(R) The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D (3DS)

August 1st, 2011 -

For those of you who don’t know, I’m a pretty big Zelda fan. Ocarina of Time was the first Zelda title I owned and beat, and while it wasn’t the first game in the series I played, it really does feel like it was. So it would seem only fitting that I would play and review the remake. Let’s get to it, shall we?

When I originally played this game back in 1998, I absolutely fell in love with it. It was the first game I owned and played on N64 besides Mario 64 that Christmas. I almost became a sleep deprived little child the first week I played it, and all was good. This game has and always will have that special place in my heart. Telling you this, you can only imagine my excitement when they announced the 3DS version. Super stoked and ready to buy the 3DS because of this game, Nintendo then announced the price of the system ($249.99 US), and my hopes dropped. I couldn’t afford it and still can’t. So my hopes were dashed and I finally settled for waiting to play it. The game was released and my nostalgia bug kicked in again. I had to play it. So I turned to my friends; thankfully one of them let me borrow their system and the game. Thanks so much Richard, I owe you one! Let’s get to the breakdown then.

The game looks amazing:
With Ocarina of Time being a 13 year old game, you’d expect a re-release to bolster a higher visual quality. Nintendo earns massive points here. The game looks absolutely stunning. All of the character models have been redone to closer resemble the original artwork of the game. Link himself has been given a new set of animations. Environments look amazing as well, and this is especially prominent in the dungeons. I would never have thought the Water Temple could look so good, and the Temple of Time finally has a ceiling. Items have also been given some polish. The Sage Seals and Sacred Jewels look better than ever. All these updated visuals have a chance to truly shine with the game’s new widescreen presentation. It’s like playing the game through 10 year old eyes again.

Controls are solid:
The controls for the game have translated very well. The top screen in free of clutter with everything being assigned to the touch screen. The touch screen itself is utilized quite well for item management. You can equip up to four items now, two being on the touch screen and two on Y and X. The Iron/Hover Boots are now equipable items – that means no more having to pause the game to put on your boots. Aiming has been made easier with the 3DS’s motion controls: simply move your 3DS where you want Link to shoot. You can still aim manually, but honestly… it’s much faster and much more accurate to use the motion sensor. The Ocarina can now be played using buttons and the touch screen, and if you forget a song, simply pull up the song list and play.

The 3D is actually good:
Now while I think the 3D trend is just that, a trend, OoT3D makes impressive use of the 3D depth on the handheld. During cutscenes and in dungeons, it makes you feel like you are actually in Hyrule with Link. Like you were looking through a little window into that world.

Two versions of the game:
This game comes with the original quest as well as the Master Quest. For those who never played the GameCube bonus disc with Master Quest, it was basically the same game with mixed up dungeons. However, this version mirrors the entire world (right is left, left is right) and makes the game significantly harder, while retaining the mixed up dungeons. So for those of you who like a challenge, play Master Quest.

It’s the same game:
Sadly, it’s still Ocarina of Time. While the visuals look gorgeous, the game still feels dated. The script hasn’t been changed, and the music is the same as the original, except for one track. Don’t get me wrong, I loved it. I would’ve loved to have a new dungeon attached on though. The only other things that set this apart from the originals are some Skyward Sword Easter Eggs, and the change in one item. The game only features one new piece of artwork. The rest is sadly recycled, much like the game itself.

Child Link still looks like a tard when he learns new songs:

The Water Temple is still stupid:
If anything should have been changed, it should have been the Water Temple. While Nintendo has made an attempt to make things easier to navigate in the dungeon by adding color coding and lines to show you where to go, it still makes no sense, and I still got lost for days! Do yourself a favor and just watch a Youtube walk-through.

This game furthers a 3DS stereotype:
This game, in essence, represents a huge 3DS stereotype as a remake/retro machine. A lot of people who I talk to and recommend this game to always say the same thing to me. “Why aren’t there new games on the system?” You really can’t deny Nintendo is really playing it safe with the re-releases. It’s saddening to see this game further that stigma. It’s also not getting better with StarFox 64 3D on the way. Also, as of writing this, Nintendo has half confirmed a Majora’s Mask 3D.

All in all, this is a great game. It was amazing the first time, it’s still amazing the 10th. It is, in my opinion, one of the first must own 3DS game. That being said, know that this a 13 year old game. It feels slightly dated and plays only slightly differently than the original. With all this said, I still give this game a:


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