The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D Review
So all you fellow ‘90s kids: go listen to a Gin Blossoms song, watch an episode of Hey Arnold, or read a Goosebumps book... I guarantee you, you’ll feel a sense of nostalgia if you’ve experienced those forms of entertainment in the past. It’s inevitable.
That’s what The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time on the 3DS did for me. It was essentially a trip down memory lane; from here on in, consider this review somewhat biased. It’s hard to objectively rate a game that has so many memories entangled with it.
Watching Link ride across the screen on Epona brought me back to 1998, when I was eight years old, watching my brother beat this game and enjoying every minute of it. And believe me: the memories didn’t stop there. I won’t turn this into a journal entry, but be warned; you’ll get an entirely different experience out of Ocarina of Time based on previous experience.
With that being said, there are reasons Ocarina of Time is hailed as the best game of all time. It’s an epic game, in every sense of the word. The scale of Hyrule is tremendous and the attention to detail is remarkable. It took me eighteen hours to complete the main quest... and that’s knowing what I was doing (for the most part - I did forget a few things) and not really taking part in side quests. This is a massive game, and the story taps into that.
In terms of storytelling, Ocarina of Time is fantastic. What separates Ocarina of Time from Super Mario 64 is the strong storyline, filled with interesting plot points and unique characters. Ocarina of Time takes place over seven years, so it feels like you’ve grown with the characters. It’s something rarely seen in a video game, as you’ll become invested in these characters, watching them transform from children to adults. There’s a wonderfully dark tone to the game, too, as Hyrule slowly falls into ruin.
We’ve all known that for years, though, and you can read articles upon articles about what makes Ocarina of Time so special. But what’s new to the 3DS edition? First, the 3D effect is really well done. I played with it on (at full effect) the whole time without any agitation. It’s especially nice during cutscenes, adding an entirely new sense of depth. Likewise, the updated graphics are remarkable, making the game feel both fresh and familiar.
Another nice addition to the 3DS is the ability to aim using gyroscope controls. Granted, this only works with the 3D off; using it while in 3D causes you to lose the effect. Either the 3D or gyroscope controls can be turned off, so it’s nice to have options. There’s also a new boss challenge mode, which is a welcomed addition. I hope Nintendo puts this in all future titles, as it really adds to the replayability. It’s nice to be able to go back and re-experience a boss without having to replay the whole game.
In the end, playing through Ocarina of Time was like reading through an old journal or rediscovering a song from childhood. I can’t say you’ll get the same experience out of Ocarina of Time because you likely won’t. That being said, this is still a fantastic title - the best available on the 3DS to date.
If you own a 3DS and haven’t purchased this game, you’re doing something wrong. If you don’t play it for the memories, play it for the praise. See why Ocarina of Time is rated the best game of all time. There’s never been a better way to experience this classic title.