Majora’s Mask 3Dwas released on Nintendo 3DS last weekend. There had been quite a demand for the game to be redone – preferably by the same developers who did the excellent Ocarina of Time 3D. But, why was there such demand for Majora’s Mask to be remade? Though many will say that Ocarina of Time is still the superior title, myself included, Majora’s Mask is still something special when speaking in terms of the Zelda franchise. Here are a few aspects of Majora’s Mask that I believe created a demand for a remake.
WARNING: IF YOU’VE NEVER PLAYED MAJORA’S MASK, THERE ARE SOME SPOILERS AHEAD!
A Unique Gameplay/Story Experience
Any Zelda title that might’ve released in the wake of Ocarina of Time would have a hard time keeping up. OoT was a giant of a game, so the dev team for Majora’s Mask had their work cut out for them. How could anyone top the epic time-traveling storyline, or the creative “age” gameplay based on which time period the player is in? Majora’s Maskwould have to come up with something unique just to keep up.
Though the actual gameplay in MM was largely the same as OoT, the “Third Day” mechanic added something new and fresh at the time. Though I found having to travel back in time – all the time – to be somewhat annoying at first, this was a very special type of gameplay for this period of gaming. Each day (and night!) brought with it new side quests and objectives to complete. Having to manipulate time and go to specific locations at specific times felt very new back in the year 2000.
The addition of using masks to physically alter young Link was a very nice touch as well. Once able to switch between masks at will, the player had to utilize various mask abilities to complete quests, get to secret locations, or gather special items. Instead of only using items to “get the job done,” the masks added more variety to the gameplay. For instance, the unique battle with Goht proves to be very memorable; whether you hated it or loved it, you won’t soon forget it. Rolling around as Goron Link, attempting to stop Goht in it’s tracks, was a new experience for me at the time. There are many moments like this sprinkled throughout the entirety of MM, giving value to the mask system.
The masks in the game really add to the unique feel in gameplay.
Finally, what I believe to be the biggest draw for the game is the dark nature of the story. Keep in mind, when I say “dark,” this is in comparison to other titles in the Zelda franchise. A wicked moon, with quite the disturbing look on its face, will fall and destroy Termina in three days time.
In addition, many of the characters found in MM are… well, many are just creepy. Take the Mask Salesman, for example. Though the guy is generally helping Link out, there is something off and unsettling about him from the moment you meet him. Even Nintendo understands how creepy and dark the game is for a Zelda title: just check out one of their latest commercials for Majora’s Mask 3D.