be doing, or if you end up doing something in a more difficult way than intended. The controls are pretty well set out, although sadly thereís no option to tweak things like whether or not you want the C-Stick to be inverted. You get the hang of things after a while though. A bit awkward with the separate item and pause menu thing, I felt. 87%
Lastability: Youíll want to have some great persistance if you want to see this through to the end. The story though is intriguing, and youíll want to play for a long time to see whatís going to happen next. Itís a bit soon for me to mention replay value, and if Iíd want to do it all again. 88%
Overall: This took me about 66 hours or so to finish, including a couple of hours there when I didnít know what I was doing. Not sure if it still keeps counting when you pause it or not. Anyway, apart from when I was frustrated, I really enjoyed the game. Being able to go back to previous places, and the ability to teleport and change form whenever you felt like it, after Link gets the Master Sword, was a plus for me. The range of weapons, and other devices was great too. I think about 96% perhaps.
Click here for my tips on the final boss.