THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: BREATH OF THE WILD
- RELEASE DATE: March 3, 2017 (WW)
- PLATFORMS: Nintendo Switch, Wii U
- DEVELOPER: Nintendo EPD, with assistive work by Monolith Soft, Brownie Brown, and more
- PUBLISHER: Nintendo
- AWARDS: Most Anticipated Game of 2017, Best of E3 2016, Best of Gamescom 2016
PLOT AND BACKSTORY
In the past, the many races of Hyrule lived together in harmony, the Sheikah's blue aura providing life to the land, and everyone benefited from the Sheikah's advanced technology. That all ended when a beast that came to be known as Calamity Ganon appeared. The Hero and the Princess attempted to stop the evil, but the Hero ultimately failed. As they helped the Princess see to the Hero's injuries, the Sheikah, as a last resort, awakened an army consisting of four divine beasts and a massive amount of mechanical guardians, that they had created in secret. They managed to seal Calamity Ganon inside Hyrule Castle, but during the battle, the monster's power turned their army against Hyrule, and out of fear, the King of Hyrule and his people banished the Sheikah from the land.
In the present, an amnesiac Link awakens from a deep sleep, as a mysterious female voice guides him to the now ruined kingdom of Hyrule. He meets an old man and learns that Calamity Ganon has been sealed in Hyrule Castle for one hundred years. Although trapped, Calamity Ganon has continued to grow in power, and Link must defeat it before it breaks free and destroys the world.
FOR REFERENCE, HERE IS THE RECEPTION OF SOME PREVIOUS ZELDA GAMES:
- THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: A LINK TO THE PAST: 95 (Metacritic); 9.3/10 (Gamespot)
- THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: OCARINA OF TIME: 99 (Metacritic); 10/10 (Gamespot)
- THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: MAJORA'S MASK: 96 (Metacritic); 8.3/10 (Gamespot)
- THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: THE WIND WAKER: 96 (Metacritic); 9.3/10 (Gamespot)
- THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: TWILIGHT PRINCESS: 95 (Metacritic); 8.8/10 (Gamespot)
- THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: SKYWARD SWORD: 93 (Metacritic); 7.5/10 (Gamespot)
" The result, for all the longevity of its series and the familiarity of the open world genre, is a game that evokes feelings we haven't felt for 20 years. Not since Ocarina of Time have we set foot in a world that feels so mind-bogglingly vast and unerringly magical, that proves so relentlessly intriguing. Plenty of games promise to let us go anywhere and do anything. Few, if any, ever deliver so irresistibly. 19 years on Ocarina is still held up as the high water mark of gamings best loved and greatest series. Now it may have to settle for second place".
- IGN | 10/10
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is a masterclass in open-world design and a watershed game that reinvents a 30-year-old franchise. It presents a wonderful sandbox full of mystery, dangling dozens upon dozens of tantalizing things in front of you that just beg to be explored. I’ve had so many adventures in Breath of the Wild, and each one has a unique story behind what led me to them, making them stories on top of stories. And even after I’ve spent more than 50 hours searching the far reaches of Hyrule, I still manage to come across things I haven’t seen before. I’ll easily spend 50 to 100 more trying to track down its fascinating moments.
- Eurogamer - Essential
All that has been either swept aside or remade from first principles. It's hard to overstate the courage and conviction with which producer Eiji Aonuma, director Hidemaro Fujibayashi and their team have rewritten their own work, and the size of the risk Nintendo has taken with a beloved property. Breath of the Wild isn't just the most radical departure from the Zelda tradition in its 30-year history, it's the first Nintendo game that feels like it was made in a world where Half-Life 2, Halo, Grand Theft Auto 3 and Skyrim happened. It's inspired by those greats and others, but it doesn't ape them any more than it rests on its own laurels. And if we're talking inspirations, we have to recognise one game above all others, an uncompromising adventure from 1986 that dared to take gaming off the rails, that put a whole world beyond the TV screen and invited the player to explore it: the original Legend of Zelda.
- GameSpot | 10/10
No matter how gorgeous its environments are, how clever its enemies are, and how tricky its puzzles get, the fact that Breath of the Wild continues to surprise you with newfound rules and possibilities after dozens of hours is by far its most valuable quality. It's a game that allows you to feel gradually more and more empowered yet simultaneously manages to retain a sense of challenge and mystery--which, together, creates a steady, consistent feeling of gratification throughout the entire experience. Breath of the Wild is a defining moment for The Legend of Zelda series, and the most impressive game Nintendo has ever created.
- GiantBomb | 5/5
Nintendo may have changed so many long-standing traditions of the Zelda franchise, but the spirit of discovery is as strong as it’s ever been no matter your age. I didn’t think I’d feel the Zelda magic this strongly ever again, but I couldn't be happier to be proven wrong.
- Press Start | 10/10[
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild will go down as one of the best launch titles of all time. Yes, technically it’s a Wii U game that was ported over to the Nintendo Switch, but Nintendo made the right decision in holding this game back. It perfectly compliments the Nintendo Switch and highlights why it has the potential to be such a great console. Many have doubted Nintendo’s ability to bring this series into the modern gaming age, but they’ve done that and taken it one step further in creating one of the best open-world action-adventure games ever made.
- Stevivor | 10/10
Breath of the Wild is The Legend of Zelda game I didn’t know I always wanted until I starting playing. It’s a disservice to simply label it spectacular, and “must buy” as a Switch launch title is merely a formality. Nintendo promised a lot and left us hanging delay after delay, culminating in a cross-gen switch, but it’s delivered in every sense of the word. Breath of the Wild is the best in a series that’s almost never disappointed.
- God is a Geek | 10/10
I do not say this lightly: Breath of the Wild is an absolute masterpiece, and may well be the best The Legend of Zelda game ever made. Having grown up playing those first games as a child on a system I remember fondly, it feels extra special to be playing a new Zelda on a new console; that I can’t deny, and there are flaws (it’s not perfect), but otherwise, this is everything I wanted it to be and more. I won’t forget Breath of the Wild for a long time, because it’s a memorable, beautiful, stunner of a game.
- [B]The Verge | No score
This new direction, and shaking up of the age-old formula that has come to define the series, helps Breath of the Wild return to what made Zelda so beloved in the first place. More so than just about any game series, Zelda’s heart lies in exploration, that moment of seeing a towering mountain in the distance and realizing that eventually you’ll be able to reach the top. Breath of the Wild takes this idea, cuts out the fluff, and expands upon it. It pulls ideas from other games, like crafting or survival, yet makes them feel perfectly at home in its beloved universe. It’s exactly the Zelda game I’ve been waiting for.
Just watch out for lightning.
- Vooks | 5 Stars
Breath of the Wild isn’t just the best Zelda game ever crafted, it’s one of the best games of all time.
Hand over the crown, Ocarina of Time.
- Gameblog.fr | 9/10 (French)
- GameSource.it | 95/100 (Italian)
- Jeux-Video Live | 18/20 (French)
- EDGE | 10/10 (NeoGAF thread - Print magazine review)
- Famitsu | 40/40 (NeoGAF thread - Print magazine review)
- GamePro | 94/100 (NeoGAF thread - Print magazine review - German)
- EasyAllies | 4.5 Stars - Excellent
- GameXplain | No score
- God is a Geek | 10/10
More to come...