Playing The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild for Nintendo Switch

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Note: Minor spoilers about certain items and actions are included here.

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Back in the 1980s I played and beat the original The Legend of Zelda game for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). It was a fun but challenging game and it’s likely that I used a strategy guide to make it through. Sometime later I tried Zelda II: The Adventure of Link on the NES but it didn’t capture me; I did not care for being pulled into battles without any warning when exploring the overworld map and the side-scrolling was just an odd fit.

With the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) I was sucked into the world of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. Just when you think you’ve defeated Gannon you learn that not only did you not beat the game but that there’s a whole other part of the game that was nearly as long as the first. It’s remained one of my favorite Zelda games over the years and I thoroughly enjoyed reliving a slightly different experience on the 3DS with The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds.

In the years since I’ve played the many of the Zelda games at some point, excluding some of the handheld editions. While I’m aware that many may have very high opinions of those games, and I certainly can’t say that they were bad, none have captured my attention for very long and certainly not to the point that I thought I might actually strive to finish those games. I spent several hours enjoying The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess when it was released for the Wii but after complete a handful of dungeons I decided to move on.

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I have discovered that, for me, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is a very addictive Zelda game that I expect to finish. I have already put in countless hours within a matter of only a few weeks, typically playing late at night. It’s one of those games where you continuously feel compelled to do “just one more thing” before ending a gaming session.

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Pilotwings Resort (3DS)

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The Short Version: Someone unfamiliar with the Pilotwings series might enjoy it more than those who have played the SNES and N64 versions. I think it’s overpriced at $40 but it’s not a bad game if you can get it for about $20.

Back in the days, when the SNES was still relatively new, one my favorite games was Pilotwings. The 3-D like graphics were high-tech (for a console) at the time and I was also somewhat fond of flight simulators. It combined a handful of different skills and craft: piloting a plane, jet pack, hang glider, and skydiving. The final level involved a mission that required piloting a military helicopter to take out various targets.

I never played the Pilotwings version for the N64 very much, but from what little I did play it seemed like a fun game (I especially had fun with the cannons).

I couldn’t resist purchasing the 3DS edition of Pilotwings. Surely, it would be at least as good as the original Pilotwings, right?

One day I went up to Wal-Mart with intention of buying a copy there but when I saw the price of $40 I decided to look on Amazon.com again because I thought I had seen it for less. Sure enough, it was sold for less than $20. I ordered a copy from Amazon while I was standing in front of the games at Wal-Mart (I already had Amazon Prime so I had 2-day shipping for no extra charge).

It turns out that Pilotwings Resort wasn’t quite the game I was expecting. Now, it’s not a bad game. In fact, if you’ve never played the Pilotwings series you might enjoy it more than I did. After all, I already had expectations for the game to live up to.

In my opinion it’s a mediocre game. I was expecting it to be a combination of the original SNES version and the N64 version, but it’s not. It is very similar to the SNES version with some additional craft and challenges, but as far as I can tell (I haven’t reached the final section) it’s missing the more fun elements from the N64 version.

I don’t think it’s worth $40. But it’s an OK game at $20.

Enhancing Replay Value In Console Games (And How To Kill It)

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In this post I’m focusing on console gaming. PC games have provided extras, add-ons, mods, etc for nearly as long as they’ve been around (at the least it was often possible to hack game RAM). Typically, it’s been much easier to modify a game on a PC regardless of whether it was what the developer intended (or expected).

I’ve played countless games over the years. There were times when I may have averaged 20+ hours/week playing. For the past couple of years I’ve probably averaged only about 15 minutes/week. Most of my reasons for playing less just have to do more with an increase in “adult” responsibilities, though a lack of interest in available titles and the replay value of many games are also factors.

A simple definition of replay value is the amount of interest and time a gamer will dedicate to a game after it’s been completed. That’s overly simplified – the characteristics of a game that determine replay value can vary from game to game and genre to genre.

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