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    The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess

    Game » consists of 19 releases. Released Nov 19, 2006

    The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess once again sees Link exploring the vast kingdom of Hyrule, this time in an attempt to dispel an evil twilight that has settled over the land.

    Nobody likes Twilight Princess?

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    NerfHerderV1

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    It seems the overwhelming majority looks down upon Twilight Princess. Most video game outlets, and podcasts, always seem to consider Twilight Princess a bad Zelda game. Was it really that bad?

    I hope these people were only playing the Wii version of the game, and not the Gamecube version. Motion controls are bad, gimmicky, and unresponsive.

    Although admittedly I can only speak to the Gamecube version, as I did not have a Wii at the time.

    It just seems like using A wii mote for this game is not the best way to play. Besides the map is mirrored from the GC version. Lake Hylia is in the wrong geographic spot! Cmon!

    This game felt soo epic. The newly introduced horse combat was snappy and fun, bosses were creative. Armor sets were cool. And It actually had temples and dungeons! Something I truly missed playing the most recent Zelda title.

    Playing as the wolf was a cool change of pace. I can see those forced sections being annoying at times. But still… was it all that bad?

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    alistercat

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    I played the remastered version and I don't remember a thing about it except being on top of a black castle as a wolf. Normally I remember almost of all of a game I've played. So... I take that as it being unmemorable. I probably wouldn't have bothered if it wasn't called Zelda.

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    noboners

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    I think it's the parts where you play as Wolf Link that most people didn't like. And the overly long tutorial/opening area. Like you alluded to though, it is a pretty great iteration of the traditional Zelda formula. People were just wanting something different I think?

    But I know Gerstmann gave it an 8.8, which is what most people consider bad for a Zelda, but in actuality is pretty great.

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    Retris

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    @nerfherderv1: Yes, it had dungeons, but those dungeons and the puzzles within were kinda bad and simplistic. The start was also kind of long. Plus people generally consider the game's graphics too gray/brown.

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    CreepingDeath0

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    It's overall pretty decent, though perhaps not necessarily overly memorable. A lot of people were mixed on Wolf Link and it takes a while to really get going, but people love Midna and it introduced duel hookshots which is cool.

    Definitely on the lower half of the list of Zelda games, but that's a VERY competitive list. It's better than Skyward Sword at least!

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    Mezmero

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    I remember it being okay though I made it to the room just outside the final boss and...never finished the game. I have no excuse or explanation, it just didn't happen. It was also weird timing because I believe Okami came out the same year, and honestly I like that game more than every 3D Zelda and Zelda-like I've played (still haven't started BotW).

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    ll_Exile_ll

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    @retris said:

    @nerfherderv1: Yes, it had dungeons, but those dungeons and the puzzles within were kinda bad and simplistic. The start was also kind of long. Plus people generally consider the game's graphics too gray/brown.

    Twilight Princess is often praised for having some of the best dungeons in the series, even among those that don't consider it a top tier Zelda game. The intro being long and slow as well as the art style/color palette being unappealing are common complaints, but your sentiment about the dungeons is certainly not the popular opinion.

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    styx971

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    #8  Edited By styx971

    i wouldn't say its a bad game ( even if i played the wii version) ,.. but it took me 2-3 starts to even really get into it and honestly i don't recall caring for it much when i did beat it . i didn't find the story particularly memorable , i don't recall most of the dungeons other than that overgrown castle with the courtyard er whatever in the middle , outside from that i found midna kinda annoying ( granted most companion characters are) and the wolf sections a pain. so while i wouldn't say its a bad game i would still say its possibly my least favorite 3d zelda game.


    edit: ... overgrown castle being hyrule castle and idk why i had a brain fart there ... honestly tho thats all i can recall dungeon-wise.... time for bed to fix my dumb brain tho.

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    FinalDasa

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    #9 FinalDasa  Moderator

    I think it straddled that strange era where Zelda games just weren't hitting as hard. Twilight was expected to be the 'mature' version of Zelda and it didn't meet whatever expectations fans had from that.

    Didn't help its split released on Gamecube and Wii, the motion controls, and the even less liked follow-up Skyward Sword.

    I don't know if I'd say nobody likes Twilight Princess, I think it's unfortunately just skipped over.

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    Retris

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    @ll_exile_ll: The thing is, originally it was a more common complaint. It even factored to Nintendo's dungeon design in Skyward Sword. The complaint was about the dull usage of the items you get and the puzzles, as I already wrote, being overly simplistic. I also remember the sliding block puzzles getting some groans back then.

    The actual themes the dungeons have are cool though and I've never really minded the dungeons THAT much.

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    tartyron

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    I like Twilight Princess. It's not the best Zelda, but it was good for the time, if a bit overly stuck to the structure of the series up to then.

    Still wish Wolf-Link could fuck, though.

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    MindBullet

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    I remember really being into it when it first released, but I think I was probably still in my diehard Nintendo fanboy phase. I liked the weird art style a lot, and the Wolf Link/Midna combo was a cute gimmick. I was also all in on the idea of Princess Zelda having a sword, for whatever reason.

    Time passed and yeah, it did seem like sentiment around the game only got worse. I bought the remaster hoping to recapture whatever I saw in it the first time, or at least determine if really was as bad as people made it out to be and... I don't think it's a terrible game or anything, but I got a few hours in an just kind of lost interest. I don't know how much that speaks to the game itself or how much that reflects on me, but I do remember being extremely disappointed at the time.

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    AV_Gamer

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    #13  Edited By AV_Gamer

    I liked Twilight Princess. Out of all the Zelda's it has the best artwork in the series. The gameplay's decent and the story interesting. I think the story takes a slight darker tone than the other games and this might have been off putting for some. I personally think a future Zelda game that actually goes there would be a good way to change things up.

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    theonewhoplays

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    #14  Edited By theonewhoplays

    I liked the last couple areas and dungeons. The snowy mountain, the floating fortress... But other than that I struggle to remember anything about TP. The beginning when you have to collect fireflies or whatever as wolf Link is ROUGH. By that point I also think I was getting really tired of the general structure of Zelda games and how Zelda herself is always pushed aside and is basically a glorified extra until the ending fight.

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    BisonHero

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    #15  Edited By BisonHero

    Put me in the camp of not liking Twilight Princess. It's not "bad" so much as it's unoriginal if you've played other Zeldas. I think I started playing it, finished the first dungeon, then just kinda fell off it and got back to it a year later. Maybe where I was at in life played into that a little, but I think it's a much less memorable Zelda overall, and it didn't hold my attention. Twilight Princess is where Nintendo got way too complacent with Zelda.

    But the reasons I think it's dull and derivative also require a look at the other 3D Zeldas:

    • Ocarina of Time: a pretty innovative translation of the overall game structure and items from Link to the Past into a 3D perspective. Really impressive how much they achieved in the game world given how primitive the hardware was in the N64/PS1 days.
    • Majora's Mask: OK it's not the greatest Zelda, but it's basically an expansion pack they made in like 18 months. It borrows a huge amount from the previous game, but the 3 mask transformations are actually a pretty well done mechanic, and the dark tone is still really striking compared to the other Zeldas.
    • Wind Waker: A lot of the dungeons and controls are still very Ocarina of Time-based, but kudos to the team for applying such a different art style to Zelda, and they did a pretty interesting job at making an ocean-based game, a challenge I feel like major developers didn't properly take on again until years later in stuff like AC: Black Flag, and even later, Subnautica.
    • Twilight Princess: The first misstep, that doesn't really do anything except be a standard Zelda. You have a pretty normal visual style, you have a pretty standard tone, the game story/dungeon progression is once again in the mould of Link to the Past/Ocarina of Time, it has this 1 wolf transformation (so literally lower quantity and quality of transformations compared to Majora's Mask). Also I think it really has some of the worst, one-note items in the whole series. It just didn't grab me, but I guess if you really want to rehash Ocarina of Time, it's trying its best.
    • Skyward Sword: Still very standard Zelda gameplay, and fewer biomes than usual, that get recycled multiple times over the course of the game. BUT! At least they took a weird chance on really leaning into the motion controls, and also the story gets to be a little different since it's such an uber-prequel for the whole series. The blurry impressionistic art style choice was an interesting workaround to being stuck on a 480p system in an era of HD TVs. But overall very weak, because in 2011 the game still doesn't play that different from a 1998 action-adventure game.

    At least after the disastrous sales of Skyward Sword, they started trying weirder ideas, with Link Between Worlds and Breath of the Wild, getting back to experimenting more and mixing up the Zelda formula.

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    El_Blarfo

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    #16  Edited By El_Blarfo

    It's been quite a while, but I remember liking Twilight Princess well enough. It suffered a bit from not being Wind Waker which is one of my personal faves, but I enjoyed my time with it.

    I continue to insist that the worst Zelda of the last 20 years is Breath of the Wild, an opinion I will scream at passers-by as I write it in crayon with my toes on the walls of my padded cell.

    (Also, in fairness I never played Skyward Sword, so who knows.)

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    alianger

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    #17  Edited By alianger

    I would say it was a bit better than the previous 3D Zeldas (not counting hacks or the remasters), if not a fave as I prefer some of the 2D ones in various ways. Very good dungeons and overall controls, good variety with some interesting new tools, improved Epona overall and Midna is probably the best sidekick/assistant up to that point.

    I do think it starts off too slow and is too linear though (can't do a single dungeon out of order, some arbitrary gates in the overworld), and I'm not crazy about some aspects of the visual style. Some of the new combat moves also felt underutilized and the mid-late game combat could've been a bit tougher or had some optional challenges. The wolf form was pretty good although it felt a bit limited and the collectathon/killathon segments with the bugs got kinda repetitive and never evolved much, I felt Okami did this aspect better in some ways.

    Played it on GC though I'd imagine the FP aiming would be better on Wii at least.

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    theonewhoplays

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    I actually think I enjoyed Skyward Sword more. Or at least I remember more of it, since I enjoyed most of the characters, who got more time in the spotlight compared to the ones in TP.

    This reminds me that I haven't played BotW yet, but I'm still waiting for the more powerful Switch... But it's always been this way. The only Zelda game I beat at the time of release was Link to the Past. All the others I've beaten 5-10 years afterwards. Or more, I beat the first Zelda just a couple years ago. I enjoy the Zelda games but I don't want to buy a console just for them, so I always end up buying them used (or borrow them from friends) several years down the line. Never got a Wii U, though, and the Switch just doesn't seem worth it yet. Can't stand those controllers and the console and games never seem to get any cheaper... That whole fiasco with the Mario collection hasn't exactly made me eager to give Nintendo my money either.

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    Efesell

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    #19  Edited By Efesell

    I think Twilight is…. Fine. It’s not good enough to be particularly memorable alongside other better games in the series but it doesn’t really have enough problems to stick out the way skyward sword does.

    So maybe that’s the main problem. It’s perfectly Okay and that’s more of a problem in a series like Zelda.

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    daavpuke

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    Playing Twilight Princess probably put me off from Zelda forever. I played it on GameCube and it looked so.. drab. It was so lifeless, compounded by being late in the generation and a dozen games looking stellar in comparison, plus the previous Zelda being this splendorous benchmark. The wolf parts were at least more appropriate than the Minish Cap gimmick, but it was way too humdrum to stand out. Haven't liked a Zelda since. I'll always have LTTP.

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    clagnaught

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    The Quick Look for the HD remaster is basically an hour long discussion between Jeff and Dan about Zelda and what they think about Twilight Princess for those interested.

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    Justin258

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    #22 Justin258  Online

    I played it a few years ago and enjoyed it a lot. I'm not a huge Zelda fan, but I think Twilight Princess might actually have been my favorite when I was trying them all.

    However, I didn't quite finish it. It's an absurdly long game and I don't really think it needs to be as long as it is. Also, it has a long, boring opening that has no business being as long as it is. Really hurts those replays, where you're bored five hours in because the game hasn't really opened up yet.

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    RagTagBag

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    #23  Edited By RagTagBag

    The overwhelming majority of people loved Twilight Princess when it came out and probably still do. It was the best reviewed game of the year that included the first Gears, Oblivion, Company of Heros, Okami, and FFXII.

    The internet loves to amplify negativity, so most of the hate about the game is hyperbolic. A lot of the podcast people complaining about it are complaining because they're comparing a game they played as adults with games they played as children.

    Out of context, played today, Twilight Princess is objectively better than Wind Waker and Ocarina, but it doesn't have the mind-blowing, genre reinventing oomph that came from playing Ocarina as a kid, and the sameiness was starting to kick in.

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    Efesell

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    @ragtagbag: Pfft, Wind Waker is the hidden best Zelda game. Especially when played today because the remaster takes out the only bad parts of that game.

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    wollywoo

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    #25  Edited By wollywoo

    I thought it was great. Not much new to the formula, but it took the core gameplay loop of OoT and made everything bigger. I do agree that the colors were too washed-out and brown. Also, Link's running animation is weirdly stiff.

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    RagTagBag

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    @efesell: Sure, you can make the argument for either Twilight Princess or Wind Waker (Ocarina doesn't really hold up), but it definitely isn't a bad game if you're into Zelda games.

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    Ryuku_Ryosake

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    I played the GameCube version. The two chief problems I had were it was way too long and wolf link was pretty bad and 30% of that game.


    In a series as iterative as Zelda is it is always better to air on the shorter side to the leave the player at the end with a sense of wanting more instead of exhausted. It also doesn't help that OoT, MM, and WW are roughly the same length. So if you have extensive experience with those games, you can really feel those extra 10+ hours of game in your bones.

    The wolf form just invited too much negative comparison to Okami. Which came out earlier that same year and almost anyone with interest in a Zelda game probably played. It being the polar opposite to TP in the looking incredible department. Pretty sure it was solely responsible for the tidal shift into you know after seeing Okami, WW looked incredible actually. Okami also shared the same problem of being too long for a Zelda being about as long as TP. Which didn't help with only 7 months between those games.

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    Relkin

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    It's still my favorite of the series, for whatever that's worth. After the weird tangent that Majora's Mask was and the boring, dead open world of Wind Waker, I thought Twilight Princess was a return to form. Still do.

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    theonewhoplays

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    @ryuku_ryosake: I've tried replaying Okami 2-3 times and those opening hours are just exhausting even if you skip through the talky bits. The 'talking' sound actively hurts the game and copying the Zelda 'one short sound per dialogue box' style would have been much better. That said, I absolutely loved it for the first playthrough even if it is way too long.

    My personal favorite among the Zeldas is still Link to the Past. It has none of the issues of the 3D Zeldas and still looks good today. I wouldn't want to replay any of the 3D ones even if they're enjoyable enough to finish once. I adore the look and sounds of Wind Waker but it's honestly pretty boring and I think I would rather replay the DS sequel. Still haven't tried the train one, Minish Cap, Link Between Worlds or BotW. I am skeptical of the open-world nature of BotW, those kind of games seldom keep my attention.

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    geirr

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    Most people I know love Twilight Princess, and speaking as a dog
    I really appreciated some representation via Wolf Link,
    and Midna is one of my favorite characters ever -
    so it's probably my favorite of the Zelda games pre-BotW,
    along with Majora's Mask and LttP.

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    Ryuku_Ryosake

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    @theonewhoplays: A Link Between Worlds is incredible. They made a better a Link to the Past. Although too much nostalgia for alttp can be a detriment to enjoying it. You have to be open to the idea that they could have just made a better version of your favorite game.

    It is a shame that Botw nuked from orbit any possibility of getting a follow up to a Link Between Worlds ideas. Botw did fall flat for me. The open world parts just felt like any open world game to me and not a revolution to make open worlds enjoyable again that fans had promised me. Easily the worst dungeons in the series. I also only like physics puzzles in very short bursts.

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    apewins

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    Loved it when it came out. It's been some 15 years since I played it but I don't think the controls were bad at all. Some people just hated the Wiimote from day one, and I do agree that waggling that thing did become tiresome towards the end of the Wii's life cycle, and some games did go overboard with that stuff. But on the other hand no other controller since has been as accurate when aiming with the bow, it was almost as good as a mouse. Being a Wii launch game, maybe I also didn't mind the story dragging a little bit since the console itself was new and there was nothing else to play except Wii Sports.

    Maybe the game wasn't particularly memorable. It was like Ocarina of Time, except with better graphics (that includes frame rate), better controls, overall better presentation and story. Who's going to say no to that? I'm absolutely in line to buy an HD version for the Switch if one comes around... maybe as soon as today's Nintendo Direct? ...aaand maybe not $60 this time?

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    judaspete

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    Twilight Princess is a better game than Ocarina of Time. It has a slow start, and more filler, but it otherwise takes the Oot template and polishes it up.

    Thing is, it came out at a point when gaming was advancing rapidly. Metal Gear had kicked storytelling expectations up a notch, GTA had ballooned world sizes, and compared to everything else TP felt quaint.

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    Kyary

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    Twilight Princes is held back by a general slowness, and certainly suffers from more of the hey we saw that you just did something, time to yank camera control away and show you the thing you just did had some effect on the world thing that used to plague Nintendo games.

    But it's not without its merits! The art direction and dungeon design are high points for me, and I think the sound design is uniquely weird in a way I can get behind. Personally I put it behind Wind Waker and Breath of the Wild, but miles ahead of Ocarina (not trying to be edgy here but I have never liked that game).

    Personally I'd raise an eyebrow if someone said it was their favorite but it's certainly not a bad game

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    gamer_152

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    #35 gamer_152  Moderator

    I like Twilight Princess. After Wind Waker, which was a breath of fresh air for the series, it felt like Twilight Princess was leaning too much on old tropes, even in a series which generally plays it very close to its roots. Given that it's so familiar, you'd think that the game might be shorter than it is, but it's a lot longer than it needs to be, and consequently feels like it exhausts its bag of tricks long before the credits. But it's still a very reliable bag of tricks, and it managed to be a late 00s game with a rougher, hardier look, that didn't lose its character and vibrance in an attempt to go darker. The melee combat feels impactful, Epona once again provides a great sense of forward momentum, and the structure opens up the world in a fascinating way as you go.

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    MisterFrodo17

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    @kyary said:

    Personally I'd raise an eyebrow if someone said it was their favorite but it's certainly not a bad game

    Well prepare to raise that eyebrow, because Twilight Princess is my favorite Zelda game! It's mainly because of where I was in my life when it came out. It was the first mainline Zelda game that I was hyped for at release (I got a GameCube and became a fan of the series between Wind Waker and Twilight Princess), and I ended up getting it and playing it at a time in high school when I was really depressed. The game was a nice escape from all that. I honestly just loved walking around the world (like I would load up the game and just walk around without making any progress), and the story's darker tone pulled me in at the time. Plus I felt like it had a truly epic scale to it, the graphics on the GameCube impressed me (Link's clothes get wet! And then dry in real time!!! Which I think they did in Wind Waker but I guess I didn't notice it then), and I still think the music is fantastic.

    It's been a long time since I've played it though, so I'm curious if my high opinion of it would hold after all this time. It's definitely not without its flaws, so I can understand why it's thought of as a more mediocre Zelda. I'm really hoping that the remaster comes to the Switch so I can play it again in HD.

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    Nick

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    i haven't played it since it came out but except for a few of the wolf segments, i remember mostly loving that game. the dungeons and bosses were really cool, and i remember it had a large world with lots to do.

    if they ever release the HD version for Switch i will definitely give it another go.

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    takashichea

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    I like Twilight Princess. One of the few Zelda games' stories that doesn't involve Zelda herself. It was all about Midna where you think about it. Link was Midna's companion, what you called it in the old American films, a manic pixie but Link is not one but he ultimately journeys with Midna. Darn, I cannot remember the story. Link was forced into due to a curse. He eventually got free of it. He still journeys with Midna to help her unconditionally.

    I cannot remember much about dungeons but I do remember the snowy temple was probably my most frustrating one. As for challenges, it did bring back the gauntlet that Wind Waker had where you fight a slew of monsters. My favorite parts was that one strange part in the game where you snipe monsters in the desert going all Metal Gear Solid in a Legend of Zelda game.

    I think Twilight Princess was one of the few Zelda games that had "fan service" in ecchi form with Hyrule Warriors showing the most fan service.

    I believe the majority of folks who like it were probably the Midna/Link shippers. I remembered seeing a big manga spoiler weeks ago.

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    lobster_johnson

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    I haven't played it since the year it came out, but I thoroughly enjoyed it at the time.

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