Zelda Twilight Princess for Wii

As with the Wii post, Zelda reviews are not new, and I'm not anywhere near the end of the game, but I wanted to say a few things before things get too far on. Actually, I really only need to say one word: Wow. What a stunner. This game is every inch an epic.

Zelda Twilight Princess Screenshot 1

Epic sometimes comes across as simply "immense." But I really think it means "immense and enthralling." There are a some really big adventure games, but this one stands out. Zelda just radiates this energy. The world is absolutely teeming with life and you can just sense the love and care that went into the design of everything. It's video game art of the highest form.

It's surprising how much the physical movements of the Wii controller add to the mix. If you watch somebody playing Wii as an observer, you think "wow, that looks awkward." I don't know why, but it's extremely natural. The swinging and jabbing of the controllers truly does pull you in more. Aiming projectiles like arrows and the boomerang is actually a joy versus the "I hope this works" aspect of aiming with a control stick.

Zelda Twilight Princess Screenshot 2

The environments feel incredible, the gadgets are clever and fun, the puzzles are true to form, and emphasis is on exploration and the journey of the character. It's not just an evolution, but a huge expansion of the Zelda world. I'm particularly happy about how you don't have to wait until the end of the game to get a reasonable set of paraphernalia. You get to enjoy some of the best stuff all of the way through.

The graphics are stunning, yet this is balanced by a subtle brilliance. The game environment, story, characters — everything — starts out tame, and slowly seduces you in a sensory assault. I really cannot overstate how different the game experience is with component video. Invest the $30 dollars in component cables, and play in widescreen format if possible.

It's hard to say exactly how they did it, but at least in my book, Nintendo has somehow brought back the raw excitement of video games from the early days of the NES. Don't get me wrong, the other systems had some great moments, but this is truly something special. It's hard to believe that I almost didn't buy a Wii because I didn't want to bring the TV back in. Thanks goodness I didn't let logic and reason get in the way.

Now, if I could just have Metroid, please.
Design Element
Zelda Twilight Princess for Wii
Posted Feb 3, 2007 — 16 comments below


Steven Canfield — Feb 03, 07 3487

I might spoil some stuff.

The game just keeps getting more and more incredible. When you have that amazing boss fight on horseback the whole time I was in disbelief. And the cool thing is that those amazing boss moments just keep happening... to a point. At some point in the game, though, the boss battles just get tired. Old. Not amazing. Booring! Boss battles where it's not fairly intuitive (and yet hard enough that your brain is proud of itself) but also not very difficult, so that you can't get hurt, just take forever to figure out and aren't challenging. It's just lame and they need to fix it in the next version. Make the bosses incredible next time.

Scott Stevenson — Feb 03, 07 3488 Scotty the Leopard

I guess some of this stuff will always be subjective, like the boss thing. I read one review which said the Wolf segments weren't enjoyable. Personally, I can't imagine the game without them. They add a completely different flavor to the mix and provide for some truly brilliant moments.

Rafael Bugajewski — Feb 03, 07 3489

Yeah, I personally don't like the wolf moments... it's very subjective I think. But Zelda is a really nice game and an alternative to the bunch of existing party games for the Wii. But these are also nice (e.g. Rayman RR and SMB Banana Blitz).

Marco Masser — Feb 03, 07 3490

I got my Wii as soon as it was released here in Europe and of course, I grabbed Twilight Princess too. I really loved the game, unfortunately I had to finish it within one week after the launch, so I didn't see all of those nice little love-proofing details in the game. I just might start it all over again...
The only thing that annoyed me while playing the game was the fairy that's on the screen for the whole time. It's just a marker for where you're pointing your Wiimote at and it doesn't have ANY relevance during the whole game (clearly, that's why there's no such thing in the Gamecube version). The only time you have to point the Wiimote on the screen is when you shoot an arrow or a bow and then, pointing is really great. Funnily, the fairy turns to a crosshair as soon as you start aiming.

What I want to say: why include that fairy when there's no use for it?

Marco Masser — Feb 03, 07 3491

... when you shoot an arrow or a bow ...

Heh, you know what I mean...

Richard Neal — Feb 03, 07 3492

Don't you mean spend the extra bucks on component cables? I played through the whole thing before mine shipped, sadly, so now the only thing I have to enjoy them with is WarioWare and Super Monkey Ball.

Scott Stevenson — Feb 03, 07 3493 Scotty the Leopard

Don't you mean spend the extra bucks on component cables?
Doh. Yes.

Adam Spooner — Feb 03, 07 3494

Got it. Loving it. Now I just wish I could play it more. School work seems to take hold of my free time... especially since the first round of exams are upon me.

I have an HDTV, so I'm seriously considering the purchase of the component cables. Convince me.

Scott Stevenson — Feb 03, 07 3495 Scotty the Leopard

@Adam Spooner: I have an HDTV, so I'm seriously considering the purchase of the component cables. Convince me.
Do it. Seriously, if you can't save the princess because your view was obstructed by muddy pixels, how are you going to explain that to the rest of the kingdom?

Michael Margolis — Feb 03, 07 3496

The wolf portions were great but I often found myself missing Link because I felt trapped without gear. That said, I still think the wolf portions were brilliant I really started to like the wolf form once I was free to change form freely. I am only 30 hours into the game (9 or 10 hearts) but so far the puzzles have been fantastic and occasionally I've even felt stumped - in a good way :) The bosses so far have never made me feel like I was going to die (except the underwater one, he kept spitting me out and swallowing me repeatedly until I realized I was still wearing my iron boots). So far - brilliant game. I can't wait to get my gf off of wii sports so i can get back to it!

Also - Rayman Raving Rabbids is absolutely BRILLIANT.

Infininight — Feb 04, 07 3499

You can turn the fairy off on the options screen, maybe you shouldn't have to do so, but you can. ;)

Grady — Feb 04, 07 3503

You can turn the fairy off on the options screen, maybe you shouldn't have to do so, but you can. ;)

But then you have to use the control stick to select items on the screens brought up by minus or plus. Grrrrrrrr. It should be off during the pointless times (most of the game) and on during the times where it'd be useful!

Nevertheless, I learned to tune it out eventually.

Couldn't agree more with you, Scott. A beautiful, beautiful game, a true work of art, a masterpiece. It's the wider art world's failing that Shigeru Miyamoto and his team aren't given the recognition of, for example, their peers in film and music making.

In fact, this is a thought that has struck me twice lately: while playing Twilight Princess but also while playing the original 1985 Super Mario Bros. on the Wii's Virtual Console. My 7-year-old self thought of it as the most fun and exciting video game I'd ever played to that point; my adult self looks at it and is awestruck at the level of care, attention, and love that was so obviously put into that game. The first of its kind, and they absolutely hit it out of the park.

Josh — Feb 04, 07 3505

I can't find a Wii, so I settled on the GameCube version and I love it. I just wish the GC version would display in wide screen. I even have GC component cables, but I still have to stretch it on my HDTV. :-(

Does anyone know how the graphics and control compare between the two?

John — Feb 05, 07 3506

I have both versions ( the GC version was damn had to get hold of! ), playing through normal connections, they look identical.

Lemont Washington — Feb 05, 07 3508

I just bought this over the weekend. Haven't gotten around to playing it yet but seeing this post , I can't wait until I get home.

OSXDaily — Mar 23, 07 3793

I'm going to get hated for saying this, but I'm not a big fan of the wolf form, it strays a bit from the classic Zelda theme.


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