Among Nintendo’s vast library of games, there are a few flagship franchises that will likely never end. Nintendo can’t seem to stay away from these iconic titles for long, and fans eat them every time. Super Mario 64 is one for sure, and the original Pokémon Red and Pokémon Blue are other great examples. Including the assorted digital and mini-console versions, the original Super Mario Bros. can surpass them all. However, with rumors that he is getting another version on the Switch, it looks like The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is gradually rising to the top of this list.
It reminds me of another industry giant that has popped up time and time again over the years: the legendary The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim. Sports releases on all consoles released from the start, Skyrim has been part of mainstream gaming culture for over a decade. It could be argued that Bethesda wouldn’t be what it is today without the runaway success of the game. It’s not hard to draw parallels between these two fantastic epics, and it may even help to understand what makes these games timeless classics.
A new take on an old adventure
Ancient scrolls and THE Legend of Zelda have both been around for a long time. The original Zelda adventure was released in 1987, at the beginning of video game history. During this time, The Elder Scrolls: Arena was released in 1994 for MS-DOS, back when 2D sprites were commonly used in 3D fields like Loss. The two games put each respective series on a path; in Ancient scrolls‘, it was like a fantasy first-person action RPG with a wide variety of character builds. In ZeldaIn his case, it was like a cryptic pseudo-open world adventure. While these early titles are much more compact and archaic than later games, they’re still recognizable as the first games in their series.
Both franchises grew a lot from there, even before Skyrim and Ocarina of time came up with. Ancient scrolls make the leap to real 3D graphics and build the open world around the player. Zelda, meanwhile, experimented with installing a descending dungeon style for the famous A link to the past. Ocarina of time Mark Zeldawent to 3D, and it was really a leap. While Skyrim is the natural evolution of Old scrolls games before him, Ocarina of time felt like such a leap forward that it is always remembered by fans as one of the most influential games ever made and one of the most important in Nintendo’s library.
Go anywhere, do anything
Another important link between Ocarina of time and Skyrim is the way they allow players to explore an open world (or ‘open field’, in Zelda‘s case – the N64 could render huge levels, but not a true open world). Venturing into a large and fleshed out world was a familiar feeling for fans of both franchises, but Ocarina and Skyrim really made the structure shine. Hyrule Field was a mind-boggling display of graphic power and detailed map design for the era, and every little nook and cranny made it truly special.
Skyrim was, again, a natural extension of the lands that had been created before him, but it felt really huge once players could start walking freely in it. Thanks to the design work put into the game’s immersive open world, that feeling took a long time to fade.
It wasn’t just the size of the worlds in these games that appealed to gamers, but also what could be done about them. The amount of secrets and side attractions available in both games was mind-blowing and still impresses to this day. Zelda had its matching mini-games, holes in the ground, side quests, and a huge selection of unique NPCs to interact with. Skyrim There were also a lot of side quests, some involved enough to feel like main quests. That doesn’t even fit into the potential of cooking, blacksmithing, alchemy, enchantment, and all kinds of activities between quests. The potential content for invested gamers was astounding in every title, and fans are still talking about it today.
Define series trends
Perhaps the most important connection between the two games, aside from being released so often, is their impact on video games as a whole. Ocarina of time and Skyrim have inspired countless games. In reality, Skyrim is undoubtedly one of the games responsible for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild open-world, due to its participation in the wave of successful 7th generation open-world games that shaped the AAA gaming industry. Most games don’t have the budget to copy the scope of these games, but the feel of a 3D Zelda Dungeon, as well as Z targeting, are familiar to many players.
Plus, there are casual games that go the extra mile to really be a Zelda-like adventure, like Darksiders 1 and Okami. Of course, it should be mentioned that Ocarina of time and Skyrim has had a huge impact on comparable games through subsequent development efforts, such as The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess and Fallout 4.
However, for all effects Skyrim and Ocarina of time have had games officially released, they have had more in fan projects. The modding and speedrunning communities for both games are alive and well, and have been for years. At this point, randomizers, visual mods, and even new games have been created for both titles. The games have been torn to shreds, with a sort of “where there’s a will, there’s a way” mentality that permeates speedruns and challenge races.
While it goes without saying, the gaming community at large still brings up both titles in major discussions about the impact of the game and the best games of all time. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim have had an equivalent presence in the video game industry for years, and their influence is unlikely to wane anytime soon, especially if they continue to appear on new consoles.
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