That legend I am referring to is none other than The Legend of Zelda video game series. Being that it is 25th anniversary this year of the release of the original game, and that I am such a huge fan myself, I felt it very proper to discuss a little about the famed franchise. Very few video game series can say they’ve lived on through the decades and continued to see such a rapid fan base and huge financial success. Its sales have stayed consistent throughout its 25 year run.
I still remember the first time I realized how incredible the Zelda games were. I was around 15 when Nintendo 64’s Ocarina of Time came out. It was the first game I had ever pre-ordered before and I was beyond excited when the day came to go pick it up. I took it home that day and couldn’t put it down for several hours. From the first few minutes of me running around that little Kokiri Village collecting rupees and getting my first sword, I was hooked. I knew my gaming horizons would never be the same.
I know, that’s a little over the top right? Nah. There is something to be said about such well made video games that almost demand your reverence. The action/rpg gameplay, the epic, medieval storyline of good vs. evil, the superb dungeon design that has you scratching your head in wonder, the details of the world, even the music. All of it is there, which is a formula for an experience like few others in gaming.
The 2D installments that came out before Ocarina hold the same level of quality as the installments that came out after. I’m sure many of us out there have fond memories the cartoony, cell-shaded quality of Wind Waker, or the simplistic, yet colorful visuals of A Link to the Past. My personal favorite has been the latest entry Twilight Princess. I loved how it took everything they had pulled of with the series so far and made it grander, deeper, and darker.
More games in the series are on their way and I await them with the same boyish excitement that I had when I was 15. They are a big reason as to why I love playing video games in the first place. At the end of the day it just has to be fun. Long live the legend!