Breath of the Wild

Jul 25, 2017

Beginning The beginning of Breath of the Wild. You can go anywhere.

I first played a Zelda game on my SNES and it left such a big impression on me that I became an instant Zelda fan. I haven’t played every game of the series but I played a bunch of them 1. When Nintendo announced the Switch with a Zelda game on launch, I was pretty excited because it was a console I’d be interested in.

I’m only about 30 hours into Breath of the Wild, I’m a slow player, I like to explore every nook and cranny so I haven’t gone very far both in the main quest or uncovering the map (climbed 3 towers so far). If you’re like me, you’ll take a long long time finishing up with this game. The world is massive and you keep getting sidetracked – you go for one thing and you see something that grabs your attention and you go there and another thing happens, and this goes on and on.

Dawn Dawn in Breath of the Wild. It’s a beautiful game.

Even if technically it is not Horizon Zero Dawn, textures are not the best in some places, there’s some aliasing and some rare frame drops, but they make it up with a carefully built world. The world is beautiful, interesting and fun to traverse. If you see something, you can get there, everything is climbable and reachable. They managed to build a coherent and organic world, full of wonderful details with explicit and implicit beauty. The design and animation of characters, monsters and wildlife is one of the best I’ve seen in a game. The way the wind moves foliage and grass or Link’s hair always gets me. The sound design also helps the immersion in the wilderness, with really good sound effects and an understated music that isn’t always on but appears here and there depending on the context or location.

Village Sunset in one of the villages in Breath of the Wild.

Breath of the Wild is an unforgivable game, it’s hard and there’s not much handholding. Be prepared to die a lot, and I really mean a lot! You just have to accept it, it’s part of the game. Careful planning does help though.

It’s unmistakably a Zelda game, but with a massive open world. Nintendo did their usual thing, but it looks like this time they allowed themselves to be influenced by other games like Shadow of the Colossus, Skyrim, The Witcher, Metal Gear Solid and even Nintendo’s own Animal Crossing, and that resulted in one of the greatest Zelda games ever.

I’m loving every minute I’m spending in this version of Hyrule and I think this might become not only my favorite Zelda game, but my favorite game ever.

  1. In the order I played them: A Link to the Past (SNES), The Legend of Zelda (NES), Link’s Awakening (GB), The Minish Cap (GBA, played on DS), Ocarina of Time (N64, played on Wii), The Wind Waker (GC, played on Wii), Twilight Princess (Wii), Phantom Hourglass (DS) and now Breath of the Wild (Switch). [return]