lowbrowculture

collects stories and ideas from John Kelly

Zelda: A Cautionary Tale

“Yes” or “no”?

Two years of sitting on a shelf with a mental note of “must complete, someday”, I finally got around to playing Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. And for two weeks, every spare half hour was spent playing that game, beating various bosses, sailing the seas digging up treasure, talking to everyone I met, amassing a veritable horde of spoils.

Now, after a long day in work, I’ve turned on the Gamecube and dragged my favourite chair closer to the TV only to find the game asking me “yes” or “no”?

It didn’t say what the question was. What could it be? Load the game?

I choose “yes”.

“Please wait…”

Hmm. My muscle memory spasms a little, telling me that this isn’t the way I load my game in Wind Waker. Flash of panic. What have I done?!

“Done!”

And I’m taken to the quest screen.

Three empty slots. Three “New quest” buttons, empty as the day they left the Nintendo factory.

My game is gone. All my hard work. All my emotional attachment is gone. As if to pour some salt on the wounds, I checked gamefaqs, to see how far I had to go to the end of the game. Not far. A couple more shards of the Triforce and I’d be fighting Ganondorf once and for all. All gone.

Now.. I don’t know what to do. I tried launching straight back into it, but there’s so much to do. My sea chart is empty, my spoils bag is.. hang on, I don’t even have a spoils bag yet. I resent every conversation with every character, so I don’t talk to anyone. Even more, I resent conversations that I must have to progress in the game. The unskippable nature of them grates over me. Things that were beautiful and magical, even the cute little cut-scene where you change the direction of the wind and Link whips his head around - all these things are like nails across a blackboard.

And so it’s going back on the shelf for another two years.

This time, without the mental note.