The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess

aka: The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker 2, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD, Zelda TP, Zelda no Densetsu: Twilight Princess

[ All ] [ Android ] [ GameCube ] [ Wii ] [ Wii U ]

Critic Reviews add missing review

Average score: 94% (based on 172 ratings)

Player Reviews

Average score: 4.1 out of 5 (based on 218 ratings with 15 reviews)

A return to the past for the Zelda series...

The Good
Zelda: Twilight Princess was a great game in the Zelda series, bringing the series back to its natural feel that emanated during the Nintendo 64 games, with much improvements made to the graphics from that platform. The storyline of the game, until the end is one the most well-developed in the series. This game takes several of my favorite gameplay elements from Wind Waker and fits them within the world of Twilight Princess. This game continues the innovations of the previous Zelda games.

The Bad
The title of my review also presages certain elements of the game, a return to the past includes no musical instrument for Link, and Magic disappears from Link Arsenal for the first time in a long time. Other problems with this game, minor in retrospect but annoying include, the sheer uselessness of some items after they're required to advance the plot. The wolf mode, touted as a new element for the Zelda series, disappointed me, it was cool when you first played it, but after a couple of sessions playing as a wolf, I became disillusioned, combat with the wolf is frustrating, the howling mechanism is very hard to distinguish, among other things, I hope the next incarnation of Zelda does not replicate this part of the game

The Bottom Line
This game, despite the negatives described above, remains a wonderful game in the Zelda series, and if it wasn't for the problems I had with Wolf Link, might have topped Ocarina as a game for me.I sincerely recommend playing this game if you've ever enjoyed a Zelda game...

GameCube · by Chris Lesinky (294) · 2007

The biggest Zelda to date but also one of the less creative ones.

The Good
The Zelda series has come a long way. From the early 2D games to the epic 3D quests such as Ocarina of Time, The Legend of Zelda is one of the main household names in video games.

When the GameCube was first shown, a short clip was shown with protagonist Link fighting his nemesis Ganondorf. While this was only a tech demo of what the system could do, it became the basic outline of what people expected a future Zelda game for the system would look like. How different this turned out to be...

In 2003 Nintendo finally brought the series to GameCube with The Wind Waker, a game that was visually nothing like the older games. Instead of the mature and naturalistic style seen in games like Ocarina of Time, gamers got a cartoony cell-shaded world with a big-eyed Link that looked like he stepped right out of a Disney cartoon. While fans were sceptical at first, they soon grew to love this new style and appreciated it just as much as the old style. In its own way, it was just as stunning as Ocarina of Time was for its time.

While many fans loved this graphical overhaul, they also expressed their fears that their much-loved traditional Link would sink into the mists of video game history. Those fans were put at ease, however, as Nintendo made their largest Zelda epic yet also the most realistic-looking ever made. The result of their labour was The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess.

This game, released in late 2006, was the GameCube's swan song while also the first major classic for the brand new Wii system. While originally made for just the GameCube, Nintendo decided to use the Wii controls to their advantage and publish a Wii version as well. Motion controls would require Link to hold his sword in his right hand for gameplay convenience, while he had always been left-handed. As a result, the Wii version is the complete mirror image of the GameCube version. It doesn't affect the game one bit, though, so you wont mind at all.

In Twilight Princess, the land of Hyrule is slowly being swallowed by a strange veil of Twilight. This curse reduces those who dwell in it to mere spirits. Only one is not transformed into a spirit. That one is a young man named Link. Instead, he turns into a wolf. Aided by a mysterious creature called Midna, Link must travel Hyrule in both wolf form as well as his human form and eventually face off against Zant, the evil King of Twilight.

The variation between the two forms becomes more important as you keep on progressing through the story. In the later phases of the game you will be forced to continually alter between the two forms to solve puzzles, reach certain areas and fight different foes. This creates two different ways to approach the obstacles in the game making the game much more interesting. It's comparable to the child/adult mechanic from Ocarina of Time and especially the mask transformations from Majora's Mask. As a wolf Link can't use items but he can use a charge attack, walk along ropes, bite foes, use his wolf senses to see hidden secrets and invisible foes as well as dig with his paws.

When he's a human Link can use his usual arsenal of items including old favorites such as the bow, clawshot, sword, bombs etc. There's also a few new ones. The most interesting one is the Spinner. This gear-shaped device allows Link to move along tracks on walls to reach far-off areas. It is too bad it's used rather sporadically as it is one of the most creative and fun items in the series. This item should be brought back in later titles.

The progression of the game is rather linear. You go from town to field to dungeon and then to the next town. There are several different provinces divided in many different areas, most of which are familiar such as Death Mountain, Lake Hylia, the forest, Gerudo Desert and Hyrule Castle Town.

In each province there are one or two dungeons. Ranging from the lava-filled mines of the Goron Tribe to the fish-like Zora's Lakebed Temple, each of the dungeons has its own distinct look and feel. They are full of brain-teasing puzzles, hidden treasures and interesting monsters. My favourite one is a town that floats in the sky like an airship.

At the end of each dungeon there is a boss. The bosses seen in this game are some of the most impressive ones ever. They are gigantic and give the fights an epic David vs. Goliath feel unprecedented in the series.

Visually the game is impressive. While it is clear the game was originally a GameCube game, it still looks very nice on Wii and the GameCube version is probably the most visually impressive game on that system, anyway. Even though it is not perfect from a technical point of view on Wii, it's got an atmosphere, artistic approach and attention to detail rarely, if at all, seen in any Nintendo game. Especially the Twilight looks very impressive from an artistic point of view with gloomy dark clouds and a strange feeling of half-light. You really need to see it for yourself to truly grasp what I mean. The dungeons and buildings are also a marvel of visual design

The music is some of the best in the series. It is too bad it's not fully orchestrated but it is some of the best music MIDI can offer. From the epic tunes of Hyrule Field to the dark and gloomy theme of the haunted Arbiter's Grounds, it's all varied and fitting.

Twilight Princess is one of the best Zelda games when it comes to characters and their development. There are some lovable characters in there that are hard to forget. The most notable is your main companion Midna, a very sarcastic and witty creature from the Twilight World. She is like Navi in Ocarina of Time but far more interesting and much cooler. (As well as far less annoying.) As the game progresses you'll find out more about her mysterious origins. She needs your help to defeat Zant. Zant is the King who conquered the Twilight Realm and now wants to conquer the Light World as well and dethrone princess Zelda. Some supporting characters are just funny such as Talo, a little kid of about 4 years old who is actually much more intelligent than most of the adults in the game and he turns out to be a great entrepreneur.

The quest is long and engaging and the world is bigger than ever before. The sheer scope of the overworld begs you to explore every corner of it There are lots of little quests and collectibles in good Zelda fashion to prolong the game's length including the grueling quest of the infamous Cave of Ordeals.

The Wii controls really make the game more playable. Simply swing the Wii Remote to slash your sword, point at foes to use your arrows or quickly select your desired item. It's very intuitive and makes it stand out just that little bit from the GameCube version.

The Bad
To put it simply; this game does little to innovate. It's a very traditional Zelda game. Particularly Ocarina of Time fans will feel a little too familiar with this game. The first few dungeons are a big déja-vu. Most Zelda games from the past decade such as Majora's Mask, The Wind Waker or Phantom Hourglass had things that set them apart from other entries in the series. Twilight Princess fails miserably in this area.

Particularly familiar is the Lakebed Temple. It's very similar to the Water Temple in Ocarina of Time (including being at the bottom of Lake Hylia) or Great Bay Temple in Majora's Mask. And it doesn't stop there, the Forest Temple, Goron Mines, Kakariko Village, Lake Hylia, it's mostly been there, done that. It's not until about halfway through the game that the dungeons and environments start getting a bit more original and actually feel inspired.

There are no true innovations in the very formula of the series either. The wolf mechanic is great but its still just a variation on older concepts, particularly the transformations from Majora's Mask.

This gets worse if you consider the game's progression is very linear for a Zelda game and you miss the open-ended feel that made the series such a hit in the early titles, especially since the world is so big and engaging. It's the age-old overworld-dungeon formula. It could have been much more fun if you could do the dungeons in a different order each time you play the game.

Sound effects are classic and you can hear them through the Wii Remote speaker. For example, if you use your bow you hear the string being pulled back through the controller. It's is of very low sound quality, though, and it unfortunately never becomes more than just a gimmick, they could have gone the extra mile and make some kind of cool Wii-exclusive feature out of it.

The story is very traditional and that gets worse as you progress further into the game. Many old ideas are carried over to this game, few new ones are introduced.

The few original concepts such as the Spinner are used only rarely.

The Bottom Line
Pros: Large, epic and engaging. Visually impressive with lots of style and atmosphere. Great cast of characters. Wii controls simply feel better than buttons. The biggest, most complete Zelda game in existence today.

Cons: Unoriginal and mostly a rehash of concepts from Ocarina of Time both in environments as well as storyline. Controller sound is bad and gimmicky. The Spinner should be used more. Bring it back in new games, Nintendo!

If you are looking for a long and engaging Zelda quest with an impressive presentation, look no further than Twilight Princess. If you are looking for an original and defining Zelda game, this is not your game, however.

Wii · by Rensch (203) · 2010

Amazingly entertaining

The Good
When I bought my Wii, I purchased TP with it, because every critic just raved about it. Wii is my first console, I was a strict PC gamer before, and just wanted something fresh, something I could plug and play, not another FPS.

TP is, for me, absolutely stunning, the only games on PC that touched me that way were games like Deus Ex, Outcast or classic graphic adventures. The very fascinating about TP is you can't play 20 minutes without having had quite a few encounters, events or items. Something is always happening, the world around you lives, and looks fabulous, too. It's such a fluent and immersive gameplay, it's hardly believable.

You advance through the story without effort, discover Hyrule and its places, deserts, dungeons, monsters, villages. You catch fish, You dive fro treasure, walk along walls and on ceilings, use the boomerang, the swords, the bow... The Wiimote controls are just fine for everything, from fishing to shooting to riding your horse Epona (and what a proud and beautiful horse it is), the soundtrack is heroic, and the difficulty not too harsh. A game you can easily get lost in, and one good reason to get Wii.

The Bad
The old console problem that when you save your game, you're not back where you saved when you reload, but at a spawn point on a level map. Textures could use a higher resolution.

The Bottom Line
One of the most amazing action adventures ever made. Likable characters, dense story and game flow, lovely visuals with huge landscapes, scary monsters, tricky, clever fights and enough reward to keep you playing for hours. And once you played it through, you have passed a time that you will definitely remember.

Wii · by Emmanuel Henne (23) · 2007

This was my first hands-on experience with any Zelda game.

The Good
The graphics are beautiful and detailed like few Wii games are. It's a myriad of wonders and fantasy world-building in one single package. It's Zelda, it's open world and it's the darkest chapter in the Zelda mythology (at least it's trying to stay that way).

The Bad
The Wii version doesn't have an option of making Link left-handed as he's always been in prior games. With that said, it's since become a varying trait in the recent Zelda games. The sword-play could also benefit from optional button-mashing as opposed to the mandatory Wii-remote swinging.

The Bottom Line
Want a game that's on a condensed console that shows its true potential with high-concept fantasy games? Look no further. It's everything you loved about Ocarina of Time and refined for 2006.

Wii · by John H. (52) · 2019

Very epic, dark atmosphere and over all a good experience.

The Good
The games has some amazing soundtrack, quite good graphics, amazing storyline and really good characters. It keeps the interest of the player.

The Bad
The difficulty variates too much. And it's not always clear where you're supposed to be.

The Bottom Line
An amazing puzzle fantasy adventure action roleplaying game. With very dark atmosphere, very epic soundtrack.

Wii · by Johanna London (3) · 2014

The biggest (and best) Zelda of its era

The Good
The huge open world to explore, the amazingly designed dungeons and puzzles, the story, the characters and the wolf transformation mechanics. It all works so well to create an amazingly enjoyable experience.

The Bad
The incredibly long and boring introduction/tutorial segments. These could have been toned down a lot and it would really help replay-ability!

The Bottom Line
An action-packed adventure game with a huge world to explore, intricately designed dungeons and puzzles and the ability to turn into a wolf and travel between worlds in order to stop your own world from being engulfed by the other.

Wii · by deadaccount (13359) · 2019

A good game, but a weaker Zelda

The Good
In 2006, Nintendo finally unleashed their latest console on the public, with strong first party support at launch. Of course, everyone got to play Wii Sports, but after everyone was all done swinging, batting, and hitting invisible objects with their newfangled controllers, only two critically acclaimed titles remained on the shelf. One of them was The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. In order to spur sales of their newest console, Nintendo made a last-minute decision to bring the game to the Nintendo Wii, and release it weeks before its Gamecube counterpart, forcing Wii purchases from only the biggest Nintendo fans out there. And it worked. Twilight Princess is one of the best-selling titles in the Zelda series to date, as well as one of the only near-simultaneous multi-console releases in Nintendo history.

Strangely, I somehow missed Twilight Princess when it was first released. Even though I got a Wii console at launch season, the idea of a “dark, mature” Zelda didn’t personally appeal to me, and it didn’t seem necessary for one of my favorite franchises in gaming to go Teen rated. Twilight Princess always passed me by, and I didn’t have a whole lot of interest in playing it until the second Wii Zelda, Skyward Sword was released. After playing Skyward Sword and absolutely loving it to pieces, I wanted to give the Wii’s previous Zelda game a shot and see how it compared to its successor, and the series as a whole. I was a little disappointed at the result.

Twilight Princess acts like a more polished and expansive take on the original 3D Zelda, Ocarina of Time. I got quite a sense of déjà-vu more than once as I made my way through this version of Hyrule. The game feels like a natural extension of the gameplay, visual, and even aural design of the 1998 smash, and it certainly tops it in a lot of ways. That said, it isn’t quite as fresh as other games in the series. If you’ve ever played a Zelda game before, you know what to expect. Find dungeons, get items, solve puzzles, fight bosses, and in general, being the hero du jour. Twilight Princess is no different in that respect. What is different is how big Twilight Princess is. The back of the box doesn’t lie when it says that the game is the biggest Zelda game to date, even five years after the game’s release. You could easily fit most of the other Zelda world maps inside of Twilight Princess’ Hyrule. The world would take a player a good chunk of time to completely walk around (without rolling) and explore all of its regions only on foot. Luckily, you have a horse in this game, and you’ll absolutely need it to get around since on-foot travel is ridiculously slow in Twilight Princess. While it doesn’t compare to other video game fantasy worlds such as Tamriel or Azeroth, Twilight Princess’ world size is very impressive by Zelda standards.

The Wii controls are pretty good. They don’t really immerse you into the experience, which was supposed to be the console’s main selling point, but they do work well for the most part. Rather than having the game accurately track your sword swings, flicking the remote acts as a replacement button for sword swinging. The game doesn’t even attempt to track the direction of your sword, so you can flail away with reckless abandon and Link will take care of the rest. You can actually swing your sword while moving in this game, which helps make the controls feel a bit more fluid. Certain items allow the player to aim them by pointing at the screen. The game tries to allow the player to point at the edges of the screen to rotate the camera, but I found this to be poorly implemented and slow to respond. Other games, even at launch, did a much better job with these type of controls, but Nintendo hadn’t quite figured it out yet. Thankfully, you can at least rotate Link using the Nunchuck, though vertical aiming can still be slow. In addition, it can be a little challenging to keep your cursor pointed at the screen, as when you want to use one of these items, you will have to flail your remote around a bit to try and get your cursor back onto the screen if it’s not already pointing there. Still the pointing controls help to make the game feel more at home on the Wii. The Nunchuck handles camera control and movement, but its motion sensors are used to handle several of Link’s special attacks. Shaking it from left to right activates a spin move, while jabbing it forward does a shield bash. This is one of the rare Wii games to actually use every single last button and function of the Wii controller, which I do love. With two exceptions, this really wasn’t the game to put the Wii’s motion capabilities to the test, but as far as mapping a Gamecube game’s controls for the infant technology, it gets the job done.

By far the most Wii-like element of the game is the fishing, and more specifically, the lure fishing. It almost has a MotionPlus feel to it, as it tracks the angle of your Wii remote for the rod amazingly well, and uses the Nunchuck to reel in. The fishing itself has more depth to it than you would expect, as you can choose several different lures to better attract various kinds of fish. It could have made a great minigame for Wii Sports, and I’m surprised that Nintendo didn’t simply copy it over for either the original or Resort.

As you go through the game, you’ll unlock special sword abilities from a mysterious unnamed character, who looks like an enemy but is actually an ally. There are seven in all, and towards the back half of the game it becomes necessary to actually make use of them, because the enemies are typically decked out in full armor and are much faster. This is a truly wonderful addition to the Zelda series, and I would love to see it expanded in future installments. The biggest new addition to the Zelda formula is the ability to transform into a wolf. In wolf form, Link is less strong and cannot use items but moves much faster, and has a really neat special move which allows you to target several enemies at once. In addition, Link can also dig to enter new areas and uncover treasures, and can activate a special “Senses” mode which allows you to see digging areas and invisible enemies and objects, which can be used to solve puzzles. You also have the ability to warp across Hyrule as a wolf, but for some reason, the game doesn’t let you warp around as a human, which did get a little annoying. If you chose to warp as a human, you would have to transform back again after you warped, which got VERY annoying, especially since Midna, your companion, will complain if you attempt to transform in the sight of friendly characters. On a basic level, it really isn’t terribly different from the transformations in Majora’s Mask, yet playing as a wolf isn’t quite as FUN as any of those, though it certainly trumps being a bunny.

Another feature that I really liked is the ability to calibrate the pointer in-game. I’ve never seen this feature in any Wii game before, and it’s baffling why it hasn’t been in any game that I’ve played since.

The Bad
There were quite a few annoyances that really held this one back from becoming the best Zelda ever. For one, the game introduces great, innovative items in many of the game’s dungeons, then does virtually nothing with them after you’ve completed their debut dungeons. Some items, such as the Ball and Chain and the Gale Boomerang, are literally only used during the level they are featured in, and MAYBE a couple of times in the surrounding area if you’re lucky. There are too many items and not enough locations in Hyrule to actually make use of them.

Speaking of Hyrule, I found that the developers failed to add anything really interesting to the world. Sure, there were SOME hidden caves and areas, but much of Hyrule consists of wide, open spaces connected by narrow channels with literally nothing to see or do. If you’re going to make such a big world, you have to have the gameplay content to match, and Twilight Princess simply doesn’t have enough. At times, the world size is extremely overbearing, as you’re forced to go around Hyrule several times throughout the game. The size of the world can make getting to your next objective somewhat of a dull experience, but with so little to distract you along the way, at least you’ll get there sooner. On the lus side, when you DO manage to find something interesting, it is very rewarding. I just wish there was a bit more to find. The second was that there were too many strange, random things that I felt really didn’t belong in a Zelda game. The opening of the game has you herding goats into a barn. You have to do this twice at the start, and it’s about as interesting as it sounds. I also found the inclusion of sumo wrestling to also be a bit strange in a Zelda game, with awkward and frustrating movement controls making it a chore to play. In addition, several of the towns had too much of a wild west feel to them in terms of look and music, which sticks out like a sore thumb in the medieval fantasy themed game. In general it seems like the art designers went out of their way to make everything look as ugly as possible, which gives the game a gritty, realistic look, but it wasn’t something I personally enjoyed. Give me color and flashy animations, not dirt and grime.

The game doesn’t feel quite as inspired as other Zelda games. At times, Twilight Princess seems to be just going through the motions. In particular, some of the sidequests are just downright boring. In one quest, you’ll have to get 3000 Rupees to raise up money so that one of the Ordon kids can set up a shop in town. Rupees are almost completely worthless in this game, so this is the one sinkhole they can actually fill up. By the time I had beaten the game, I STILL had not completed this sidequest. Even some of the required quests aren’t that great. There’s a really tedious quest where you have to seek out invisible electric bugs as a wolf to get rid of the Twilight. You have to do it three times in the game, with almost no changes or surprises each time.

While Zelda games are not especially known for their stories, they always are engaging on a basic, and sometimes emotional level. At the very least, they’re certainly Nintendo’s best stories. Well, except for Twilight Princess, that is. The story really doesn’t hang together well in Twilight Princess, as many elements aren’t explained or are confusing and important characters and plot threads are dropped or virtually ignored for large sections of the game. Why was the game even called Zelda to begin with? She played virtually no part in this story at all, and yet it’s her name in the title of the game. The ending itself feels rather abrupt and strangely incomplete, and the story as a whole just felt rushed. It would have helped if the cutscenes weren’t so ponderous and slowly paced. I found myself saying “get on with it” for far too many times during the cutscenes, because it wasn’t really holding my attention.

The game’s difficulty feels highly inconsistent. The puzzles and level designs are some of the most grueling of the entire series, perhaps the hardest they have ever been, but the combat feels like a pushover, especially in the boss area. Part of the reason the ending feels underwhelming is that the final boss goes down far too easily. I think that by making the combat feel more fluid, they took away a lot of the challenge that came from the more clunky controls of past Zelda games. Yes, the FEEL is more enjoyable, but you’ll often wish that the enemies were just a little harder as a result.

There is another mini-game called Roll-Goal that is playable at the Fishing Hut. It’s a basic ball-rolling game, but the motion controls are poorly implemented. You are supposed to tilt your remote to place a marble in a cup, but the tilt of your remote doesn’t affect the level of tilt in the game and acts as a digital trigger. Combine that with platforms that are only the size of your marble, and you have an exercise in frustration.

The Bottom Line
Twilight Princess is an undeniably good, and at times great game. Since it’s a Zelda game, I would have expected nothing less. If most Wii games were at least as good as Twilight Princess, then the Wii could possibly have been the best console ever made. But compared to other Zelda titles, Twilight Princess lacks that special “something” that always makes a console Zelda game a one-of-a-kind, standout experience that only happens every few years. In attempting to go dark and edgy, Nintendo loses a bit of the almost child-like sense of wonder that all of their best games have been built upon, also losing some of their creativity in the process.

Wii · by krisko6 (813) · 2012

Ah, sweet obsession.

The Good
The Legend of Zelda series has always seemed particularly mythological to me. I played the original NES games on my father's console as a child and then when Ocarina of Time came around I was astounded at the level of depth, graphical polish and the level of addictiveness the game offered. Majora's Mask wasn't as a big as a revelation for me, although I did enjoy it. I for one, was not put off by the use of time travel in the game as a mechanism to push you forward as things lost could quickly be re-obtained by rolling around the field as a Goron for a bit. It was just a bit "me too" featuring more or less identical progression to its predecessor released 2 years earlier.

I enjoyed Windwaker on an entirely different level to the other games. It offered something drastically different, with a renewed emphasis on exploration and turned me into an almost compulsive collector (which I already kind of am with video games in general.)

The little games in between like the Four Swords Adventures and Minish Cap didn't particularly appeal to me enough to warrant a purchase as I was waiting for another real instalment of the series to be released. Well, it was a long wait between Windwaker and Twilight Princess.

When Twilight Princess came along I was in the middle of my little Nintendo hating spree where I totally ignored everything they were releasing. It's frustrating to me now in retrospect to think of how ignorant I was to deprive myself of the fantastic games being released on the Gamecube and at the launch of the Wii around that period.

Recently when I had my little change of heart and became a warm fan of Nintendo I purchased Twilight Princess in addition to a couple of other games with my console. I have been consistently amazed by this game. There's just something indescribably appealing about it that fills me with this sense of elation while I'm playing it.

Link (or Frank or whatever you want to call yourself) is a goat herd who lives in Ordon Village. While running an errand to Hyrule Castle he is mysteriously struck down and turned into a wolf. He finds himself with a mysterious, petite companion named Midna who gradually warms to him more and more as she accompanies him on his adventures. Link (Frank) learns that the evil King of Twilight known as Zant has his sights set firmly on the kingdom's Princess (guess who?) and thusly his journey begins in earnest.

Link controls very well. The nunchuck is used to maneuver him around the world, pressing A to roll and lashing out with the Wii remote to strike with his sword. Holding Z on the nuchuck raises Link's shield and in time further uses for it become apparent. As the game progresses Link can learn Hidden Skills which augment his current stock of fighting moves. These Hidden Skills are mostly used to quickly dispatch an enemy or are defensive like the Shield Bash. They aren't particularly easy to find though and you must do a bit of exploring to find them.

The flow of the game is such that it will be familiar to Zelda veterans but isn't samey to the point of being tiresome. The game is paced intelligently with lot's of story slipping neatly into intelligent gaps in the exploration. The pace of the game is driving and although you're never really explicitly told what to do it is hard to become lost as the nature of the clues provided for you are balanced perfectly. For instance, occasionally a red target will appear on your map, giving you a general idea of where you need to be but what needs to be done there remains a mystery. It keeps the pace up, while not ruining the gameplay for you.

The nature of the dungeons is also refreshing. The "dungeons" in Twilight Princess are unlike other games in the series. Most aren't temples or obvious caves but towers, mansions or mines. They flow so organically into one another that sometimes I didn't actually realize I had entered a "dungeon" area. It was a genuine surprise and that's what I like in a game, that element of unpredictability that keeps things feeling fresh.

To think the vast world of Hyrule once fit on a single Gamecube disc is somewhat unbelievable. Every inch of the world, which is huge, is rendered with immaculate detail from soft lighting filtering through trees to the many tiny details on rock faces and buildings. The muted tones of the world may not appeal to everyone, but they do to me. It makes Hyrule feel organic, grass isn't luminescent and tree bark doesn't glow a sickly brown. The pastel colors similar games use to render the world have been omitted here for a more day dreamy, fantastical presentation that makes the world look like a beautiful painting at times. Although Hyrule is split into many very distinctive provinces the land doesn't feel fragmented at all, with each unique portion of the land flowing naturally into one another from the scorching Gerudo Desert to the winter wonderland that is Snowtop Mountain.

The soundtrack is one of nuance and variety. The theme that plays when exploring the field is driving and inspirational, urging you to adventure through it as you gallop around on your horse (whom by default is called Epona, but I renamed Greg.) Town themes are jaunty and fun, boss battles play with a variation of the main theme thrown in with traditional Zelda style battle tunes and even minor incidental music displays that level of stylistic polish the rest of the soundtrack shines from.

Twilight Princess is a Zelda game of course, so then it is safe to assume the level of collectables is quite high. In this entry in the series the main side quest collectables are Golden Bugs and Poe's Souls. The characterization of the individuals who request you to collect the bugs and souls for them is eccentric and charming. Apart from the requisite collectables there are the typical heart pieces and expansions for your wallet and quiver. These things are always fun and satisfying to collect and they are here for you to find.

The Bad
There is very little not to like about Twilight Princess. Most of the criticism is in regards to some of the presentational mechanics that have become characteristic of the series. To begin with there is a lot of text to wade through, sometimes too much text and in the transition to the Wii it would have been nice to find this entry in the series with voice acting, even if it was just for major cutscenes. It's not a major detriment and anyone with even a moderate attention span should be able to sit through the text, as it is very engaging. It's just been a long time since Ocarina of Time, it's probably the right time to take that next presentational step and add voice acting.

The camera is a jerk at times. It's a pretty rare occurrence, but it always seems to happen when you're standing precariously on the edge of a cliff staring over a bubbling pit of lava or shifting sand. The camera will try to snap behind Link, yet get stuck on something or the lock on system won't work properly. Like I said, it's very rare, but it certainly did happen.

The Bottom Line
As of writing I've sunk just under 30 hours into Twilight Princess and I intend to invest many more returning to Hyrule over and over again to immerse myself in the magnificently rendered world. The adapted control scheme, beautiful presentation, intelligent and masterful pace, genius dungeon design and engaging story made me so happy while I was playing. I almost instantly fell in love with Twilight Princess and the minor faults concerning the presentation and camera really don't mean anything. This is officially one of the greatest games I have ever played, an example of gaming Nirvana, and something every self respecting gamer should experience.

Wii · by AkibaTechno (238) · 2010

Perfection achieved

The Good
This is by far the best Zelda game I have ever played.

Being one who has lived through all the Zelda games to the current date, I can without doubt call this game a masterpiece. I bought this game on Friday, was finished on Sunday evening. I didn't leave the freaking chair, it took me a whole 37 hours to play it through. It is by far the most adrenaline-filled Zelda game that has been launched.

Twilight Princess has beautiful artistic perspective, and one of the best looking Game Cube games to date. There is nothing more fun than shooting an arrow all the way across Hyrule field, then riding your horse trying to find it again. With award winning sound and gameplay, the most in depth plot, great graphics, great artistic perspective, over 60 hours of gameplay, and a character that never talks, The legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess is sure to bring enjoyment to any gamer who appreciates games for what they are, an art.

Twilight Princess amazingly follows through on all of its promises. Nintendo has done what one might consider the unthinkable -- achieved perfection.

The Bad
For some people that have played several Zelda games in the past. This is not a very hard game to finish.

The Bottom Line
There is not a single point where the game is not at an outstanding level. I would like to tell you more about it, and tell you in detail about every feature in the whole game, but...why should I tell you, when you can experience it yourself? Why should I spoil the greatest adventure of all? The best way to experience all this is to play it yourself. And I do recommend that you do just that, so go buy one, for your own sake, and get the game. You will not be disappointed. Nintendo has created a true masterpiece.

GameCube · by SiriusCrane (8) · 2007

Nothing new enough to warrant a purchase

The Good
I do like Zelda don't get me wrong. The graphics are pretty good but not exactly ground breaking, the control scheme is nice and I love the new circular inventory system. Hyrule has been overhauled and it is considerably larger than the last time we rambled around it as Link. Puzzles involving transforming between a Wolf and Link are pretty ingenious, look for ghosts pointing to the goal and then transform back into Link to get the job done!.

The Bad
As usual little has changed. The control system has been buffed but has essentially remained unchanged since Ocarina of Time, take away the pointing with the wii-mote and it's same old, same old. There are little new locations, graphics are fairly un-impressive for a next-gen console and most of the items are pretty superfluous. The novelty of changing into a Wolf wears off quickly and admit it, our new buddy is essentially Navi. Most of the music in the game is just a bunch of remixes of old Zelda tunes but there are some new tracks and some of the mini-games are boring (Whoa, let's herd what fun!) and bizzare (giant fruit collecting????).

The Bottom Line
What we have here friends is Zelda; Ganondorf is back (for the six billionth time) and another Link must take up sword and fight for the survival of Hyrule. You can do some new things and there are bells and whistles but essentially it's just the same old formula recycled with a new graphics engine, I definetly wouldn't buy this game it's a renter if anything. Buy it if you want, I mean you will enjoy it because it's Zelda and it is fun but there just isn't enough that is new to warrant a purchase.

Wii · by AxelStone (34) · 2008

A Beginner's Adventure Game

The Good
A fairly clean adventure game that reminds me of games made back in the 80's. The player is handed multiple puzzles to work through in a linear manner. For the most part this game is very good for the younger crowd. It would be a great introduction to a genre rarely seen today.

The Bad
Well, this game doesn't bring anything new to the table. If you have played adventure games before this one is just the same formula with new graphics (albeit done very well). It's also kind of annoying that while this game is a rail game, players are forced to repeat, or back track, sections of the map in order to emulate an open form game.

The Bottom Line
This game hearkens back to the age of adventure games where players were shoved down a rail by the developers and were forced to solve puzzles. In this game the puzzles can be logical, but sometimes they make no sense at all. And then players are forced to back track in order to complete the quests they are given, which can be quite annoying at times.

But this is also a very clean game that is done very well for what it is. For new players this would be a great first adventure game.

Wii · by Sean Johanson (12) · 2010

A good Zelda game, but with some weird problems

The Good
This Zelda game starts of very well by featuring a complete new characters cast with barely any characters from previous installments. I like that a lot because using characters from previous games often causes me to lose interest because I already saw them before and know how they act (like the Mask Salesman from Ocarina of Time that also appeared in Majora's Mask).

Using the Wii remote also feels better than in most other games on this system because using it actually feels natural. You swing your sword, aim with your bow or throw objects and never did it feel forced or unnecessary. Combat also works perfectly fine although it is a bit easy at times.

The graphics look great and I especially like it when you go to the Twilight Palace which looks just as creepy as it sounds. You can't expect much from the Wii, but this game can beat most Xbox 360 titles in terms of graphics.

Playing as Wolf Link is a lot of fun and although the combat is a lot slower due to the absence of a finishing move, it is still a fun game mechanic that can be used for both puzzle solving and fighting.

The story is well told and most characters you get to meet actually play a role in it rather then just standing around waiting for you to do it. Something I have always missed in the Zelda franchise is the feeling that Hyrule is actually at war, but in this installment you can see that the country is caught in a conflict. The story is also a lot darker than most other Zelda games with characters actually fighting back and dying.

The Bad
The world is rather big and while that sounds like a good thing, in order to make a big world have impact on the player that world also has to be interesting. Hyrule Field is a good example: There is literally nothing to see there and travelling all the way through it takes the same amount of time as it took to get from one place to another in Oblivion.

Most characters try to be funny way too much and feel out of place considering the darker story. The goofy major, the weird bomb vendor and the "wise" (read demented) Goron elders all fail to endear themselves to you. And please Nintendo, get rid of all the cowardly soldiers!

Some dungeons and most of the music is copied straight from previous Zelda games. Especially the music takes the piss because the only song I enjoyed that wasn't ported from another Zelda was the Hidden Village song. Music is to the Zelda games what cheese is to macaroni, you can still go without, but it just cries out for something more. The dungeons are a bit cheap, but not to apparent. The Water temple and the Arbiter Grounds took the piss because those were copies from the most annoying dungeons from Ocarina of Time.

The Bottom Line
This game is a good sign because it shows that the Zelda franchise is far from over. The game looks and plays great and the new story filled with fresh, new characters is really enjoyable. The game made me laugh at times as well and that is always a good sign.

It does fail big time in the music department and some characters try to be funny way too much, but I was able too look past that while playing the game. If your a fan of Zelda game then you'll love this game and for newcomers this isn't a bad start either.

Wii · by Asinine (957) · 2011

One of these rooms is going to break you.

The Good
Nice graphics. Interconnected world for exploration (Metroid and Braid fans will find this particularly satisfying). Horseback fighting. Very long single player campaign. It took me 20 hours to get to "Chapter 6" (Zelda has a guide that's divided into 22 chapters). Good production values -- everything flows well and smoothly.

The Wii Remote + Nunchuck controls are especially praise-worthy. The controls work, with at least a dozen moves that feel quite natural. Or it would have worked, if the level design had been more forgiving. But the Japanese who designed the levels (dungeons) had issues, and they decided to take it out on the players -- See the next section.

The Bad
Zelda games have ALWAYS been hard. In the past it was the boss fights that were hard. Now it's the camera angles.

Exploration has always been futile in Zelda games too. It has never been reasonable or sane to beat a Zelda game without reading guides. Twilight Princess required me to read a guide, or even two guides, basically everytime I entered a new room. There are tiny, tiny items or switches that you are unlikely to see at all, but have to interact with, in order to proceed. So, even with a guide, you don't complete your quests easily.

Almost every room in Twilight Princess is a test of your endurance. One of these rooms is going to break you, and you'll just give up. I made it to Chapter 6 (the Goron Mines). It's a dungeon with lava everywhere. It's so easy to die in this dungeon. After I finally got to the third room, I saved my game and turned the Wii console off. The next time I loaded my game, I was back at the entrance!? That's it. I quit.

The Bottom Line
Just know what it isn't. It isn't a game you can play through casually. It isn't a game you can play through with some dedication. If you decide to play Twilight Princess, you have to be really devoted. It's hard work. There is only one difficulty. You have no choice. Honestly, I found most of my textbooks (college and graduate level, mind you) to be much easier and friendlier, after I played Twilight Princess.

It is also not like the old top-down Zeldas. In A Link to the Past for example, you could see the whole map very early in the game, and you could go very far and you could go in any direction. Twilight Princess is a lot more linear. You're limited to go to only a few places, or only one place, at a given time.

Wii · by Pagen HD (145) · 2013

The absolute best

The Good
This game is my favourite, of all time. The graphics and soundtrack are astounding (considering this game is nearly 10 years old and ported from the GameCube) and I have never played anything else with a storyline that is so enchanting and personal. If you don't cry at the end, you're heartless.

The Bad
There is nothing I didn't enjoy, some of the mini-games are fairly difficult.

The Bottom Line
The ultimate Zelda game.

Wii · by Brandon Armstrong-Dance (2) · 2015

One of the best games in the series.

The Good
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess is one of the best games in the Zelda series. First of all, it can appeal to people who have been fans since the beginning, as well as newcomers. I also disagree with GameSpot about the Wii version's controls. While they are at times slow or unresponsive, I don't believe that they were "tacked on", as their reviewer put it. One thing I found funny was the shapes of some of the heads of animals. The monkeys look like someone shoved bananas through their ears and there is a bird with an Afro selling oil. Of course, Ganondorf/Ganon (one of the greatest villains in video game history) makes an appearance.

The Bad
Although I enjoyed this game overall, there are a few things I feel I must talk about. First of all, the controls were sometimes late or unresponsive, which led to much frustration (especially when trying to pick up bombs). Another thing I didn't really care for was the Midna character. More often than not, gameplay will be interrupted by a (mostly unhelpful) statement from her. Although she is sometimes helpful, she mostly appears to point out the obvious. One of my main complaints, though, is playing as wolf Link. This feels very crippling and, if you dislike Midna, you're going to be in for a long few levels because she feels it's necessary to ride you.

The Bottom Line
Overall, Twilight Princess is a very good game. It has it's flaws, but every good game is bound to have a few.

Wii · by J.D. Majors (14) · 2009

Contributors to this Entry

Critic reviews added by Big John WV, nullnullnull, Wizo, kurama, RhYnoECfnW, Alsy, Patrick Bregger, Flu, Solid Flamingo, Sciere, Kabushi, chirinea, Kyle Bell, Jeanne, Yearman, Chaju, Xoleras, Kam1Kaz3NL77, Axi, beetle120, Corn Popper, yenruoj_tsegnol_eht (!!ihsoy), Plok, Tim Janssen, Cantillon, Victor Vance, Maner76, Alaka, Rellni944, GTramp, Evil Ryu, firefang9212, ALEX ST-AMOUR, Jacob Gens.