By Maniacal Clown
For my first written article in quite a while, I thought I'd delve into a few questions that I've heard around the 'Net lately. Well, actually I lied. It's just one question, really. "Just how many Zelda games are these Nintendo maniacs going to make?" I heard it once on a message board. I can't remember which one. It's been that kind of week.
Now, as many of you are aware, when I'm not laboring away with my, well, meager duties here at IZC, I like to hold a presence for IZC at the message boards of the, ahem, "lesser" sites. =)
Something I became known for, kind of, at the HTLOZ boards BESIDES promoting IZC and harrassing the staff was my uncanny ability to understand and explain people's nature and thoughts. Today I will put that to good use, with a corporate twist, in a little segment I like to call... "Maniacal Clown's Daily Trip into the Human Psyche!"
No one can argue that The Legend of Zelda has been an incredibly successful videogame series since the original was released back in the late eighties. With the release of A Link to the Past, it bacame more than that. Zelda became a videogame dynasty with a fan following larger than an Arkansas elementary school lunch lady. That's right...it was BIG!
This fact was more than obvious to you and me, but the people who could have capitalized on it most were mostly indifferent. Nintendo. Apparently they were too busy mashing the better company, Sega of course, into the ground to notice that their little fairy boy was walking the path of that red plumber. It's no surprise, really. Nintendo has always been more interested in monopolizing the industry than improving on their own success. After all, these are the same people who make Star Wars games just to brag to Sony that they have the liscense.
A few years later, the Super Nintendo was still dominating the poor Sega Genesis, and those slow, corporate twiddle-brains at Nintendo finnaly did something they should have done years ago and released a Zelda game on the Gameboy. Now those still unnoticed fanatics could carry their favorite hero everywhere. And still, Nintendo was too bust with their own affairs to either notice or care, but they DID start to catch on.
If we do a little math, we can figure out a few things. Ocarina of Time was in development for five years before its release in 1998. That means work began in 1993. Not surprisingly corresponding to the approxomate time Nintendo began work on the "Ultimate 64."
Judging by this, we can ponder that Nintendo planned on releasing OoT not too long after the eventually renamed "Ultimate 64." When 1996 rolled around, Ocarina of Time was nowhere near completion. It would not be until November 23, 1998, that the game was released. It instanly became a legend.
Only then did Nintendo realize what they had on their hands, and that is what has doomed the future quality of the games. Now that Nintendo has finally noticed the popularity of Zelda, our hero Link will end up walking the path of Mario, starring in plotless, commercialized games with no purpose other than profit.
It's starting already. The sequel to a game five years in the making will be released just two years following. Three Gameboy games will be released back-to-back. It took eleven years to release five Zelda games. We'll have nine less than three years later. Now is it just me, or is there something terribly wrong here? Quite frankly, I wouldn't be surprised if "Hyrule Party" becomes a top-selling game for the Dolphin a few years down the road. What an insult.
As disgusted as we are with this ugly trend, we do nothing to stop it. We still buy the deteriorating games and merchandise without a though. Eventually The Legend of Zelda, a series that has always been driven by quality and detail, will become no better than the Playstation, overused and overhyped. Will any of us ever learn? Nope. We're the people who waited for Donkey Kong 64 to buy the expansion pack for ten bucks more.
"But it came with the game!"
Oh go beat up an angry crocodile or two...