“Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild” for the Nintendo Switch has taken over my life. My brother actually had to pry the Nintendo Switch out of my hands and force me to write this review. In other words, I’ve started to believe that I’m a tiny elf who needs to spend all day, every day working to save a princess. It’s bad.
This action-adventure game was released in early March by Nintendo for the Nintendo Switch and the Wii U. The game follows a familiar protagonist, Link, as he awakens from a 100-year slumber and is told that he is the last hope for his crumbling kingdom’s survival. He has no recollection of anything before his nap, so the storyline follows him slowly regaining his memory and piecing together his past in order to save Princess Zelda and her kingdom.
The goal is to build Link up in order to find Zelda and help her defeat the boss dragon, who is holding her captive. In order to build up Link’s defenses, you must complete different “shrines,” each with their own logic puzzles.
The game begins with simple tutorials that teach basic skills, but you are quickly released to wander the virtual world. The emphasis is on exploration. Players are free to decide how to go about completing quests.
For example, I took the domestic route and learned how to tame a horse, cook elixirs, and visit with people in the villages. My brother took the adventurer path and focused on exploring and fighting enemies. Players can decide which approach works for them.
The game has a perfect mix of non-combat puzzles and random enemy encounters and battles. It’s playable for beginners and experts alike because it’s easy to learn but almost impossible to master. It keeps players engaged throughout the whole story, no matter what their skill level is.
Sometimes, the options in this game are overwhelming. It’s easy to feel lost and frustrated with all of the side quests and random encounters, yet that is the price you pay with a game that gives players so much freedom.
The Nintendo Switch is required to play this game at its full capacity. “Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild” is expensive and currently in high demand. It’s also the only major title that is currently available for that console, so it might seem like the purchase isn’t worth it. I was skeptical at first too, but this game is worth the effort to obtain it. I recommend it for anyone who wants to forget about his/her responsibilities for a while.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.