February of this year the Zelda nation was blessed with the remake of an old dark classic Majora's Mask. Announced during the 2015 Nintendo Direct in January, Majora's Mask was a much anticipated remake which had taken over 3 years to complete. While the majority of the story play remained the same, producer Eiji Aonuma admitted that certain things had changed since the first release of Majora's Mask 15 years ago. In an interview done by IGN, Aonuma discussed some of the larger areas they chose to focus on for the remake.
One thing that Aonuma and his team decided to change was reflected in the bosses that Link faces throughout the game. "We thought about making weak spots on bosses a little easier to see, but we definitely discovered that it’s something you have to be careful with, to avoid destroying the feeling of gameplay from the original."
When compared to the original, the boss weak points are generally more visible to gamers which makes some player feel the game is easier. However, Aonuma has discussed that making the weak points more visible didn't make the bosses too easy to beat, but instead gave the boss fights more direction.
Him and his team found that the old boss fights were a little too difficult and occasionally had no direction for the player. The end result was gamers who just attacked a boss until they finally beat it. Instead of having to use strategy to beat the boss they only had to use sheer willpower to get through them. Making boss weak points more visible gave gamers a chance to try out new strategies to try and get to those weak points.
Another area that Aonuma decided to update was the side quests that are available along with the hints in the Bombers' Notebook. It was decided to make the gameplay a little easier for the user to understand, however this is far from making things a piece of cake as some have feared.
"I feel like in previous iterations, those opportunities were just passing by, and now we have the chance with the revised Bombers’ Notebook to bring players into those moments a bit better."
Aonuma wanted to still give gamers the sense of satisfaction of figuring out the quests themselves, but he wanted to provide them with more guidance with how to get to the point of being able to actually attempt the quests. In the older version of Majora's Mask, things like side quests were a little too difficult for some users and this caused them to ignore a big part of the game. By adding a little more detail in the Bomber's Notebook, a wider range of Zelda gamers will be able to attempt these side quests adding to their overall experience.
One of the biggest changes that fans will see is the swimming aspect of Majora's Mask. When the game first came to America, the swimming was changed from the Japanese version. Now, with the new remake, the swimming will again be changed making some wonder why the change needed to be made. Aonuma described it as a fresh new perspective that he had on the game.
"The real difference here is in how people have experienced the last 15 years since the original game came out. A lot of people who were big fans may have been playing that continuously for 15 years, returning to it, but I hadn’t really spent a lot of time playing the game over and over in that 15 year period. I just came back to it and suddenly I had this fresh experience which made me think, wow, I really want to work on how swimming is implemented here."
He mentioned that creating water levels is difficult for him and his team to achieve because they tend to be harder for gamers to maneuver around. When the gameplay is too difficult for the players to navigate it ruins the experience they have when trying to solve the puzzles within places like the Water Temple. Aonuma said he only wished he had come up with the solution for navigating in water earlier than the Major Mask 3DS remake.
While the storyline has remained the same, Zelda fans can expect some differences in the new Majora's Mask 3DS remake. Aonuma has figured that there are about 20-30 big changes in the remake, but the number of small changes is too high to guess accurately. These changes in gameplay and updates to familiar areas like the Water Temple will present gamers with a new spin on an old classic.
If you haven't already, take a look at the trailer. This should be bring back some old memories of playing Majora's Mask. Although some things have changed you still only have 3 days to save Termina so you better hurry!