Well, it’s finally over, and we have one winner for the <100 word contest, and a winner for the >100 word contest.

Some people wanted to know the number of entries, so here you go; there were 18 people who submitted, and a few of them entered into both the categories.

Here are the results. The <100 word winner, Alexander Dennis, wins this one with his unique entry that places his trust in Nintendo.

“As a fan I always feel I know ways to improve on a game… You know, an extra item here, a new weapon there… maybe a wicked sweet multi-player mode (Thanks Four Swords!)… I figure I play the games, I must know how to make them better!

So my IDEAL Zelda game? Whatever Mr. Aonuma and Mr. Miyamoto have in mind at the moment! The original creator and his apprentice have given us so many quality games, and as far as this fan is concerned, not one of them disappoint.”

For the >100 word winner, we have a tied vote, so I’m going to show both their entries. Firstly, this one from ZMAN7.

“Well to start off with my ideal of Zelda would have a selectable difficulty mode: Easy, Normal, Hard. (and Hero mode *which must be unlocked*) My next idea would be to give players a vast open-ended overworld to move about in. TP’s Hyrule Field was a step in the right direction but the Twilight Curtains pretty much killed the feeling of being able to go where you please. Of course a big empty field would be boring so I would fill it with hidden caves in the hills, small wooded areas, ponds, ruff terrain, as well as hidden treasures so good you could play for hours without even touching the main quest. Let’s not forget monsters, near the beginning of the game you’ll face small fry like Peahats and Wolfos but by the middle of it Moblin boar riders, Lizalfos and other baddies will rule the plains of Hyrule.

Now for NPCs, I would try to make them as lifelike as possible. For example you see a woman feeding Cuccos. The next in-game day later you’ll find the same woman getting water from a well. Just thought it’d be good to give NPCs some life, shoot maybe even bump into travelers in Hyrule field.

Finally for the plot, the classic Triforce storyline is still compelling, but characters like Gannondorf could use a new role in the story. I’m tired of him always wanting the triforce. Zelda’s role is fine, but it would be nice to see her more involed in the plot like she was in OoT under the guise of Sheik.”

The other >100 word winner is Doran_Bladefist, with this entry.

“My ideal Zelda game would be one that was more grand than the previous incarnations. It is true that the games are vast and full of wonder, but must Link always do these tasks by himself? And beyond the lonely hero complex, he generally is working under the premise that no one even knows what he’s doing, let alone where he goes afterwards. It’s as if the rest of the world doesn’t care what’s happening. This needs to change.

If Zelda were to evolve, I would make it bigger, more difficult, and have a deeper requirement of cunning and strategy, not just button-mashing. I would love to see Link in a more prominent role, such as leading armies into battle, defending cities from vast hordes, and uncovering greater secrets then he, or the world of Hyrule, can possible imagine. This would pull away from the classic Zelda formula that we all know and love, but it’s time for the game to grow up, else it may become stagnant.

Exploring forgotten lands and places should still be a part of the game, as it wouldn’t be Zelda without it, but you should do so as a group of adventurers. It’s easy enough when it’s just your own life in your hands, but what if Link had companions that you also wanted to survive? What if their very lives were attached to the commands you were giving? This could not only key in a multi-player factor, but would make the game that much more challenging; the choice to sacrifice your friends in order to save the world. In short, I would like to see more gray-colored paths to take, not ones so blatantly black and white; or, more commonly, the lack of one altogether. Some choices need to cut into your very heart, making you question yourself and the leadership you are giving.

In closing, I believe that if Link is to save the world, then the world needs to see him do it. No more hiding in decrepit caves and forgotten temples all alone. It’s time for the hero to make his way into the wild, open beyond and show us what courage is really made of – the courage within ourselves.”

Enjoy. The forum discussion thread for the contest is here.