Celebrating its 15 12 months anniversary, The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass is the DS’s most bold try at a Legend of Zelda sport. Not solely is it a sequel to the beloved Wind Waker, nevertheless it additionally options many ideas and concepts that had not been tried earlier than in a Zelda sport. However PH continues to be a sport many followers look down upon.
Nonetheless, the sport does have a devoted crowd of followers who discover the sport not simply fulfilling, however laudable. With greater than 15 years between its preliminary launch and now, the sport has been explored lengthy sufficient for all of its finest attributes to really shine, notably within the face of later releases which can be simply as controversial.
The Phantom Hourglass Itself Is Distinctive
One of the crucial distinctive facets of the sport is the titular hourglass, which can be utilized to cease time. This mechanic has a short interval of use, nevertheless it is likely one of the most uncommon mechanics within the Zelda franchise. Very like the Twilight Princess shape-changing or the masks from Majora’s Masks, it’s a mechanic that some view poorly.
It is usually seen as a gimmick that lacks significant use or interpretation, however the truth stays that it is a instrument that has many makes use of all through the sport, from puzzles in dungeons to quests for townpeople. The Hourglass supplies the sport with a standout instrument that’s artistic and attention-grabbing.
Stealth Was Modern
Due to the above timestop mechanic, The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass was in a position to present some precise challenges to the stealth that was discovered straightforward or boring in Wind Waker. In Wind Waker, Hyperlink would usually be captured or positioned right into a place the place stealth was the one choice.
TLoZ: PH builds upon this facet of the sport very nicely, offering Hyperlink with the instrument to freeze time. This enables for a way more artistic and attention-grabbing design for stealth, in addition to many selections about when to make use of the facility, how a lot to avoid wasting, and extra.
Multiplayer Was Nice
Whereas the Zelda video games aren’t any stranger to a multiplayer expertise, because of the 4 Swords video games, they’ve lengthy been targeted on a single-player expertise. That is clearly working, however many want for extra alternatives to share within the video games with their family and friends.
TLoZ: PH supplies a multiplayer expertise outdoors of the primary sport with the Battle Mode. This sport mode permits gamers to compete in a capture-the-flag type sport wherein one particular person controls Phantom Statues to defend their gems, whereas the opposite participant controls Hyperlink and tries to collect them.
The Cooperative Tag Mode
Much like the Multiplayer mode, this sport offered gamers with a singular technique to work together with others who had been engaged on the sport. The Tag Mode provided a technique to trade ship components, permitting upgrades and distinctive choices to those that used the mode on Beedles Barge.
No different Zelda sport has given this type of cooperative choice to gamers. Whereas Breath of the Wild options the choice of utilizing Amiibos to realize in-game objects, a cooperative buying and selling mode would be an unimaginable manner of growing a neighborhood across the sport, in addition to affording gamers with assist and choices.
Its Humor Was Charming
Many critics of the sport discover it too cartoonish and infantile. Whereas the artwork type is definitely within the cartoon realm, it isn’t unfair to level out that the Phantom Hourglass sport has a a lot lighter and extra comedic tone in the way it treats the primary and plenty of facet quests.
One of the best protection towards this criticism is the humor itself. Whereas many Zelda titles in recent times have been much more tonally critical, humor has at all times been baked into the collection – for higher or worse. From unhealthy jokes like Tingle to good ones like Tingle’s RupeeLand, infantile humor is an effective factor within the Zelda Sequence.
The Closing Boss Was Terrifying
Whereas gamers aren’t launched to the true ultimate boss till greater than midway by means of the sport, Bellum is a really intimidating and terrifying creature to face. The eldritch nature of a god-like beast that consumes the life drive of people and gods alike is terrifying.
The squid-like Bellum has a few of the normal traits of a traditional Zelda boss, like a single brightly-colored massive eye. However the boss additionally has a whole lot of distinctive aspects that make him stand out. As an illustration, he is crafty, creating the Phantom Pirate Ship legend to attract victims in. He additionally possesses folks, resulting in very horrifying realizations and choices relating to find out how to excise him.
The Map Is Big – However Feels Compact
One of many main attracts of Wind Waker was the Nice Sea setting, wherein there are dozens of islands and locations to go. Phantom Hourglass builds upon this concept with a world that feels bigger, notably with the islands that Hyperlink can go to on his journey. Every island feels very populated and vigorous.
Wind Waker has an enormous map, however a lot of that map is taken up by empty house. That is glorious for offering gamers with the sensation of journey and the good unknown. However as a sequel, Phantom Hourglass does not must construct on that very same feeling, permitting it to put extra emphasis on the islands themselves.
The Soundtrack Is Epic
In Wind Waker, the music of the sport takes heart stage because of using the magical Wind Waker baton itself. This offered the sport with an excellent technique to combine music into the gameplay and make gamers extra conscious of the music. Whereas PH lacks this identical form of mechanic, it builds on the soundtrack in its personal methods.
Many tracks in Phantom Hourglass are very harking back to the Wind Waker soundtrack – from the ocean-faring theme to the boss music. This soundtrack can be improbable by itself deserves, however the similarity to Wind Waker possible hurts it, as returning gamers really feel like they’ve already heard it.
It Has A Fishing Minigame
In what’s shortly turning into an ordinary factor in all Zelda video video games, the fishing minigame in Phantom Hourglass is likely one of the finest within the collection. Ocarina of Time set a excessive normal, and Phantom Hourglass passes that normal with flying colours, offering hours of leisure outdoors of the usual gameplay.
PH‘s fishing could be very interactive, making glorious use of the stylus and DS’s display screen controls. The sport entails pulling actively on the fishing line and dealing shortly to attract within the fish. Whereas the number of fish obtainable may use some enhancements, this minigame stays among the best.
It Started The Customization Craze
Breath of the Wild and Spirit Tracks are two Zelda video games that present gamers with an enormous quantity of customization. BotW Hyperlink has many armor choices, in addition to dyes to make use of. Spirit Tracks supplies gamers with management over the Spirit Practice’s look and skills by way of customization. Each of those have roots in Phantom Hourglass.
Whereas there are numerous truthful criticisms of the ocean-faring in PH, it might’t be understated how fulfilling it’s to have the ability to create and alter the ship’s look, talents, and controls. Offering gamers with customization choices brings out one thing new and thrilling within the Zelda collection – artistic expression and participant company.
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