The lights are on
The Legend of Zelda games have a combination of certain elements that make them so lovable such as the way they combine hack n slash gameplay with also the ability to use projectile weapons and explosives and great incentive to explore(searching for heart pieces that increase your max HP permanently or for secret weapons and armor that increase your stats and because of the creative puzzles that make you utilize numerous items and for charming characters and even great story telling.
Wind Waker has these elements but adds boat sailing to allow you to explore the massive ocean(in the story for Wind Waker,most of the world has been flooded and only small bits of land remain)and the ability for Link to control the wind (which he will need to do for sailing and for puzzles)by using a magical wand known as the 'wind waker'.The Wii U version of Wind Waker allows you to purchase a sail that makes sailing twice as fast and always keeps the wind on your back,I will admit as much as I liked the sailing in the original Wind Waker,sometimes it was annoying because it was very slow to get to one place to the next and you had to keep changing the direction of the wind to move fast.
Some people don't
like the sailing feature,but I do because the game made me feel like a true explorer because it made me search the world hard for every little bit of land I could find that might have items to help me on my journey and the fact most of Hyrule is flooded adds a more epic feel to the adventure,it feels like it's The Legend of Zelda meets Waterworld.
---------------------- Story ----------------------
The story in Wind Waker(WW)is set hundreds of years after the events
in Ocarina of Time,and the first part of the story is explained by
legends talking about how a person of great evil(possibly Ganon)stole
the hidden power from the kingdom to become extremely powerful,but a
hero in a green outfit(refered to as the 'Hero of Time' and is possibly
Link from Ocarina of Time)defeated the person of great evil but the
hero of time disappeared into history.Oneday,another powerful evil
force threatened their world once again,but the hero of time didn't
return so a Goddess flooded the world in an attempt to stop the evil
force. During the current timeline,young girls were being
kidnapped and were being held in cages in the places they were taken
to.After an event which makes Link personally affected by the series of
kidnappings,Link goes on a journey to try to come to find out why the
girls are being kidnapped and to stop it once and for all.
Link will discover a powerful foe who threatens their world,so he
attempts to free the Master Sword from it's seal and I won't reveal
anymore about the story except it has some big plot twists and
interesting/creative story ideas and revelations. -------------------- Gameplay --------------------
This is where WW really shines.WW has smooth,natural feeling
controls.I played Ocarina of Time right before I played WW,and WW's
controls are much smoother and tighter than Ocarina of Time's
controls,allowing the player to easily direct Link around the place.The
combat has Zelda style,sword wielding hack n slash feel that many
people love and once again there's a block button(to block with your
shield).Link can now perform a wide variety of special moves and can
once again use a bow,boomerang(to stun enemies),bombs(to damage certain
enemies and clear passages),nookshot(which can damage certain enemies
and pull Link to certain areas)and he also has what's called a 'grapple'
which allows Link to throw a grapple attached to a rope that he can
climb to get to higher areas(yeah it's similar to the nookshot)and the
Deku leaf(which allows Link to glide to places for a limited amount of
time because you'll need magic meter to use it). Once again
there is some complex dungeons to get through,and Link will need to
think how to use his weapons/tools to solve certain puzzles in
dungeons,plus how to interact with the dungeon in the correct way.
You can once again search for heart pieces(everytime you find 4 heart
pieces,it will increase your max HP),bottles(to store fairies in),and
for fairies.For people who don't know,a fairy can revive Link one time
after he dies,and if you want a fairy to be able to do that,you'll need
to capture it and store it inside a bottle.Bottles can also hold
health restoration/mana restoration liquids.To make the exploration
even more creative,you can use the deku leave to glide to places you
cannot walk/climb to and you'll have to use the wind waker to make the
direction of the wind blow in the right direction for you to glide to
that area. When I played the original version of WW for the Gamecube,I was surprised by how easy the combat in this
game is compared to the Zelda games released before it.Many enemies will drop lots of hearts(the mini hearts the
restore some of Link's health)and using simple hack n slash can easily
overpower most enemies.Some enemies are a bit tougher and you'll need
to hit their weak spot to remove their armor and some enemies have
stronger attacks you'll want to avoid,but I was surprised by the lack
of damage that enemies(even the stronger ones)inflict on Link,and the
weaker enemies will remove 1/4 of a heart and a stronger enemy will
remove 1/2 of a heart and bosses can remove an entire heart with an
attack.But it's like I've said,so many enemies drop multiple hearts
after you beat them,it's not often you'll worry about dying,and even if
you do,your fairies can still revive you. The ease of the
combat doesn't stop WW from being a fun game,because I had a great time
with this game.The dungeons have some tricky puzzles and the game
feels fun,for some reason it's a game I enjoyed a lot. The
fact that most of the world is flooded makes you really make an effort
to find the small bits of land that are left in the world,so you can
explore them for goodies.You can cast a spell with the windwaker to
change wind direction so your boat can sail to places quicker,and later
in the game,Link will learn a spell(song)to make him instantly appear
in certain places in the world/or to travel over big chunks of area,so
he won't need to sail through all of it,and in this game,you will spend
a lot of time sailing. Like I've mentioned before,the wind spell songs done with the wind waker allow you to change direction of the wind,but they can also make the wind pick
Link up and to take him to another place,or to change day to night or
vise versa and for some puzzles.There is quests that can only be done
at night,such as finding and entering a ghost ship. Link can
also search the sea for treasure and he can drop the grappler in the
water to pick up treasure(Link can buy treasure maps and areas where
treasures are but if you are near where a treasure is,you'll see a
glowing section of the sea surface).Treasures can include useless
junk,rupees(currency)and certain quest items. Link in other Zelda games,you'll need to travel to towns and interact with people in the towns for certain quests. Other gameplay features include boat battles(pirates will shoot
canonballs at your boat and you can do the same to the pirates).
The HD remake includes new gameplay features such as the Wind Waker,cannon and sails are equipped on the D-PAD so it means you don't need to go into the menu to use the wind waker.Like I mentioned before the Wii U version allows you to purchase a sail that doubles the speed of sailing too.
----------------- Graphics ----------------
The graphics in WW use cell shading and it makes everything bright and
colorful and the artstyle is very cutsey which I will admit at first
was off putting when I first saw this game,but now I think the cell
shaded graphics suit the tropical atmosphere in this game wonderfully
well,because you'll see bright blue ocean water and cute ripples in the
water when you swim/sail and there's palm trees and little tropical
islands with towns full of happy people and it's a nice visual
experience. The game has a proper day/night cycle(including sunrise,sunsets)and you'll see stars.
For more charm,you'll meet a weapon combat master,who has an asian
appearance and tattoos on his body and Link and that guy will bow to
eachother after a sparring session. The islands have some nice,diverse terrains such as cliffs,steep hills,foresty areas.
I also like how the dungeons in WW don't rely on using grey walls and
being dark,because some dungeons have a nice bright yellow color to
them,or firey atmosphere or foresty surroundings.
In the Wii U version the graphics look sharper but at the same time their colors look less bright.Their is now shadows and realistic blur effects to make far away objects look distant but while I appreciate the sharpness from the HD I wish the brightness of the colors stayed the same,also they changed some colors around which is a bit annoying because from an artstyle perspective I thought the visuals for the original Wind Waker were wonderful and all that was needed was HD to make them look a bit sharper but they didn't need their artstyle altered or realism added to it.
------------- Sound -------------
The music matches the tropical environment and gives a nice relaxing
atmosphere to the game.But the music can get intense during some tough
sea voyages. You'll hear the typical Link voice sound effects when he swings his sword.
When you hear an enemy with your sword,it makes a certain sound effect
and as you string a combo of hits together,the sound gets louder,and I
actually don't mind it,it's like it's encouraging you to execute
clean,combo hits on your enemies. The game has the Zelda theme music and it's remixed in a very nice and catchy way. --------------- Overall ---------------
This game is a masterpiece and one of the most satisfying adventure games I've ever played.The gameplay improvements are much appreciated but I can only say that for some of the graphical modifications such as making visuals sharper but not tampering with the artstyle.
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