The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
Reviewed by Nu64fan
Five years after Nintendo's last Zelda release, The Legend of Zelda: Link's
Awakening, Mr. Miyamoto and his team have finally released the fifth Zelda
title. The game proves well worth the wait.
Graphics 9 out of 10
Had it not been for recent games using the 4MB expansion, Zelda would get a
perfect score in this category. The textures are beautiful and the
pre-rendered scenes will blow you away. While the overworld areas of
Zelda are slightly foggy (especially Kokiri Forest), the dungeon areas are
amazing. In the Forest Temple in particular the textures are so vivid one
would swear he/she were actually there. The only reason Zelda doesn't get
a perfect in graphics is if one plays a high resolution title for a while and
come back to Zelda he/she will immediately notice it is in low resolution.
Music and Sound 10 out of 10
Zelda's music could have been a movie score. While a few of the opening
tracks in Kokiri Forest can be a bit annoying, the game really shines overall.
Tracks for the Forest Temple, Water Temple, and Spirit Temple are among
the best in the Zelda series. The "March of Hyrule" is by far the best in the
game, however. It is quite versatile in that it will change instrumentation
and primary melody line based on where you are and what you are doing. Best
of all, the game has a surround option and works great on a Dolby Pro Logic setup.
Game Challenge 9 out of 10
Zelda's primary challenge mainly comes from puzzles. The puzzles in this
game are flawless. As great as the puzzles are, Zelda didn't earn a perfect
score because the enemies were a little too easy. This is because after you
solve all the puzzles and beat the game, the game becomes easy to beat again.
The enemies should have been a little tougher in order to provide more
challenge on repeat runs.
Game Play-Fun 10 out of 10
Even the dullest parts of Zelda, such as the Hyrule Castle Garden, are 100%
more fun than the average N64 game. As the system comes into it's third full
year, one must face the fact a lot of N64 titles (I.E. Yoshi's Story) haven't lived
up to expectations. Sometimes they (I.E. Mission: Impossible) were just plain
awful. While there are certainly many quality titles on the N64 as well, Zelda
really sells the system. If Zelda were the only game on the N64 it would still
be worth buying. Besides the main quest, there so many little things for a person
to do to suit their personal interest. They can compose on the Ocarina, horseback
ride, or practice their sniping on the slingshot or bow & arrow. If one can't find
something they enjoy in Zelda they probably have no interest and should go to
their rooms and practice some math problems.
Rumble Pak 10 out of 10
Unlike most N64 games where the rumble pak is just a gimmick, Zelda truly
delivers. Besides the standard vibrations when you fall, there is the
incredibly Stone of Agony. This item, when found, beats like a
heart when one is over a secret grotto, allowing one to find new secrets.
Hands down best use of the rumble pak ever.
Replayability 8 out of 10
No game is perfectly replayable, but Zelda is defiantly worth more than
one go around. Most people will keep coming back trying to find more items,
more hearts, more spiders, more everything. Also, if you've beaten the game
and don't have the Biggoron's Sword, play through again and get it. It makes
the game into a totally different experience.
Game Value 10 out of 10
Zelda could easily be sold at upwards of $100, so a price tag of $60 is
Story 10 out of 10
Probably the best story for any N64 game. Super Mario 64 and Banjo-Kazooie
are great games, but their stories are terrible. Goldeneye & Shadows of the
Empire have great stories, but they came from movies. Zelda not only has a
terrific storyline, it has an N64 exclusive storyline. For some it may stir
emotions. The characters are also well crafted. Malon is quite addictive.
They only bad part is Princess Zelda's obvious idiocy.
Overall 10 out of 10
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, is absolutely the best game for the
Nintendo 64. Looking at the release forecast for 1999, it would seem as if
no game coming out this year will surpass it either (don't worry, there will
still be some great games, just not better than Zelda). If you don't own
Zelda, buy it. Right now.