Average User Score: 9.0Nov 27, 2013When Nintendo officially announced that there would be a sequel to The Legend Of Zelda A Link To The Past more than 20 years after its original release I like many other people was ecstatic.
Knowing Nintendo I had High hopes for a game that would cater to both long time fans and newbiews of the series.
Unfortunately the final product is what I think I can call my least favorite Zelda game to date. Long gone is that feeling of exploration, self discovery and character growth. What you get is a game that feels more like a parody Zelda title created by some fan in their garage. Zelda A Link between worlds is a sequel set 300 something years after the events of the first game, but Nintendo has done little to nothing to make it feel so.
With a world that is almost identical to its predecessor, there is almost nothing here for long time fans who want to explore this hyrule and to see more. If there is one key difference, it's that during the 300 something years that occurred between both games Link and his family must have interbred with goats because that's what this link looks like now.
In order to establish its own identity A link between worlds starts you off with the ability to rent every key item at the start of the game such as the hook shock, the boomerang, bombs, Bows and arrows, etc. This means no more rewarding sense of progression through exploration just pony up enough cash and all the items that normally require lots of effort to obtain are immediately yours. Their is some sense of risk. If you die anytime during the game all the items that you rented return to the store, however I was always careful and saved before going off into a dangerous place so as long as you save before entering a dungeon you'll be fine. If you don't then you will have to go through the annoying task of traversing all the way back to your home just so that you can rent them again. After you've beaten the first three dungeons you will be given the opportunity to buy these items indefinitely.
Just like in a link to the past you have a magic meter that drains over use, however unlike ALTTP magic is drained with everything you use. Everything meaning a simple swing of a hammer or throw of a boomerang will cast magic. So say you want to stock up on ammo and attack enemies repeatedly with a barrage of arrows bombs and just about anything else, you can't do that because instead of collecting these items you have an infinite amount of them to use at your leisure, but your magic gauge is not going to let you shoot more then a good 7 to 8 arrows before it depletes. Why does shooting an arrow drain your magic meter, why can I simply not pick up arrows and bombs like in any other Zelda game?
Sure your magic meter regenerates quickly but still your items should never be linked to a bar of energy, unless it's a game like Dark Souls where you have a stamina bar, but this isn't Dark Souls. This Zelda's biggest new feature is the ability to turn yourself into a painting and traverse walls. This ability uses magic energy and is extremely useful when traversing tight areas. Though it isn't used that often in combat. One boss fight requires you to time their attacks and then just as they're about to ram you turn into a painting to disorient them. For me though the lack of difficulty and memorable set pieces is what made this game a mediocre forgettable title.
I get the feeling that Nintendo has forgotten what it feels like to make a game hard as damn near every dungeon in this game I was able to beat on my first try in less than 45 minutes. For a Zelda games, that's pathetic.
Every dungeon in this game requires you to use one and only item to beat it. At the very beginning of the dungeon their is a symbol telling you what key item you need to use to complete it. After beating the dungeon and facing the boss instead of trying to find creative ways to beat it you just use the same item that you've been using for the entire level to defeat it.
Half the fun in any Zelda game for me at least is trying to figure out what combination of items are needed to beat a certain level. When the game flat out tells you that you only need one specific item to complete that entire ordeal it zaps away the joy.
There is a lot of stuff to do outside of the main quest that can be fun and adds replay value. Certain subplots like catching a thief to acquire shoes that let you run faster, collecting ore for a black smith to upgrade your sword, and wait does this seem familiar? It is it sounds like I'm talking about A Link To The Past Doesn't it. It's hard for a sequel to stand on its own to feet when its best moments are referencing it's predecessor.
If your a fan of the original game and want a true sequel then I recommend importing the game BS The Legend Of Zelda Ancient Stone Tablets for the Super Famicom, because A Link Between Worlds is not the game a true Zelda fan deserves.… Expand
Average User Score: 9.0Jul 12, 2012While you get to watch every character in your party develop over time from your typical spiky haired RPG protagonists to characters with such astounding depth and complexity that you can't help but smile nowing that it was your hands that guided them towards such a path. The characters that you come across are equally as robust and interesting, with each step forward you discover something new. And unlike too many RPG's now days unfortunately every bit of dialog is intriguing and showcased in such a manner that actually makes you care about what goes on in this world. Every location that you traverse in this game is slightly more diverse than the last. That is because in the land of skies different continents from all over the world were levitated into the stratosphere. You will explore the native jungle of Ixa taka, submerge yourself in an underwater cave inside a volcano in the Asian Continent of Yafutoma or the dessert like region of Nasr. Every location in this game is incredibly detailed, and although a bit Stereotypical at some points bursting with liveliness. Though for me it was the more subtle moments of this game that I enjoyed the most and brought it to life. A palace that was frozen in a continent which had been abandoned for thousands of years, or an isle in the middle of no ware that at first seems to provide nothing more than a starting point for your adventure that will later on play a key role in the overarching plot of the game. Many people might not be able to enjoy these desolate environments, but for me this game's lack of on screen action at certain points is very similar to the lack of action in games such as Shadow of the colossus, sometimes it's the lack of a certain something that fills in the void with something else. The player's imagination is the true guiding light for Vse Inglebard and his crew. The game dares you to explore new places take risks when risks are needed, and although the game is scripted so that everything will happen the way the programmers intended the limited amount of dialog that you are given to chose from topped off with excellent presentation as well as facial and hand gestures make Skies feel as genuine and interactive as any open world non scripted game. These incredibly well scripted moments truly are the driving force behind progressing through the game. In one instance I was given a choice to either comfort a girl in my party by either talking to her or just putting my arm around her as we both gazed up into the night sky. But the gameplay is far from simply interacting with others and piloting your ship. The battle system is a fresh take on your typical turn based system. Rather than have you and your partners in a straight line facing your enemies you and your crew are spread throughout the deck of your ship or ground or wherever the battle takes place and depending on your position you can attack different enemies. either with your regular attacks, or by charging up your focus gauge to unleash horrific and beautiful techniques that will take up the entire screen for an epic presentation that would make any other RPG protagonist just a little jealous.
On top of that the game also features a weakness/strength system. You have 6 different colors to chose from all of which are strong or weak against an enemy depending on that foes traits. It's sort of like a six-way rock paper scissors war, only don't depend on your weapons attributes to much because you still have a hefty amount of foes that you have to face off against and sometimes taking the time to figure out what enemies are weak against what can take time that you don't have, especially against the bosses. Your best bet against them would be to use your neutral weapons that don't have any color or if you really want to risk it have one or two of your strongest teammates use different weapon attributes while the others stay on the sideline ready to heal your partners if and when they've suffered enough damage. How you enter a battle and what tactics you should use are the driving points in the game just like any good RPG should be. You could always rely on luck hoping that the attributes that you give your weapons are a perfect match for the enemies weakness, but truly skilled players will only rely on that as a last resort. On top of the regular battles you will also partake in mandatory ship battles. These battles take place on a 4X4 grid each of your teammates selects a move that they want to use and when to use it. To help increase your ships potential during these fights you can recruit over 30 people from around the world who's specialties include increasing your ships primary attack power, secondary attack power, resistance to magic, resistance to physical damage etc etc. At some point this may seem to feel like information overkill but after you've invested about 40 hours or so into the game it starts to feel like second nature.… Expand
Average User Score: 7.1Jul 12, 2012AW wastes no time thrusting the player into the shoes of Asura a Demigod tasked with protecting the world from an evil infestation that causes gigantic tentacles to rise from the earths very core and unleash a savage fury to which even the gods have a hard time contemplating, as the impurity level of all the creatures is shown on screen the source of all of it is one with a level that is to high to measure. an on rails shooter segment quickly turns into a button masher. I use all of my divine strength to diminish the evil that ravenges the earth. With the evil sealed away in the center of the earth once again it is a time for celebration. But like any anti hero Asura soon finds his quest for peace transforming into a quest for revenge, as your wife gets murdered and your daughter is kidnapped. To make matters worse Asura is framed for conspiracy and is then sent on a 12000 year quest to rid the world of evil and clear his name. The gameplay and story go hand and hand in this quest for redemption and revenge. As intriguing as the story may be the gameplay is far from being your standard button masher. Yes you primarily rely on one button to attack your foes while occasionally waiting for a QTE to occur on screen to counter an enemies attack. However the way in which you traverse each battle as well as the different opponents that you face off against offer a unique blend of challenge, that depending on how skilled you are can either be a cake walk or a pain in the @#!*% . While at first glance it may may just look like another god of war or devil may cry clone in actuality it has more in common with games like Mike Tyson's punch out.
Now I know that that's probably one of the last games that anyone would think of referencing when playing Asura's wrath, but when you grind it down to it's core, and you think about what made Punch out on the nes so great you might see the similarities. The greatest innovation of punch out was that it wasn't just a sports tittle, it was more centered around the rhythm/timing genre in which you had to memorize every enemies set of moves until you were good enough to create a pattern that worked out best for you.
In Asura's wrath you pretty much do the exact same thing, you have to memorize every enemies unique attack pattern so that you could develop one of your own and think of a strategy to successfully dispatch incoming threats in a way as quick and effectively as possible to get a higher rating at the end of each stage.
The most prominent difference between this game and every other hack and slasho button masho on the market is that you don't win levels by killing enemies, instead you have a bar on top of the screen that tells you your "Rage" level defeating enough enemies, or countering enough attacks via quick time events are the two primary ways to build up your rage meter, even getting hit will slightly increase your rage meter as somewhat of a consolation. Once your meter has been filled up all the way the word "BURST" will appear on your screen indicating that you are to perform a series of quick time events to progress to the next area, this unnatural means of progression may turn off die hard action game fans, bit like I stated this isn't so much an action game as a Timing/Rhythm oriented game.
Another great aspect that should not be overlooked is the games art style mixing together the canvas like art style of prince of Persia with sketch models via Valkiria Chronicles and well placed lighting effects you get an incredibly unique art style that looks like all the characters are made out of woodcarvings, yet are flexible enough as to avoid looking to much like a cardboard cutout during cutscenes.
Roughly two thirds of a way into the game your perspective will be switched over to another protagonist named Yasha who's move-set is very similar to Asura's except slightly more fast paced. Though this also serves as a way to introduce new equally fast and ambitious foes at you so the slight tweak in gameplay is gradually appreciated as your new characters powers are a perfect match for your new foes. The rebel without a cause in this game who's true intentions are unknown until the ending climax is a great way of changing up the pace, though only ever so slightly it shows that the development team at least had enough common sense not to have you playing as the same obnoxious four armed hero throughout the roughly 8-10 hours that you will be playing this game. being able to view the story from different perspectives is a great way to avoid making the antagonists seem one dimensional.
while I definitely can't recommend it to everyone the sheer scope of events that take place here are defiantly evident that a game doesn't need to follow the rule book as so many action games before it in order to be good. It's a unique game loaded with potential that will make you feel like a total bad @#!*% .… Expand