June 5, 2023

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Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom review

The Legend of Zelda: Kingdom’s Tears

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is a special game, maybe even unique. The game encourages players to be creative with the possibilities offered by Link’s new powers. Combining all kinds of objects to create vehicles and all sorts of other things plays an important role in this, while Ceiling Dive changes the way you look at the game world. These are achievements that almost no game The Legend of Zelda can match. The game also offers a high degree of freedom, which is mainly a plus, but can have the disadvantage of having very little “control” for some players. In the occasionally dipping frame rate and the crowded list in which to collect items, the game still has some minor shortcomings, while other visual flaws are mainly due to the old Switch hardware. That’s not all that bad. The game is also packed with quality content, with all kinds of fun challenges and puzzles. Once you’ve mastered the basics, Tears of the Kingdom quickly becomes an exhilarating game that will be in the running for some prizes by the end of the year.

“Wait, didn’t I just **** bad?” The amazement on the other side of the chat is palpable as I share my musings with another reviewer, who late last week called The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom the best game he’d ever reviewed. My first hours on this new version of Hyrule weren’t smooth to say the least. And, of course, if the first reviews are flying on social media and it seems like you’re the only one who has run into some snags, you know that such a question can be asked. Whose fault was I wandering around for hours, not knowing where to go, or venturing into an area where every enemy gave me the game in one fell swoop? the game? Or am I really bad? Of course you can.

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Anyway, before I take you on an adventure that has brought me more frustration than you might think in a game like this critically acclaimed game, let me just say: It worked in the end. After a rocky start, more on that later, I’m starting to get a little better into it, understanding what the game wants from me and the possibilities the game offers better match what I’ve experienced. Before my eyes, Kingdom Tears transformed into a game that I didn’t understand, that I didn’t click on, into a game that felt more and more unique and more immersive. I don’t play every game I review after review, but this Zelda has already booked its place in my spare time for the weeks to come. I wouldn’t have thought of that a week and a half ago.

At first nothing was wrong. The game takes place after the events of Breath of the Wild, the previous main game The Legend of Zelda. This game is partly the basis of this game, but at the same time you don’t have to play it before you start Tears of the Kingdom. The game world is partly the same, so you can’t identify a number of locations that others will, but that’s not a problem: the story is straightforward enough. Zelda and Link, of course the main character of the game, are on an adventure in the caves below Castle Hyrule. There, Zelda discovers clues about the Zonai, a mysterious people who, according to tradition, descended from the heavens and possess special powers. However, a little later, the discoveries become less innocent, because no one but Gannon appears to be imprisoned under the castle.

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Of course it won’t stay that way for long. Ganon comes to life in front of Zelda and Link and attacks immediately. Link manages to protect Zelda from the attack, but nearly kills himself in the process. The attack robs him of almost all of his heart, stamina, and main blade. As if all of this wasn’t bad enough, Zelda seems to disappear into thin air. When it comes to Link, it is revealed that he was saved by the Arm of Rauru, a divine being who was a member of the Zonai civilization. It was his arm that kept Ganon in place for so long and his arm that allowed Link to survive Ganon’s attack. From that moment on, not only is Rauru’s arm no longer part of Link, but also the powers of the Zonai. In the opening phase of the story, Link learns to use these powers and you as the player learn the possibilities this brings to the gameplay. We will return to this in detail on the following pages.

After the opening stage, a story unfolds that seems predictable at first, but then becomes increasingly interesting. Visiting the four corners of Hyrule to collect allies is of course not very exciting. Moreover, this setup is of course very similar to the way Breath of the Wild went. Visit Fort X or Palace Y, solve a local problem there and voila: you’ve got the support of one of their most important warriors. After that, it got more interesting and also learned more about what exactly happened to Zelda and what role the ancient civilization of Zonai plays. Then more and more puzzle pieces fall into place and lead to a wonderful apotheosis. It’s hard to explain how that works without giving things away, so we won’t. Let’s just say “holy shit!” Think or shout, this is not even an exaggeration.

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Another part of the story is the role that disorder plays. This is the phenomenon that gave Hyrule a somewhat different look. Hyrule is more or less the same on Earth, but above it floats a whole new world in the form of all kinds of floating islands. You visit these islands gradually, with the help of towers that can launch Link high into the air. There are also holes in the surface. Can download the link to it and visit Netherrijk. This dark area primarily provides variety, but also hides necessary secrets and connects to the rest of the game world in a more thoughtful way than you might initially think. Anyway, Disruption has created a very different version of Hyrule than what you saw in Breath of the Wild.