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Forget Call of Duty, Real Men Need the Retro Love: ‘The Legend of Zelda- Majora’s Mask’

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chris-littlechild - November 12, 2014

In the early days of the 3DS, when scaremongering media dudes thought the 3D effect would melt our freaking eyeballs right off, Ocarina of Time 3D was a big deal. This was one of the biggest games ever made, portable and remastered and irresistible for many.

Its appearance in 2011 sparked a three-year session of Internet bitching, whining and petitioning for another game. For the nuttier N64 Zelda, Majora's Mask, to be given the same treatment. If you've really got your shit together and know what's been going on down Nintendo way, you'll have heard the recent announcement: it's happening. At effing last.

What better way to celebrate than to party like it's the year 2000 and take a look back at the original? There are several better ways, frankly, but this is all you're getting. Suck it up, put your pants back on and let's reminisce.

Yep. This guy.

The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask was the series' second N64 release. It was also the second to be presented in that trademark eye-gougingly-craptacular early 3D, though of course it looked spectacular at the time. This time, we're leaving Hyrule behind for the mysterious new realm of Termina, and we're getting surprisingly motherfreaking dark in the process.

The story picks up where Ocarina of Time left off. Link's searching for Navi, his departed ballache of a hey, listen! fairy (being the elfen hero he is, he can't just leave the damn thing to rot in Satan's underworld u-bend as it richly deserves to). While cruising about, he encounters the enigmatic Skull Kid. Said Kid messes with him, Link pursues into a weird-ass cave, and so the strangest adventure in Zelda history begins.

Time travel is nothing new around here, of course. In the last game, you were constantly wanging the Master Sword into that doohickey at the Temple of Time to switch between child and adult Link. But here, you're rewinding the same three days to prevent the goddamn moon from crashing into your face and mangling the planet. A moon with a sort of hell yeah, what are you going to do about it, fairy boy evil expression on its face the whole time. It's all kinda screwy.

I don't know, creepy talking fox dude. I don't know.

Majora's Mask is known for being the darkest and most creeptastic entry in the franchise. It's not often that Nintendo decide to unleash both barrels of nightmarish WTF, but that's what they've done right here. Whether it's the Gibdo man jumping out of that closet like a crazy mofo or those dancing ReDeads, there is weird effing weirdery going off all over the place.

But even so, it's still Zelda. And you know what that means: dungeons full of items that let you get to more dungeons and half-witted prattling NPCs. This one continued the refinement of the formula that Ocarina of Time started, with its spangly new L-targeting and day/night cycle and such. The mask system, too, was a nice innovation, and introduced us to the ball-busting power of Fierce Deity Link into the bargain.

Majora's Mask is the black sheep of the family, very different in tone to others in the series. As such, it's a favorite of the edgy hipsters of the gaming world, who are surely trembling in their Converse shoes at the chance to play it again on 3DS.

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