Breath of the Wild if anything else is a sobering reminder that Nintendo still is in the top class of the development industry, and that the rest of the development world has been lucky that Nintendo since 2006 has been producing consoles that are a generation behind the competition thus officially placing its development teams in an unfavorable handicap situation.
It was in fall 2011 when the mighty Zelda series ran into a proverbial wall. Skyward Sword became in many eyes the weak link (no pun intended) of the series. Skyward wasn’t terrible or even a bad game in fact it was a very good if excellent game in a series that had accustomed the gaming world to ground breaking flawless experiences.
It had the misfortune of running into Bethesda’s refinement of their Elder Scrolls series in Skyrim. Five years earlier Twilight Princess had run into a similar predicament when it had to compete against Oblivion.
In 2006, though out dated in terms of graphical prowess; Twilight proved to be the superior Action RPG title when stacked up against Oblivion. In 2011 Skyrim blew Skyward Sword out of the water (or air in this case). Which wasn’t surprising as the Wii didn’t age well graphically and in spots Skyward Sword looked inferior to Twilight which had released 5 years earlier.
Enter the Wii U AKA Nintendo’s big mistake( we will pretend the Virtual Boy never happened). The Wii U saw the light of day in 2012…6 years after the PS3 but it was only marginally more powerful than the 360 and the aforementioned PS3.
The Wii U was a gigantic sales failure that had no ground breaking games until Zelda Breath of the Wild was announced for the system. BotW would eventually become its swan song, and the Killer launch app of Nintendo’s new 2017 console/portable hybrid The Nintendo Switch.
All things considered the jump in power from the Wii U to the Xbox One/PS4 generation wasn’t a supremely epic one, and so in BotW Nintendo’s wizards managed to craft a game that tech wise for the first time in more than a decade manages to impress and even compete with current open world offerings on the more powerful consoles.
Being completely honest Zelda hasn’t been a visually stunning game at the time of release since Ocarina of Time back in 1998. In 1998 the N64 was by far the most powerful console around (Though Japan had the DC) so Ocarina was not only a tech show case for the system but a ground breaking game that shattered and set standards across the video gaming industry as far as console visuals went.
Twilight Princess was a beautiful game on its own right but the GC in 2006 looked dated (though at E3 2004 it made the biggest visual splash of any Zelda before or since) in comparison to Xbox 360 games. So
it is fitting to say that BotW in 2017 while eerily finding itself in the same position TP found itself in 2006, looked in 2017 a bit more impressive than TP did in its hey day.
While the Switch’s rendering capabilities might some day provide us with a more realistic take on Zelda than BotW’s mix of realistic textures in environments populated with cel shaded characters, the Wii U had to adopt the aforementioned visual style in order to produce a game that visually competes with the Witchers, Skyrims, and Horizon Zero Dawns of the world. Yes HZD looks a full Gen ahead, but BotW looks good enough to never feel out of date in the current gaming landscape.
One of Skyrim’s gifts to the open world genre was the wonderful sense of scale that the players felt when standing on top of a high mountain or peak while watching the sprawling world unfold beneath them towards the horizon. In 2011 this was mind blowing. Today playing through Skyrim’s remastered open world on the PS4 the visuals still please the eye and the sense of scale is still intact. The Witcher 3 failed to capture that sense of scale in its world. Horizon Zero Dawn came closer, Breath of the Wild nails it. An impressive feat indeed considering BotW is a 3rd person game.
While open world sand box style of play is the current trendy thing in the industry, Nintendo pioneered the style of play back in the mid 1990s with Mario 64. The first properly realized action RPG 3D open world followed soon thereafter with Ocarina of Time.
In many ways Nintendo pioneered the open world genre that we see today, so it’s not surprising now that technology has finally caught up in the form of decent hardware that Zelda once again competes for the crown for the greatest open world experience your money can buy.
The world is as diverse as it is beautiful. Death Mountain, Zora’s Domain, Hyrule Castle, Kokiri Forest, Lost Woods etc. Are all represented here in epic scale. While BotW is not a reboot, it is a transitional game in the series as it is hard to envision the series returning to the smaller compact Hyrule we saw in older Zeldas ever again at least as far as main console entries are concerned.
There is a price to pay for the epic scale, and grandeur of course. The modern wonderful texturing seen in HZD and current PS4/Xbox One games is missing here. The textures here belong in the PS3/360 era as they should since BotW is basically a higher res Wii U game. The game is beautiful because Nintendo pushes the limit of its Wii U tech in the right places in order to keep the game from looking out dated and at the same time uses cel shading and colorful art design in areas were the Wii U tech would show its age such as in character models, grass, and foliage texture, etc.
Witcher 3, and HZD are technically in terms of tech the more impressive titles. Artistically speaking though Zelda belongs alongside them. In some ways it even surpasses the former games thanks to Nintendo’s uncanny attention to detail. When it rains Link gets wet and you can see the droplets dripping from his tunic, puddles form across the grassy fields and every surface looks wet. The physics system affects cloud formation as the sky moves accordingly to wind direction. The lighting is fantastic exhibiting proper illumination during daylight and nighttime. The draw distances are impressive, (though there is constant texture popping especially when gliding around the world) as are the gigantic Divine Beasts…everything runs at 30fps even in undocked mode, with a notable exception being the deku tree area where the game noticeably drops frames.
Undocked the game runs at 720p on the handheld screen, docked however we get a gorgeous 900p presentation that enhances visual clarity by a small but noticeable margin. Breath of Wild is probably the greatest looking open world game of the 360,Ps3, WiiU era.
It is not today in 2019 the most stunning game around but it remains one of the better looking games out there. Ocarina was much more impressive in its hey day but BotW especially in handheld mode is a wonderful technical showcase for the Switch.
Nintendo Schools Everyone Else Again
BotW is a magical game. The type of game that pulls you into its world, and never lets go. Nintendo’s attention to detail is again without peer. Skyrim still is I guess; the more realistic take on the Open World genre in terms of freedom of choice as you can pretty much kill (almost) every NPC character in the game. Yet, BotW’s world felt in some ways the superior world even if interaction with NPCs is nearly as simplistic as it has been in the series since the N64 days.
The physics system is a game changer. The ability to chop or burn down entire forests, cut grass, watch pretty much every environmental element react to Link, makes this version of Hyrule one of the liveliest open worlds I have played.
So it is fitting then that reminiscent of 1998 when Ocarina of Time pretty much single handedly took action Rpgs into the 3rd dimension establishing many gameplay conventions still in use today, that nearly two decades later it is a Nintendo Zelda game that pioneers new territory and game play mechanics in a genre that Zelda itself might have invented.
Skyward Sword was the only game in the series that felt dated to me, and judging by the feat Nintendo pulled off with BotW on WiiU tech it is clear that the former entry was hampered by the Wii’s ancient Game Cube hardware. Nintendo did however break away from Ocarina’s successful blue print when designing BotW’s progression system.
No longer are we hindered from progressing to a new area in the map by not having the proper key item in our inventory. Once you leave the Great Plateau early in the game, you are free to go anywhere, tackle the game’s dungeons in any order that you want, and if you’re a feeling bold or stupid, charge straight into the final battle with Ganon.
Because of the lack of a carefully (if linear) planned progression system featured in older entries, BotW is the toughest Zelda game since Zelda II The adventure of Link.
The first 10-15 hours are basically for the most part an open world survival experience in which you are forced to scavenge, cook, and carefully pick your fights in order to stay alive to make some progress. Dying in the early stages won’t be an uncommon occurrence.
Nintendo has said they used the Elder Scrolls as an obvious source of inspiration, and it shows. Link collects both body parts ( which can later be traded or cooked in to dishes) and equipment (mostly weapons and shields) from his fallen foes. Unlike the Elder Scrolls, Link’s carrying capacities are extremely limited, so eventually you have to ditch some of your equipment in order to carry stronger one. Weapons and Shields break…it was hard getting accustomed to new feature of the gameplay as it made the survival early stages that much tougher. Yet Nintendo has filled Hyrule with treasure chests, and enemies both gigantic and small to cover Link’s weapon needs.
There is a way around this system but you will have to find the Master Sword and pay an extra 20 dollars on the e shop to download the expansions for the game. In the expansions the hellish Master Sword Trials await and you can power up the Master Sword to last you forever in combat after conquering said trials. The Master Sword will run out of energy during normal play, meaning you will have to equip another weapon until it charges itself back up after a set amount of time. This little inconvenience makes no sense for a legendary sword that never needed recharging in past iterations but oh well, it is what it is.
Combat has been an important part of the series since its early days, and this is also true in BotW. While the traditional dungeons are gone (more on that later) there are plenty of Boss fights in the overworld and some challenging bosses in the game’s four main dungeons.
The bosses at the end of each divine beast offer challenges that in my experience were more difficult than your typical Zelda boss.
Being that BotW leaves exploration, and the order in which to tackle things up to the player. I made the mistake of going after the Desert Divine beast first; it was the closest Divine Beast to my location on the map.
The end boss in that particular dungeon was unforgiving, his lighting fast moves, and his lighting attacks were killing me at times in just one blow. I had only about 5, or 6 hearts at that point in my life bar. So after many failed tries I gave up, and went on a 10 hour quest to get hearts, and to find a recipe that would give me some protection against lighting strikes.
After ten hours of adventuring I did get some better equipment, cooked lighting resistance dishes, and added about five more hearts to my bar. After this I managed to kill the boss in an exciting affair in just one try. It was satisfying and it felt rewarding knowing that meticulous exploration lead to substantial improvements on Link’s character.
Of course hours after that battle, while exploring the world, and completing some of the available 120 hidden shrines. I found a lighting resistant armor which would have made that particular boss battle an easier one.
That is the beauty of BotW, rush through the game and it will be brutal for Link…take your time to enjoy and explore the beautiful scenery and you will Ace the boss battles including Ganon.
It is the new breed of overworld centaur like monsters called Lynells that have caused me my greatest challenges during my 100+ hours of playtime.
At the end of the day apart from the survival mechanics in the early part of the game, the cooking, scavenging, and the weapons that break, BotW still plays mostly like every other Zelda of old except for two key components…The elimination of thematic Dungeons, and dungeon specific key inventory items (hook shot, boomerang, iron boots, lens of truth, etc).
I won’t lie I was in the disappointed crowd when the elimination of themed Temples and dungeons was announced. Zelda pretty much built it’s entire formula on the strength of these dungeons. However I am happy to report that the Shrine system that replaces the older Temple system is superior in more ways than it is the opposite especially in the context of the massive open world that BotW presents; it simply works better this way.
Because full Shrine completion isn’t required to finish the game, Nintendo had more freedom to craft some really brilliant and difficult puzzles. This is a plus for those of us that have played Zelda since its original entry as I suspect that most us were finding the standard dungeons to be quite on the easy side of things.
It is inside these shrines where the physics system Nintendo has in place shines. Controlling wind, heat, gravity, force and time is easier and more intuitive than it sounds. Some shrines have a common theme. In others you have to figure out which abilities you have to combine in order to solve the puzzles and challenges.
Sometimes the solution could be one that Nintendo did not intend and such is the beauty of Zelda breaking away from scripted events. So after a few hours of play I can safely say I didn’t miss the temples as much as I thought I would.
In the context of BotW story the temples would have also created a dilemma. Link receives every key Item and skill that he needs during the first 2 to 3 hours he spends in the beginning of the game at the great Plateau. So dungeon progression would have been rendered pointless unless Nintendo created some other reward system to compensate. There are massive ruins of ancient temples scattered throughout Hyrule for the player to explore any ways.
The shrines and even Hyrule’s massive and varied terrain are in the end a massive playground for Nintendo’s new Physics system. Link can chop and burn down forests and individual trees.
If you can’t cross across a chasm, you can look around for a nearby tree. Chopping the tree down will create our needed bridge. Sounds like a typical Zelda game of course; the puzzle was the chasm and the solution was cutting the tree down to create a bridge. In a previous Zelda game this would have been the one and only solution to the dilemma of crossing to the other side, and the entire thing would have taken place in a scripted event.
In BotW however chopping the tree from the wrong direction, could cause the tree to fall in an undesirable way or to fall off right into the chasm. Or you could just try to find a way over the mountain on foot to get to other side. Hyrule has never been more alive and no other open world game has ever given you this much freedom in how to go about your business.
Like Skyrim BotW’s world is filled with epic mountain ranges. Unlike Skyrim’s wintery lands, Hyrule features tropical beaches and islands, snowy mountain tops, scorching deserts and volcanoes, green lush forests, gorgeously epic water bodies and grassy plains. Hyrule is as vast as my child imagination thought Ocarina’s Hyrule was. Link’s new found ability to climb onto every surface in the game (as long as it isn’t an Ancient construct) lets you touch and uncover every nook and cranny in this gigantic over world.
Hyrule in itself is an organic puzzle. The map in your Sheikah slate (a tablet like gadget that Link uses to keep tabs on the quests, inventory and even doubles as a camera) is mostly dark until you climb a Sheikah Tower to map a region. getting to places can be daunting even with the gliding ability and ability to climb any surface. Link is always hindered by the stamina meter, which you can upgrade as you uncover spirit orbs in the shrines (for every 4 orbs you can get a heart or a stamina piece) but there is a limit to how much stamina you can get. At the early stages of the game you have to plan carefully which ledge you are going to climb, what side of a mountain to chose etc. Choosing correctly will give you
some room to rest if you can find a solid foot hold on the side of one of the cliffs. Choosing wrongly will have you plummeting downwards to the very foot of the mountain if your stamina wheel is depleted.
In the end the stamina wheel and the gliding mechanic in which you can traverse long distances fairly quickly make traveling by air the most efficient realtime way to move around the world of Hyrule. That is not to say you can’t ride horses or other animals in the game, in fact horse riding in this particular version of hyrules is pretty much a mini game on itself. Taming horses can be time consuming but the lack of an evident story important horse like Epona sort of makes horse riding a pointless endeavor, especially with the expansions handing you a motorcycle after completing the Champion’s ballad. Riding horses here is marginally more fun than it was in W3 and Skyrim…except for the fact that Skyrim at least gives you a super immortal horse after completing the guild of assassin’s quest line.
There are gliding and snowboarding challenges as well, in short Hyrule has never been more alive despite its massive size and scope. It seems Nintendo lovingly crafted every nook and cranny in the game as no two areas surprisingly look the same. Every area has a Korok seed, a Shrine or some other item to find.
Where Nintendo still lags behind Bethesda unfortunately is on the side quest and NPC AI interaction systems. BotW is the most gigantic open world the series has ever seen, and yet it still plays like Zelda of old in terms of NPC interaction.
Obviously this is Zelda, and there are well established guidelines as to how Link should behave in this universe. Link is a hero. The prospect of Link going around burning down villages isn’t one that we will probably ever see outside of Fan Fiction universe. In that regard there isn’t much Zelda can do to defeat Skyrim’s, GTA’s and RDR’s sense of freedom. And yet there should be no reason for many of the NPCs running around in the wild not to meet an unfortunate end. After all there are many instances where they can be seen fighting Ganon’s minions.
Saving these innocent adventurers didn’t really skyrocketed into a high spot in my list of priorities in the game mainly because the NPCs can’t die. So basically you are left with recurring seemly scripted scenarios that are common, and boring to say the least.
BotW’s massive replay value lies then on the collect a ton formula Nintendo has thrived in since the NES days. There is an absurd amount of Korok Seeds, 120 shrines, different pieces of set armor with upgrades that can be found at hidden fairy locations through the game world.
In the end BotW accomplishes what it set out to do which is to bring Zelda into the current open world craze while maintaining the high polish level of excellence that series has us accustomed to.
Aside from my NPC questing complaint, my two other gripes with the game are the awful (to the point of frustration) motion control system used in some of the shrine puzzles, and the lack of underwater exploration. The motion controls are mostly a gigantic problem when playing undocked. I couldn’t precisely flip some of the surfaces that had to be moved around with the motion controls mainly because I couldn’t see the screen of the tablet device as I spun it around to get the proper momentum required to solve some of those puzzles.
Nintendo has always excelled control wise in both of their flagship series ‘s (Mario and Zelda) so it was surprising, and frustrating that in an other wise flawless game Nintendo had opted for motion controls in those few (shrine puzzle) instances.
The lack of water exploration segments while understandable feels counter productive when BotW’s game world features gorgeous bodies of water everywhere, and the huge selling point for the title is that BotW offers an unrivaled experience of freedom.
One of the most magical things about Skyrim is spotting a body water and diving in it. The ever present promise of a hidden cave that could leave to a massive cave system or ruin is something that no other Open world game has come close to matching. I was hoping Zelda would match Bethesda’s effort in this regard and it didn’t. Perhaps there wasn’t enough time to implement this system and Nintendo is not a company that does things for the sake of doing things so the under water sections were dashed.
BotW marks the first time that I can’t really remember many tunes from a Zelda game even after 110 hours of playtime. While this is technically the most advanced sounding Zelda in the series, the music is quite standard fare except for the cutscenes which feature great orchestrated tunes accompanying whatever scene that plays.
Most of the game time is spent in the overworld and the classic Ocarina theme, and Zelda theme are missing instead replaced by a subtle yet beautiful piano that is mostly forgettable. The piano just adds mood to the world while not getting in the way of exploration. I assume since so much time is spent running around in the gigantic map, Nintendo probably felt that any defined track accompanying the overworld sections would become tiresome after many hours of play.
I don’t mind this decision, after all the cutscenes are epic. And there are orchestrated versions of classic Zelda tunes in the game. Yet musically speaking the game somewhat falls behind Skyrim and HZD, for most of the play time except for those few epic instances during cut scenes and town/village sections.
Link is once again a silent protagonist, but everybody else of importance to the main plot has been voiced over. The acting here is fairly mediocre. The Tales Series completely destroys the voice acting here. It is not surprising as Nintendo isn’t know for featuring great voice acting in their games. What is truly surprising is that there was no effort to find a proper actress for Zelda who has the bulk of all speaking lines during the game.
Triple A videogames have since the last gen featured voice acting rivaling, and at times surpassing the best that Hollywood has to offer.
Uncharted and The Last of Us are clear examples of this. The Witcher and Horizon Zero Dawn (especially Aloy) feature stellar voice work. While expected it is disappointing that Nintendo didn’t try harder in this sometimes overlooked area. All in all the cut scenes featuring Zelda are short and fairly powerful in their own way pedestrian voice acting aside because…
BotW’s Plot Thrives in the Series’s History…
The Zelda series for the most part hasn’t been a drama filled mind blowing tale as far as individual games are concerned. Ocarina started a trend of better story telling in the series but it still a bit lacking in that department when compared to the JRPGs of yesteryear, and BotW continues that trend.
This newest chapter in the series by itself won’t make anyone forget Horizon Zero Dawn’s amazing Sci Fi story, or The Witcher’s sword, and sorcery driven narrative. That being said BotW did pull some heart strings in a few cut scenes, and it did a good job at referencing past Zelda games most notably Ocarina of Time.
Some of the locations such as Lon Lon Ranch (or what remains of it) can still be found in the game. Even the Great Deku tree makes an appearance. BotW by itself has a simplistic story. Link was defeated 100 years prior to the start of the game. He awakes in a Shrine without his memories. Whether he gets his memories back or not it is completely up to the player. What Link must do however is seek and fight Ganon in order to save Hyrule and Princess Zelda.
In other words it is the same tale we have seen over, and over again. Though it plays out with different events the end result is the same. BotW has a decent story with some character development if you seek out all of Link’s forgotten memories, and take on all of the Divine beasts. On the converse it has literally not much of a plot to speak of if you ignore the aforementioned tasks.
The new found sense of freedom hurts the narrative a bit especially for new comers, however long time Zelda fans will probably feel compelled to seek out the memories if only because we have seen the endless cycle of reincarnation, and rebirth of these beloved characters in Link and Zelda for more than 30 years. So in many ways the few scenes that tugged at my heart strings were successful in doing so because the entire series as a whole has done a heck of a job developing the characters over several entries. There is some thing tragic about the fact that Link and Zelda are still struggling against Ganon thousands of years after their first incarnation.
Will their souls ever find peace? Will Hyrule ever be a happily ever after kingdom? BotW hits you hard with the answers: no, and most definitely no.
Zelda in the course of 3 decades has created an expansive universe. Nintendo only needs to include Link, Zelda, and Ganon in a game and long time fans will eat it up. BotW is the prime example of this, there isn’t much character development apart from Zelda, and Link. The champions themselves are hard to like or dislike mainly because you only get glimpses of them. Twilight Princess and Wind Waker did a heck of job in creating some genuine shocking moments in their respective tales. BotW hints at something great from the start but even after recovering Link’s memories and getting the “good” ending that goose bump moment that I eagerly awaited never arrived.
BotW seems to have the most enticing and historic world seen in the series while at the same time in many ways takes a step back to the days of a Link to the Past in terms of storytelling. I couldn’t help but leave the game feeling that Link and Zelda deserve a better tale.
The DLC…is lacking….
Nintendo forced early adopters into a 19.99 season pass that included two DLCs. The Master Sword Trials and the Ballad of Champions. The Ballad of Champions being the more robust offering by offering new shrines and entire new dungeon and more story content based on the champions.
While The Master Sword Trials offer a way to power up your Master Sword to unbreakable status after 3, 15 fight scenarios that are nearly unforgiving. The entire section felt like it should have been included within the original game, as the Master Sword was available from the get go, and there is no sensible reason for paying an extra fee in order to get a chance at powering the legendary sword up.
The Ballad of Champions while more robust, and offering excellently designed dungeons also felt like a short add-on that for all intents and purposes should have been included in the original product.
My complaint with the DLC might fall into deaf ears…BotW is a gigantic epic game that took me 100 hours to finish without the DLC. That said the DLC costs 19.99 that’s the same price Sony charged for the vastly superior (New story, landmass, enemies etc.) Frozen Wilds expansion for Horizon Zero Dawn.
DLC for openworld games have traditionally offered new lands to explore with plenty of content, the fact that BotW offers minimal additions to its world is a dissapointing even if the content that does exist in the aforementioned season pass features the usual Nintendo polish.
The Greatest Zelda Ever?
It is in the conversation, and that by itself makes the game a must buy. It is not as ground breaking as OoT was in 1998 but it does break new ground for the series which is something that hasn’t happened since well…1998. It is the greatest Wii U game ever released and might end up being the greatest Switch game ever released when it is all said and done.
The bigger question remains: Is BotW better than Skyrim and Witcher 3? It is a difficult question for me to answer mainly because there is no right or wrong answer. BotW borrows from both of them but the game still plays like Zelda at its core. The ability to glide across the world, and climb on every surface adds an element missing to Witcher 3’s somewhat limited roaming options and fixes issues with Skyrim’s trial and error vertical climbing when wanting to go over a mountain.
BotW has received the highest praise and rightfully so for being such a perfect polished open world experience. Yet Skyrim is the gift that keeps on giving even after 300 hours of play. While Witcher 3 and HZD are the better games in terms of story telling. BotW is unique in its own way. It belongs in a class by itself and has for the most part improved on the bases set by the aforementioned games in terms of gameplay. A must buy with substantially long replay value, perhaps only Skyrim can claim to be a longer more robust experience.
GAMEPLAY: 10.0—Rune abilities and the Sheikah slate allow Link to posses the required abilities to conquer any challenge in the game world right from the get go, thus shaking the very foundations of the established Zelda formula. The gliding and climbing additions as means to move around the vast game world allow for unprecedented freedom. Link controls as wonderfully as he ever has and even though he can no longer swim underwater I don’t feel this should merit a deduction in the score. Traditional dungeons are replaced by 120 shrines and 4 Divine beasts, though Hyrule Castle is a massive dungeon in itself. BotW features some of the best puzzles and challenging combat that the series has ever seen. Motion controls are a bit iffy in undocked mode but only present in a few puzzles.
Graphics: 9.5–Wonderful artwork, excellent character design and animation make BotW one of the most impressive Switch showcases to date. A game of this visual quality in portable form was unthinkable a few years ago. The deduction comes from the use of last gen textures and pop up. Runs at 900p docked but considering that it is a Wii U title I wonder if it could have run at 1080p instead with a little more effort.
Sound: 9.5–While the music is sparse the ambient music fits the vast open nature of the world. I would have liked more variety but the deduction here comes from the awful, awful voice acting.
Story: 8.5–Seek out the memories and finish the Champions Ballad dlc in order to get a hefty tale that is pretty good as far as open worlds go. However Link’s and Zelda’s predicament has so much untapped potential especially in a quest that spans over 100 years before the game even starts, that I wonder if Nintendo still holds on to Miyamoto’s stead fast belief that story should be an afterthought rather than a driving force behind this venerable series.
Replayability: 10.0–Any game that manages to draw me for over 100 hours of joyful play deserves the highest score possible. There are tons of things to do, collect and see. While getting iconic garbs from OoT and TP for Link in the game is unfortunately a costly Amiibo endeavor, there are plenty of Armor sets to collect in the game. Once the game is finished there are diverse difficulty modes for those seeking a greater challenge. For those seeking every Shrine, Korok seed, and full sidequest completion I can see over 300 hours of play.
Overall: 10.0–There are not many games that can claim to be better. Most of its shortcomings are mostly nitpicks from this reviewer. A must own and a reason to plunge into a Switch.