Monday, March 31, 2014

OoX Update - Another Game Completed.

It has been YEARS. But finally, FINALLY, I finished Oracle of Seasons.

I'm not very fond of that game. It wasn't bad -- I really don't think it's possible for a Zelda game to be bad -- but something about it just didn't appeal to me.

Usually Zelda games have some kind of story progression in between dungeons that breaks everything up, but this game didn't really have that, so it ended up feeling very formulaic and repetitive. Link's Awakening, which, as you know, is one of my favorite games, really did this well; there were beautiful, realistic, memorable main and side characters, there were what passed for cutscenes back in the day in between every dungeon... everything was paced so wonderfully. In Oracle of Seasons... Were there any side characters? Or main characters besides Link? I guess you could say there's Din and Impa as well but they're not there for very long... And Onox is the most boring villain ever. He's generic, he's bland, he's boring, and there is absolutely nothing memorable about him except for the fact that he turns into a giant freaking dragon which was surprisingly fun to fight. I'll probably talk about him later.

The gameplay was... okay, I guess. It was pretty much just Link's Awakening. I don't remember anything TERRIBLY innovative about it... except for the Magnetic Gloves, which were SO MUCH FUN. They were definitely my favorite item from the game and probably among one of my favorites in the series. Those would be very entertaining in a 3D environment. Twilight Princess gave us a taste of that in the Goron Mines with teh Iron Boots, but I think it could be taken to the level that Oracle of Seasons used it. There was also this moment in the game where the walls were closing in on you and you had to run as fast as you can with a Pegasus Seed to get to the other side before they crushed you. I thought THAT was cool, too. We should see more Indiana Jones-style stuff like that in Zelda, haha! ...Other than that though, there was nothing special. Now, of course, I played this in EXTREMELY fragmented bits and pieces, so perhaps I'm just not remembering the cool parts. Maybe after a replay I'll enjoy it more. But for now... it's at the bottom of my favorite Zelda games list.

Oracle of Ages on the other hand... So far, it's done everything RIGHT.

We've got Ralph, who already has more personality than the entire cast of Oracle of Seasons, who's fun and entertaining. ...Although he makes no sense. In my most recent session, just the other day,  I was speaking with some man who said he wanted to make the Flippers, and when I exited his house, which, keep in mind, was around a corner and over a broken bridge away from the regular path, Ralph just waltz up there. He says something like, "Hey, Link, what's up? ...Oh, that guy? Yeah, I think I saw his grave in the present time. Anyway, I'm busy, so bye!"


He says he's busy, yet he came up to ME, while I was coming out of a WAY out of place house. He seemed to have no idea what I was doing there, but he has just the information that I need before he has to rush away to attend to more important matters. ...And what kind of matters does he even have in he PAST? Shouldn't he have been off trying to save Nayru like I am rather than wandering around Labrynna aimlessly and nonchalantly pretending that meeting you was a total coincidence and he's "busy" when he makes a wrong turn?

What the heck, Ralph? Or should I say Mr. Plot Device?

...Anyway, uh... Ages really does do the character thing right. I swear. Ralph just had a... moment. Let me talk about Veran. Veran is amazing. I love Veran. I've always loved Veran, even before I played the game. She IS the first and only female Zelda villain in history, after all. ...No, the Twinrova don't count. And her ability to possess people really makes the game interesting. Possessing Nayru and using her to wreak havoc in the past is FAR cooler than "Me Onox. Me kidnap damsel in distress Din. You save her at my dark evil palace." And from what I've heard about the rest of the plot of Ages, it gets more and more interesting. Seasons' plot never changed. Ever. Eveeer. Your goal the whole game was to get to the next dungeon. The only thing in between that was getting to Subrosia -- which was kind of fun.

But still. Like, there's this part in Ages where you have to get to the next dungeon -- but when you try to in the present, you instead gracefully tear the entire place down. Excellent job. FORTUNATELY, it's probably hopefully still there in the past. So you go to the past -- but the entrance is blocked! However, the queen is offering a special item to those who bring her Mystery Seeds. So Link finds some Mystery Seeds and brings them to the queen -- who, as it turns out, is just being manipulated by Veran, who wants the Mystery Seeds for some unknown reason. You find out the reason later, of course. The queen gives you bombs as a reward, which you can use to access the dungeon. This is excellent. This is worldbuilding, foreshadowing... everything.

I'm out of time for tonight, but this is not the end of my Oracle tales. Oh no. Certainly not. I've got lots to say. I've also got a fun... review-type post planned, so be on the lookout for that.

Last day of the month post at 11:59 PM... out again!

EDIT: Yeah, my blog has the frustrating tendency to publish posts when I STARTED writing them, not when I actually published them... But hey, the fact that this originally showed up on March 18th proves to you that I actually DO attempt to write blog posts during the rest of the month and don't COMPLETELY procrastinate. ...Key word is "attempt".