Never before have I thought that I would say that I hate one of Arin’s videos. But if there was ever one to make me cringe when I watch it and make me want to actually click dislike, it’d be his Legend Of Zelda Sequelitis video.
The video was titled and intended to speak the differences between…
Pretty sure his intention was to say as compared to the original Zelda, it didn’t have the same feel. In his mind, Legend of Zelda was all about exploring a world and discovering new things and not being limited to a linear plot. Link to the past changed this up, but Ocarina of time changed the formula entirely using an old brand name. Personally, I’m on Ego’s side when he talks about all of it, because he makes the point that while Link to the past is an older game, it holds up much better in the test of time compared to OOT.
I’m going to bring up something that I don’t think Ego did a particularly good job of explaining, which is game flow. Flow is present in every game, and it’s the pace of which things develop and change. It is literally how well the game… Flows. Link to the past does an amazing job with flow, as you don’t have to slow down for anything or be crippled by large amounts of dialogue, breaking up the flow of a game like Zelda, which is essentially hack ‘n’ slash with puzzle elements to it. A game like that has to move relatively quick and flow well enough to keep a gamer engaged to it. Any game with a good story and shitty flow will keep some gamers occupied, but for older gamers, flow is incredibly important to us. And in the transition between LTTP and OOT, that flow is lost completely at times. It’s cool and all having a story, but you don’t want your dialogue to disconnect you from what’s really happening.
Things like Z targeting don’t help terribly with this flow, either. While it creates a new axis, it also creates another dimension of flow to work with, which developers still struggle with creating a decent flow in modern games with three dimensions. It breaks the game up into exploring, looking around, targeting, and then whatever actual brief fight results when the enemy is close enough to attack. This breaks the flow up in many ways, and it creates game segments where it’s just damn frustrating to work with IE the majority of the temples in the end-game. It was just annoying as hell to change back from a kid to an adult when I just wanted to keep moving in the game, nobody wants to have to go BACK to perform some assanine task for all of fifteen minutes, only to progress forward.
As far as I’m concerned, Majora’s Mask did a far better job of improving on most of the problems Ego addressed, as it creates a definite flow to things. You can just toss on a mask and BOOM there you go, keep on at it. But it also makes it to where you can use different masks for every situation, as well. It creates a flow that doesn’t have to be broken up due to a certain mechanic. Every major mask (And minor!) has perks and cons to it that you can swap out in a mere second according to the situation, keeping a solid flow on the game without having to jump over to some silly shrine to do something in the past so that you can progress in the future. The game boy game Oracle of time did a much better job of that.
Game flow is allowing the player to choose how the game progresses according to their play style and desires, and not according to a linear timeline set preemptively by developers because ‘that’s how the story is supposed to go’. You’re the adventurer, you should be the one making that choice.
I got nothing for Skyward Sword, though. Never played it. And to be honest, I’ve never had an interest. I like the original Zelda formula, which link between two worlds? Holy. DICKS. I LOVE IT. It goes back on the old formula and improves it in such a way to where it really is *your* adventure. It’s a breath of fresh air for us.
TL;DR - You silly kids and yer story driven games. Back in my day, we made our own adventures and had freedom!