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SummaryDon't be fooled, this is Zelda at its best
The GoodI'm sure by now you've heard about the drastic change to the Zelda series, taking the 3D styled Ocarina of Time adventure and turning it on its head with a cel shaded style presentation. It's a major risk by the Big N, especially with so many fans backing the series with every passing title, but I for one am proud to say The Wind Waker is a shining light in the industry.
Yes, this is a kids styled game. The controls are easy enough to get into for any age, the graphics are more like something you'll expect in a saturday morning cartoon, and the adventure itself is far from the detailed world of a Final Fantasy, etc, but don't hold that against lil' Link. You see, behind it all is a game that's probably one of a few that are really worth playing all the way through. The cel shading lends an element of style rarely seen in any other.
I dare you not to be taken aback by the transition from day to night as you sail across the ocean, small fish following in the wake of your boat and the light breeze sifting across the sail. It really is a sight to behold, no matter how detailed other games might be.
The BadThe adventure itself isn't too short, but at the same time isn't too long either. As with the Zelda franchise of old, there are plenty of side quests and items to collect that can add plenty of extra hours to the game time, but The Wind Waker, if you sit down non-stop for a couple of days, won't take too long to complete the major quest at hand.
There isn't much else, however, that detracts from the experience. Yes, there are fans who hate the graphical overhaul, but I don't hold the originality of the title against it.
The Bottom LineUntil the next big Zelda title comes along, Ocarina of Time will forever stand as the best of the series. But the Wind Waker isn't that far behind. The only real let down, a slightly short playing time, and the fact that it is so easy to sit down and play may deter experienced and older gamers. But if there is one GameCube title that deserves a place on your shelf, this is it.
Nintendo made a brave move shifting from the OoT and Majora's Mask worlds with this cel shaded title. It's a solid and entertaining entry, so please don't let the kiddy like display on the screen put you off playing. You don't know what you're missing.