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The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask


JFo
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With the brief lull in games at the moment, and with most of the hot holiday titles I wanted to play finished, I decided it was time to sit down and play through one of my favorite games from the N64: The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask.

 

This is a game I feel deserves more recognition than it gets. I would even say that it's the best Zelda game no one has ever played. The game came out in October of 2000, late in the N64's life cycle. By then, many gamers had grown frustrated with the lack of titles for Nintendo's system and had moved on to either the Dreamcast or the Playstation 2. Majora's Mask, in fact, came out the same day Sony's much-hyped second console hit the shelves. On top of all that, it lives under the shadow of its predecessor, Ocarina of Time, a game that many (myself included) believe to be the greatest game ever made. Naturally, that's a tough act to follow.

 

Now, it has a second chance to ensnare gamers with Nintendo's recent Zelda compilation for the GameCube. Really, who can argue with having a free copy of all of those classic games? At any rate, this thread is for those who have played it as I have, and for those who have not yet played it, but may have the GameCube disc. Now's your chance to sit down and experience another great addition to the Zelda series.

 

Having just started to play it again, I'm struck by how familiar it feels while being so different from Ocarina of Time. Majora's Mask runs off an enhanced version of the engine used in the first N64 game. Hence, the graphics are almost identical (save for some improved texture maps) and the soundtrack is almost a note-for-note repeat of the first game. There is new music throughout, but a lot of old favorites return, including the classic Zelda theme, which was sorely missed from Ocarina. Even the controls and menu system are exactly the same. In short, if you played Ocarina of Time, you will feel right at home with this one.

 

And yet, almost immediately, you realize that this game is different. A lot of that would be because at the start, poor Link is transformed into a scrawny Deku Shrub and finds himself trapped in a world that will end in three days time. That's right, there's a time limit, and it's a good idea to accomplish your goals before it runs out. That's when the angry moon above your head comes crashing down into the world and kills everyone, Armageddon-style. And don't expect Bruce Willis to save your ass by blowing it up with a nuke.

 

To say that the time limit changes things is like saying ants are small. The almost leisurely pace of past Zeldas is replaced with a greater sense of urgency. Players must decide what they want to do and when they want to do it, and then face the possibility that they may not be able to do it before time runs out. This is particularly true in the dungeons, where everything will reset if you warp back to the first day. Just in case players can?t beat everything within the three days, they can play an alternate version of ?The Song of Time? that will slow down the passage of time to roughly half its normal speed. For my part, I?ve decided that on my second run that I won?t be doing this at all. Good luck to me.

 

At any rate, I?m sure I could go on and on about this game all night long. Instead, I?m going to shut up now and let someone else have the floor. Please discuss? :D

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Majora's Mask.

 

Its just one of the, well, all Zelda games that I haven't really played properly. My brother keeps 'borrowing' them before I get anywhere, and then I never see them again. I even hunted down the compilation disc for the Gamecube recently, and he nicked that too.

 

Git.

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I'm ashamed to admit that the only Zelda games I've completed are Link's Awakening (the game that got me rolling on the Zelda franchise) and A Link To The Past (and it took me forever to actually get through).

 

With both Gamecube Zelda compilations in hand and Wind Waker waiting patiently to be played again, I am bound and determined to finally work my way through the entire series.

 

Majora's Mask is the only one that I haven't played at all (excluding the Oracle games I guess), so I am anxious to finally play it.

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Argh, now I'm feeling bad about not having finished Majora's Mask. I made it pretty far once, just a few months ago, but it just didn't grab enough to complete the last little bit.

 

I've never even played any of the Game Boy Zeldas either :(

 

Wind Waker got me so good that I'd probably play through it again before I played another Zelda.

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After Wind Waker came out and I beat it, I decided to play through all the Zelda games again, and as much as I love them all, Majora's Mask is by far my favorite. I think it was the darker tone of the game. I have to suggest to everyone, play this game. FWIW, it plays better on the N64 than on the Gamecube, but if the Gamecube version is all you have, go for it.

 

Clay

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Originally posted by Clay@Feb 8 2004, 11:19 PM

FWIW, it plays better on the N64 than on the Gamecube, but if the Gamecube version is all you have, go for it.

I've been noticing the same thing. I know several places have reported the audio irregularities in the game, but I haven't seen much talk about the excessive amount of slowdown in the game. I do remember some slowdown on the N64, but not as much as in the GameCube version. Maybe I'll have to wip out the N64 again just to double check.

 

EDIT: Yep, there is definitely some slowdown present in the GameCube version. I just tried out the Goron races on the N64 version and it runs perfectly smooth. There's no slowdown whatsoever. What a shame that Nintendo couldn't get it to run smoothly, especially after playing through the GCN edition of Ocarina of Time, which ran perfectly.

 

I will say though that seeing the N64 version after playing the GCN version is like watching a movie you love on VHS after watching it on DVD.

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