Last year I posted up a link for a wonderful localization piece on Super Mario Bros. done by Mato. Well, he’s gotten around to doing the same extensive and exhaustive treatment to another of Nintendo’s staples, the original Legend of Zelda. If you like the series or even just this game, or, hell, care an itch about translation differences between Japan and America, you should devote a couple hours to pouring over this piece. Incredible insights to be gleamed here.
All posts tagged legend of zelda
Posted by WildcatJF on August 14, 2012
Jeremy Parish investigates genre juxtaposition in this article, a lengthy but informative look at how the Action RPG came to be, and how Diablo (pictured) changed its meaning forever. Here’s a piece to sample:
Of course, even then, the notion of Diablo-as-pure-RPG left some people with a stomachache. And so the world arrived at a compromise by giving Diablo its own genre: The action RPG.
This came as no small surprise to people who had been playing “action RPGs” for years on consoles — or even before that, on the 8-bit microcomputers of the ’80s. Today, the term “action RPG” brings to mind Diablo and its descendants almost exclusively: Loot-driven games powered by randomization and the mouse-clicking power of the human index finger, such as Titan Quest and Torchlight. Prior to 1996, however, the term “action RPG” described a number of other games and styles, foremost of which was The Legend of Zelda. Such has been the impact of Diablo that the Zelda series has been entirely recategorized as “action adventure.” Somewhere, the guys who excoriated Final Fantasy VII for PC are smiling in satisfaction.
Posted by WildcatJF on August 3, 2012
While some may view Nintendo’s Legend of Zelda series as stagnant and afraid of real change, 1UP.com’s Jeremy Parish has published an interesting article explaining why it is still a genre-defining series that has yet to be surpassed by its competitors. He makes the case that, while relying on a solid foundation, the Zelda games do, in fact, contain bold experimentation.
Yes, Zelda games maintain a consistent set of underlying mechanics and objectives. The overall game structure — roaming a huge world containing tool-granting dungeons with a boss cherry on top — hasn’t changed much since 1986. But what long-running series has more radically reinvented its appearance or interface with each new iteration than Zelda? From the addictive four-player co-op style of Four Swords Adventures to Twilight Princess’ ethereal Twilight Realm, every new Zelda game contains a guarantee that you’ll experience something new and different. Maybe it won’t always be to your liking (see: Sailing in Wind Waker, divining in Skyward Sword), but it’s not like Nintendo is just sitting on its hands, you know? Every Zelda stands apart from its predecessors. And that consistent willingness to switch things up in way you never expected helps the series maintain its standing at the top of the genre. Competitors may come and go, but Zelda still rules the action RPG. (Or whatever you call it.)
Posted by Nester on May 8, 2012
If you’re anything like me, you felt a little bit annoyed by Nintendo’s recent reveal of the “official” Zelda timeline. “If the Hero won”, “If the Hero lost”…just give me a straight line of events from beginning to end. Is that too much to ask?
Apparently not, as Zach over at View From Heaven has seen fit to create his own version of Zelda’s official canon, playing through all of the non-embarrassing titles and collecting his thoughts in a rather well-written essay. It’s impressive to see how much time and thought he’s put into this thing, especially when you consider that Nintendo themselves couldn’t be bothered to do something similar for the franchise’s 25th anniversary.
Good job, Zach!
Posted by Jason X on February 3, 2012
I’ve written up my thoughts on the latest Zelda game, Skyward Sword, and posted them at my poor, neglected blog, Lark’s Island. In short, I loved it. Here’s a sample:
Do you believe in destiny? Is there a predetermined role we were meant to play regardless of any efforts to deviate? This seems to be the eternal theme for our green-clad hero Link, even if this particular one is the first in the line. In the latest entry to the Zelda saga, Link has been inexplicably chosen by the goddess to be the legendary hero, just as Zelda is locked to her own fate, as are other characters. And throughout the game, they rigidly follow their roles.
So, too, does Skyward Sword seem to have its own destiny; one which it does not deviate from, but yet heroically lives up to. It is as enjoyable as any of the main console-based Zelda titles, and while it does not extend far beyond what is expected of it, it manages to reinvent itself within its established framework.
Check out the full article at my blog, and give it some love: The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
Posted by Nester on January 2, 2012
For me, 2011 wasn’t exactly the most exciting year for games or movies. As far as games go, I spent most of my time catching up with all the great releases from 2010. Still, there were some notable events for me.
First, there’s The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, which I thought lived up to the high standards of the Zelda series. This was the main big release of 2011 that I really wanted to have at launch, and I came away from it highly satisfied.
Also, there was the surprise announcement of Xenoblade Chronicles for North America. I’ve been patiently waiting for an excuse to dive back into the JRPG genre for a few years now, but most of the games that have caught my attention ended up being frustratingly withheld. But the stars aligned, the cosmic tumblers fell into place, and finally, one of the several games being denied to North America will actually make it over the ocean. I’m grateful for it, and I’m not taking it for granted.
Speaking of taking things for granted, Nintendo seems to have this odd habit lately of announcing something new, but not providing enough incentive to be excited for it (at least, for me). Thus, I have somewhat mixed feelings about the Wii U. I’m curious about it, sure, and I suppose that’s the point, but its “unveiling” at E3 didn’t provide me with any substance to be interested in. Similarly, they also announced new Super Smash Bros games for both Wii U and Nintendo 3DS, but had nothing to show for it. In fact, no such games are in actual development, and won’t be until sometime later this year. Furthermore, it carried all the impact of saying, “Sometime in the future, we’ll release a new Mario game.” Thus, it feels as if Nintendo is taking their fans for granted by simply mentioning an established franchise, and expecting them to swoon. (Sadly, some of them do.)
For movies, as with games, I spent some time catching up with the films I missed in 2010. To be honest, I hardly go to the movies anymore, and I don’t even watch that many at home. But one movie this year broke that streak and got me back into a theater. That movie was The Muppets. It’s a wonderful return to form for the characters, although I think older fans will get more out of it, as they will likely have the nostalgia and catch on to all the fan service. But it’s a terrific film, and I’m glad I took the time to go see it.
The big announcement for me in music was that my all-time favorite music group, The Beach Boys, would be reuniting to go on a world tour and release a brand new album in 2012. It’s something I honestly never expected, as the remaining original members had splintered more than a decade ago, and there seemed to be a bit of animosity between them (as often happens with bands that have been together for any length of time). But I’m thrilled that they’re getting one more chance to be The Beach Boys again.
So, that’s my 2011 in a nutshell. What will 2012 bring?
Posted by Nester on January 1, 2012
After a six-month hiatus, TheSpeedGamers are returning this Friday, December 16, at 7pm EST/ 4pm PST to play through every major title in Nintendo’s Legend of Zelda series. Coincidentally, this will be their 25h marathon, and it coincides with Zelda‘s 25 anniversary.
The organization they’re raising money for is Rocking H Ranch, which actually distributes donations among three other charities that you can read more about here. Their initial donation goal is $15,000, and if they meet it within 72 hours, they’ll extend the marathon an extra 24 hours.
There will also be prizes given away, including games, a Nintendo 3DS system, and much more! So get into the holiday spirit, make a donation, and enjoy over 72 hours of Zelda with TheSpeedGamers!
For more info on which games are being played and a tentative schedule, click here.
Posted by Nester on December 14, 2011
Some big names from Dwelling of Duels here, like Viking Guitar, Hat, Bonkers and Brandon Strader, not to mention the shredding of Metroid Metal’s Stemage, among plenty of other great remixers. You can check out and download its track list here.
Secondly, OC Remix has pulled a rabbit (or a Cucco?) out its hat and dropped a full-on Legend of Zelda tribute album, recruiting indie composers like Laura Shigihara (Plants Vs. Zombies) and Souleye (VVVVVV), among many others (and a few OC Remix regulars) to supply fresh spins to the wide berth of Zelda music. Here’s their reveal trailer:
Wow, that’s a ton of music from two franchises full of fantastic songs. I’m looking forward to sampling, and I hope you do, too. Enjoy!
Posted by WildcatJF on November 22, 2011
Long ago I did a really big series on the NES, with four articles discussing a bunch of games I had played and some other thoughts. I did a Top 10 list that plucked quotes from other posts of mine, but I think it’s time to revamp that old list a bit (and revise the one I redid a year afterward a tad). So, here’s my favorites from the original NES!
Mega Man 3 (Capcom)
I consider Mega Man’s third title to be his finest (as well as the console’s!). The difficulty is perfect, the bosses break off from the molds the other games followed, and the music is just fantastic. More on my love for it here (and Tactics for it here).
Bionic Commando (Capcom)
I’ve grown to love Bionic Commando more and more over the years. It’s a game so brazen that it just screams out for it. Hitler + pseudo Nazis, no jumps, “damn” in a NES game, and incredible genre-bending gameplay? Well worth some time in my opinion.
Super Mario Bros. 3 (Nintendo)
Up until New Super Mario Bros. Wii, 2D Mario didn’t get much better than this outing way back in 1990. Great levels, awesome powers, and just overall a piece of brilliance.
Legend of Zelda (Nintendo)
I still find the NES original Zelda to be among the best in the series. It’s a little confusing and certainly isn’t as smooth as later games, but I find its design to be fairly tight despite that. It also has two quests, which is a great boon for those seeking the most for their money.
Kirby’s Adventure (Nintendo/HAL Labs)
Kirby gained his power stealing habit here, and HAL’s game is loaded with charm. It’s not hard, but not every game needs to be difficult to be enjoyable…and I enjoy this one a lot.
The NES had a knack of improving arcade ports (see Bionic Commando), and Contra continues that trend with some great bosses and levels. Pure shooting glory.
Mega Man 2 (Capcom)
Mega Man 2 may not have wowed me as much as its later sequel, but it’s still a well made game that has many strengths. It is easily among the greatest games in Mega Man’s career.
Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse (Konami)
Castlevania’s earliest days are best served by Dracula’s Curse. It’s got the richest adventure with multiple playable characters and the best overall balance of the three NES games. If you could pick only one NES ‘Vania, I’d recommend this one.
The best licensed game on the NES? After some deep reflection, I think so! Sunsoft’s Batman is a fantastic game that out-ninjas Ninja Gaiden in my book, and despite a bit of cheap enemy placement, it’s a great rush to play through. Great music, too!
This Zelda-esque action-adventure is wonderful. I really wish it picked up more sequels than Zoda’s Revenge (which lost a lot of what made this so cool). It’s kooky, but lots of fun…if you can deal with the clunky controls, that is.
Super Mario Bros. (Nintendo)
Balloon Fight (Nintendo)
Wrecking Crew (Nintendo)
Posted by WildcatJF on November 14, 2011
Got about 11 minutes or so to spare? Then you will definitely want to consider spending it with this lovely recording from the recent L.A. Zelda Anniversary Concert (ignore the silly crowd and their clapping in the middle of the performance). This is epic stuff from a soundtrack that deserves far more love.
As a bonus, a visual treat for you:
The art used for the concert is pretty nice, huh?
Posted by WildcatJF on October 25, 2011