The Legend of Zelda is a series is always polished to a point of perfection. This review is difficult because it balances the expectation of its release on the Nintendo 64, what has changed, and an overall upgrade to the visuals are massive for most individuals. Most will be looking at this review and asking, “Should I buy this, as I have already played it multiple times” if they have not bought the game already. I will tell you now, that you should, but here is why.
The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D
Reviewed: 3DS, 2DS, New 3DS (Review Copy Received)
Developer: Grezzo, Nintendo
Released: February 13, 2015 (Nintendo 3DS)
MSRP: $39.99 (Nintendo 3DS, 2DS, New 3DS)
Right from the start the game is visually amazing. This is no simple port. There has been a large amount of painstaking detail put into this game. It is hard to believe that this is a game on the 3DS, as the visual fidelity represented in this game is astounding. Draw distance, texture details, lighting all work extremely well with the overall aesthetics of the game, and really make all the visuals pop to life.
Character design, from NPCs to bosses is crisp and ranges from complex to ornate in their surroundings. Boss design in this game, is hands down some of the most unique in the series and really emphasizes the mask motif presented by the game.
As for bugs, or graphical errors, I did not see one error while collecting all the available masks in the game, to the completion of the final day.
Controls are remarkable in this game. The entire game really uses all aspects of the 3DS to its advantage. I will make a special note to point out that aiming with any item that requires it, is extremely intuitive on the system because of the addition of movement controls. This is a rarity on any system, and this game nails it on every level.
The world design is more compact, and filled with individual details because of the nature of the gameplay and the 3 day mechanic, and is utilized rather well. You will be walking the same spaces quite a lot so having new and interesting things to interact with makes the game world more vibrant and alive.
One issue is that the Mask collection aspect can be very trial and error. To find them all on your own, you will need to be extremely vigilant in looking for clues and keeping track of every NPCs timeline. You will most likely be spending the majority of your time looking for these clues and seeing how different masks interact with different people.
Music and Sound:
Majora’s Mask has some of the most memorable music in videogame history. There is little else to say. It is classic. And hearing it as crisp and clean as you do on a 3DS is amazing. This is one title you might want to pop some headphones on for.
Sound effects are crisp and clean, but very standard for the series. It is very much a “If it is not broken, why fix it” situation. There is really no room for improvement.
When you think of Majora’s Mask, you think of the story, and the people in it. Majora’s Mask takes a strong departure from the traditional story telling elements that we normally see in the series about the Triforce and saving Hyrule, and focuses in on the larger theme of great lose, sorrow death, and a person who stands outside of it watching it all.
It is almost unfair to say that this game has one story, because really it is an epic, as it deals with a many stories within the Hero’s tale. The amount of detail given to each story is rather remarkable, invoking a sense of wonder as you explore its narrative. For most, the story will pull you in to the emotional aspects of what is going on in the individual lives of each person you interact with.
Overall, there are no flaws with the story. There is a place for everything and everything is in its place.
Everything in this story goes hand in hand. The graphics and music reflect the somber tone of the story with perfect execution, highlighting the moments of joy in one’s life that will bring a tear and a smile. There are lessons to me learned with each individual story that are reflected on by the musical and graphical cues that other games have yet to master. All of this is held together with the gameplay as if to cradled in to place. You will be hard pressed to find a game that pulls all the pieces together as this game.