The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (NS/WiiU)

  • Soooo, I just finally beat the game and am back to this thread in full. I want to talk about all that buisness, but really would hate to spoil it — good and bad — for anyone who's yet to play or finish Breath of the Wild's main story. So don't read this if you haven't beaten the game!

    Surprisingly enough, Hyrule Castle is the only dungeon in the game that you can approach from all angles like Aonuma talked about in interviews back around when the game was announced. I don't want to have the value question conflated with my points to come, so I'll come right out and say that Breath of the Wild was worth the $450-some I spent to play it, even without having played the DLC. And it's great to be back in the Nintendo ecosystem — 3DS wasn't really enough for me ere those long Wii U years.

    However, this is a 3D Zelda game, those games being much different to — and often better than — other titles. (Coincidentally I'm still wavering on whether or not I would call it a game in the Zelda genre as opposed to just the main series, but let's split those hairs after I've had time to ruminate on the ending.)

    Bigger spoilers start now: 'Spread too thin' has never been more appropriate. Obviously in a game this big, you do not make a main story that short. Having seen what I confirmed as the full ending ('cause who would know), alone, in a non-disturbing environment, and after re-watching all of the memories, doing all of the dungeons, and even completing every single shrines, I can say that Breath of the Wild's maybe one-hour total collection of cutscenes are almost totally insufficient. Everyone could stand to wait through an at-least 5-minute length memory cutscene after clicking the prompt. A script this short gives you a story all about Zelda not really doing anything and a bunch of peripheral characters that don't matter at all, as well as a bunch of one-on-one scenes with a silent protagonist. (How did no one see that!? They must have known and just been scared of fan reaction or too afraid to voice Link in this story that is absolutely screaming for him to say something — anything.)

    They obviously could have done more, but I think the chiefest sins Breath of the Wild's story commits is signposting the end of the game right from the start, killing all of the main characters offscreen before the game began, and finally — suuuper spoilery at this point if you haven't beaten it — not having an antagonist at all. The first thing inherently ruins a plot by taking out any ambiguity as to where it's going or whether any twists will take it elsewhere (they won't). The second takes all stakes out of the plot (remember worrying for Midna at the end of Twilight Princess?) and was used as an excuse not to develop those characters beyond archetypes and a maybe minute of screen time apiece. And the final thing is just obvious: Have Ganon talk. Ganondorf was a good villain because he was imposing, well-shot, and — in Twilight Princess and The Wind Waker — charismatic. Creating a mindless force of evil is just boring and the least creative thing they could have done.

    Phew, so about Hyrule Castle and Calamity Ganon specifically, it could be the strongest Hyrule Castle ever, lmao. I don't get where the weird malice-guardian fusion designs came from, I wouldn't mind them if they talked at some point. It's cool that they explained how the guardians were all stored inside of the pillars beneath Hyrule Castle, and how there's a legless guardian just perched atop one of them and sniping you. They kind of just threw the kitchen sink at it in terms of challenges, with rock enemies and guardians and lynels all. The upper half of the castle and the throne room take major inspiration from Twilight Princess' titular aesthetic, what with black motes rising up into an cloudy, shifting orange sky (I appreciated the nod there). The final / first ever form of Ganon was interesting, but only really served to put a point on how not-really-great the pools of malice looked and how lacking the horseback combat was. There being only one regular enemy to fight on horseback — bokoblins on other horses that don't follow you terribly well — and guardians, an admittedly incredibly designed mini boss. Ganon didn't really... do a whole lot, he was just huge and messed up the environment while having giant, huge hit box weak points. A surprisingly easy fight, considering what came before. I guess I won't ever see my dream of fighting humanoid Ganondorf high up in the castle tower with all of Hyrule all around, or flying around in a tornado above the ruined castle and fighting his — I guess now 'its' — miasma on chunks of floating rubble with the paraglider. I'm glad the Twilight Princess-style teleport out into Hyrule Field for the final battle is being standardized, though. More horseback combat is always a good thing, and I appreciated the aesthetic and textual nod to Beast Ganon. I'm tired and going to stop assailing you all with this wall of text. Goodnight!

    Overall, better than Skyward Sword — still not good enough.

  • ThisIsMyDogKyle posted this video on Discord.

  • @Mbun said in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Switch/WiiU):

    ThisIsMyDogKyle posted this video on Discord.

    I was just about to post this here!

  • I just listened to the most recent Frame Trap and I think the panel did a good job talking about the dungeons, bosses, and frame rate. I have many of the same feelings but they are better at articulating than me.

  • @Tragosaurus When saying you want more VO, I'd caution you to look at Fallout 4 as an example of maybe staying away from VO. Adding NPC's with dialogue becomes a much more expensive and time consuming process. Especially when you have to have one actor come in (main character) for every line of dialogue an NPC has.

    You are bottle necked by how many lines that voice actor can record per week.

  • @Stormcrownn That's fair. I haven't played Fallout 4 but I can see what your getting at. Naturally I would love every character to be voiced and be top notch quality which isn't exactly plausible in a game of this size. I feel like at least they could have fully voiced the characters that do have actors but not every NPC. Sidon audibly speaks at times but a lot of the time he doesn't.

  • Oblivion had fully voiced NPCs at the beginning of last generation, so let's not pretend that fully voiced games are untenable. And Bethesda games have very manageable budgets for AAA titles.

    If you want to talk turkey, Link has a lot of one-on-one cutscenes with other characters, severely hindered by the fact that he can't emote at all. And key story sequences see main characters jumping in, and out, and back into voiced lines. There's ample room for improvement, but not cause to run away from fully voiced, especially if Zelda is resolute on doing the Skyrim thing from here on out.

  • @Haru17 Fully voiced is certainly possible, but its very expensive. A voiced main character is included when you say "Fully voiced". Not to mention actually getting good voice acting.

    Oblivion/Skyrim were heavily criticized for having repeat voice actors and repetitious dialogue. I think Bethesda took that criticism a little too seriously, as their over correction with Fallout 4 shows.

    Personally I'd rather the resources go to more world design, more interesting friendly-interactions, etc.

  • @Stormcrownn 'Resources?' Nintendo has fixed development teams that are writing, not casting and directing. Those people aren't developers exactly, but rather separate voicing and localization teams.

    It just speaks to ambition and how much you're willing to throw yourself behind a story. They really believed in Twilight Princess back in 2006, with how long and ornate that story was. I'd like to see the same thing, just with modern production values. I mean hell, there are so many lesser series that have been fully voiced for decades, and new series don't allow silent protagonists to put a drag on their stories. And Zelda's just better than Infamous, lmao.

  • I did find it slightly annoying that Link doesn't speak or emote at all. I mean there are times when he does speak to other characters in the world but we don't get to hear or read what he is saying. He's not mute, but he is to us.
    The jumping around from voice to not in a single scene is what bothers me the most. Just choose one or the other, preferably [for me] the former. I would like just a sprinkle more resources spent on that in the future.

  • So how long before Link gets mugged and turned into a fucking plant?

  • The moment Link speaks actual words he becomes a character and no longer your avatar. I realize this is a sucky argument if you're a female reading this and shrug my shoulders empathetically in your direction.

    I never want random NPCs to lose their charming crys for actual dialogue. Fully voiced main characters besides Link? I don't mind that. On the flip side, I'd love to hear humanoid enemies grunt out broken insults at Link during fights.

  • @Mbun said in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Switch/WiiU):

    The moment Link speaks actual words he becomes a character and no longer your avatar.

    Well excuuuuuuuse me princess!

  • im just gonna leave this here

    Youtube Video

  • Surprised to see Joe do a review

    Youtube Video

  • Careful if you want to start a new game, it will overwrite your old one

  • Yeah, I think you'd need to use a different user profile for a new game, though I haven't tried it.

  • Could you imagine if Zelda was all, "How's it going, fuckstick?"

    The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wildlands

    Y'see, that dialogue would be interesting in Zelda, whereas it's just more generic macho dribble in Ghost Recon's Tom Clancy's jingoism simulator. Oh, Ubisoft... so many towers and dull murdering dudes. Yes, I'm watching the co-op stream VOD.

  • @Haru17 I'm still not very far into the game (although my Switch says I've played "15 hours or more"...), but so far I'm really enjoying the writing and getting immersed in the world and story a lot more than any previous Zeldas.

    I'm really, really bothered by the fact there's no recipe book, it seems like such an obvious thing to do, especially since there's

    the Hyrule compendium I just acquired.

  • EZA, Your Nintendo streams are washed out so here you go.