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Breath of the Wild

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Posted

Breath of the Wild came out several days ago, yet there's no thread about it yet! How sad. But fear not, I'll start the discussion!

I didn't preorder a Switch, but I called around on release night and found a GameStop that had a handful of unclaimed systems left. I drove there as quickly as possible and stood in line for seven hours to claim the last one in stock, then drove home and immediately turned on Breath of the Wild with my wife. I let her play first, because I try to be a good husband.

My wife is not a gamer at all. She does enjoy the Sims, and she likes Mario Kart, but she's never been into these large, single-player games with hours of content and combat. But my wife absolutely loves Breath of the Wild. Though I'm sad to admit it, she's played a few hours more than I have, and I'm one of those die-hard, lifelong Zelda fans (go figure, right?) who has been looking forward to this game for years. I remember the first time I rented Majora's Mask, my first Zelda game, and the first time I beat Ocarina of Time. I remember borrowing a Gameboy from my friend to link my copies of the Oracle games. I remember the hype for the Nintendo Revolution and the excitement when the first then-unnamed Twilight Princess trailer released. 

I feel as though Breath of the Wild is the most satisfying one yet.

I was unhappy with Skyward Sword for a lot of reasons, so I restrained myself from getting too excited about this one. Honestly, I didn't have any intention of buying it or a Switch until Christmas, but I'm so glad I did. The game is amazing in every aspect, and I honestly have been riding a new-Zelda high since it released that I can't really describe. It's so different, yet so definitely Zelda nonetheless. 

What are y'all thinking so far? Love it? Hate it? Don't yet have it? Let's hear your thoughts!

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Posted

I won't say too much, but I love this game. I got the Switch and this game the day it came out. I was expecting to not like it because of the open world aspect. It's why I refuse to play Skyrim, it's why I never finished Fallout 3 and Xenoblade Chronicles X. I don't know if it's just because it's Zelda or not, but I am loving this game. Though, there are times when I get lost and want to quit and give up. To me, I have to make my own personal goals or the game becomes overwhelming.

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Posted (edited)

I'm going to have some mild spoilers in my breakdown, but more in the surface level: like game mechanics and features, rather than plot.

I do love that they took a world and lore that I love so much and expanded the scope to make a land as rich as mysterious as it deserves to be. It's not as densely detailed as Skyrim, but I think this game proves that it doesn't need to be. There are a lot of options for player expression that make the game a lot of fun to play and discuss with people. I particularly like time-stopping boulders, building up their momentum, and then climbing aboard to shoot myself into the sky, and usually to my death.

Only real gripe is that you can't stack buffs. I feel like if I was used to using stat buffs in other games, I'd be used to the fact that you overwrite one as soon as you add another, but having to stick to heat or cold resistance when I also want to up my attack bothers me a lot. That and for a good while before I realised this would be a problem, I cooked everything to include stat bonuses, and so if I need to heal, I run the risk of overwriting necessary stat buffs.

I'm 20 shrines down and I've been playing it for so long. Snuck a peek at Calamity Ganon about halfway through the main 4 things just to satisfy my curiosity. By the time I'd rounded the castle on the map, I really felt the need to just swim in, climb up the back of the castle, and get a look. I'm currently just getting into the Akalla region.

Interviews leading up to this talked about wanting to recapture the sense of discovery from wandering around the countryside and finding interesting areas to play around in. It undoubtedly succeeds in this. Nothing beats climbing a ridge and looking down on some new valley or natural phenomena and then immediately scouting for the highest point to drop down onto it and start puppying around.

For the record, I play it on Wii U, and apart from some dips in framerate and the occasional stop, the game runs fine. Like, if this was the only version it's easily playable, but not what people would consider a finished or totally acceptable state. Elder Scrolls games get away with worse though; at least Breath of the Wild has never fully frozen on me (I've only had to wait maybe 2 seconds, less than a handful of times, over lets say 30+ hours, give or take). It's okay for a game which is the inferior port, but if anyone's wondering, it's good.

Edited by Teto (see edit history)

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Posted (edited)

Also I don't know about anybody else, but this game feels full of Laputa: Castle in the Sky vibes, and making the association I can sometimes feel it in the music. I love that this game just like, a culmination of a lot of lore of the land coming together.

Rito Village spoilers

Getting regions like Faron, and seeing Wind Waker's music being appreciated and integrated into the long-time legacy of music by remixing Dragon Roost for Rito Village

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1pI_5Y6HKU 

Edited by Teto (see edit history)

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Posted

I really wish I could get my hands on it, and I'm so glad to see people raving about it. If this keeps up, Zelda will continue to have a promising future.

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Posted

I've been playing it on the Wii U over the past several weeks, and I love it. (some spoilers to follow).

Story-wise it feels a little more sparse, but it may be more because they tell the story more indirectly. This reminds me more of the Metroid series, where the story is told more indirectly through the setting, atmosphere, and lore you have to actively look for. The only part that was really guided was the tutorial section with the old man (nice callback btw).

If anything I find the main quest more engaging when I don't have to complete things in a given order. After the tutorial section you're free to go wherever you like, up to and including going to fight Ganon. What kept me from marching straight to Hyrule castle and stabbing Ganon in the face was not that the storyline wouldn't let me; I didn't have the skills or equipment to do so. 

I haven't noticed any issues with the graphics or anything. The only technical issue is the occasional lag when fighting too many Moblins. I'm conflicted on the weapon system. The upside to the weapon breakage is it encourages the player to try out different weapons and keep a variety on hand, so I'm somewhat okay with it. I'd be more okay if the game had a more robust storage system. Having more storage would allow the player to store more of the rare and powerful weapons, as well as spare potions and food items. As it stands they take up all your inventory space until you have to waste them on weaker enemies or sell them. You can buy a house and store/display weapons and shields, but only a few.

The music is subtle and beautiful. It made sense for more bombastic overworld themes when you weren't spending 90% of the game exploring it. You still hear familiar themes, but they're scattered around. The soundtrack does up the ante during certain battles and segments, such as Hyrule Castle.

Overall I'm really happy with it. They took a risk changing the formula, and it paid off.

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Posted

Just bought it today, only on the first dungeon but it's fantastic :D

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Posted

I went crazy with BOTW when it came out. I took a week off work and just marathoned it. Did two 40 hour sessions(day inbetween each one) and beat all the shrines, found over 400 koroks, and beat the game. Can't wait for DLCs. I'm the kind of gamer that likes to game for 18 hours, inject a saline solution, push back in my eyeballs and go back for round 2.

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