Giant Bomb Review

470 Comments

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword Review

4
  • Wii

For mostly better and only a little bit worse, Skyward Sword is the best Zelda game in years, and makes a strong case for motion controls when done right.

An early boss brutally teaches you to avoid telegraphing attacks.

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword is Nintendo’s closing argument on motion controls with Wii, especially as it relates to traditional games. It seems fitting that saving the world alongside Link will, for many of us, act as the first and last time we spend dozens of hours with a game inside our Wiis.

And boy, how far we’ve come. It takes only minutes with Twilight Princess again to understand how tacked on those motion mechanics were, and Skyward Sword’s evolutionary leaps only compound the idea that we should have played Link’s last adventure with a GameCube controller in both hands. How you come into Skyward Sword partially depends on how you took to Link the last time. Top to bottom, I found Twilight Princess painfully boring, which is, perhaps, a fate worse than bad. My reaction was fueled by a combined indifference to the game’s uninspiring world, characters, and gadgets, and the tepid, half-hearted implementation of motion to make the mechanics more physical.

Especially as it relates to the last point, Skyward Sword could not be more different. It’s not just the added fidelity from Motion Plus that makes the difference, it’s that your physical actions are truly meaningful when it comes to engaging in just about every combat scenario in Skyward Sword. The very first enemies in the game will beat your ass to the ground if you’re not reading their moves, and Skyward Sword quickly teaches players that “waggle” will not work here--period. To be successful in combat, reacting to the placement of each enemy’s hands is of utmost importance, and while one becomes extremely adept at taking out the early combatants after a few hours, from start to finish, Skyward Sword asks much of your wrist. When the credits rolled, my hand ached, and it felt great.

Combat never becomes difficult, but remains challenging, as you’re constantly tasked with reacting to enemy actions (i.e. placing their sword to the left) with your own (i.e. slashing your sword to the right). Early on, the enemies are very blatant about showing weaknesses. That's less true later, forcing you to spend several failed encounters sussing out various “tells." In one case, a lizard appears to be hiding its weak arm on the left, when in reality you must swing around from the right--a sleight of hand. Furthermore, for him to even show off that weak point, you must swing away a few times and force him into a defensive posture. The most satisfying encounters are when enemies swap tells over and over, asking players to be extraordinarily quick with a response, and this becomes more demanding over time. The game is always reading your sword in relation to the enemy, and if you telegraph an attack, enemies will smack back.

Get to know your sword well, as it's basically a living companion.

Link’s sword is front and center here, with only a few of the gadgets playing into combat. Mastery of the sword is of utmost importance. It’s strange to spend so much time talking on and on about combat in a Zelda game, but it’s no longer about smashing on the attack button anymore. Quite literally, you are part of combat, and motion controls, done well, provides a satisfaction that wouldn’t be possible any other way. This is the finest example yet.

One facet of modern games Nintendo’s dodged is overcomplicated design, focusing on a simplicity that appeals to a larger audience. The Zelda series has always been described as an “action RPG,” but in light of what the RPG has become with games of immense depth like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Zelda has become more RPG lite. And that’s fine! Nintendo can contently stay in its corner, while Bethesda tackles another. But Skyward Sword takes steps to address the gap and falls short. The game includes a forgettable element of potion-crafting and item-upgrading, a case of good ideas that don’t go far enough. Providing such a tiny amount of customization that’s also built upon the same grinding mechanics of other crafting systems (prepare to catch lots of bugs, and read descriptions of what those bugs are every single time!) meant I only ended up upgrading when I just happened to have the right materials, and never bothered the rest of the game. It doesn’t help that Skyward Sword’s isn’t particularly tough, which isn’t outright a bad thing, but in the context of creating upgrade desire, not dying more than once or twice didn’t create much motivation.

Some depth would have gone a long way here, especially if players could have any customization of Link's sword, the weapon he spends the most time with in the game. The sword's path is all story-driven, and that makes it difficult to forge a unique identity through upgrades. It ends up feeling like you’re working way harder for upgrades that would have been found naturally in a dungeon in any other Zelda game.

It’s hard to overlook other areas where Skyward Sword doesn’t play catch up, too. It’s unacceptable now that Link doesn’t have access to any catch-all quest log. Sure, the replacement for Navi, the robotic Fi, will provide you hints on where to go next, but that only relates to the primary goal, and she does not keep a database of side quests stumbled upon while exploring Skyloft. Characters have conversation icons above their heads if they have anything to say, but it’s contingent upon you to either resolve a side quest when you encounter it, or make a note of and come back. Mostly, I just never came back.

There’s plenty to keep you busy, however. Even if you don’t touch anything but the main storyline, Skyward Sword will take you well over 30 hours to complete, and if you want to see everything, that number could easily double. It’s a packed journey, and while it’s one that plays with some of the same tropes the series has become known for--Link, Zelda, evil, Triforce, forest, desert, volcano--the world of Skyloft, situated in the clouds, feels genuinely refreshing. What’s old feels mostly new again, thanks largely to some truly devious, changing dungeon design. None of the dungeons are particularly long, there’s not a single “bad” one, and the more active combat provides a welcomed contrast to puzzle barrage.

When in doubt, take a deep breath and look around for clues.

An early puzzle asks you to recreate a specific motion that wouldn’t be possible without Motion Plus, and it took me over 20 minutes to come up with the solution, purely because I’d never encountered something like it before. You’re constantly doing new everything here, and it’s the moments when the designers most daringly break from the past (ironic, given the game’s “birth of a legend” branding) that Skyward Sword makes the game worth playing, even if you’ve grown tired of Zelda at this point. My favorite dungeons involved playing with time, where Link will move from room to room, switching between the past and the present to solve puzzles and avoid enemies. Creatures spawn in and out of reality in real-time, so rather than having to fight them, you can move time objects out of their vicinity--and poof! You’re forced to think about the environment in entirely new ways, and ways that often don’t feel very Zelda-like.

And that’s one of the weird things about playing a Zelda game, as it’s impossible to play a Zelda game without acknowledging it exists in a large vacuum of other Zelda games. It’s not unlike what has happened to Call of Duty, in which many devoted players are simply looking for more Call of Duty, rather than a complete reinvention. Coming to terms with the latest game becomes a nostalgic balancing act of understanding the latest game in relation to itself, where it's come from and everything surrounding it.

Skyward Sword doesn’t do itself any favors in taking its sweet time getting started, and longer before introducing you to some of its most creative highlights. Designer Shigeru Miyamoto once said “the first 30 minutes of a game is the most important,” and Skyward Sword fails to pass that test. It takes several hours before you’re given any sense of real freedom, which is too bad, as the game manages to merge the sublime openness of the sea from Wind Waker (without the Triforce madness!) with the directed fun of most other games, as it's easy to just keep moving forward without much fuss. And by the time you start seeing what the designers really have in store for you (wait until you get to the pirate section, where your boat is able to...well, you’ll see), you actually don’t want it to stop, even if you’re able to constantly, cynically predict when the game will ask you to find just One More Thing before it's all over.

Good luck skydiving, one of the game's most frustrating bits.

Perhaps the most surprising disappointment is how little control players have over the game’s central instrument, a harp. If you’re going to call back to one of Ocarina of Time’s most memorable features within a game that makes such exquisite use of the new options afforded by Motion Plus, you’d think the designers would come prepared with something altogether unique. That’s not the case. Though Link learns several songs for the harp over the course of the game, you have no choice over which one to play, and playing anything involves haphazardly waving the Wii remote back and forth.

Even in Skyward Sword’s lowest of lows (don’t get me started on a late sequence involving swimming underwater and collecting musical notes for 30 minutes), the game benefits from the prettiest art direction since Wind Waker. The game seamlessly transitions between various degrees of an impressionistic painting, based on where objects are in the foreground and background. And while I detest the meme “it’s good for a Wii game,” at the point where we’re beginning to gripe about the limitations of our high-definition consoles, it’s a testament to the art direction that I immediately forgot the hardware's aging technology after a few minutes of play. Skyloft is an extraordinarily pretty place to explore.

Skyward Sword is simultaneously a very good Zelda game and a rather great adventure game. It has some of the most inventive dungeons the series has ever known, sports the most impactful changes to the combat since Z-targeting, introduces wrinkles to the Zelda mythology that will force fans to rethink the entire series, and will have you gawking at it constantly, 480p 'n all. But the series finds itself facing an identity crisis, as it flirts with expanding what has defined the series without abandoning its charming but waning simplicity. Zelda doesn’t need to become something else to maintain relevance, but at a certain point, when “a brand-new great Zelda game” isn’t enough, there’s reason to pause.

Patrick Klepek on Google+
470 Comments
Posted by CaLe

I'm really looking forward to this game. I haven't been excited about a Wii game in a long time. The only problem is seeing what Zelda fans are like; they are rabbid. Seeing how some of them react just to seeing the Zelda character.. well, I'm glad I'm not like them but still, this along with Skyrim and Dark Souls have been my most anticipated games this year (not forgetting Portal 2, Batman and U3).

Posted by Whizbang

Look, we're not saying that we're right

We're just saying that you're wrong

With your quote unquote review of Skyward Sword

And you're desperate for attention

Yet barely worth a mention

Except to take attention with your desperate grab for hits

You gave Skyward Sword an 8

I wanted an 11 on our site

Our scale doesn't go that high but I had to try

And who are you to say Skyward Sword is a good game

It's not

It's a perfect video game

Oh it's a perfect video game

Yes it's perfect

You can't give Citizen Kane an 8

Everybody knows, just ask Roger Ebert

He would tell you that's a disgrace

Citizen Kane gets two thumbs up and therefore so does Skyward Sword

The NDF said so

But I would give it three thumbs up

But I don't have three thumbs

So you can lend me one

And together three thumbs up for Skyward Sword

Me and you giving Skyward Sword its due

But that leaves one

Idle thumb

Who thought this game was a little bit dumb

Posted by mrfluke

wow 4 stars brace for impact patrick

Posted by SirPsychoSexy

I really expected 5 stars, now I am less hyped

Posted by Hot_Karl

Over 100 comments on this review, like 70 of them are repeating the same "OH MAN 4 OUT OF 5 BE WARE OF THE FANBOYS PATRICK" joke (a joke that's apparently not true, since there haven't been any fanboys talking mess about the review). Irony.

Hey Patrick, Loved the review. I'm not even a Zelda fan, but the way you described the combat & art direction almost possibly kinda sold me onto this game. If only I had a Wii.

If only a big box retail store was selling a Wii for $99 on Black Friday...

Posted by algertman

@Freshbandito said:

I'm getting a sick kind of schadenfreude from reading Zelda fan's "you're doing reviewing wrong! GOD!!" comments, it's like I draw sustenance from their wails of woe.

He mentioned Call of Duty and Skyrim in a Zelda review. Let me put it this way, he mention games not even made by Nintendo in a Zelda review.

Posted by SaturdayNightSpecials

Zelda doesn’t need to become something else to maintain relevance, but at a certain point, when “a brand-new great Zelda game” isn’t enough, there’s reason to pause.

Enough for what?

Online
Posted by Cozmicaztaway

@algertman said:

@Freshbandito said:

I'm getting a sick kind of schadenfreude from reading Zelda fan's "you're doing reviewing wrong! GOD!!" comments, it's like I draw sustenance from their wails of woe.

He mentioned Call of Duty and Skyrim in a Zelda review. Let me put it this way, he mention games not even made by Nintendo in a Zelda review.

So all Nintendo reviews are supposed to exist in a giant vaccuum now and only allowed to be compared to other Nintendo games? Or are you saying Patrick's gonna get shit because all other people think so?

And @freshbandito, I totally know what you're talking about.

Posted by bunkerbuster05

I had no idea Giantbomb hired the Invisible Man to write reviews. In other words, get a silly cartoony picture Patrick!

If I still had my Wii I would definitely play this, oh well.

Posted by Cybexx

Great review, I personally enjoyed Twilight Princess quite a bit, even if it did expend too much effort trying to be a bigger and better Ocarina of Time, so I will probably enjoy Skyward Sword a bit more than you even if all your criticisms ring true for me.

The combat sort of sounds a lot like Punch Out!, especially trying to deduce the tells and getting the harder enemies to show their weak point. So that sounds pretty great to me.

Posted by KamikazeCaterpillar

Nintendo can contently stand in its corner and reproduce the same game over and over and over and over and over and over again. I really wish I could understand how people still get excited about first party Nintendo games. Even the Call of Duty bros will stop buying those games eventually... I hope.

Posted by EpicBenjamin
@patrickklepek

@krabboss said:

I think I could do without constantly reading "So the Wii sucks and Skyward Sword is the only decent thing that has come out on it for years" in these reviews.

More people should play Deadly Creatures. I loved that game.

B-b-b-but spiders!
Posted by JimmyPancakes

Good review, can't wait to play this. I disliked Twilight Princess, the most disappointing game since Deus Ex 2. All of the magic and joy was gone from my favorite franchise. I'm delighted it's back.

Posted by CrunchbiteJr

Great review. May god have mercy on your soul Patrick.

Posted by algertman

@KamikazeCaterpillar said:

Nintendo can contently stand in its corner and reproduce the same game over and over and over and over and over and over again. I really wish I could understand how people still get excited about first party Nintendo games. Even the Call of Duty bros will stop buying those games eventually... I hope.

People keep buying games like Madden and Halo.

Posted by Nictel

Oh am I the only one here happy it got 4 stars? After Twilight Princess I was fearing 2/3 stars. And no a 10 from NintendoWorldReport doesn't really comfort me. Since this will go to 2000 comments when the kids wake up: This is a great review, and though I was already going to buy this anyway, this review makes me more enthousiastic to buy the game than any 10-review. Because Patrick had exactly the same problems with TP as I did. I completeted it but wouldn't want to go back to it. Boring and uninspirational.

Posted by Thusian

I'm confused by the comments here. Why should Patrick expect negative feedback. I'm a fan of the series, not fatigued by the franchise, and the lack of a fifth star does not make my blood boil. He said it was good with a few flaws that brought it down for him thoughtfully written. I will see once I play it, because I never questioned that I would purchase it, if I agree or disagree with Patrick. If I do disagree I won't pester his email or twitter account, I'll likely go walk the dog or look after my cat who is recovering from an operation, you know real things to be concerned with. Patrick keep on keeping on bro.

Posted by Tim_the_Corsair
@lizzard2

Can someone who don't call Zelda an "Action RPG" please review the game instead...since no its not an Action RPG its an ADVENTURE game. And to talk about Elder scrolls and call of duty in and Zelda review wow. worst review i read so far in this place . The score is probobly fine thats not my issue but to call Zelda RPG ..well thats just sad..

Is it point and click? Does it play like Sam & Max?

Then it is not an adventure game.

I am sure Patrick and the crew are having a good laugh at the pathetic complaints anyway.
Posted by EchoEcho

@VinceNotVance said:

Over 100 comments on this review, like 70 of them are repeating the same "OH MAN 4 OUT OF 5 BE WARE OF THE FANBOYS PATRICK" joke (a joke that's apparently not true, since there haven't been any fanboys talking mess about the review). Irony.

Hey Patrick, Loved the review. I'm not even a Zelda fan, but the way you described the combat & art direction almost possibly kinda sold me onto this game. If only I had a Wii.

If only a big box retail store was selling a Wii for $99 on Black Friday...

I agree that the joke didn't need to be repeated over and over at least a few times on each page. It's no longer funny if you're the tenth or fifteenth person in a row to make it.

That said, you may want to go back and skim over the comments again -- there have already been more than a few to the tune of "Your opinion is wrong because it's not the same as mine!" and "You're doing it wrong! You're not supposed to make comparisons or play other games at the same time!" and "Other websites are giving it perfect scores, so obviously there's something wrong with you!" among others. Several of them are even rather lengthy essays.

Posted by Simplexity

Man gutted, just spent way to much money on a 4 star game. god damnit this holiday season is not shaping up great for me.

Posted by IkariNoTekken

@Thusian: Probably people harking back to when Jeff Gerstmann gave Twilight Princess an 8.8 (decent score I might add) and received hate mail and death threats. Hopefully most of those people were left behind at GS and Patrick won't receive the same treatment.

Heres a sample of the forum topics made back after Jeff's review.

Posted by DeF

@KamikazeCaterpillar said:

Nintendo can contently stand in its corner and reproduce the same game over and over and over and over and over and over again. I really wish I could understand how people still get excited about first party Nintendo games. Even the Call of Duty bros will stop buying those games eventually... I hope.

The problem with that statement is that it's completely not true. They may put out new games from franchises they created 25 years ago, but they couldn't be more different from one another. Just look at all the different games and how they have changed over time. Compare that to almost all other franchises and their sequels. The only two games I can think of that are almost the same every time are Mario Kart and Kirby (even Kirby has very different titles throughout its history).

Posted by Yummylee

@Contro said:

So, you think Nintendo spent a year and a half contemplating the Zelda series and it's core traits, and how they should progress the series while retaining these traits, only to produce a Zelda game with an identity crisis, lol :?

The game has been is design for five years, this is exactly the Zelda game Nintendo wanted to craft for fans and they had a very clear direction and logic in all their design choices:

http://iwataasks.nintendo.com/interviews/#/wii/zelda-skyward-sword/0/0

How much of this Zelda game have you played exactly? I ask because a Tweet of yours being banded around currently strongly implies you rushed through it in order to play Skyrim, lol, (!)

If you did rush through Skyward Sword, you would have missed out on an estimated extra 30hrs of extra gameplay, and some great moments. The side quests, if you can even call them that, are said to be some of the best in the series and are very rewarding.

"Skyward Sword doesn’t do itself any favors in taking its sweet time getting started, and longer before introducing you to some of its most creative highlights. Designer Shigeru Miyamoto once said “the first 30 minutes of a game is the most important,” and Skyward Sword fails to pass that test"

Ugh... Wind Waker took a long while introducing you to characters on Outset Island and the basic mechanics of the game (made more important with Motion Plus), it did so with the very best of intentions: When I played Wind Waker, I left Outset Island for the first time feeling like I knew what those characters on shore - an emotional connection was created, which further heightened my experience of the adventure.

@Darkpen said:

"One facet of modern games Nintendo’s dodged is overcomplicated design, focusing on a simplicity that appeals to a larger audience. The Zelda series has always been described as an “action RPG,” but in light of what the RPG has become with games of immense depth like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Zelda has become more RPG lite. And that’s fine! Nintendo can contently stay in its corner, while Bethesda tackles another. But Skyward Sword takes steps to address the gap and falls short."

Patrick.... I want to punch you after reading this. Skyrim? Really? That's your genre comparison, your analogy? The two games couldn't be further removed. The fact that you admitted on the Bombcast that you played no more than 2-3 hours of Twilight Princess when that originally came out really hurts your credibility and your review. Its apples and oranges here--a better comparison would be the evolution of gameplay, content, and depth between Skyward Sword and Twilight Princess, or even your beloved Wind Waker. Or hell, Darksiders would be another worthy candidate for a valid genre comparison.

You played the worst hours of Twilight Princess and dropped it; I feel like your review of Skyward Sword is tainted by untempered cynicism that grows from your own lack of completed games. This may be me harping more on you based on what I've heard of you on the Bombcast as of late than the review, but I feel that you have bad gaming mojo: its always with the "ehhhhh," and "I can understand WHY people like X game..." but never any time spent truly building a niche for yourself.

That said, I don't have a problem with your score. 4/5 is a great score, and not unexpected for any great game. What I have a problem with is that you were the wrong person for the review. You're right, Twilight Princess is a game that should have been played with a Gamecube controller, and guess what, that was a choice made available to consumers, a choice that I happily chose and was rewarded for. You say that Twilight Princess is painfully boring, yet your experience with it is in reference to possibly THE worst 2-3 hour tutorial introductory section of any game in the previous generation, barely beating out Kingdom Heart II's horrible late title card.

Get back to me when you're 4-5 dungeons into Twilight Princess, and then we'll talk. I'm not even being a TP apologist here; I genuinely believe that a lot of the "problems" you've thrown at Skyward Sword are things that should be addressed with respect to where its been before, which is an experience that you clearly do not have. Either that, or you're just a horribly cynical gamer.

I know, it's a very dumb comparison to make, but It doesn't surprise me in the slightest in light of what I've been told.

All that aside, the game is currently raining 10's. The IGN review is surprisingly excellent, they break it down thoroughly, check out the written review.

http://www.metacritic.com/game/wii/the-legend-of-zelda-skyward-sword/critic-reviews

Oh, Linkyshinks. At least you're (currently) a little more restrained this time around and aren't outright needlessly insulting the staff.

Posted by LassieME

That was fucking great!

Posted by Hilts

There's a surprise. I had predicted It should come down to Skyward Sword, Portal 2 and Skyrim for GOTY. Guess Portal 2 it is then!

Posted by LassieME

I wonder if the reason behind this review not getting to many hate comments is that no-one has played it yet, other than reviewers ofc. Could this be some sort of tactic from Nintendos side, trying not to make a big deal out of this game?

Posted by Nictel

Comments over at Gamefaqs are picking up the slag here:

"it's fine that the reviewer doesn't like Zelda games much and would rather play Skyrim...

its a problem that this ridiculous review will impact metacritic"

And:

"Seriously, anyone who finds Twilight Princess, one of the best titles in the franchise, "painfully boring" should not be reviewing Zelda games, period"

Posted by Sawboss

Great review Patrick as always. Despite its flaws, I still really want to make this game my last wii hurrah. It has been so long since I played my Wii and this game still seems like a a proper send off.

Posted by CptBedlam

@Nictel: Just leave that shit over there ;)

And lol@ TP being one of the best entries in the series. That game bored the shit out of me.

Posted by Luketh

This review was an interesting read and well written. As an irrationally enthusiastic and nostalgic Zelda fan, I'd have been buying the game regardless but it raised some curious points. Certainly given me some things to think about for when I get my hands on the game myself. I must say, divided opinion on this 'upgrade' system does make it sound like a very odd choice on Nintendo's part.

The only thing I'd question here is Patrick's adoration of Wind Waker compared to the outright dismissal of Twilight Princess. Wind Waker is probably my favourite Zelda, but these judgement calls from Patrick on the Bombcast and in the article seem largely to be based on art style alone, but articulated as if to apply to gameplay too... Twiight Princess had a lot more creative dungeon tools than Wind Waker, even if it used them equally formulaically.

For Patrick (who I respect as a writer and an opinion a great deal) to happily admit to not giving Twilight Princess more than about 3 hours chance and then go on to talk about the in depth evolution of the series seems a little "armchair game critic" to me. Trying to factor everything in and sound as intelligent as possible without a full point of reference for the closest point of comparison: the previous console Zelda title.

From this view, it seems even weirder to have such enthusiasm for Wind Waker - an incredibly similar game. I fully accept Zelda is pretty far from the face of innovation and that the derivative aspects along with a formulaic structure can be a big turn off to people less enthusiastic about the series... but to me an outright dismissal of Twilight Princess is on par with those blinded by Ocarina of Time nostalgia who didn't even give Wind Waker a chance because of the graphical style.

Still, though, none of this impacts the actual major points of the review. Just kind of thought it was worth mentioning. You won't see me crying over a single score or a perfectly valid opinion visually represented in stars. Like I said, it made for an interesting read!

Posted by Raios

Good review, will definitely be looking forward to this after my Skyrim binge.

Posted by dolsande

I can't believe these children are wrapped up in the star rating. Read the words and take the time to understand them before ranting and raving about the "rating". This review was a good opinion peice about how Patrick felt about the game while he was playing, also bringing in some references to other games in (technically) the same genre. If you want to get a full understanding of the game, bloody play it, otherwise the best you can do is read a few different reviews to get different people OPINIONS on it.... fucking chi

Posted by DrDarkStryfe

A whole lot of hilariously pathetic comments going on here. Once again, an example at why gaming will never be taken as seriously as other forms of entertainment media.

Posted by dolsande

Quick question: What is a 'metacritic' and why gamers care?

Posted by Vorbis

I'm shocked after hearing early impressions from other sites, was almost expecting this to be the Wiis swan song. I mean, it still sounds great, just not the "reason to buy a Wii" kind of great.

Posted by avantegardener

Good review Patrick, and what appears to be a well reasoned score, as someone who is pretty much 'over' Zelda, this actually peaked my interest. As for the Internet? Chill the fuck out and move out of your parents house.

Posted by catpowerd

Five pages of comments and not a single death threat. The Internet is growing up! *wipes single tear from eye*

Posted by Parsnip

Twilight Princess is the best Zelda game.
On Gamecube of course.

Posted by jellotek

Next article on Giantbomb: 4-star review fallout for Zelda.

Edited by BonOrbitz

2 important things:

1) Do NOT compare this game to Elder Scrolls: Skyrim

2) The scores don't matter. The reviews don't matter. What matters is if you enjoy the game and the time spent with it. As easy as it may be, it's not worth getting upset over a review score, so just enjoy the game and be grateful for it's existence.

Posted by Tesla

Why isn't your opinion like mine Patrick?! This confuses and angers me, so I must divine your motives. I heard you couldnt wait to go back to Skyrim...care to explain yourself to the Zelda Committee?

Posted by Blind_Evil

This'll sound terrible because my name is in red, but I sort of knew Patty would be the one reviewer to skew the game away from the 96+ ground on review aggregates.

I'm not upset or anything, I've been over review scores as a thing for probably 4 or 5 years. I'm still going to play it, and I think everyone else that was going to is as well. Just, you kind of know who you're dealing with at a point.

I *thought* I knew the same for Eurogamer, being as hard to please as that lot tends to be. Then they surprised me with one of the most effusive reviews I've ever seen. Their glowing praise of the innovation apparently present, along with lines like Patrick's, "You’re constantly doing new everything here," make me figure this will be a five-star game for me.

Posted by rcath

Too bad I guess. It would have been a reason to turn on my Wii. I will probably buy OOT from the download service instead. Disappointing.

Posted by rcath

@FacestabMan: Cmon now, we both know that is a bunch of horse poo.

Edited by ptys

Only four... phew! I was almost ready to buy a Wii again after hearing all the Edgy 10/10 Perfect rumours. Dodged that landmine!

Posted by masterpaperlink

I approve of anyones opinion who loves Windwaker.

Windwaker was magic but i don't think any game will ever capture those same emotions because im not a kid anymore.

As long as this game is better than TP im happy. (if its not then i should stop playing zelda)

Posted by rcath

@Contro: Except for all those 90 and 80 scores it got too.

Posted by mikey87144

4/5 stars is a good score. Great review Patrick. You articulated your points well.

Posted by DiegoBitterman

@Contro: @Contro said:

So, you think Nintendo spent a year and a half contemplating the Zelda series and it's core traits, and how they should progress the series while retaining these traits, only to produce a Zelda game with an identity crisis, lol :?

The game has been in design for five years, this is exactly the Zelda game Nintendo wanted to craft for fans, and they had a very clear direction and logic in all their design choices:

http://iwataasks.nintendo.com/interviews/#/wii/zelda-skyward-sword/0/0

How much of this Zelda game have you played exactly? I ask because a Tweet of yours being banded around currently strongly implies you rushed through it in order to play Skyrim, lol, (!)

If you did rush through Skyward Sword, you would have missed out on an estimated extra 30hrs of extra gameplay and some great moments. The side quests, if you can even call them that, are said to be some of the best in the series and are very rewarding.

"Skyward Sword doesn’t do itself any favors in taking its sweet time getting started, and longer before introducing you to some of its most creative highlights. Designer Shigeru Miyamoto once said “the first 30 minutes of a game is the most important,” and Skyward Sword fails to pass that test"

Ugh... Wind Waker took a long while introducing you to characters on Outset Island, and the basic mechanics of the game (made more important with Motion Plus), it did so with the very best of intentions. When I played Wind Waker, I left Outset Island for the first time feeling like I knew what those characters on the shore line were all about, I had emotional connection with them, which further heightened my experience of the entire adventure. Nintendo wants to establish a firm connection with you and the games colourful characters, I'm very surprised this wasn't obvious to you, but maybe you had other things on your mind...

@Darkpen said:

"One facet of modern games Nintendo’s dodged is overcomplicated design, focusing on a simplicity that appeals to a larger audience. The Zelda series has always been described as an “action RPG,” but in light of what the RPG has become with games of immense depth like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Zelda has become more RPG lite. And that’s fine! Nintendo can contently stay in its corner, while Bethesda tackles another. But Skyward Sword takes steps to address the gap and falls short."

Patrick.... I want to punch you after reading this. Skyrim? Really? That's your genre comparison, your analogy? The two games couldn't be further removed. The fact that you admitted on the Bombcast that you played no more than 2-3 hours of Twilight Princess when that originally came out really hurts your credibility and your review. Its apples and oranges here--a better comparison would be the evolution of gameplay, content, and depth between Skyward Sword and Twilight Princess, or even your beloved Wind Waker. Or hell, Darksiders would be another worthy candidate for a valid genre comparison.

You played the worst hours of Twilight Princess and dropped it; I feel like your review of Skyward Sword is tainted by untempered cynicism that grows from your own lack of completed games. This may be me harping more on you based on what I've heard of you on the Bombcast as of late than the review, but I feel that you have bad gaming mojo: its always with the "ehhhhh," and "I can understand WHY people like X game..." but never any time spent truly building a niche for yourself.

That said, I don't have a problem with your score. 4/5 is a great score, and not unexpected for any great game. What I have a problem with is that you were the wrong person for the review. You're right, Twilight Princess is a game that should have been played with a Gamecube controller, and guess what, that was a choice made available to consumers, a choice that I happily chose and was rewarded for. You say that Twilight Princess is painfully boring, yet your experience with it is in reference to possibly THE worst 2-3 hour tutorial introductory section of any game in the previous generation, barely beating out Kingdom Heart II's horrible late title card.

Get back to me when you're 4-5 dungeons into Twilight Princess, and then we'll talk. I'm not even being a TP apologist here; I genuinely believe that a lot of the "problems" you've thrown at Skyward Sword are things that should be addressed with respect to where its been before, which is an experience that you clearly do not have. Either that, or you're just a horribly cynical gamer.

I know, it's a very dumb comparison to make, but It doesn't surprise me in the slightest in light of what I've been told by others.

All that aside, the game is currently raining 10's. The IGN review is surprisingly excellent, they break it down thoroughly, check out the written review.

http://www.metacritic.com/game/wii/the-legend-of-zelda-skyward-sword/critic-reviews

This is fucking priceless.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5H3TiMgE6ME

Posted by Toxin066

I feel like I've reached the point where Patricks vocal voice is able to be heard through his writing voice, which is totally cool.

I think the most egregious ooffense committed in this review is the lack of a cartoon avatar for the Patman.