Monday, March 13, 2017

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Review

Friday March 3rd, I eagerly awaited the release of the next Nintendo console, the Nintendo Switch. It was tantalizing to be minutes away from playing this new piece of hardware and seeing just what it could do. But perhaps what I was looking forward to more was it’s big game, the Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. For years, the next Zelda game taunted fans, saying it would be released year after year but never actually appearing. It kept on getting delayed for five years, it seemed like never come, that we would eternally remain Zeldaless. But, alas, a release did final show up. March 3rd, 2017, simultaneously releasing on both the Wii U and Nintendo Switch. I couldn’t wait to play this game. But something made me suspicious. The reviews of the game came in and they were all nearly perfect. There were, 10/10, 5/5, five star ratings and the like. The game had a 98 out of 100 on Metacritic, a site that aggregated review scores. This was practically unheard of. On GameRankings, another site that aggregated review scores, it is listed as the best reviewed game of all time. So if the got all this good press, why was a skeptical? Why was I not convinced?
Well, to be honest, I didn’t believe it was possible. These reviews must be lost in the hype of a new Zelda and the next Nintendo console, that’s why it’s getting all these perfect reviews. I had seen footage of the game and it looked great, but I saw some flaws. In some areas the framerate would drop, some of the textures in the game didn’t look the great, there are huge areas that just look empty, I can see this game getting great reviews, but greatest game of all time? No way. I was not convinced. And then I played. And boy, was I wrong.
The game was amazing, now I could finally see what these reviewers were saying, I could final see what made this game so great. I finally understood why people so badly wanted to avoid spoilers. I now know why The Legend of Zelda: Breath of Wild desires the title of best reviewed game of all time.
Now, to be fair, I haven’t played that much of this game. Now by that I mean I’ve played about 5-10 hours, which, isn’t that much for this game. The world is huge! I’ve tried to explore as many areas as possible and I’ve only filled in like 5% of the map. Some People might find this daunting, but I never did. It feels like it’s just begging to be explored. That’s the magic of the this game, discovery.
Climb up a mountain and look around and see something you want to go to. Go explore and find some incredible discovery. That’s why people are so sensitive about spoilers! It’s not really about the story, although you really shouldn’t be spoiled on that either. The biggest spoilers in this game are that about the world. I don’t want anyone to tell me what’s behind the mountain, I want to discover it for myself. The joy of discovery is what drives me, not any other rewards.
The gameplay encourages this to. You have the perfect arsenal for discover from the very beginning of the game. You can climb almost any surface and then descend down it with the help of a paraglider. After a short time spend in the opening area the world opens about to you and you quite literally can go anywhere you want. The game clearly points out where you should go to advance the story, but you can ignore this. You could go explore every corner of the world before even completing a single quest. This freedom is almost unrivaled by any other game, and it’s, pun quite intended, breathtaking.
I could go on for pages about the game’s combat, the puzzles, the visuals, or the music, it’s all fantastic. I think you get the point though. I love this game, and I just want to play it more. It’s just a joy and I could recommend it enough. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is amazing!