Wednesday, May 30, 2012

My Skyward Sword Experience

(WARNING: This is an extremely long post filled with careless spoilers! This hardly seems necessary, considering the top of this blog already says there's unmarked spoilers... but I thought I'd mention is anyway. Enjoy!)

*gasp*

Wait! Wh-What is this? ...Two posts in the month of May? Impossible! This must be some kind of trick!

...Well, it's not. I've delved to the world of blogging yet again this month to finally write a post that, of course, you should have expected the moment I mentioned Zelda Wii. Which was March 1st, 2010, in case you don't remember.

I'm going to go into detail about my Skyward Sword experience.

E3 2012 is surprisingly close - Nintendo's presentation is June 5th, 9 AM. I'll probably be waking up early yet again this year in hopes of hearing about Super Smash Bros. 4, but it's not likely we'll have anything Zelda-related. ...But who knows?

Anyway, it's made me realize that I really should talk about Skyward Sword - it's one of my favorite Zelda games of all time. I just decided that today, when, just about an hour ago, I completed Hero Mode for the first time. Honestly, though, I can get so into this game. It's the strangest feeling; a few times I've even caught myself flinching when Link is hurt or something similarly stupid. I've also determined that the best way to play this game is in front of a huge TV with lots of space around you, standing up. It's incredibly fun and immersive.

Annnyway?

Let's start from the morning that I first received Skyward Sword - November 20th, 2011, of course. I woke up early to get to GameStop as soon as it opened. My sister and I walked into the store and headed over to the desk to pick up my preorder.

Here I am, decked out in a Zelda shirt and internally freaking out, whispering to my sister as we pass a kid walking by with Skyward Sword in his hand. "Did you see that? Oh my gods, he has the game! That is one awesome kid! He didn't get the special edition, though... oh gosh, I can't wait to get my hands on my golden Wii remote..."

So we look up at the GameStop guy, and naturally, seeing my impending fangirl freakout, he says, "You're here for Zelda?"

Vigorous nodding. "YES YES YES!"


He smiles sadly. "Oh, well, I'm sorry. You came on the wrong day. It's not coming out until tomorrow.

...

Moment of silence.

...

"B-but... B-b-but..."

...

...

And then my sister speaks up.

"But... what about all those Skyward Sword games behind you...?"

And then a grin forms on his face and he starts laughing. "Yeah, yeah, I'm just messing with you! You have a preorder?"

Yes, that's right, everyone. He, knowing that I was about to dissolve into a puddle of fangirly excitement, decided to screw with me and claim that the game I'd been waiting for two freaking years (longer if you count the amount of time that they were actually MAKING the game, though they hadn't announced it yet) wasn't coming out for another day. My mind literally froze up when he said that. I'm sure that the stupid grin that had been on my face that entire morning suddenly disappeared into a blank expression of incomprehension. Thoughts like, "But... it's November 20th! I literally counted down, day by day, until this moment! I've had this date circled since the day it was announced! Where did I go wrong? Is this a nightmare?" were running through my head.

Honestly, if my sister hadn't said anything, I probably would have stood there, frozen, for an indefinitive amount of time.

You, Mister GameStop Employee, are evil.

Oh, and just for the record? This isn't the only time people at that GameStop have messed with me. When I preordered Kid Icarus: Uprising, I asked, "So, can I preorder a game?" And the guy responds with, "No." I stared at him in confusion for a moment before finally letting out a nervous chuckle and telling him what game I wanted.

So, FINALLY, I got my copy of Skyward Sword and jumped back into the car, tearing apart the box immediately to gaze longingly at my golden Wii remote and beautiful game disk. Finally, when we arrived back home, I rushed into the back room and shoved Skyward Sword into the Wii. Then, knowing I'd be spending at least the next week or two of my life on this game, I hurried on to Club Nintendo on the computer and registered the game before allowing myself to play it. Because of my excitement, I actually have no recollection of what I wrote in those little boxes asking for your opinion on the game. I probably typed something along the lines of "OMG NINTENDO IM GONNA DIIE IF I DONT PLAY TIS GAEM NOW JKAD FJK!" Perhaps even less comprehensible than that. They probably figured some three-year-old had gotten ahold of the computer and typed something in. That, or they're used to stupid responses like that from desperate fans dying to try out the game.

At last, I strapped up my golden Wii remote, selected Skyward Sword from the Wii menu, and PLAYED.

It's... difficult to remember my first playthrough of Skyward Sword, now. After all, it was a while ago. However, to the best of my memory, it was incredibly fun.


I played the game for ten hours on my first day, getting through Skyview Temple and the Earth Temple. I could not hear much of the music, unfortunately; my father plays guitar in a band, and he needed to practice. And, of course, he had to practice in the exact same room.

The intro was mostly lost on me. I'd already watched all the way up until Link meets Fi for the first time on YouTube, because I was incredibly impatient and simply couldn't resist the temptation. Skyview I remember a bit more clearly. Why? Because I spent most of my day in there.

Okay, I'm SURE this is just me. I've watched two other people play through this part, and NEITHER of them had a problem with it. If you've played the game, you may recall the room right before the large "hub" room of the dungeon that was used in demos prior to the game's release. You know what I'm talking about? There's two rooms that branch away from it (remember the "One switch is above, one switch is below" puzzle?) where in both you must raise the water level. I did that. I figured it out pretty quickly, too.

...But for the life of me, I could NOT figure out what to do next.

Now, what you're SUPPOSED to do is climb on this convenient little log that raised along with the water and from there jump onto a vine wall.

THIS LOG. It's totally evil.

For whatever reason, I completely skipped over this log.

Instead, I walked back and forth in between these two rooms, struggling to figure out how to get to the treasure chest that I just knew was holding the key into the next area. I must have spent a half hour on it at least - two hours at most. Seriously. It was a long time.

I purchased a guide with the game, too, and I was severely tempted to use it. Eventually submitting, I skimmed over the pages a bit - and couldn't find anything. Why? Because most people aren't IDIOTS and don't MISS THE FREAKING STUPID LOG.

This is a classic example of Sierra overthinking things in Zelda games. Trust me. It happens a lot.

After that, Earth Temple was a breeze, as far as I can remember. Because, I don't. ...Remember, I mean. I don't remember the Earth Temple.

Lanayru was a bit more difficult for me. I spent three days on it. Three. Days. Ugh. I don't know what was so frustrating about it! It was also the first time I died. I allowed my sister to try the game for the very first time while I was activating the generators (or whatever you do to get into the Lanayru Mining Facility). She brought me down to two hearts, and when I frantically stole the controller from her to save myself, I died.

...So technically, that death doesn't count, since it wasn't my fault.

When I first got into the facility, I was stuck on my second seemingly insolvable puzzle. If you can even call it a puzzle. I never get stuck on actual "puzzles", just on stuff that should be obvious. LIKE THE LOG, FOR EXAMPLE... *angry muttering*

This time, however, it was a switch. ...Now, these switches appear throughout all of Skyward Sword - they're like little red bars that you had to sprint toward a wall to run up it, grab the lever, and pull it downwards. ...For some reason, I couldn't figure that out. I knew that lever had to do SOMETHING, but thanks to my oddly over-analytic mind, I was certain that the solution couldn't be a simple as running at it. Oh, no. Never.



...It took me a while to finally figure out.

The rest of Lanayru wasn't much easier for me. I remember one moment where you were supposed to use the Beetle to grab a bomb and drop it on these wooden boxes to explode them. ...I don't know why I didn't think of that at first. I kept running back and forth in between these few rooms before finally thinking, "Wait a second... I can probably explode those!" And then, in true facepalm fashion, I tried it, it worked, and my head met my hand.

At least it was better than the wave of complete and utter humiliation and underlying rage like, oh, I don't know... maybe...

THAT STUPID LOG!!!

...And... then I fought Moldarach - which was actually the first Skyward Sword boss we saw, at E3 2010. Remember that? I do, haha. Now, let me just say that Moldarach looked a lot easier in the demos than it actually was. Plus, during the second phase of the battle added after the demos, you had to find it in the sand, and that was extremely frustrating. I recently fought it in the Hero Mode Thunder Dragon's Lightning Round (with one heart, too, and it was the last boss to fight before I got the Hylian Shield; talk about pressure!), and I took ten minutes in that battle because I couldn't get it out of the sand. I don't remember my inital battle too much, though. When I fought it in Hero Mode (outside of the Lightning Round), I know I died twice, however. It insta-killed me if it managed to back up and ram into me before I could stab its eye in the second phase of the battle.


What makes it worse is that, after looking up some YouTube videos, all the comments say that it's the easiest boss. D:

Also, doesn't the post-Moldarach chamber kind of look like the Tower of Spirits from Spirit Tracks? There's train rails and everything...

(I couldn't find a picture, though. Sorry. D:)

So, after that, I watched the cutscene, which became my favorite cutscene until I met Zelda again. It's inside the Temple of Time, and Ghirahim and Impa have a somewhat epic battle. Kind of.

One of the best parts of this cutscene was being able to choose your own answers! Isn't that awesome? :D


I chose "Am I late?" which is CLEARLY the best answer. Because it's an "IN YOUR FACE, IMPA" moment, because of how she told Link off in the Earth Temple. (That's the only thing I remember about that place, after all. I really didn't like Impa after that cutscene. XD)

So, after that... what happens again...?

...I honestly don't remember. The next dungeon is Ancient Cistern, and I think you fight the Imprisoned again... by the way, I HATE the Imprisoned, soooo much...

...OH!

Silent Realm.

This was quite a terrifying experience. It was not necessarily shocking - I knew it was coming from pictures and videos before the game came out - but it was still scary.

And I was horrible at it. Horrible! So horrible, in fact, that Fi actually told me, "Master, the chances of you being the chosen hero are rapidly decreasing..."

Which kind of made me laugh, but made me dismayed at my own failure at the same time. Even the game knew I sucked.

My problem was that I thought you had to actually sprint to get away from the Guardians - which apparently isn't the case. Just running at normal speed is sufficient. However, I didn't know that, so I continuously ran out of stamina and got caught.

Plus... I couldn't find the last tear! It was on an elevated platform accesible from a vine wall. I couldn't find it for the longest time.


Oh well. After that stressful moment, we had the semi-peaceful Ancient Cistern. (If I'm remembering this correctly, of course.) Although that moment where you had to climb up the vines to escape the Zombie Bokoblins kind of freaked me out. O_o


Neeeexxxxtt...?

Well, the second Silent Realm was Nayru's, right? I think everyone has a similar story (at least, I've read them from others), but I'll tell it anyway.

There was one moment where a minecart sat in waking water, and you had to push it to get to a floating tear. However, I carelessly stepped into the water while trying to move the minecart. This awakened the Guardians and created an interesting scenario. I'd run in a circle to stay away from the Guardians, then return to the minecart, and push it slightly. Then I'd run again, return, push... and so on, until I jumped on to reach the tear. To be honest, it alleviated my fear of the Guardians quite a bit, since I evaded them for so long. It made me confident for once. ^^

And then... Sandship? Yeah. That sounds right.

Now, I loved the Sandship. Actually, scratch that. I love the Sandship. As in... present tense. When I first went through it, I actually didn't care much for it at all. But after replaying it and thinking back on it, I thought it was a lot of fun.

I got stuck a few times here, too, though. (Lanayru just doesn't seem to like me.) There's one point where you're supposed to lower or raise a life boat off to the side to hit the Timeshift Stone. I... well, it took me a while to realize that, haha.

...Not as long as that log, though.

Yes, I'm going to keep mentioning that.

Eldin Silent Realm was frustrating, if only because at some points, I felt like I HAD to awaken the Guardians. I don't like waking them up. My heart starts pounding the moment I hear that music.

I rather liked Fire Sanctuary, though! I think it was just the design of the dungeon, however. It was just kind of... temple-like. The most temple-like dungeon in the game, I think. Or perhaps it was that riddle about the two statues, and that leap of faith I had to take. I really was shocked when I didn't fall into lava.


See, at first I thought I liked it because of the music, but then I realized that I was thinking of the Earth Temple music, which is amazing. Fire Sanctuary music is boring.

One problem I encountered in this temple was... well, those water-filled plant-thingies. I DID NOT KNOW YOU COULD STAB THEM. So... imagine how long it took for me to figure out how to open the water-activated door?

These plants. I thought they were just for making lava blocks!
Fighting Debbie/Ghirahim at the end was fun, though. I heard something very odd, though, about that battle. Ghirahim states that he and Link are bound by a crimson thread of fate. And apparently, in Japan, a red thread is a symbol of two lovers.

...Was that on purpose, Nintendo? I hope not. O_o

At last, I got the last flame and forged the Master Sword. And then I returned to Sealed Grounds... to see the saddest cutscene in Zelda history.

Seriously, there's some sad stuff in Zelda. Just think about Anju and Kafei embracing one another as the moon destroys the world around them. But Link's face in this cutscene... Oh my gods...


...One still picture doesn't really cut it, though. You just have to watch it. I've NEVER seen Link look like that before in a Zelda game. I thought he was going to cry for a moment there.

If Link ever cries in a Zelda game, that's officially going to be my new favorite game. XD

Annnnnyway... and then it's on to Song of the Hero! Like I said in my last post, I went to Lanayru first (and got my Hylian Shield :D), Eldin second, and Lanayru third.These parts were pretty fun. I stumbled into the Eldin one on accident, though. It was kind of frustrating; once you activate that event, you can't get out of it without completing it. I traveled to Eldin for a sidequest: you have to fetch the fortune teller a new crystal ball. Deciding to ignore the event and just not bother getting my items back, I used dowsing to find the spot.

...BUT THERE WAS NOTHING THERE.

After a rage inducing moment, I determined that maybe the crystal ball was INSIDE the Earth Temple, though why my dowsing would lead to the SIDE of the temple, I didn't know.

...Well, as it turns out, the crystal ball is reached using the Double Clawshots, but the clawshot target doesn't appear during the Song of the Hero event. O_o So it wasn't my fault that I couldn't find it and wasted ten minutes trying to figure out what the heck was going on.


Oh, and that third Imprisoned fight before you go get Faron's part of Song of the Hero? ...Am I the only one who seriously struggled with that? After you hit him once, he starts flying up, and you have to hit him with a bomb from the Groosenator. I missed a few times. Oh, and then even WORSE after that, you have to fire Link at him. I kept missing Link, and one miss and you're done for. I must have heard the old woman in the Sealed Grounds scream, "All is lost... all is lost..." a good four times. (Which, in case you are some sort of gaming ninja and didn't know that, it's what she says when you get a game over because the Imprisoned reached the temple.)


...I think I said all of this in my last post. O_o

At last, I got the Song of the Hero and hurried to Skyloft for the Skyloft Silent Realm.

However, as I stabbed down and went into the Silent Realm challenge, I realized something.

...There were Remlits, those evil little adorable flying lemur-kitty creatures. And... if I could place them on the Silent Realm platform...

Well, this happened.

video


Yes, that's actual footage, filmed from my cell phone, of me stabbing the Remlit. And you can't imagine the giggles I tried to stifle while filming this. XD (I also apologize for my sister's apparent incapability at properly filming something! Not my fault! ...I think she was watching the actual screen, haha.)

So, yeah. What next?

Skyloft Silent Realm was not so terrifying now that I was used to Silent Realms, so it went by fast. After that, it was on to one of my favorite dungeons: Sky Keep! I loved this place. ^^ (And I just did it today, so I remember it well.)

If I remember correctly, I got the Triforce of Wisdom first, Triforce of Courage second, and Triforce of Power last. Now, I just wanted to point something odd out.

...Why is there Twilight Princess Hylian on the walls? In SKYWARD SWORD?!








This is in all three of the Triforce chambers. And I KNOW it's Twilight Princess. I think it doesn't read as anything - many of the characters are hard to make out, but what I did translate didn't make much sense - but it's THERE. The letters appear to be flipped on one side, futher supporting the fact that it's TP, since the letters were flipped from GameCube to Wii.


Plus, it's also on the door in the Sealed Grounds!










Anyway... maybe everyone knows about this, and I'm just a bit late in noticing it. XD

So... then it was on to the final battle! I love the cutscene right after you make your wish on the Triforce, though. Link and Zelda hold hands! And Link LAUGHS! Now, just think about it: when, in any Zelda game ever, have you seen Link laugh? I'll tell you when: never. He never laughs. He has little giggles from time to time, but never full out LAUGHTER.

And then... horde battle. Debbie. Demise.

So, when I first fought Ghirahim, I thought I was going to die. I really, truly did. And I still don't know what happened. In the end, I miraculously survived with half a heart. That's it. One. Half. XD


So, of course, I ran as fast as I could to Skyloft afterward and stocked up on two Heart ++ Potions and two fairies.

Fighting Demise... well, I actually died once. But that's just because I forgot that I only had two fairies. If I'd remembered, I could have drank my Heart Potion ++, I suppose.

But it wasn't that hard after that! I got really good at Shield Bashing. I didn't use it for most of the game, but in the final two battles with Ghirahim and Demise, it was quite useful. The lightning was a nice touch too, haha.

Also, Demise uses a lot of big words. Now, think about it. If you just heard the words "subjugate" or "paragon" or "begot" without any context to help you figure out their meaning, would you know what they meant? No. But Demise says all of that.


In the ending cutscene right afterward, Link was a jerk. Zelda begins crying... and Link just STARES at her. SMILING, even. He doesn't do anything to comfort her. Nothing. At. All. Seriously. WHO DOES THAT?!



 
...Well, that's pretty much all I have to say about Skyward Sword right now. It's quite late - I've been working on this post for a few hours, now. The only break I had was practicing harp. I will probably come back and edit this surely long, pointless post later... but for now... hope you enjoyed! :D

(If the paragraphs are glitchy, BLAME BLOGGER. IT HATES ME AND MY PARAGRAPHS.)

Thanks to YouTube - specifically, TheHiddenTriforce, Tobygames, and some guy (hypermetalsonic?) with HD cutscenes - for the pictures! ...Except for those low-quality ones, because you KNOW those are mine. :P

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

See? I can be honest.

I TOLD YOU I'D POST!

Now, um... I have to go practice harp. But I wanted to prove that I could do it. That I CAN keep promises. :D

I guess I'll just go over a quick update on Skyward Sword. ;) I mean, because, tonight I was playing that instead of posting here. (Whaaat? It's fun!) In Hero Mode (which I've been neglecting until recently), I just got to the part with the Song of the Hero – when you're first supposed to get the parts of the Song, at least.

Now, here's the perfect opportunity to discuss some of my SS experiences – I haven't really been able to mention anything since I got the game. The first time through on this part, I actually got the Lanayru part first. Now apparently Nintendo's telling everyone "NOOOOO YOU'LL BREAK YOUR GAME!" if you go there. ...I thank the goddesses that my game wasn't broken. XD Man, that would have ruined my whole... Thanksgiving. Because that's probably when I was playing that part through.

So this time, I decided to go to Faron first, like you're supposed to. And I fought the Imprisoned. Okay, I have to ask: am I the ONLY one who died a good four times on my first try? O_o I was completely prepared to die this time, but I actually didn't! I was so proud of myself! It's because I learned from my mistakes the last time and learned how to control the Groosenator so that Link landed on the Imprisoned's head properly. I kept missing last time, so he'd make it to the temple and the whole world was destroyed. Four times. Yay.

So I just left off the game after drowning in the flooded Faron Woods. Gods Dangit. >.< And I think I jinxed myself, too. I had already nearly drowned once, but a fairy saved me. So when I was up on land next time, I briefly looked at my potions – and I realized I didn't have another fairy. So I told my sister, "I'm going to drown now... Even a heart potion + can't save me..."

And predictably...

Well, you know. I... died.

Anyway, that's all I have time for! Have a good evening, my nonexistent readers. ^^