Many years ago, after the creation of Hyrule, the Triforce was entrusted by the Golden Goddesses Din, Farore and Nayru to the goddess known as Hylia. However, the Demon King Demise gathered an army to take the Triforce for his own evil intent. Using her power to create the floating islands called Skyloft to keep the Hylians and the Triforce safe, Hylia and the remaining tribe (the Ancient Robots, the Parella, the Kikwis, the Gorons, and the Mogmas) battled Demise's horde before the demon was defeated.
Many years later, Link, born and raised in Skyloft, begins to have dreams of a strange figure, but then he's woken up by his childhood friend Zelda by her loftwing to prepare for the Wing Ceremony, a tradition to acknowledge one as knight.
I was really amazed on how different the story in this game was, while it does have some similarities form the other games, it was still a great combination of being different and being new at the same time, this game taking place as the first game in the Zelda timeline, it does a great job at explaining its setting that's supposed to take place, but not only that but it does other things a lot of different thing and make it not look predictable ! in fact, I think that this game's plot twist were really well put together and not feel disappointed or frustrated whatsoever ! and I feel that it does it all the time ! however I did find some few flaws, one of them being the same flaw that I've found on a lot of zelda games, that were mostly plot holes that kind of made me a little frustrated, but as a whole, the story in this game is really great and different from other zelda titles that I've played, and it is certainly a great way to as an early title of the zelda timeline.
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword (also known as Zeruda no Densetsu: Sukaiwodo Sodo in Japan) is an action-adventure game but with some role-playing and a lot of puzzle elements that the other zelda games were known for and it uses the Wii remote with Wii MotionPlus capabilities, either included on the remote or with a peripheral, with the Nunchuck, however like the story, the gameplay was also handled differently, as I've mentioned before, the whole game takes place in the sky, where you can ride on your loftwing to travel around the world, it's kind of similar to the ship in Wind Waker, but this time you can fly upwards or downwards, and can also jump out of the loftwing and land on a place, but the sad thing is, there are no other villages to visit on, it's only a few places with a minigame, places with hidden treasure (more on that later on...), and floating rocks, your only village, Skyloft, not only is the only village in the game, but it's also your main hub world, and in there you can do sidequests, buy objects, etc. however, later in the game, you can access to hyrule down below where you can land on respective places depending on your progress in which are also the ones that leads to the dungeons, and this is where the game gets different form the other zelda games, these places, while they do have some kind of exploration in them, they also have puzzles just like if it was a dungeon, and for me it was not that noticing ! specially in the later levels ! however because of this, there are only three different places to visit on, and there's not enough exploration in them to be honest, sure, later in the game you can find more places that you couldn't reach before, but I still felt that it could've been a little more better when it comes to the exploration in this game, certainly diehard retro zelda fans might get angry about this...
But now let's talk about the thing that makes this zelda game unique on its own, the controls ! the game uses the Wii MotionPlus technology so that you can control the sword more accurately, where you can swing the Wii remote from any particular angle, Link will slash the sword at precisely the same angle ! and this doesn't fell like a gimmick either ! In contrast to earlier installments of the Legend of Zelda series, battles do not focus solely on timing attacks, but also on their target, such as the direction in which enemies are hit ! it's an amazing gameplay mechanic that really does its job very well ! but not only that ! the game also uses the MotionPlus capabilities so that the pointing system is also used to navigate the game menus and control some of the additional weapons, such as aiming the bow and slingshot items or even selecting a respective item, meaning that you don’t always use the Wii sensor bar anymore since the MotionPlus capabilities are doing the job for it ! however, I did have some problems with it, mainly due to the cursor pointing in the wrong direction all the time, but fortunately, there is an option to where you can press down on the d-pad in real time so that it can center again whatever and whenever you want ! and thankfully if it wasn't for this option, the game would've been frustrating to control, however, I do feel that some people might get his/her arm tired throughout this game.
And speaking of items, you now have two, real-time item menus where you can choose them by pointing a direction of the Wii remote, in which those are your main items and your adventure pouch, the main items are your key to progressing through the game, and each of them use the capabilities of the MotionPlus as well ! be it the new items such as the whip (where you can reach certain switches from a distance and steal treasure form enemies) and the beetle (where you can use it to fly around, explore new unreachable areas and activate certain unreachable switches or carry items such as bombs to drop out of or items to collect them), returning items such as the Bow and arrow and the bomb, in which they have Motion plus capabilities where it makes them even better ! (with the bow and arrow being better at aiming and the bombs where you can also roll them over like if it was a bowling ball helping you throughout the game) and even some other unfamiliar returning items from previous zelda games (the wind bag from Minish Cap and the bug catching net from A Link to the Past in which, of course, have MotionPlus capabilities on them as well !), and then there the adventure pouch, where you can store empty bottles, your shields and you medallions (more on that later on...) !
And also let's talk about the new things included in Skyward Sword comparing from the other zelda games, first things first, you can run instead of rolling by pressing the A button, you can also run up walls to climb them, however you also have a stamina meter, where it quickly decreases if you run and also climb, perform spin attacks and do somersaults, and if it runs out, Link will tire out and will be unable to perform any actions until the meter replenishes itself. And another new thing is that you can also upgrade your items ! in the bazaar, you can upgrade your items, shields and even potions ! and to do so you need to collect treasure (be it an item dropped by an enemy, on places, etc.) and sometimes bugs that you can catch, and a certain amount of rupees in order to do so, the items can be upgraded so that they are more efficient, useful and as for the potions they can also be upgraded so that it can be more effective, more durable, etc. and speaking of shields, there are also some types of shield included in the game, and each of them have a health bar of themselves ! meaning that the shields can't be used casually anymore, since you can thrust forward the Nunchuck in order to use it, so that way you can, when timed well, can deflect incoming attack, but if it's not timed well, your shield will lose health ! and you can recover it with a potion but if it breaks, you'll have to buy it again ! and finally there's the dowsing, where your sword can track a specific item that you are looking for by just looking in first person view (in which by the way, you can move around now !) and selecting what item you are looking for by holding the C button and pointing with the Wii remote, and that way you can move and point the sword in the direction of the item, indicated by the signals the sword generates depending on how closer you are ! other new things are the return of the sword beam that the retro zelda titles were familiar with and you can also spin attack vertically ! but keep in mind that each of these new features are not going to be ready the first you start playing this game, since you can unlock them later on in the game, and sadly I felt that this game felt a little slow paced in terms of accessibility to these new features because of it... (but there's more to it than that later on...)
This game requires you to be skillful and not mess around so much, making this game doing a great job on what it's supposed to be aiming for ! but at the same time, the game is really fun, but also while it requires you to be strategic, and for me, this game does an amazing job of balancing these two experiences together ! while I did had some problems with the controller many times, but maybe that was because of my remote itself, overall this is one of the best gameplay I have ever experienced in any zelda game !
And this is where I might get a lot of backlash for it... the graphics in this game look pretty... ok ! the game has a style that uses graphics that resemble impressionist art, in which also looks like a mix between Wind Waker (in terms of the cel-shading style) and Twilight princess (in terms of character models and design), and while it does work for more exaggerated enemy designs, which emphasize their attacks and weaknesses and also close objects and settings, when you look at the background or something that's very far... it looks pretty bad ! I'm sorry ! it's just that they look blurry ! and it certainly affected the way on how much I liked the graphics ! but as for the rest, it does look really good but there aren't any moments where I was blown away by its great achievement in its capabilities, but as it is, it may have a flaw in a certain section as well as a few regarding the animation, but it's still pretty good nonetheless.
Music and Sound
The soundtrack in this game is really good, and some songs were actually a little close to become memorable ! each song has an orchestra composition and also some other instruments, it does a great job at expressing its setting it's being represented, and some of them even sound amazing ! so while the game didn't have a lot of memorable songs just like it's other previous titles in the franchise (in my case), I feel that this soundtrack is so good it at least needs to be heard by a lot of people since who knows ! they might even love it more than I do !
The sounds are great ! while there are some sounds that are from previous zelda games (like the sword swing and the sound of a vase breaking) there are still new sounds included as well, while some of them didn't left me with a great impression, other sound were doing its job well and they also don't look out of place. also the game doesn't have any voice acting, just grumbles, while it is typical for this franchise, it's still fine as it is, although there were a few problems in some of the characters when they were reacting or talking... and the game also supports other languages depending on what language do you speak.
As I've said before, the game is very short when it comes to its exploration, however, the game still does a great job at presenting a great atmosphere and environment, even if the environment is kind of small, and the new places that you can uncover also adds more to the quality of the whole atmosphere of the game in general, while I felt that it was kind of small when compared to its other previous entries, it does a good job on its own, however I do feel that the sky world does lack a lot of things when considering "being it alive" for a lack of a better word, I just feel that it would've become better if there was more places that were more lively and not just villages mind you, but still there are some places that does feel somewhat lively, so I guess the whole setting in this game is really good, but let me warn you though the beginning of this game might seem really slow paced, and not in a good way... However, there is a certain problem in this game that that did affect the whole quality of this game, and that is the game breaking glitch where there's a glitch in which it doesn't allow you to progress further in the game, much like the game breaking glitch from its previous game, Twilight princess, but thankfully ! there is now a channel in the wii shop channel that can fix this bug ! so you just must download this channel if you don't want to suffer the consequences of not continuing the game !
The game, celebrating the 25th anniversary of the franchise, also came in a special edition box set, that includes not only the game itself, but also a CD featuring select orchestral arrangements of some of the iconic music of The Legend of Zelda franchise, and a Gold Wii Remote Plus with a Triforce Symbol on it (but sadly it doesn't include the gold Nunchuck as well...)
Now this is where the does make a difference when it comes to its previous games, not only the gameplay and the story has changed, but also the character development for many characters, including Link and Zelda, have more depth to them than before ! while it is not as good as in Majora's Mask, you do feel like there's a connection between Link and Zelda that you now care more about, unlike other games where you just save the princess and that's it, Link and Zelda are actually friends in this game and now have a reason to why he should save her, granted it's not a strong enough reason in the minds of some people, but this is still a good enough reason to care more about these characters, and for a type of game like this, it does work a lot ! However there's one character that I want to talk about, Fi, this time she's your follower like navi and midna, she's pretty likeable, but one thing what's wrong with her, and I can see a lot of people agreeing to this, is that she can become annoying when it comes to giving hints and suggestions, while this is typical for a 3D zelda game (with the exception of wind waker), she might be even worse to a lot of people, since she constantly talks to you when you are making some progress, and while she doesn't bother me in my opinion, I can see other people getting annoyed by this character, and might even affect their opinion of this game !
As for the replayability, just like any zelda game, there is a lot of stuff to do ! you can collect treasures and bugs in order to upgrade your items, and there's a sidequest where you must collect these gems known as the gratitude gems and give them to a certain character, and in order to collect them, you must do a lot of other sidequest in skyloft which is doing a request on some people of the village depending on how far you are in the game and they are also scattered individually in the village ! and after finding some of them, bring them to this certain character and he will reward you for certain amounts, be it more rupees, a giant wallet, etc. there's also the minigames that you can play and can also keep track on your high score ! There's also the Goddess cubes, where they are scattered throughout the whole world of hyrule where you must find them and then hit them with your sword beam, and then go to the sky world again in order to find a treasure located in a certain part of sky world so that way you can open it and receive a treasure, be it an item, rupees, etc. there's also the return of the heart pieces, where if you collect four of them, you will receive an extra heart container ! and there's also the medallions, where if you have it in your equipment, it can affect the way you collect or receive items, for example if you have a rupee medallion, it increases the likelihood of finding rupees in bushes, pots etc. and then there's a boss rush mode, in which it gets unlocked very quickly ! where later on in the game where you have completed an errand for your main quest, you will have access to this mode in game only, and not in an option menu in the gamesave menu. And finally there's the Hero mode, where you can unlock it by beating the game and then over-write your completed game save, and in this mode the game is more harder ! Enemies inflict twice the damage they did before, there are no hearts unless you have a heart medal, a few instances of dialog will change to reflect that you're on hero mode, but everything that you had on the first playthrough be it only the sword beam and the treasures, will be carried over to this mode, and if you beat this mode and save, you will have a triforce simbol in your gamesave (yep...), so as you can see, there is a lot of time to be put in this game, and to be honest with you, it is pretty fun to do so ! so the replayability in this game is really great !
This game is pretty good ! while I did have some problems regarding its lack of exploration, a certain bad feature on the graphics, and other flaws, it doesn't however ruin what it's, in my opinion, a great Zelda game experience when talking about it's amazing gameplay and more in-depth great story ! so if you love zelda games or you wanted to try out the concept of motion based sword combat, then go ahead and get it ! if you like the zelda games but you don't like the concept that's the motion control or you were bothered with some of the flaws that I've mentioned, give it a rent at least because who knows, you might even enjoy it more than what you have expected ! as for me, this game gets...
8- Great This is a great game that might have a few flaws or could have been better, but is still a game we highly recommend!
If you only have these two choices, which one will you choose ? to have a game with no story ? or to have a game with the most ridiculous, boring, cliché-filled and horrible story ever ?
Do games need to be epic ?... or fun ?...
Wii #: 0018 2269 1524 9019 (codename Jnes)
Also on PSN ! PSN: jnesDX
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