Majora’s mask passed me by the first time when it came out on the N64. I remember getting the game and playing it at my girlfriend’s house in Norwich when I wasn’t really paying attention to it. Subsequently I never even managed to find the Ocarina of Time before the 3rd day was up and the scary moon starting down at Termina crashed into the world and killed everybody. Needless to say I couldn’t be bothered to try again and gave up, bewildered by the whole idea of a game that ends so suddenly.
So, when I heard the game was going to be remixed on the 3DS I jumped at the chance to play the game, knowing that it would provide an epic adventure with a few additions to make the game more palatable to a handheld and an impatient generation.
The good news is that a few of the ideas from Ocarina of Time are back in the game that, for me, help immensely. Sheikah Stones are back which you can crawl inside in order to get a hint about what to do next and there’s also a quest log book so you can keep track of the main things you need to do as well as the side quests and times you need to do things by in order to progress or gain stronger powers and health.
The addition of the C-Stick on the new 3DS is also a godsend, meaning you can now control the camera as you move in a way that’s more akin to playing the game on a console.
If you’re new to the game, it’s basically a much darker tone than you may be used to when you play a Zelda game. At the start of the game, Link is set upon by a creatures called Skull Kid who’s nicked a very powerful mask. The long and the short of it is you have to get this mask back in order to put the world to rights and stop the evil looking moon from crashing into the land and destroying everything. It’s an interesting mechanic, because once you find the Ocarina of Time in order to reset to the first day, you will keep having to play the song to put things back to the beginning so that you don’t die. You’ll lose some items and some tasks will reset so you have to think very carefully about time management and how you go about beating the dungeons. If you run out of time halfway through a dungeon, I’m afraid it’s back to the beginning to have another go.
Alongside the usual mechanic of killing enemies, lighting torches and hitting switches to open doors in a clever sequence of puzzles and backtracking are the masks you can wear to give you all kinds of new abilities. Wear a Deku Scrub mask and you can now hover about the land and shoot bubbles from your snout. Don a Goron mask and you can roll into a ball to whizz about the land and access new locations and punch things very hard in the nads! Wear the Great Fairy mask and you can detect when fragments of them are near so you can reunite them at fountains and be rewarded for going out of your way.
The sense of achievement is really big here, as there are so many side quests to go on as well as beating the four main dungeons at the four points of the compass around Clock Town. You’ll meet a variety of odd characters and ghosts and of course get to ride your beloved horse once you go on a quest to find Epona. Combat is a
The 3DS touch screen also helps matters, with so many items you’ll need to swap in and out and assign to buttons, it’s a very easy case of accessing the menus to find what you need. Likewise, once you buy maps or find them in the dungeons, you can see it on the bottom screen and find you’ll get lost a lot less.
I highly recommend this game to anyone that likes adventure games or RPGS. Brought bang up to date on the 3DS with less muddy textures and a more user-friendly approach, it’s a great adventure that will keep you busy for hours and hours when you’re on your travels, making journeys fly by. It gets 9 out of 10.
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