I usually do not consider myself a very lucky person, but there are a few exceptions to this. New York Comic-Con 2013 was just that. It was the last year that Nintendo had a game demo station at NYCC, and usually, I’m not one for waiting in line for demos, but I saw a preview of the Wind Waker HD and I was intrigued. It was years since I last picked up Wind Waker, and seeing it made me want to play again.
The dealer room was just about closing, and the line was pretty short. My two friends who came with me that year were over in the Playstation section, finishing up a trail of a fighting game I’ve never heard of (I’m really more of a Ninten-dork), so I figured I might as well wait on line. There were two women in front of me who were really excited to play, it sounded like this was their first time playing the Wind Waker, which made me excited for them as well.
The demo time was relatively short, with only having the options of playing the introduction of the game or fighting the Helmaroc King. I was still deciding which one to do as I waited among the other con-goers. I’ve played and beaten the Wind Waker so many times, but the thing was, I had never played the WiiU before this. It was still relatively new, none of my friends owned it, and I was still a broke college kid without a job, so I could not afford it myself. I didn’t know if I would be able to handle a boss fight on a console I’ve never touched before. However, when the women in front of me had their turn, I had made my decision.
Watching them play, they chose the boss fight. The one woman handled the gameplay while the other cheered her on. I watched from behind as well. The woman was clearly a beginner and was not getting too far in the first stage of the battle, which was climbing up the spiral scaffolding of the Forsaken Fortress tower. The large bird would either claw her off the bridge or she would make too sharp a turn and jump into the water herself. Either way, she didn’t seem frustrated or upset, the two women were laughing and enjoying themselves, and that’s really what it was all about. That was what convinced me; I was going to take on the Helmaroc King.
As their demo was ending with the time limit coming to an end (as they were still only on the first part of the stage), the woman running the booth called out to the line;
“We only have time for one more demo for the day! We’ll be here again tomorrow!” I was the next in line, and wow, I was excited! Usually, I would be the one right after the last person to play, but this time, it was my turn to be the chosen one. The giggling woman handed me the Wii U controller and wished me luck. I thanked her and started to set up the demo.
“Don’t worry, we’ll make sure you have enough time to play before the dealer room closes for the night.” The woman told me. I thanked her as well, still in shock that I was able to play the game.
“We’ll let you know when the time is almost up, but you’ll get the same amount of time as everyone else, so no need to worry.” She said assuringly. That made me feel even better about playing. It also helped that there wasn’t a large mob in the back of me watching over my shoulders.
The cutscene began and the tower began to fill with water. The grappling hook and skull hammer were both equipped. This was it. I began to climb up the tower, jumping gaps and dodging the beak of the monstrous bird. By some miracle, I made it to the top flawlessly. Gaining more and more confidence, I was ready to fight the boss. It was just me and the Helmaroc King. Feelings of nostalgia came back as I fought him once more in this new, high definition edition. I remembered all his moves and tactics, which allowed me to once again, by some chance of good fortune, defeat him without taking any damage in only a few minutes. The demo ended, and just after that the staff woman came back to me and said;
“You’ve got about three minutes left, but you don’t need to rush!” In which I could only respond:
“Actually, I just finished.” I handed her back the Wii U gamepad. She seemed really surprised, but the screen did not lie. The demo was over, and I was victorious.
The woman gave me tickets to earn Super Mario 3D World cat ears. I was only there for Saturday that year, so I handed them to some stragglers at the Nintendo booth and helped them earn their ears. I must admit I was a little sad that I couldn’t obtain a pair of fluffy ears of my own, but that perfect victory was reward enough for me.