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Being part of the Backloggd community for 3 years

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Dai Gyakuten Saiban 2: Naruhodou Ryuunosuke no Kakugo
Dai Gyakuten Saiban 2: Naruhodou Ryuunosuke no Kakugo
Yakuza 0
Yakuza 0
NieR: Automata
NieR: Automata


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Played in 2023


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This was my favorite Zelda game for years growing up. I never managed to beat the 3D Zeldas as a kid, so while I did enjoy games like Majora's Mask and Wind Waker, nothing really hit the same way that ALTTP did until Breath of the Wild rolled around. It's a little weird, considering everyone else in my generation is the opposite, but growing up with a terrible PC that could barely emulate 6th gen games left me instead emulating more SNES and Genesis classics I couldn't play in my earlier years.
With Tears of the Kingdom releasing, and not having the time for it myself, I got nostalgic for this game and wanted to play it again. I decided to use the fan PC port, and try to clear it as purely as possible -- turning off all extra features, and avoiding guides as much as possibles (both things I abused as a kid). And replaying it now, there are definitely ways time hasn't been kind to this game.
The internal game logic is all over the place, more often than not dissuading creative solutions to problems (down to not letting you attack bosses with anything but your sword and maybe arrows if you're lucky). This ends up making figuring out how to solve certain puzzles more frustrating than it is rewarding, which takes the wind out of the core loop of the game.
This is an SNES game, and one that was undeniably boundary pushing for its time, so it feels a little mean to rag on it for quality of life, but the need to traverse the dungeon all over again if you die to the boss, not to mention needing to leave the dungeon to refill your bottles got really grating after a while. The Pegasus Boots also end up being useless as a quick traversal tool when you realize you can't turn while using them.
That said, there is still an undeniable charm this game has to me. Hyrule Map is incredibly well designed, and going through it is a ton of fun. Due to it being so small and each area being so distinct, it's easy to remember where to go back when you get an upgrade that solves a previously telegraphed roadblock. This game does a great job letting you know the tools to solve its mysteries, so despite being as old as it is, I'd be very hard-pressed to call it cryptic. In that sense, it's a perfect evolution over its prequels.
There's so much charm to the NPCs and world of the game that I can't get enough of. It's all poorly translated, yes, but the cartoony, adventurous feel reverberates and still gives this game its charm, even if future titles would undeniably do it better. It's just very addictive to want to keep going and want to keep interacting with the world and mechanics. Even when the dungeons aren't great, I just can't put the controller down and want to stop playing. And when they are great, that's when I can easily spend several hours on the game without even noticing.
Despite it all, the core loop of this game holds up, and If you're playing through the game nowadays, definitely make use of all the PC port enhancements and save state your own checkpoints. It's still absolutely worth playing... just don't feel the need to have a 'pure' experience like I did. I had much more fun when I didn't.

One of the greatest endings in a videogame to this day.