First off, before you all get up in arms, I already know what you're going to say. Yes, I already played The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker for my blog, back in April, during my week long adventure through The Legend of Zelda franchise. And as you already know, I am supposed to play and write about a new, different game each day this year. So what's up with this entry in my blog, you ask? Well, Nintendo released the game as not just a port or a virtual console game, but as a full-fledged HD remake. It's not just a HD polish put on the same old game that came out over a decade ago, but a legit remake as only Nintendo knows how to do.
Speaking of which, I just have to say, that if there is any company out there, Nintendo is it when it comes to the masters of remaking old classics. They genuinely love their franchises, and while they put many older, classic games on their Virtual Console markets as a fan service, they don't take the job of remaking games lightly. In fact, they choose to remake very few games, but seem to be coming around to the idea more often than ever before. However, they don't just slap a new sticker on it and call it a remake, but they take their time, focussing all of their attention to detail and love for their creations into the remake at hand as if it truly was a brand new game.
Even if they aren't directly creating the game in-house, but rather outsourcing it to dependable developers, they are sure to make sure that the consumer and fans don't ever feel like the remake is just a cash-grab, and that they are getting the full value of the product they are investing in.
With that said, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD is Nintendo's most recent love letter to their fans in every way, shape and form. I almost feel like they are still holding a grudge to all media outlets and outraged fans who shunned this version of Link and his universe when the game was originally released, and with that grudge, they wanted to firmly establish this Zelda game one of the finest in the series. While the original Wind Waker finally received critical acclaim after it had time to age like fine wine, Nintendo, in my humble opinion, wants everyone to see this HD remake in the same light they feel it should have been from day one.
Despite what people tend to think and accuse Nintendo of, in regards to doing their own thing without care of the wants and desires of their fans, they actually sat down and took every complaint about Wind Waker into consideration when creating this game, changing almost all of it. Sure, they have a machine now, the Wii U, that can handle what they possibly always wanted to do with the game but couldn't because of the GameCube hardware. But they could have just been lazy and put the same experience into HD and called it good.
They actually fixed many game mechanics, such as the slow, tedious sailing, and made the experience more enjoyable for gamers. Also, they made the GamePad functional and useful, transforming it into the inventory screen, adding touch screen controls slight motion controlls, and of course, adding the ability to play the game from just the GamePad, freeing up the TV for anyone needing or wanting to watch it while you're playing.
Above all else, this game looks absolutely phenomenal. I always loved the cell shading look of this game, but now, the lighting effects, the shadow and the polish to the cell shading with this HD remake is gorgeous. The world comes to life like never before, as colors pop and graphics you may have thought were average before now prove to be unbelievable. Again, only Nintendo could take what was already a beautiful game that actually held up well over time, and recreate it to make it look like something never seen before.
The prospect of Nintendo taking their classic games and remaking them for the HD generation is so exciting. I can't wait for other games to receive this level of love and care from Nintendo as updated remakes of what we all already know and love. Go ahead and bash Nintendo for "doing the same thing for years" and "relying too heavily on their long-standing franchises." If they can take awesome games and remake them to almost perfect status, I'm not going to complain.
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