GAME REVIEW: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D

My fondest childhood memory involving video games is beating “Super Mario Bros. 3” with my older brother during a snow day off from school. For many others, it’s probably the first time you sat down to play “The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.” Still a classic to this day, the Nintendo 64 title was one of the system’s few must-have games, and for good reason. Not only did it represent Link’s first foray into a completely 3D environment, but the open world-based adventure featured the kind of narrative depth that you just didn’t see in video games during that time. Though it’s been re-released quite often over the years (perhaps most notably as the Master Quest pre-order bonus packaged alongside “The Wind Waker”), the new 3DS version has been completely remastered with enhanced graphics and some updated gameplay features.

The first thing you’ll notice is that the 3D looks great. Though Nintendo experienced a bit of a backlash from critics with the initial launch lineup of games, “Ocarina of Time” makes excellence use of the effect, particularly in the more open areas of Link’s adventure. The most welcome change, however, is the addition of the touch-screen inventory system, which allows you to easily access items and weapons on the fly and even features a permanent spot for the map and your ocarina. Additionally, you can now use the system’s gyroscope feature in first-person mode to look around while shooting your slingshot or bow. It’s not for everyone, as some people will likely want to avoid being seen spinning around like an idiot in public, but it’s a nice addition that makes playing the game that much more immersive.

Other cool new features include a hint system that allows players to visit Sheikah Stones for prophetic-like visions on what to do next; a Boss Challenge mode where you can fight all eight bosses back-to-back; and, of course, the Master Quest mode for those that want a slightly different experience on their second go-around. But no matter how much it improves on the original game, “Ocarina of Time 3D” doesn’t quite have the same charm as playing it while sitting in front of the TV. Diehard fans and newcomers would be crazy not to pick this up, but everyone else will be perfectly happy with whatever version(s) they already own.


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