Retro Review: “Ocarina of Time” Over 20 Years Later

By Lakyn Gardner

lagardner@lc.edu

“Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time” was the first 3D “Legend of Zelda” game. Created in 1998 by Nintendo, the story follows a 10-year-old boy named Link on his journey to save Princess Zelda and Hyrule from the evil Ganondorf. 

The game was released 20 years ago, but I still will not spoil anything. Child Link must obtain three spiritual stones. First courage, then power, and finally wisdom, all based on the goddesses that came before. Once he has successfully retrieved all three of those, he gains the ability to retrieve the master sword, which is the sword that banes all evil. 

However, Link is too young to wield the sword yet, so it seals him for seven years. During that time, Gannon overtakes the kingdom. Then, Link must embark on his journey as an adult to obtain six Medallions that will grant him entry into Ganon’s Castle to end his rain on Hyrule. 

This game allowed Nintendo to branch off three different ways: the Adult timeline, Child timeline, and the Hero Defeated timeline. The controls are flawless, even accounting for Nintendo’s odd three-prong controller design. As for bugs, the game is very well made and even to this day it took speedrunners almost 20 years to find cracks in the game in which they could exploit it. 

I believe this is an impressive feat of a game considering it is the first 3D “Legend of Zelda” and one of the first 3D games ever made. This game paved the way for many RPGs ahead, and it also set up the timeline for the next “Legend of Zelda” games. The game contains a breathtaking story with very few bugs and tons of replayability. I give this game a 10 out of 10. Thanks for reading, see you next week!

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