The below article will be spoiler-free. Technically, I can only tell you about my first five hours with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which primarily consists of areas, enemies and weapons that have been shown publicly before. I just couldn’t wait to start spilling the beans on just how promising this game is, so far.
In all honesty, I’m not the biggest Legend of Zelda fan. I’ve played pretty much every iteration, but I often have to force myself through. After five hours with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, I can tell that this game is going to be something truly special.
It’s still very much a Zelda game but it’s the fact that it’s open-world (maybe even more so than any other game) that still maintains core Zelda elements coupled with the fact that you can literally take it anywhere with Nintendo Switch.
Zelda: Breath of the Wild literally takes the open-world genre to a new level. You can truly go anywhere providing your stamina will allow you to make it the distance. Climbing a mountain? Make sure you can make it to the next ledge before your meter runs out. Want to swim across water? Make sure you’ve got enough stamina to make the distance.
You’ll be often surprised just how frequently you’ll die due to running out of stamina whilst swimming, leading to drowning to death or falling from a cliff. In my first five hours with the game, I realised that I was going to die a lot and I was oddly OK with it. It was worth trying to make it to a certain area or go exploring in a new direction that I hadn’t been if it meant possibly dying.
If worrying about stamina isn’t enough, you’ve also got to deal with some pretty nasty enemies and quite frankly not a lot of health containers in the first few hours of the game. I’d constantly find myself cornered by five to six Bokoblins only to have my weapon break mid-battle and die. Like a troop, I’d restart, head back into battle and come up with a better strategy to take them down one by one.
You’ll also have to deal with weather elements such as the cold. It’s absolutely brutal and these elements will kill you quicker than any enemy will. They add another level to the open-world, puzzle-solving aspect of the game and there are so many tense moments early on.
The first few hours of the game are spent visiting shrines in order to get a Paraglider. Whilst completing these shrines, you’ll unlock four runes which will serve you in the early parts of the game. It’s a brand new idea for a Zelda game to give you so much early on, but I like it.
You’ll also learn pretty early on that collecting food and other material to cook them will be pretty essential to your survival. You’ll be able to come up with recipes that will aid you in your adventures.
Honestly, I’m incredibly glad that Nintendo waited to release The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild on the Nintendo Switch. It’s so incredible to be able to pick up the handheld mode for ten minutes to complete a side quest, or to just settle into the couch in TV Mode for multiple hours.
The world of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is brimming with things to do. I can’t wait to spend hours upon hours getting lost in this world.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild launches on both Nintendo Switch and Wii U on March 3rd.