Escape Velocity

A curated Collection of Fantasy and Science Fiction Media

After awakening from a one hundred-year long sleep, Link finds the kingdom of Hyrule in a post-apocalyptic state. The evil entity Ganon, sealed away by Princess Zelda’s magic, is on the verge of escaping, ready to finish his path of destruction. Only Link can stop him…

I finished the main story line, as well as all the side quests, after what I estimate to be a few hundred hours of playing. I enjoyed every minute of it. Yet, I believe there is much of this game I could still explore, many more possible hours of entertainment.

I’m not a very skillful gamer, I believe. When given the chance, I’ll seldom engage in melee combat. However, Breath of the Wild gave me plenty of room to develop skills and confidence so even I could fight my way through the more challenging encounters.

Luckily, there is much more to this game than combat. I particularly enjoyed the many puzzles scattered around the world, as well as the exploration aspect that went with them. For the diehard gamers and explorers, there are also countless little challenges I have yet to try my hands on.

Mind you, those who are looking for a complex story will not find it here. The plot is a very straightforward good versus evil narrative, with a ‘chosen one’ performing quests to gather allies and power. However, despite its simplicity, the story is well-executed. This, combined with light-hearted humor, makes this game a very comfortable option for casual escapism.

On a final note, I would like to applaud the worldbuilding within Breath of the Wild, and the way in which it is strongly supported by environmental storytelling. Many locations have a visible history that is told by the scenery, if you care to look for it. I happily spent entire gaming sessions exploring (and nothing else) because of this.

At times, I am a gamer girl. And when I have the opportunity to immerse myself in an open-world game that has a map with seemingly endless exploration, I don’t want to put my controller down anymore.

Even though there is a clear path you could follow (solve the riddles, battle the big bad Ganon and save Zelda), the game doesn’t force you to take this route. Which is perfect for my playing style, since I can get frustrated when I’m being railroaded. I love to wander across the lands, sometimes with a clear goal, sometimes just to marvel at the new environments thrown at me. The puzzles can be quite challenging at times and it is interesting to see how Jop solves some of them in a completely different way.  You will need some skill to fight and complete the main quests. However you get ample chance to gradually build this skill when encountering the goblin-like creatures on your way.

The controls are very intuitive, whether you are battling foes or cataloguing fauna. You can play this game in many ways: be a casual traveller across the lands or kill anything that crosses your path, make sure you finish every side quest or complete the main storyline as quickly as possible, it is all up to you.

The feeling of freedom is what makes this a beautiful game that I happily pick up anytime I have some free time.

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