Easter isn't just about chocolate eggs from eager-to-please bunnies (I've been told there's some religious alternative purpose, but we'll gloss over that for now), it's also a perfect excuse to discuss the oft-forgotten gem of our industry - the video game Easter Egg.
Easter Eggs are essentially secrets, hidden jokes or messages left by developers and designers for you to hunt out in game. They serve no purpose and have no reward other than the satisfaction that comes with finding something that most will have missed whilst playing. The first Easter Egg was discovered in a game released exactly 35 years ago this month - Adventure for the Atari 2600. By locating and manipulating a hidden "dot" players could gain access to a hidden room, which had the message "Created by Warren Robinett" - the game's programmer. Once this secret was found, Atari decided to keep it in game and call such secrets "Easter Eggs". The rest, as they say, is history.Click here to read more...
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past was my first ever Zelda game. It will always hold a special place in my heart not only for being the game that introduced me to one of the greatest franchises I ever have had the pleasure of playing, but also for being a fantastic game in its own right. So when a straight sequel was announced, I have no shame in revealing that I was very excited - kiddie at Christmas excited.
But how would I find a sequel to a game that I have placed on a pedestal for two whole decades? Would it be able to live up to the game I held so dear, and would there be enough difference in this game to make it a classic in its own right?
Like most Zelda games, we begin with Link oversleeping – Hylean heroes apparently need their ten hours of beauty sleep a night. After being woken to go and do some work, our hero gets accidentally caught up in a very familiar plot involving kidnap of Sage descendants to a mysterious parallel land. It’s up to our hero to collect some well-known jewels, and a famous sword to go off after them.
So yes, story-wise this won’t win any awards for individuality, in fact its parallel to Link to the Past’s story is equalled in the mirroring that also occurs between Hyrule and the game’s mysterious parallel land known as Lorule. And Lorule itself is essentially the Dark World from Link to the Past, right down to its music, design and enemies.Click here to read more...
With the new 3DS title A Link Between Worlds being released just last week, and with a Dealspwn review still a work in progress (early impressions are very positive though), I thought I’d compile a Top 5 that should whet your Zelda appetite, and hopefully provoke plenty of discussion. So without further ado I present to you the Top 5 Best Zelda games.
NB. There may be some light spoilers, but to be honest if you’ve not played these games yet, then shame on you!
The original game received a lot of unfair criticism when it was released, due to its new direction in art style, its apparently low difficulty level, and all that sailing between small islands of interest. However what lay underneath was a game that was packed full charm, even from Link himself – normally a protagonist void of emotion and character. It also introduced a parry mechanic which added a new dimension to combat, which created a much more fluid fighting system, and a more energetic and flexible Link than we were used to seeing.
Essentially it was an adventure that never took itself too seriously and was probably the most fun Zelda that has ever been released. Upon realisation of that, you understand the new visuals worked perfectly with the game’s core design and allowed for a really enjoyable experience.
When the HD version released this year for Wii U, we finally had the game we’d always hoped for, with Nintendo addressing many of the technical criticisms, and adding in a new Hero Mode to really up the challenge. Unmissable.Click here to read more...
Nintendo's E3 global broadcast went down like a lead balloon yesterday, with a shocking lack of major reveals and 2013 software. However, the inestimable Shigeru Miyamoto confirms that they're working on a massive Zelda title for the Wii U, which they didn't show to avoid people seeing it, buying a Wii U and giving them lots of money.
Or something. Either way, the logic is insane.Click here to read more...
Following Nintendo's big Wii U Direct presentation this week, we pick apart the announcements as well as discussing the Metal Gear Rising demo, Strike Suit Zero, and Ni No Kuni.
Parental Advisory: We've tried to keep it as conversational and informal as possible, and you should be warned that there may be a few instances of strong language.
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The tour kicked off early last year, but it's coming to London for one night only. Following a wildly successful and delightfully entertaining slew of 25th Anniversary concerts a couple of years ago, the Symphony of the Goddesses tour hits the UK on May 23rd, 2013 at the Hammersmith Apollo.Click here to read more...
Our newest recruit Chris takes a look back over a long year that saw the second year in a row won for him by Bethesda, a surprisingly muted launch for the Wii U, a flawed gem in Capcom's Dragon's Dogma, and a glorious Platinum in Skyrim at last!
For me, Bethesda pulled it out the bag again this year with their stealth, magic, assassin, first-person, action game. The first thing that really works for this game is that its so easy to get absorbed into it. With the first-person perspective, and the “choice” system of how to complete missions that makes a difference, it really does take you in and feel as though your really are Corvo Attano pacing through the streets of Dunwall. It makes you think about how you should continue, and not in a forceful way, like a game like Dark Souls, but in a personal way of how you want to play the game, and how you want it to pan out. And there’s so much fun to be had on further playthroughs to discover where different decisions could have led.
And the way in which you can make those decisions also made this a great game. A combination of weaponry and various powers at Corvo’s disposal provide you with plenty of options to tackle each enemy and situation. I also found the AI to be a step up from most games, where a quick hide in a corner might be enough, but Dishonored is less forgiving of rash movements – in a good and thought-provoking way. To top it off the visual style of the game is also very good and the landscape of Dunwall oozes character, creating an overall gaming experience that for me was the best this year.Click here to read more...
Shigeru Miyamoto has responded to fan suggestions that they'd like to see Retro Studios - the Texan-based developers responsible for the fantastic Metroid Prime - take on another Nintendo franchise: Zelda.Click here to read more...
We loved Lone Survivor here on Dealspwn, and creator Jasper Byrne has revealed a few tantalising tidbits for new game that he's working on - a title that, according to Byrne himself, is shaping up to look a little like The Legend of Zelda: The Phantom Hourglass meets Demon's Souls.Click here to read more...
According to a sensational new report, Nintendo are hard at work on a flagship Zelda title for the Wii U and targeting a 2014 release window. The rumoured project has been described as "the most innovative Zelda game ever," sporting HD graphics, GamePad functionality and a development team numbered in the hundreds.Click here to read more...
Here we go. Will Nintendo blow us all away this time around? Frankly we'd just settle for them getting it right. Don't just tell us, Nintendo, show us. Show us a bunch of games that we can get behind and the Wii U will be the only thing on everyone's lips for the rest of this week. Show us how they make the most of the new console, how they make the console unique, and how they'll fare against the intrenched forces of MS and Sony.
Oh, and Luigi's Mansion 2 would be nice as well.Click here to read more...
In our final look at the big three press conferences, we chat about Nintendo and, unsurprisingly, the big thing on everyone's lips is the Wii U. Will they announce features and specs? What of the console's launch lineup? Will it get a rebranding? And what of the 3DS? Nintendo have a second chance following last year's fiasco to set the record straight.
Oh those guys. Those ******* guys. After an E3 presentation last year which left me horribly disappointed it’s time for take two of the Wii U’s unveiling, but this time they have to absolutely 100% nail it. My hope is that they have used the last year to allow multiple tablet controllers to connect to a console, and perhaps even allow for streaming a game to a tablet over the internet so you can properly play on the go (you know, like the name “Project Café” implied.)
No doubt we will get a smothering of Mario-based products, Zelda will make an appearance, and we will see their attempt to make the 3DS relevant to the casual buyer market, but what I really want is for Nintendo to start being more adventurous and grab my interest in their games again. A guy can dream, eh?
It shouldn't have worked. In fact, if one takes statistics into account and appraises the situation from a purely numerical perspective, it didn't. But somehow Nintendo's little purple box of wonders has left an indelible mark on hearts across the globe. It was the little console that, in the end, sadly couldn't. But for the faithful, for those who took the rather inexplicable plunge and sampled it's delights, there was nothing else we'd rather have been playing on.
Looking at Nintendo's practices now - with their last two consoles built and sold on hardware gimmicks and promises rather than stacks of excellent software - the GameCube defies all logic. Indeed, it seemed to defy logic back in May 2002 as well, launching without the ability to play audio CDs or DVDs (instead plumping for the laughably cute mini optical discs), abandoning the N64's trident controller in favour of a dual-analogue approach, there was no backwards compatibility, and it looked ridiculous. It even had a carry-handle!
But it also had some of the best games of its generation.Click here to read more...
It's always a little curious to think a new Zelda game is in the shops. The development period is often so long, the game becomes something of a myth. Well, Skyward Sword is a reality, and with Link's latest adventure released, Nintendo has turned their attention to the next title in the Zelda series. And might they be taking the radical step of not only including a new team in developing said title, but a Western outfit who revitalized the Metroid series?Click here to read more...
Eiji Aonuma, current series producer for The Legend of Zelda, has told of how in spite of coming to the series halfway through its lifespan thus far, he really wants to make the series his own, stamping his own mark on the series after taking the reins from Shigeru Miyamoto.Click here to read more...
It's the last in our mini season of Twitter parties, and we're ending things with Ninty's biggest launch of the year. You know the drill by now, so make sure you've got enough food, drink, heating and internet. We're going to raise the cyber-roof !
Every hour, on the hour, between 6pm and midnight there'll be a question going up on either the @Dealspwn or @HotUKDeals streams on Twitter. We'll be kicking things off at 6pm on the @Dealspwn stream and alternating from there, so make sure you're following both accounts to maximise your chances.
And so we reach the last in our season of Twitter competitions.
It's been a bit of a nightmare year for Nintendo. The 3DS didn't exactly set the world on fire, the announcement of the Wii U was met with widespread confusion and shrugging, and the albino box that once printed money has found itself carried onwards only thanks to dancing titles. But Ninty are preparing for a big finish. The Wii is finally getting the dedicated Zelda epic that it has been longing after for four years.
And on Tuesday 15th, we're giving away 18 copies!
You know the drill by now. Every hour, on the hour, between 6pm and midnight there'll be a question going up on either the @Dealspwn or @HotUKDeals streams on Twitter. We'll be kicking things off at 6pm on the @Dealspwn stream and alternating from there, so make sure you're following both accounts to maximise your chances. The night will run as follows:
All you need to do is reply to the relevant stream on Twitter with the answer and the #winZelda hashtag within the hour.
For example, if this is the question:
Win Zelda. Name the village at the foot of Death Mountain in Ocarina of Time. #winZelda
If the question came from Dealspwn, then you should answer:
Kakariko Village @Dealspwn #WinZelda
Or if the question came from HUKD, then answer:
Kakariko Village @HotUKDeals #WinZelda
Individual question rounds will last an hour, after which three winners with the correct answer will be chosen at random for each question. As you'll see in the rules below, we only accept one entry per person. Multiple entries and duplicate posts are deleted upon data collation to ensure a level playing field. We tend not to disqualify people completely, but we will if you take the piss.
Things to note:
The Legend Of Zelda: Skyward Sword is shaping up to be... well, it's a Zelda game. It's going to be good. However, it contains a few nifty new upgrades to the traditional formula in a very literal sense. Players will be able to collect resources from slain enemies and use them to upgrade their gear at the Skyloft Scrap Shop, making their shields tougher and their catapults more powerful. We assume that most of the items and weapons can be upgraded, which should provide an addictive new dimension to the gameplay as well as a constantly-improving arsenal.
Check out our hands-on preview here, and click through for the trailer. We'll keep you updated ahead of its November launch.Click here to view the Skyward Sword upgrade trailer >>
The Legend Of Zelda: Skyward Sword is shaping up to be an absolute blinder. Well, it's a Zelda game after all - but this time, the tight puzzling is blended with the freedom to fly. Nintendo has released a new Comic-Con trailer that shows off some of the action - as well as revealing that the Gorons will make an appearance. It's brilliant stuff, and rousing to boot.
Why not check out our hands-on preview?Click here for the trailer >>
At their E3 2011 unveiling of their newfangled console, the Wii U, Nintendo showcased an impressive tech demo for a mysterious Zelda title, showing a meticulously rendered Link entering a beautiful cathedral, awash in light-shafts, crisp textures and a particularly large arachnid. It was jaw-dropping stuff, the true-to-life art style a stark difference from the painterly Skyward Sword. However, according to Zelda producer Eiji Aonuma, whether they decide to make a Wii U Zelda title or not, it's not certain it'll look like that.Click here for more on the Wii U Zelda