´Zelda: Twilight Princess´ is set to become an unusually long game, boasting more than 70 hours of gameplay, not including side quests. Additionally, extra levels will become available as downloadable content.
On the downside, the game´s graphics have not been improved above and beyond the original GameCube version. This is information from a GamePro interview with George Harrison, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Corporate Communications at Nintendo of America:
GP: How long is Twilight Princess?
Harrison: There are 70+ hours of gameplay -- it's significantly longer than Windwaker.
GP: What sorts of online features are you looking forward to in the future?
Harrison: Downloadable content, such as additional levels. (...)
GP: What sorts of differences are there between the Wii and GameCube versions?
Harrison: There is very little difference in the graphics, although the Wii version supports 16:9 displays. In the GameCube version Link is a lefty, as he has traditionally been. All the fighting and puzzles are reversed because of this, and the game basically mirrors the Wii version -- even the cinemas are flipped.
The story is the same and it's basically the same game, except for the big difference in control schemes.
I am surprised at Harrison´s comments on the game´s graphics. Having seen the two new clips, I was in no doubt that the graphics of the Wii version had been upped from the early GameCube builds. Still, I take this to mean that the GameCube version´s graphics will be better than expected, rather than the Wii version´s turning out worse. After all, the trailers looked absolutely amazing.
Not having played much of the game myself yet (I will do in the last week of November), I will now bring you guest commentary from four big news outlets that played the game for hours on end.
Nothing less than amazing
So far, Twilight Princess seems nothing less than amazing; although the opening hours had the potential to feel old hat for fans who've been through the basics time and again, the game tosses in enough new twists to keep things interesting. And the look of the game is impressive; sure, it's not HD, and some of the textures seem a bit bland, but the visual design is far more beautiful than just about anything else out there.
If Twilight Princess manages to uphold the level of quality seen in its opening hours for the entire duration of the adventure, it will unquestionably go down as one of the greats. Imagine Ocarina of Time, but polished and expanded and refined and generally perfected: that's what Twilight Princess feels like so far.
We still have a long way to go through Link's latest odyssey, and we'll be posting further details about the game over the coming weeks, all to whet your appetite for the game's November 19th release date. Having seen what we have, we're confident that the payoff will be worth the wait.
Moderate graphics and controls issues
The game is remarkably cinematic, but not in the cheesy Hollywood-wannabe way that so often traps the gaming industry. At times, I had moderate issues with the graphics and controls. But part of the reason I am a little down on the game is that the first 4 hours aren't nearly as exciting or innovative as the four that follow.
Sure, it's a Gamecube port. From what I understand, the Wii version's major differences are a wider aspect ratio and Wiimote incorporation. Twilight Princess doesn't utilize motion as well as some games built for the Wii from the ground up, which I find to be a disappointment. But I do find myself enjoying playing, and I'm enjoying playing in the way one can only enjoy a Zelda title. Does Twilight Princess need to be on the Wii? Probably not. But the game is a little better for it.
Another genre benchmark
I'm 10 hours through Twilight Princess and I still feel as though I've just gotten started. The game kicks off to a quick start and the action and challenges rarely relent. The result is an incredibly fun and rewarding experience that both feels like every Zelda we've played before and also completely new. I've always appreciated Nintendo design and Twilight Princess - even early on - demonstrates that few in this industry can make a game as epic and engaging as the Big N's top teams can. Of course, I'm not nearly through the finished product, but I have faith, and now that I've glimpsed Nintendo's newest Hyrulian adventure, I'd be surprised if it didn't go down as another genre benchmark, not to mention a cherished classic.
Every bit a killer app
The game is immersive, there is no questioning that. It is every bit a killer app for Nintendo and the Wii, and deservingly so. Despite the nitpicking, this is still the best reason to own a Wii at launch, and will probably be for some time – despite a strong catalog of first and third party releases already announced.
It's fun and deep, and according to Nintendo will take players the span of time we normally attribute to a traditional role-playing epic to complete.
Thanks to: The Wiire