The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker
- Set in an era after the events in The Ocarina Of Time, this incredible adventure takes a different young hero named Link on an all-new quest.
- Link's sister Aryll has been taken by a monstrous bird. Link sets sail to track down the bird and get her back -- setting him on a quest that will make him as much a legend as his namesake.
- As you face monsters and try to think your way around obstacles, you'll earn the Wind Waker -- a special conductor's baton that controls the winds.
- Incredible new combat engine with exciting new moves like the parry attack.
- Addictive mini-games and side quests will help you earn rupees.
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Continue Link's adventures with Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. You'll experience sword-swinging action, perplexing puzzles and stirring storylines. The trouble starts when Link witnesses his sister being snatched up by a giant bird. He then embarks on an epic voyage to locate his sister.
The Legend of Zelda series practically defined adventure gaming for an entire generation. Link, the hero of the adventure games, delighted millions by starring in games for each Nintendo console from the NES and Super NES to the Nintendo 64. Link brings this beloved franchise to the Nintendo GameCube in The Legend Of Zelda: The Wind Waker, and he's more animated than ever.
The first thing you'll notice about The Legend Of Zelda: The Wind Waker is that it looks completely different from any previous title in the franchise. Nintendo has opted to use cel-shading technology on Wind Waker; the result is that the game looks like a cartoon. Die-hard Zelda purists initially howled at this change, arguing that the game skews too young. I think it's fantastic. The cartoon animation style allows for better expression of the characters, and several of the animations--like Link trying to pick up an object that's too heavy--are so cute that you can't help but laugh a little.
The second thing youll notice is a focus on wind. Instead of trotting around on foot, Link travels from island to island on a talking boat, but he doesn't get far without the wind blowing in right direction. Luckily, you'll learn how to change the direction of the wind early in the game, and you'll do so frequently--not only to power your boat but also to solve puzzles. Clever use of wind makes Wind Waker stand out from more conventional adventure games.
The third thing youll notice is that the game is just plain fun. Puzzles are innovative and refreshing, and despite some tricky puzzles, I never felt too frustrated to keep playing. The locales you'll visit are invariably exotic and fun to explore, and the host of bizarre creatures you'll encounter (friendly and otherwise) are always a kick in the pants. Moreover, though the look is radically different, Wind Waker feels like a classic Zelda game. Veterans of the early games in the franchise will experience more than a bit of nostalgia while playing it.
The Legend Of Zelda: The Wind Waker is everything you've come to expect from a Zelda game, and it's one of the best adventure games to date. This is a must-have title for any GameCube owner. --Jon "Safety Monkey" Grover
- New cel-shaded animation looks great
- Puzzles and characters are a lot of fun
- There's a special place in the heart of any gamer who's ever owned a Nintendo console, and that place is shaped like a Triforce
- Some Zelda purists may be turned off by the cartoon look
Top reviews from the United States
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I thought the cel-shading was ridiculous. It was when I finally ended up getting a Gamecube, and my friend made me borrow it, that I was blown away.
The first thing I came to realize is how deep and emotional connection I really had to the Zelda series. I had constant chills running down my spines as the storybook-like intro unfolded and the original zelda theme chimed in. It was after playing this game that I realized that this is the best series of games to ever be played by mortals, and I really need to stick with it no matter what.
Then came the graphics. It looked like a pre-animated move, but it really was the actual game graphics. Seeing adorable characters such as Aryll gave me an amazing warm sensation, and, along with the music, this immersed me so deeply in the game I would get irritable and grumpy when it was time to put the controller down. These graphics are amazing.
The controls are really good and responsive, and very easy to use. And rotating the camera is something the series really benefits from. the targeting system still works great, and some of the actions are mapped to the r button, which makes some things less akward than in previous zelda games
The gameplay itself never lacked in fun, even long sailing boat trips could be fun with so many things to do out there, such as collecting items, sunken treasures, and fighting off marine enemies. Even spinning the camera around can provide good entertainment, with such great graphics.
There are so many sidequests and collectible items, that this game can last you a very long time. When I beat it, I felt satisfied, victorious, and eager to play it again. Especially eager when I learned of the second quest. While not much different, the second quest let you continue your nintendo gallery exploits by starting you with the pictograph box and lets you keep the original pajama outfit throughout the game. You can also now read the hylian language, and new humorous dialogue is added in.
I have played this game thrice now that I have bought it for myself, and I plan to play it again on my Wii. This game still hasn't lost any of it's charm. The difficulty level obviously decreases as you play it again and again, but the story, the music, the graphics and the characters alone are enough to play it several times over without yearning for something more. That is a quality I look for in my games.
+Amazing graphics, beautiful animations.
+Perfect puzzle solving expected of Zelda has come to the next console generation with flying colors, and is just the right level of difficulty.
+Great epic storyline, with imaginative characters and unique plot twists.
+Amazing soundtrack, and nostalgic for Zelda veterans.
+High replay value (for people like me who like to get more for their money)
-All other games seem a little dull after playing this.
-It's hard to think of cons for it :).
?It takes place after Twilight Princess, and is (believed to be) one of the later games in the Zelda timeline. Nobody knows for sure though.
?There is no equipment subscreen this time, as with Majora's Mask. I wonder why they never let you switch back to your family's shield...
?Strange how the parts of this game that recieved critcism are the parts that made it so great.
I reccomend you buy this game right now if you don't already have it. It's better than Twilight princess, in my opinion, if you're looking for a solid Gamecube Zelda. It is a masterpiece and you will be fondly remembering it 20 years from now.
The Wind Waker is actually set hundreds of years after the Ocarina of Time. Hyrule is covered in water now, and the only remains are the mountaintops, which are now the various islands throughout the game. The Link from OOT is considered a legend in TWW, and on a certain island known as Outset Island, it is customary to garb boys in green when they reach the age of the Hero of Time. Here on this island is where the adventure begins. Unlike the old Link, the Link of TWW has a family: his Sister and his grandmother. They live together on Outset Island, and when the game begins; it is Link's birthday. He reluctantly puts on the green clothes (they seem a little hot for this time of year....) and not long afterward, things start happening. A band of pirates sail by Outset, pursuing a gigantic bird who has taken there Captain: a little girl named Tetra. A shot from their cannon makes the bird drop Tetra to the earth. But then, in an attempt to recapture her; the bird takes your sister instead! Link leaves the island with the pirates, determined to rescue her. But things get a lot more complicated, and before the game is over, the fate of the world hangs in the balance. It appears that Ganon has returned, and he's pretty ticked. The Wind Waker has a story thats every bit as epic as OOT. There are many memorable supporting characters, and numerous twists and turns throughout. (Something I missed in Majora's Mask.) And don't worry; it has plenty to do with Hyrule, Zelda, the Master's Sword, and the Triforce But I'm not going to spoil it.
Despite how it looks, TWW actually remains quite faithful to the groundwork laid down in OOT. You traverse a gigantic ocean, go through numerous riddle-filled dungeons, collect new items (which in turn allow you to access new areas), et cet. Most of the usual items are back, (The bow, the boomerang, the hookshot), along with some interesting new ones, such as the Grappling Hook and the Deku Leaf. Not to mention; the title item: The Wind Waker. The Wind Waker itself is much like the Ocarina instrument from OOT and MM. You learn songs for it that do different things. However, you don't learn as many songs for it as in the past two games, and you don't play the songs that often. Three different items can be equipped to the X,Y, and Z buttons, while your sword is default on the B button. The control scheme is essentially the same as OOT and MM, with a few tweaks. The camera can now be rotated with the C stick, which helps when you need to look around. You can crawl through tight spaces with the R button. The control scheme isn't broke; so I don't think they need to fix it.
The combat which worked so well in OOT and MM is here, and its better than ever. The controls are still the same, but this time we're treated to beautiful acrobatic animations for the attacks, rather than just a monotonous slashing of the sword. Also, there is a new feature called Parry; which allows you to dodge an attack and strike back at the same time. Also, Link can pick up an enemies' dropped weapon. This is fairly useless; but adds a bit of depth. Also, for the record, this is without a doubt the most fighting-oriented Zelda yet. There are literally hordes of enemies at a time; and they are a lot more serious than before.
The Wind Waker's overworld is bigger and better-looking than ever, although this time its a vast ocean with islands scattered throughout. You'll sail back and forth of these islands many times throughout the game, on your trusty talking boat. (Yes, talking.) This actually is one of the faults of TWW. The sailing from island to island can take forever. Seriously, you'll sometimes spend 10-15 minutes just sailing. And the sharks that come and knock you out of your boat don't help. Thankfully, you'll learn a warp song for your Wind Waker that seriously cuts down on the time spent traveling.
There are plenty of islands throughout the sea. Most of them are just secret areas where you can find money or upgrades, others are bustling towns and homes. Windfall Island is a very impressive place, with plenty of people to talk to and plenty of buildings to enter. Its not as large as Clock Town from Majora's Mask, but its impressive enough. A lot of the time you'll spend in WW is in the overworld, but thats no complaint. There are an absolute TON of secrets to be discovered.
But that being said, you'll spend a fair amount of time in the game's dungeons. There are only five official dungeons, which is one more than MM, but three less than in OOT. Like in the past games, there is a theme to each one. (Fire, forest, earth, and a newly added Wind Temple.) They are filled with riddles that you have to solve to progress, and at the end of each one there is a massive boss. The dungeons are amazingly well thought out, and extremely fun to navigate and defeat. However, they rarely put up much of a challenge. But this can be said of the entirety of the Wind Waker; it is generally quite easy. The puzzles are straightforward and easily recognized. (For the most part. I will admit that there were a few instances in which I was confused.) But none of the dungeons ever get as difficult as, say; OOT's Water Temple. (Shudder). Also, while the bosses are bigger and better looking in this game than they've ever been, they are all very easy to defeat. Even the games final boss, amazing as it is, really does not put up much of a fight. When I completed TWW; I realized that I had not died a single time. If you have played OOT and MM, you will probably breeze through TWW.
This is part of what makes TWW shorter than either OOT or MM. But it isn't just the difficulty; the course of the game just doesn't run very long. In OOT there were 8 dungeons, plus the Well Temple, Gerudo Fortress, Ganon's Castle; et cet. In MM there were only 4 dungeons, but a TON of sidequests and out-of-dungeon missions. (And 20 masks to collect as well.) TWW has 5 dungeons, and very few out-of-dungeon missions. Plus the fact that you can basically breeze through the game due to its low difficulty, the WW goes down a lot quicker than the past two games. Granted, the game will take you around 15-20 hours to defeat, depending on your skill level. And for those who want to gather every heart piece, every arrow upgrade, et cet; you can probably make it last a lot longer. Also, there are a few uneven parts. For instance, the first part of the game has you collecting 3 pearls (Rather like the quest to collect 3 spiritual stones in Ocarina). You have to beat a Fire and Forest temple to get the first two; but there is no water temple to get the third. It seems like it was cut out, perhaps to get the game finished on time. Then for the last part of the game it makes you go on a "scavenger hunt" of sorts to collect 8 triforce shards. You have to literally sail across the entire world to collect 8 charts that tell you where the shards are, and get them deciphered for a whopping 398 rupees each, which makes money collecting a necessity. And then finally, you have to find the shards themselves. This portion of the game is boring, lengthy, and seems like it was shoved in to stretch the game to an acceptable length.
Now we turn our attention to the graphics. As you know, TWW has a distinctly different graphical style than OOT or MM; going with a cel-shaded cartoony look. There are many people who say it stinks, makes the game a cartoon, et cet. These complaints are unbased, as TWW is, in a word, gorgeous. When you play through the game, you'll realize that this was actually a good idea. As this is a new world and time period, there definitely needed to be a new look. And the graphical strength of the Wind Waker lies in other areas. Mainly in the facial expressions of the characters, including Link. Now, as we all know, we never hear what Link says to others; only their answers to him. In the N64 games, he basically seemed like an emotionless shell. But in TWW he is fleshed out through his many, many different expressions and sounds. But it isn't just Link; its every single person you meet. The expressive characters are the main strength of this game. But there are many more. Wind blows through the grass, trees sway, waves wash the beach, lighting streaks the sky, the shadows cast by torches are beautiful, and TWW boasts an extremely high resolution. The graphics are, in fact, quite a step up from the past games. Also, the Wind Waker is by no means a silly game. The ONLY aspect that is not serious are the look of the graphics. I actually thought TWW to be a more serious game than MM.
The audio is solid as well. The music is mostly remixed themes from OOT, and it sounds great. There are numerous sound clips for the characters, although there is no voicework. And I somehow doubt there ever will be.
Despite a few shortcomings, this is still the best game on the GameCube. A great story, fantastic gameplay and excellent graphics combine to make a more-than-worthy title in the Zelda series. It is every bit a must-own as every Zelda title before it.
Top reviews from other countries
Graphics? Gorgeous. Link is at his most expressive - his eyes in particular can help you out if you're stuck - and definitely his sweetest. Particularly when you play through a second time and get to be in his PJ's all the way through - aw! Don't let the cuteness fool you, though - there are some vicious baddies in this, and the re-deads in this game particularly freak me out - THEY CHOMP ON YOUR HEAD. Ugh.
Story? Well, it does eventually turn into the usual "save Zelda" plot, but there is a lot more emphasis on family throughout the first half of the game, which is a nice touch - at first, rather than saving the world, you're trying to save your sister. You have a granny, whom you visit once or twice, and it's emphasised throughout that, although Link is a hero, is friends and family are hugely important.
Controls - spot on. Very similar to the controls from Ocarina of Time, with the addition of a couple of things - such as an excellent dodge/attack move. Z targetting returns (well, it's L targetting on the Cube, but I always think of it as Z!), this time with the option to have it switch, like in Ocarina, or you being required to hold the button down to keep targetting.
The sound is perfection. Link has his usual assortment of grunts and shouts, plus a few words this time!, but I really like that. I've never wanted voice acting in a Zelda game, so I'm glad they didn't add it. The music is generally good - I particularly like that it changes when a baddie approaches. Most of the music themes - such as when you're sailing - are good, which is definitely a plus as you spend a LOT of time sailing.
And so, onto things that I love rather less about this game.
The sailing. Even once you have the warp power, you will spend a LOT of time sailing, and yes, it gets incredibly tiresome. I did like the mechanic of feeding the Zora to have islands charted on your map, but there was just TOO MUCH SEA.
The dungeons. Although the gameplay in general is good, and I liked the change from "nine dungeons to slog through" - I mean, going around to different islands and performing smaller tasks to get stuff is mostly fun - the dungeons themselves were too short and too easy for my taste. I never got lost in a dungeon, as I had done in both Forest and Water in Ocarina. It would have been nice to have one longer or harder one.
Tingle. I hate Tingle with a passion, and I never want to see him in a game again. He is at his most irritating in this game by far.
All that said, though, this is a fun wee game. Yes, there are some tedious aspects to it, but the world is beautifully realised, and the history provided is fairly fascinating. Ganondorf is at his most sympthetic in this incarnation, which I quite liked as a change from the unrelenting evil. The boat is cool, and Tetra is a great character. All in all, I'd recommend this, but get used to sailing.
Can't wait to finally play Wind Waker, thank you for the product!
Obviously it gets 5 stars because its the best game on the GameCube at the moment by a barge pole or two.
But it just didnt bring out in me the insane frenzy of gameplaying that Ocarina of Time did.
The graphics are actually beautifully crafted and look stunning, about 3 hours of my time was spent panning around Links boat.
Here though we come to my main complaint, the sailing. All of those that remembered Epona (the Horse) from Ocarina will tell you it was a JOY to ride over the fields on your horse, it tied Ocarina together in that no matter how far you had to go it was always fun doing it. Wind Waker's sailing isnt the case. Once you can teleport it gets a tiny bit better; but not much. Another niggle i noticed after playing Ocarina through again was that the dungeons in Wind Waker are too easy, i cant remember dying once.
But im only mentioning bad things here! everything else about this game is great, dont think its the MGS2 of Zelda because it isnt. The same perfect control system, camera, fighting, new picking up and swinging, eye watering graphics and the obviously Link, complete with face pulling action. What more could you want?
If you own a GameCube and dont own this game.... why?