In 2000 on the Nintendo 64 the direct sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, also developed by Nintendo EAD, The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, who had the burden of proving to live up to what had been called the Best Game Ever.
In 2011, a few months after the release of 3DS, a new edition of Ocarina of Time arrived in stores, with revised graphics, improved where and if possible, and with some optional additions to be appreciated even by those less hardcore players (the Sheikhan stone).
Ever since, fans of the series have been clamoring for a remake of Majora's Mask, except being teased with various clues (just think of Zelda Williams at the last E3) or the countless quotes scattered here and there like the one present in A Link Between Worlds.
In the latest Nintendo Direct of last year however, the Kyoto house finally revealed The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D, obviously exclusive for 3DS and which from next February 13 will accompany the restyle of the same laptop in stores, New 3DS (and consequently New 3DS XL).
After telling you about the first impressions in the preview a few weeks ago, the time has finally come to give a verdict to the darkest Link adventure ever.
(Matter of time
We have already analyzed the incipit of the plot of Majora's Mask in the preview of last January, leaving Link to his journey through time that will lead him to relive the three days cyclically needed to retrieve the Majora Mask from Skull Kid's hands.a milestone of Nintendo titles
To prevent the moon from falling on Cronopoli and save all the inhabitants of Ends, the Hero of Time will find himself exploring four main areas, presided over by the four minions of the masked rival, once defeated Link will free the Guardian Giants, who will give him a hand on the night of the last day.
Since Majora's Mask is the chapter of the series that puts its strength on the plot, we will not tell you further and we will instead focus on the particular mechanics that make this classic a cornerstone of Nintendo titles.
All the events of Majora's Mask take place over three days, 72 hours of events that take place both in Cronopoli and in the entire Termina. Once you have obtained the Song of Time, you can return to the Dawn of the First Day whenever you want, however losing all those countable objects (Rupees, arrows, bombs, potions, keys, etc ...) while maintaining the different equipment collected (weapons, songs, bottles, heart fragments and of course masks), this means, that if you play your cards right, with each reset Link will be more and more prepared for what he will have to face (most of the time the four main boss battles).
Each inhabitant of Termina lives according to his own rhythms and schedules, to learn them and solve the myriad of subquests present in the title, Link and the player can rely on the Bomber notebook: almanac that will record every request and movement of the various NPGs.
The subquests can develop over the course of one night or cover all three days, giving the hero specific times to carry out certain actions and continue: the key example and the one that most strikes fans of the series is certainly the mission of Kafei and Anju, two betrothed who see their marriage threatened by the imminent fall of the Moon and the disappearance of Kafei himself.
Each quest, although optional, gives both Link and the player new information about Termina (as well as a reward once completed) and makes the game map itself more alive and unique.
Improvements to the Bomber notebook are useful
The changes made in this new version to the Bomber's Notebook also help to plan the events to be carried out, or the people to meet, thanks to an "Alarm Clock", making it very useful for the unfolding of the title and to complete 100% Majora's Mask 3D .
If you suffer from anxiety about the continuous countdown, there are two optional songs that make the situation much less tense: the Slow Time Song it is identical to the original version, slowing down the passage of time, while that of the Time doubled it allows you to move at a specific time according to the player's wishes, unlike the N64 version where it only allowed you to arrive the next morning.
This change certainly helps newbies, but it could make purists turn up their noses: in fact, together with the Sheikhan Stone, which reveals ALL the secrets of Majora's Mask through small videos, if used greatly undermines the core experience of the title, making it too easy. and hasty.
Of course, it is up to the player to honestly not use the aforementioned stone, but being able to deactivate it completely would have been more comfortable.
Fate was really cruel to you, right?
After talking about the "time factor" it is good to focus on the other fundamental characteristic of Majora's Mask: the power of the Masks.
Those who have 100% completed Ocarina of Time surely have some of the title's optional tools, obtainable from the Mask Vendor, and which were an integral part of an almost infinite series of exchanges.
Masks are an integral part of the gameplay
Nintendo EAD strengthened by this mechanic decided to make the Masks an integral part of this sequel, giving Link the possibility to transform himself with four of them, and to obtain different benefits from all the others.
The first of these masks allows Link to become a Deku bush, so you can enter the special flowers and reach elevated places, in this form you can also shoot bubbles and walk on the water (up to five consecutive steps), the ocarina of time will also change becoming a set of trumpets ; the second will turn Link into a Goron, by greatly increasing his physical strength and weight, allowing him to roll and use his magic power to create spikes to damage opponents, the instrument will become a set of bongos; finally the Mask Zora will transform the hero of Time into a member of the aquatic race, allowing him to swim at high speed, to explore the seabed and to throw his fins as a boomerang, in this form the ocarina will change into an electric guitar in the shape of a bone bone. fish.
The fourth special mask will be obtainable only after having collected all the masks of the title, an effort that, we assure you, will be worth making.
The optional masks instead give several benefits to the Hero of Time, from rabbit ears that will make him run faster, to mere disguises that will be used to access secret areas or to complete some subquest.
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Hey but there used to be here ...
Majora's Mask 3D not only has a new graphic design, a process under which Ocarina of Time had also passed, but it has also undergone a refinement in the gameplay and setting sector, the very useful inventory in real time, located on the touchscreen, also returns, which allows to have four instruments at the same time.small changes make the game more modern
In addition to the aforementioned Bomber's Notebook and Accelerated Time Song, the most profound change in terms of gameplay was the transformation into Zora.
In the original version, once he obtained the Mask, Link could swim much faster, complete with dolphin-style jumps on the water: the biggest flaw of this "marine freedom" was certainly poor maneuverability, especially in the Temple and in the aquatic competitions with beavers.
In this new version, freedom has been denied, underwater acceleration is still available, but it is no longer unlimited, but it will only be available in exchange for magic (thus pressing R): a change that might not please everyone, were it not that Zora-Link's movements result in improved maneuverability and precision never seen before in previous editions of the title.
Other small changes follow, the ice arrows now allow you to freeze only certain points, some rewards in the chests have been moved, some secondary masks are no longer obtainable in the early stages of the game (including the Stone Mask ed), the dungeons are have been cleaned and "fixed", resulting more modern thanks to these small aesthetic differences, finally several owl statues have been added to save much more often than the original version, making this portable remake capable of giving both long and short sessions.
Bossa Nova Marina
We have already widely talked about the graphic renewal undergone by Majora's Mask 3D, but we did not dwell on the effect that gives the name to the Nintendo laptop: if on the basic and XL models the stereoscopic 3D is at the same level as Ocarina of Time, on New 3DS (and XL) it manages to fully exploit the 3D Super - stable and the head tracking of the new version.
Unlike A Link Between Worlds, however, the effect is not mandatory to enjoy the darkest Zelda ever, so if you have a 2DS you won't have any problems.
The Spanish translation may not go down well for those who have always been accustomed to English names, but there is the fact that Majora's Mask it has never been adapted into our language until this new version (Basically it had been released in 2000 the translation would have probably been the same ndGuido).
The soundtrack remains intact in all its sublime beauty, curated by the tireless Koji Kondo, with some songs taken from Ocarina. Each background music adapts perfectly to the atmosphere of Termina, giving emotions also on the auditory side.
✓ Masterful soundtrack
✓ Renewed graphics x Accelerated time song all too convenient