Breath of the Wild is a breath of fresh air

This is a screenshot from the first preview of the game, back at E3 2014.

After almost six years of development time, Nintendo has finally released one of the developer’s most ambitious projects to date, “The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild,” and it definitely delivers.

Nintendo’s main goal when creating this game was to break many of the franchise’s old traditions. The game is on a completely different scope from any the company has ever conquered, and it works surprisingly well, especially for a first attempt at this style.

While many of the previous games had a linear progression style, this one throws that idea out in favor of a completely nonlinear game. After clearing the Great Plateau, the starting area of the game, you can explore anywhere the eye can see, without much exception. If you are good enough at the game, you can go straight to the final fight in the game, skipping the rest of the narrative. This adds a sense of freedom that has been long absent from the series.

Controlling Link is much different this time around. In past games, his movement has felt very stiff and on point, but here he moves very fluidly and loosely. It feels much less exact and calculated, and much more natural and smooth.

The weapon and item system works a lot different in this game than ever before. Every melee weapon, shield, and bow you pick up in the game will break, and they will quickly. You have to grab and loot a variety of weapons to replace the old ones. While I think they break too quickly, which is annoying, it does force you to plan out your attacks and try out different means of achieving a goal. It may bother some, but at the same time it can add to the experience. I just think that they should have made it so swords lasted for more than a couple battles.

The game’s storytelling is extremely subtle, and so is the music. It adds a nice, simple charm. Most of the previous games tried being much more over-the-top in both regards, so it is nice to see Zelda try to be subtle. 

Overall the game is great. It is much more impressive than I had initially thought it would be. If you have a Nintendo Wii U or Nintendo Switch, I would highly suggest this purchase.

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