It’s been a little while since the release of the brand new Zelda game Tears Of The Kingdom and the world has gone bananas for it, the general conscientious is it is better and vastly improves upon Breath Of The Wild in every way with some now saying BOTW was just a massive tech demo and now feels like an unfinished game. Honestly I’m hard pressed to disagree with many aspects of that view. TOTK is an excellent game, there’s no real argument against it, even those that give it a lower score still agree the game is good and worth your time and it sucks you in so hard you’ll sink literal days in to with out realising.
This happened to me with BOTW but when I started playing that game the world was in a VERY different time, completely shut down and didn’t allow people to do much besides fuck and game. The main bulk of lockdown consisted of me endlessly playing Mario Odyssey until it was 100% complete after 65 hours, during this time I had more money due to not being able to go out and spend it so I bought BOTW a game I wanted quiet badly and when I started playing it, initially I felt underwhelmed but then the world opened up and I played the game all day every day, doing nothing else…then I was able to go to work so my life became a cycle of waking up gaming, going to work, coming home, play Zelda until 4am, go to bed, repeat…before I knew it I had hit 120 hours without realising, it was only when my girlfriend asked how long I had been playing for that I checked and then we pissed our selves laughing as Id only had the game maybe 2 weeks at the time.
So when TOTK was announced I knew I was getting it day one, I did not expect history to repeat it self (which is quite funny considering the themes and story of the game). On our YouTube channel I spent a week solid preparing for the release of the game playing all the old games that appear in the Nintendo Switch Online apps…the day the game released I squeezed in a 3 hour session where I played the opening island and kept every reaction and mess up and even my initial opinions of the game right there for you all to see. As impressed as I was, I was also deflated and getting bored just powering through to the open world (this is a regular flaw of 3D Zelda games…I’m looking at you Twilight Princess) and since then I haven’t recorded a singe video based on Zelda. I have solely played the game on my TV and kept it well away from YouTube…but shrine hunts will return, I have been prepping this in game deliberately not doing shrines just for you to enjoy me mess them up.
As I said history repeated its self with this game and me, every waking hour I played the game as much as I could but I have been playing very differently to two members of the Respawning team (Clarissa and Luke). We had a little chat going to help with tips and other stuff too. But during these conversations we each discovered how we each play…Luke focused on armour and beefing up the little guy we call link, Clarissa focused on story, and I just explored…a lot…I barley touched anything…I did the main story beats to get the paraglider and then didn’t touch the story at all. The only reason I did the Tears is because Luke and Clarissa wouldn’t stop telling me to get it done, but I was too busy unlocking the map. Eventually after 60+ hours I started the tears, before then I stumbled into the wind temple and couldn’t do anything because I hadn’t started the mission that leads me to it, I had entered the depths and explored the darkness slowly working out how it mirrors Hyrule above, I had been to almost every Sky Island and only then did I start the Tears but once they where done with I went and ignored so so much until I decided that I should add some new abilities to links repertoire…of to Zora’s domain I went and I experienced the coolest mechanic in low gravity that I wish was elsewhere in the game because it was soooooo much fun hopping about. After this I bumbled about again focusing on a few side quests getting hugely distracted as I go and I found one of my favourite distractions in the form of a dude holding up a sign. As a result I have only just finished all the regional disasters and the following mission, I’m 90+ hours in to the game.
I the real world Playing this game had me thinking about it constantly, I would be walking Merlin (my dog) see a wall and think…Link could climb that easy, I would be at work zoning out because I’m thinking about what tactics I could do to take on the 5 Lynel in the floating colosseum of take out a Gleeok ( which I’ve only done once with some crazy amount of prep and about 5 goes at it) and get them guts to that one person that’s ill and I cannot for the life of me remember where they are in this huge map. Ive barely built a thing in game, Ive barely touched the depths and I’ve not even been to every notable town or location that we would have visited multiple time in BOTW. I have sooo much to do, so much to see I genuinely think I will never finish this game, TOTK is straight up better than Breath Of The Wild but yet again even though BOTW is the game I have played the most ever (475 hours) I still don’t think it’s is the best ZELDA game…it technically is with the sheer amount of stuff to do the world its built and the story its telling but its just too much and clearly stretched out the writers “like butter scraped over too much bread”. We finally got temples…that are basically the same thing, go to temple unlock 4 things, boom boss fight (the best one is the lightning temple) then you get a cut scene that is exactly the same thing four time over with a near identical script…I get why this was done as you can play in any order but god damn I went from temple to temple and it so obvious they cheaped out here, Nintendo could’ve really played around with these characters but they all get told the same thing and then somehow unexplained instantly know how to use their mcguffin which is odd especially as one of the characters was struggling with an ability they had before hand but all of a sudden oh hey thanks now I can do this…give me a fist bump and you can do it too…just dumb. (Just a nitpick to be honest)
Oh boy I went off track there, but this is what I mean, I cant stop thinking about this game, I watch videos if crazy builds and Zelda content in general…when it comes to me making content I have to set alarms to remind of what I need to do, then pre set up so all I have to do is sit down play some games for my series NS OH NO! I was weeks ahead before TOTK came out and now I’m barely a 5 days ahead of schedule…this game has consumed me.
I could go on but I’ve spoken too much and if you keep an eye out for my shrine hunting videos you’ll see more opinions there.
Have a great day and don’t forget to be nice to each other.