The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess Review
A game to be remembered for the ages as one of the best games of the Zelda series for not only what it built upon and added, but left its legacy for the future of Zelda and its themes being shown in future games like Breath of the Wild, if you know where to look. This is a game people should buy. This game came through when Zelda was gonna face a cancellation on the series if sales and popularity didn’t rise after wind wakers low sales and reputation in the early 2000’s due to Aonuma confirming the reaction to the North American market and its positive reception and continued to use its tropes throughout the series and marketing. This game was and is still fun to play if you have a GC, Wii and Wii U.
Link must embrace the role of a hero and overcome the threat of darkness know as “Twilight” shaping the world of Hyrule along with an imp named “Midna”. Players must harness both wolf and human forms as well as unique skills and abilities that both forms grant them to save the world.
-The theme of link’s representation as a wolf was unique, similar to links transformation into a rabbit in A Link to the Past, while the wolf form is not my favorite as it could have been made more appropriate to have more combat and special powers, but when Aonuma mentioned about how wolves represent heroism I checked it out and found it to be true that some cultures have different religious themes for animals and beasts. A wolf is heroic and courageous and interesting enough pigs/boars represent evil themes in religion, and considering how Ganondorf is at times wether beast or spirit his inner theme is of a pig. In that sense I liked the themes of good and evil represented in those animals, especially since they are taken from our world’s religious cultures.
-Excellent Art Style, had that high fantasy feel from ocarina and classic Zelda games and added more high fantasy themes, it was also amped up to lord of the rings style. This also applies to ascetics and atmosphere as well as equipment, weapons, etc.
-Horse back combat while lacking enemy variety, fun combat especially traveling around especially as game progresses and during action scenes and more attack variety with items was added on horseback than Ocarina of Time.
-Hidden skills were an excellent edition, offered options in terms of swordplay to open enemy defenses and weak spots, inflict massive damage or kill foes in one shot strikes through mortal draw or ending blow and sometimes helm splitter depending on enemy types.
-Added more traditional medieval tropes to the game, such as enchanted weapons and ancient equipment: gale boomerang, dominion rod and spinner. Medieval type ball and chain weapon. Fleshed out outfits, characters, places: links chain mail added to his signature green outfit with more intricate designs, Darknuts medieval knight style and atmosphere, Ganondorf’s demonic warlord outfit, Zelda’s regal atmosphere and display, Bulblin enemies and King Bulblin were reminiscent of Orcs from Lord of the Rings films, Fyrus represented more of the fire demon Balrog from lord of the rings, Hyrule castle town and Hyrule Castle featured a more medieval style theme and fleshed its environment out with a decorative atmosphere and other areas of high fantasy were fleshed out more.
-Had a great variety of characters that had fleshed out personalities and unique atmosphere to them.
-Superb story that did a great job in not only conveying light and darkness, but the themes Power, Wisdom and Courage were used, especially with Link, Midna, Zelda, Ganondorf and Zant.
-Lore to Hyrule was expanded to environments, dungeons and cultures of old races as well showing how the world of Hyrule has aged and where it is now.
-New non-enemy races were added: Twili, Yeti’s, Occoca.
-Well unique themes and styles to mini bosses and bosses. While puzzled based patterns most fights were, they were enjoyable number of bosses and a number were more memorable in terms of how to engaged against them in combat. Well themed Mini bosses ( King Bulblin, Death Sword, DarkHammer, Darknuts, Aeralfos, Phantom Zant, etc.)
-Well designed dungeons, had nice gameplay and engaging concepts and themes and some good puzzles.
-Newer and original enemy units were added to the game with returning and updated old ones. New ones: Bulblin’s, Toadpoli’s, Chillfols, Aeralfos, Redead Knight’s, Stalhound’s, Chu Worms, Shadow Beasts. Old ones: Bokoblin’s, Lizalflos, Darknuts, etc.
-Excellent music including original and older revamped themes to fit this era of Hyrule, brings tone and emotion to this game with this selection of themes.
**ADDED BONUS 1** One of the things in twilight princess that I liked is that a rival was created for Link in this game, if not that this was the first Zelda game to create an enemy rival for Link. That character is King Bulblin. What made this addition awesome was how Bulblin’s character reflected the power to oppress and rule over others while Links was to defend and protect. These themes were well used in two horseback fights (The first one is my favorite and the victory scene) and two duel scenes with Link and Bulblin. This is a testimony to Bulblin’s resolve to come back and prove his resolve for what he believes is right. He even acknowledges his defeat in the end at Links hands and speaks that all he ever understood was power, nothing else. This to me shows that despite his attempts to prove his beliefs in rematches, he can never triumph Link and his convictions for what Link believes in. This really delivered a strong rivalry in whose beliefs were correct. As certain movies and games show the only way to prove whose values are correct is to fight to prove your resolve for what you believe in. Also the manga for Twilight Princess expands upon this greatly between Link and King Bulblin.
**ADDED BONUS 2** Original personality for Zant: I can understand some peoples negative reactions to Zant, but it was actually good they choose a more maddening, insane, impatient and childish Zant for his character. The thing that I think fans miss is that while its cool to have villains have a strong character when it comes to themes of power presented in the game, however if they are crafted in the same mold that ganondorf and older style themed villains are, then there is no originality to their characters, they would act and behave the same without any uniqueness which they cannot be separated, its a common flaw. Its the same thing with Midna’s character, what made her loved so much by the fans to this day is the fact on how well the developers made her character resonate and was expressed within the game. It was fresh and unique, not bland and stereotypical as like for villains classic villain style. More villains need more fleshed out and different personalities like Zant that shows traits, characterizations and motivations.
-While the world is large it did not break the barriers due to linearity to allow full exploration of the entire world of Hyrule for how the player wanted to explore and exploration was extremely minimal in several places when you advance to the next place and could explore the region within a limited area. So, there is a sense of exploration, but it is extremely small if you know where to look.
-World lacked more enemy numbers in large areas in Hyrule.
-Needed more enemy AI attack enhancements for further combat intensity.
-Some enemy attacks were less powerful than others.
-Game was easy especially since the difficulty was not added in GC and Wii version. HD did fix it, but was present in the other versions.
-Magic meter was removed preventing possible magic powers.