The Legend Of Zelda: The Wind Waker Is One Of The Most Timeless Games Ever

Despite being over 20 years old, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker is still as charming as it was when it first came out.

Story Highlights

  • The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker was initially insulted thanks to its cartoonish art style.
  • Unlike other Nintendo secondary female protagonists, Tetra is a character with dreams and ambitions.
  • Modern open-world games are big but empty, which doesn’t apply to The Wind Waker.

Games don’t tend to age well, and that’s a fact. Games that used to be loved like Super Mario 64 and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas now seem clunky and borderline unplayable, especially for those who tend to prioritize graphics and visual fidelity. However, some games manage to retain their charm.

There are only two games that I feel aged in reverse, becoming more of a joy to play now. The first is Ultimate Spider-Man, and the second is The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. The Wind Waker was looked down upon for its cartoonish art style and goofy-looking characters. However, in a world where game developers contest each other for who can make the most realistic game, returning to The Wind Waker is always a treat.

Visuals That Still Hold Up Today

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker has a timeless art style. As mentioned before, some players clowned it for being too cartoonish, especially since the GameCube was meant to be the next big thing. As a matter of fact, it got so bad that Nintendo quickly released Twilight Princess to appeal to those fans.

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Comparing the two GameCube Zelda games, The Wind Waker has definitely aged better. The thing about realistic graphics is that they’re realistic for the time. With the constantly progressing technology, graphics that look realistic now will likely look like ancient history in ten or even five years. However, The Wind Waker’s cel-shaded art style looks as good as it did when it came out, maybe even better.

The characters look charming, the world is vibrant, and I can still boot up my GameCube to enjoy Wind Waker like before. I tried doing the same with The Elder Scrolls: Morrowind, but couldn’t get past the starting area because of how weird everything looked.

Princess Zelda Isn’t Some Damsel In Distress

Aside from the amazing art style, another thing I think aged very well in The Wind Waker is how Princess Zelda isn’t some damsel in distress. Players first see the princess as Tetra, a rowdy captain of an equally rowdy pirate crew. Orphaned at birth, we learn that Tetra followed in her deceased mother’s footsteps to become the captain of a ship.

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The entire crew respects Tetra, even though she’s younger than them. While she tends to act first and think later, she’s as kind-hearted as can be and puts on a tough exterior to hide her true feelings. This is the polar opposite of how most Nintendo female characters used to be around that time and I love it.

Fortunately, Princess Zelda has started taking a more front role in The Legend of Zelda games, as we saw with her Breath of the Wild rendition. However, I’ll always say that Tetra walked so BotW Zelda could run in her Hylian boots.

The Legend Of Zelda: The Wind Waker’s Open Seas

If you ask most gamers what the issue with almost every modern open-world game is, you’ll likely hear the term empty world a lot. Developers like Ubisoft tend to make games with huge open worlds but barely anything to do with them. Wind Waker doesn’t suffer from this at all and actually sets the bar for what an open-world game should do.

Unpopular Opinion: The Wind Waker HD is the best Legend Of Zelda game ever
byu/ZeldaLegend101 innintendo

Every square on the map has a unique location, so players feel rewarded for exploring the drowned kingdom of Hyrule. Unlike modern games where dungeons feel the same, Wind Waker prides itself on oozing creativity, and I think new gamers could benefit from playing the game at least once. They have to learn that open-world games can have more than 100-hour fetch quests, right?

While The Wind Waker isn’t really the most important game in the series, it’s definitely one of the best. Even though it has been over 20 years since the game came out, I couldn’t recommend it more, and that’s largely thanks to the timelessness of the game’s visuals and beautiful world.

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Hannan is an Opinion Piece writer at eXputer. He is a BBA student who started gaming when he was just three years old with his trusty Nintendo 64 and hasn't stopped since. Dabbling in all sorts of games, he's the type to never bash you for liking a particular game, even if he'll judge you for liking Mass Effect: Andromeda. When he isn't sitting on his worn-out gaming chair playing something, he's either writing about games or on his bed thinking about what to play next, even if he'll eventually replay Skyrim for the 100th time.

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