You see, I had taken a gaming hiatus for a couple years, which again, I have talked about here on the blog. In those couple of years, I didn't play games, read about games or even pay attention to what games were even coming out. This dark period of my life caused me to not even realize a new Zelda game had been developed, and subsequently, released. Of course I am talking about The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, the game that was originally in development as the GameCube's swan song, but ended up being released as a port for the Wii before the GameCube version even came out!
Anyway, when I saw this game, sitting there on the shelf, I picked it up immediately. Instead of coming home with a second controller, I came home with a game instead. That's kind of how this hobby works.
Shortly after getting the game, maybe a couple weeks or so, I ended up losing my job that I had for roughly five years or so. It was the first job I had out of high school, and that was the first time ever I had been an adult and been unemployed at the same time. Basically, I had no idea what to do with myself or my new found free time. Sure, I wanted to go out and join the workforce right away, make myself feel like I was contributing to the family and all that jazz - but let's be honest here. I had unemployment checks coming in and I knew rushing out and taking any old job wasn't something I wanted or needed to do at that time. So in between submitting applications and resumes for jobs that fit my skill set, I had a lot of time alone, at home, to play games.
And what was the one that game that I had that was ideal for single-player adventure time? Zelda: Twilight Princess, of course.
This game was surprisingly challenging back then, as I remember getting stuck on a few puzzles in the game. To get unstuck, I turned to the internet and found a little site called IGN that had a guide up to help me out. Turns out, they had more than just game guides, including tons of news and features about all aspects of the gaming industry. This is the moment that opened my eyes to video game journalism, and would eventually set me on a path to be where I am now, here, writing this blog.
Playing tonight, once again, brought back all these non-gaming specific memories of one of the best looking, most creative and highly thought of Zelda games in the series. I realized it was the first Zelda game to get a "T for Teen" rating because of the more mature theme and violence never before seen in the franchise. Clearly, this was a bold step for Nintendo, but one that was necessary to give the series a shot in the arm and revolutionize it. Transforming back and forth between the wolf is a fantastic game play mechanic, yet one that almost made it feel like it wasn't a Zelda game at some points. The Twilight realm was cool, and played on the concept of light and dark which is prevalent through the whole series.
For a lot of people, especially the new Wii owners when it was released, this was the first Zelda game they had ever played. While it is not exactly the most tried and true representation of the Legend of Zelda series, it is one that I could easily see roping people in. Hopefully, players that enjoyed this one went back and rediscovered the beginning of the series to see where it all started and how this new, scary world came to be.