"The bottom of the Zelda bucket isn't too deep after all."
My memories of The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess are mixed. On one hand, I remember camping out in front of Best Buy on what might have been one of the coldest winter nights ever seen in Gainesville, Florida, waiting to purchase a Wii and bring home that launch day copy of the newest, most mature installment in the Zelda series to date. I remember going back to my dorm room and taking shifts with my roommate and friends playing the game, doing my best not to look at the screen when someone squealed in delight. I remember running towards Castle Town and squealing too – I was so excited to see the areas I remembered from Ocarina of Time portrayed on Nintendo’s newest hardware.
On the other hand, I remember the frustration of attempting to catch two fish for a cat in the somewhat obtuse beginning of the game. I remember thinking: "How does this controller work? This isn't magic. This is annoying." I remember the fetch quests between dungeons that became increasingly long and tedious. I remember a world that seemed vast but was suspiciously empty. Over the decade since the release of Twilight Princess, these less pleasant memories overtook the fond ones, until finally I was left calling it my least favorite 3D Zelda game.
The truth of its appeal to me, it turns out, lies somewhere in the middle and includes some wrinkles that I didn't anticipate. Twilight Princess is worth revisiting not only for its strengths, which are numerous, but also to learn what the series needs to improve upon in future iterations.
Freelance review by Francisco Santelli (March 29, 2016)
Francisco Santelli is an avid gamer, overworked high school teacher, and aspiring rockstar. He is often accompanied at the keyboard by his cat, Matches.
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