Posts Tagged ‘tower’

VR Zelda Month: Top 15 Dungeons

vr_zelda_month_og

This is it – the quintessential bread and butter of the Zelda series. Every Zelda game has them and every Zelda game is judged by them. No matter what aspect of the so-called Zelda formula that resonates with you the most – whether it be story, item selection, music, combat, enemy design, sidequests or the like – if you do not enjoy playing through Zelda dungeons then to be honest your gaming time is better spent elsewhere. Dungeons comprise at least 50% of the average playtime of most Zelda games and they very rarely fail to deliver on quality, satisfying puzzle solving and real immersion.

Distilling well over 100 Zelda dungeons into my top fifteen favourites was not easy in the slightest. To help me narrow it down I tried to keep the dungeon qualities that are most important to me at the top of the pile when it came to ordering the list. That means things like difficulty and length are largely inconsequential while factors like uniqueness and atmosphere are king. Bosses are completely out of the picture unless they appear throughout the dungeon before the fight at the end. They have their own list anyway.

.
-◊-◊-◊-◊-
VR ZELDA MONTH DISCLAIMER
This list represents my opinion only. I am not asserting any kind of superiority or self-importance by presenting it as I have. My opinion is not fact. If you actually agree with me 100%, that’s scary. Respectful disagreement is welcome.
-◊-◊-◊-◊-

.

15. Skull Woods – A Link to the Past


Structurally speaking, Skull Woods stands out from its A Link to the Past dungeon brethren like a sore thumb. For one, it almost completely takes over what is normally the Lost Woods (in the Light World at least), making it quite possibly the biggest dungeon in the game in terms of pure surface area. Furthermore, the Skull Woods is laid out in such a way that traversing its mostly underground tunnels requires frequent visits to the wooded surface. Running through a ghastly off-colour representation of what is normally an overworld area as part of a dungeon adds a real alien freshness to proceedings.
.

Continue reading

VR Zelda Month: Top 10 Pseudo-Dungeons

vr_zelda_month_og

The word “dungeon” means something quite different to a Zelda fan than it does to a player of most any other RPG/action adventure franchise. To the latter, a dungeon might consist of any decently sized enclosed area where enemies are fought and/or puzzles are solved. For a Zelda fan though, a “dungeon” is one of a handful of self-contained areas separate from the game overworld with an obtainable navigational device or two hidden within it, as well as an item that directly furthers the progress of whatever Link happens to be exploring it. It finishes with a boss and that boss relinquishes a heart container. Such is the Zelda dungeon equation.

Other decently sized enclosed areas where enemies are fought and/or puzzles are solved do exist in Zelda games as well, though. Some are entirely optional, others required to move along in the story. The word “mini-dungeon” is often thrown around to describe such places, but I’ve gone for the slightly less used “pseudo-dungeon” for the purposes of this list because some of these entries are actually larger/longer than the average regular dungeon. These are my ten most memorable.

.
-◊-◊-◊-◊-
VR ZELDA MONTH DISCLAIMER
This list represents my opinion only. I am not asserting any kind of superiority or self-importance by presenting it as I have. My opinion is not fact. If you actually agree with me 100%, that’s scary. Respectful disagreement is welcome.
-◊-◊-◊-◊-

.

10. Cave of Ordeals – Twilight Princess


The Cave of Ordeals is the most regularly used defense against the well worn “Twilight Princess is too easy” argument among Zelda fans. Consisting of 50 floors of increasingly more difficult enemies, the desert-bound pit is certainly not for the faint of heart visually speaking and it isn’t exactly a cakewalk either. The grimy cave, found in the TP version of the Gerudo Desert, throws waves of already encountered enemies at you in groups. Even notoriously tough opponents such as Darknuts, who usually only appear by themselves elsewhere in the game, are allowed to gang up on you here. The cave only grants an opportunity for rest and recovery once every ten floors, so it isn’t a bad idea to bring a few potions with you when you attempt the challenge.
.

Continue reading