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Why Have We Never Seen Something Like Majora's Mask Again?
  • Majora's Mask was a great game and many people love it. Nintendo is fully aware of this fact. They released Majora's Mask DLC for Hyrule Warriors. It has it's own track in the Symphony of the Goddess Concert. Fan demand got a 3DS Remake of it. The Masks have made several cameos in later games. Yet why have we never got another game emulating it's cycle system? Or such an in depth transformation system? Or hell even it's reusing assets to cheaply make a game (actually I guess we got Link's Crossbow Training out of that last point)? Point is there's a lot to love about Majora's Mask and Nintendo has taken very little from it as the Zelda games go on, instead retaining mostly the Link to the Past framework with some admittedly creative ideas thrown in. It seems like Tingle is the only lasting legacy the game has had on the series itself even though the game is praised so highly. Majora's Mask is by no means a perfect game either. The characters acting under the three day cycle is very underdeveloped no doubt due to the level of tech at the time and the fact that it was made in less than a year. The only three characters that actively move around a lot are Gorman, Anju and the Postman (actually he's a lasting legacy on the series it gave us too coming to think of it), everyone else just warps to places when day and night change. I'd love to see a game where each and every character is moving around and has a routine that you can modify in each cycle, and not just in the game but on the field and external areas of the game too.

    Any way major question is, why do you think so little of Majora's Mask has bled over into the other games and would you like to see more elemnts of it in other games or do you want it to remain unique?
  • I thinks its because Nintendo realizes that they cannot overuse a games idea too much. Nintendo is all about new ideas, hence why Zelda is becoming an open world adventure game which will bring a new twist and ideas to the table. If Nintendo made a game exactly like Majora's Mask, just a different map then they could be taking risks. Nintendo probably wishes they could remake Majora's Mask but running a company just simply pushes away the things they want to do because it is obviously a company and they are in a fierce economy which is not forgiving.
  • Yeah I agree with Brody. Zelda is kind of a lost cause, so Nintendo has to think of new ways of innovation, new ideas, for every game. Because Nintendo is unable to know what it is people actually liked so much about the classics, like OoT, MM, ALttP, due to the times changing, poor communication of fans, and usually due to poor research on Nintendo's behalf, their strategy instead has been to redefine the series in style and theme, gameplay, story, what the series is about, each time. Next time we'll see a totally different Zelda. Just how you will see a new game come about that will shake the foundations of the hall of fame like OoT did back in 1998, something totally new, different and brilliant, that's just the way of creativity.

    This doesn't mean for Nintendo their games will be truly brilliant or innovative, that's a rare thing. They will still have to reuse many aspects that they know work, aspects that are tried and true, like the combat system and repetitious movement patterns of Link, and recycled puzzle mechanisms we've all played before. But, it will influence a lot of kids new to gaming, and that is their rationale and that's what keeps them in business. They won't attempt to reuse too many specifics from before because they're too focused on redefining the specifics and not on the big picture, which is why the specifics of every new Zelda game are always so different, but the general gameplay remains the same old. Most Zelda fans have retired from playing this series, just because of how much it has both changed too much of its specific identity and yet how much it has remained too uninspired and predictable overall, via gameplay and pacing.

    When you take the fundamental style of pacing from one game ie. OoT, and reuse it with a totally different style and mood of story-telling and exploration mechanism ie. TP, it does not translate well. That is why as a developer you always have to think of how this new game is going to work and come together, and not worry so much about what worked before. A positive times a negative is still a negative, so to speak, so to come up with a masterpiece is to too make sure there are no negatives. Game design is not all comprised of good elements, there is a lot of pushing and pulling, manipulating and unfitting puzzle pieces and cracks. Thus, the golden equation for video games is hard to find and it's always changing. Zelda had it back in the day, but that doesn't mean it's the same now as it was back then.

    The post was edited 43 times, last by guest_15468 ().

  • The gameplay of MM's is too niche and restrictive and wouldn't last long in repeated games before people get tired of it.

    MM's is a fantastic game and easily my favorite but I wouldn't want Nintendo milking a game that essentially has a one-game appeal. By catering to a time-limit system, the amount they can with the game is always going to butt heads with more ambitious goals--something that a typical Zelda adventure won't have issues because there will be no constraints other than what the dev team imagined.

    MM's gameplay wokrs because its a smaller affair and a one-note experience but trying to stretch that out would just devalue the experience we already have.
  • I would love another game like Majora's Mask (novel, a side-story, divorced from the rest of the series' lore and conventions) but NOT a Majora's Mask sequel or spin-off. The world of Majora's Mask was fully realized and there's nowhere to go but down. A major part of the appeal of Majora's Mask was that it was fresh and different.

    An ideal situation would be that Nintendo releases Zelda U and then immediately starts work on a side story like Majora's Mask using the same graphics/game-play foundation. But don't bet on it. They'll decide to rebuild everything from scratch again and we'll endure another 5+ year development time.
  • gladefinder wrote:

    Yeah I agree with Brody. Zelda is kind of a lost cause, so Nintendo has to think of new ways of innovation, new ideas, for every game. Because Nintendo is unable to know what it is people actually liked so much about the classics, like OoT, MM, ALttP, due to the times changing, poor communication of fans, and usually due to poor research on Nintendo's behalf, their strategy instead has been to redefine the series in style and theme, gameplay, story, what the series is about, each time. Next time we'll see a totally different Zelda. Just how you will see a new game come about that will shake the foundations of the hall of fame like OoT did back in 1998, something totally new, different and brilliant, that's just the way of creativity.


    Well for a long time (c. 2002-2011), people were complaining that the overworld was getting in the way of the dungeons and that the overworld was nothing but padding, so we got Skyward Sword: the game with barely an overworld to speak of and just doesn't give you the opportunity to breathe like any action-adventure game should.

    Since Skyward Sword, now it's "those shitty dungeons are padding, they need to improve the overworld".

    Sad thing is, I did switch my position on the overworld/dungeon debate. But it seems I'm the only one who remembers the former opinion.
  • I get what some of you are saying about needing to keep things fresh and not reuse gameplay gimmicks, and I agree. We don't need to see a game revolve around a time cycle and masks again.

    However, those things are not even close to being the only thing that made Majora's Mask special. It was just as much, or more so, about the atmosphere, tone, presentation, writing, and art direction.

    And considering those elements, the reason for why we have never seen anything like Majora's Mask since all boils down to one thing: the absence of Yoshiaki Koizumi.

    Blue Quills wrote:


    Well for a long time (c. 2002-2011), people were complaining that the overworld was getting in the way of the dungeons and that the overworld was nothing but padding, so we got Skyward Sword: the game with barely an overworld to speak of and just doesn't give you the opportunity to breathe like any action-adventure game should.

    Since Skyward Sword, now it's "those shitty dungeons are padding, they need to improve the overworld".

    Sad thing is, I did switch my position on the overworld/dungeon debate. But it seems I'm the only one who remembers the former opinion.


    There is no way that a significant amount of people ever wanted to get rid of the overworld like with SS. The overworld was a major part of the series from the beginning, being just as important as the underworld and having a more even balance. If anyone did want to get rid of the overworld, it was really that they didn't like the overworlds in the 3D games, when starting with OoT the balance had a huge shift and much more emphasis was put on the dungeon gameplay. The problem was not that a proper overworld, like in the early games, couldn't be made into 3D, it's just that the new post-Miyamoto Zelda team simply did not put in the effort to try. Now with Zelda U/NX, they seem to be finally taking inspiration from the original games and restoring the balance between overworld and underworld.
  • Mik wrote:

    starting with OoT the balance had a huge shift and much more emphasis was put on the dungeon gameplay. The problem was not that a proper overworld, like in the early games, couldn't be made into 3D, it's just that the new post-Miyamoto Zelda team simply did not put in the effort to try. Now with Zelda U/NX, they seem to be finally taking inspiration from the original games and restoring the balance between overworld and underworld.


    I contest this point. In my opinion Ocarina of Time had a better integrated overworld than several of its predecessors. Zelda II and A Link to the Past were both much more focused on dungeon combat over exploration. Likewise Majora's Mask was <80% overworld in its design so Ocarina of Time certainly didn't start a downward trend. Conceptually The Wind Waker also relied heavily on it's overworld since it was the main visual and narrative element of the game. It might have failed somewhat due to technical limitations, however it is clear that's where their priorities lay considering they even abandoned several dungeons during development. Twilight Princess was the first 3D game to rely more solely on dungeon combat than over world exploration and before that it was proceeded by the Oracle Games plus the ones I mentioned. I'd rate Ocarina of Time, alongside The Minish Cap, as striking a pretty even balance between overworld and dungeon.

    The post was edited 2 times, last by Jotari ().

  • Jotari wrote:

    I'd dis

    Mik wrote:

    starting with OoT the balance had a huge shift and much more emphasis was put on the dungeon gameplay. The problem was not that a proper overworld, like in the early games, couldn't be made into 3D, it's just that the new post-Miyamoto Zelda team simply did not put in the effort to try. Now with Zelda U/NX, they seem to be finally taking inspiration from the original games and restoring the balance between overworld and underworld.


    I contest this point. In my opinion Ocarina of Time had a better integrated overworld than several of its predecessors. Zelda II and A Link to the Past were both much more focused on dungeon combat over exploration. Likewise Majora's Mask was <80% overworld in its design so Ocarina of Time certainly didn't start a downward trend. Conceptually The Wind Waker also relied heavily on it's overworld since it was the main visual and narrative element of the game. It might have failed somewhat due to technical limitations, however it is clear that's where their priorities lay considering they even abandoned several dungeons during development. Twilight Princess was the first 3D game to rely more solely on dungeon combat than over world exploration and before that it was proceeded by the Oracle Games plus the ones I mentioned. I'd rate Ocarina of Time, alongside The Minish Cap, as striking a pretty even balance between overworld and dungeon.

    It would help to clarify exactly what we mean by "emphasis."
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  • Blue Quills wrote:

    Well for a long time (c. 2002-2011), people were complaining that the overworld was getting in the way of the dungeons and that the overworld was nothing but padding, so we got Skyward Sword:
    Hmm... you mean 2002-2006? :arch: If Twilight Princess had anywhat of a sense of overworld, I could understand the 2002-2011 thing? TP was pretty much all about dungeons and/or dungeon-like staged tasks, going down the staged paths they put in place of actual exploration was pretty much "dungeon 2.0" There was no deep overworld exploration or questing, that was MM and TWW. Honestly, I still think MM and TWW were the best additions to Zelda philosophy, imo, they had so much more personality and intrigue than a typical Skyrim.

    The post was edited 18 times, last by guest_15468 ().

  • gladefinder wrote:

    Hmm... you mean 2002-2006? :arch: If Twilight Princess had anywhat of a sense of overworld, I could understand the 2002-2011 thing? TP was pretty much all about dungeons and/or dungeon-like staged tasks, going down the staged paths they put in place of actual exploration was pretty much "dungeon 2.0" There was no deep overworld exploration or questing, that was MM and TWW. Honestly, I still think MM and TWW were the best additions to Zelda philosophy, imo, they had so much more personality and intrigue than a typical Skyrim.


    I talked about this in an earlier thread, but TP tried to have a good overworld. Admittedly, it wasn't perfect, and it was probably better in theory than in actual execution. But I like it anyway, even if I see some serious flaws in it (particularly since it was released in the dawn of the Golden Age of WRPGs that we're currently in).

    And I assure you, I was there to see everyone complain about TP's overworld getting in the way of the dungeons.

    The post was edited 1 time, last by Blue Quills ().

  • Also when I say overworld, I'm talking about the actual whole overworld. Not just the field. Everything besides the dungeons. Like how ALttP had everything all out in a big epic field with paths, overworlds like MM's and TWW's were more segmented. MM's was strictly path-oriented like TP's, while TWW's was spotted and distanced. While you may have appreciated TP's overworld as a whole, I wasn't able to actually experience any of it as a whole. My personal experience in playing the game for 10 years has been one of closed taskdoing and cutscene-listening, whether it be staged paths or closed dungeon tasks. Any openness briefly experienced in that game was empty and had no observed purpose or story. There was no point I observed in exploring its field. I only respond in confusion as to why TP would be considered an overworld type of game. Maybe more of a cutscene-to-task interchange type of game like SS. I mean, in TP you could go back and visit the areas you've been, but that didn't mean they had a point or that there was really a cohesive concept of an "overworld." When I think of games known for their overworld I think of something actually open and rich in content, serving a significant main purpose to the game. Not just a giant prop you can walk around but mostly likely wouldn't waste time on. But that's me.

    The post was edited 36 times, last by guest_15468 ().

  • My only complaint with the Skyward Sword overworld is that it's not actually connected. I think they did a good job making the overworld not feel empty, but I agree that they could have given players a little more breathing room.

    I think The Minish Cap probably did the overworld/underworld balance the best.

    As for the Majora's Mask style gameplay, I think they can and will use a cycle again for sidequests someday. They had more limitations in 2000, but I think they could easily make characters that follow a set schedule over the course of several in-game days/nights.

    The only minor annoyance that may occur is needing to wait for characters to start their routine again, and that's likely part of why Nintendo has not done it yet.

    Part of what makes Majora's Mask special is that you can see the outcomes of completing the sidequests and the outcome if you do not. I think it will be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to implement this type of gameplay again without a time traveling mechanic (which they are unlikely to reuse). But they could have sidequests with choices that lead to different permanent outcomes.
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  • I would personally love a game where TP Link visits Termina, maybe in an effort to find a way to reconnect to the Twilight Realm and Midna, homaging OoT Link's reason for visiting Termina in the first place (looking for Navi). Even though the Hero of Time was forgotten in Hyrule, maybe his heroic feats were remembered in Termina? It would be cool to see how Termina has progressed in whatever amount of time has passed between OoT and TP (assuming time in Termina flows at the same rate when it's not being screwed with). Hey, we might see Lulu and Mikau's babies as grown up Zora, or Anju and Kafei's descendants! And imagine TP Link with the Fierce Deity Mask!

    It worked with ALBW. *shrugs*


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    "Breath of the Wild: "Zelda's Redemption" Chapter 3 now up!

    After Calamity Ganon's defeat, a devastated Zelda must come to terms with her ruined kingdom, dead friends, and the resentment of the Hero who had saved her, but lost his fiancee. When all hope seems lost, she comes across a legend of a holy relic that can set things right, if she can find the ancient keys to access it. With the help of new friends, and without Link, can Zelda finally become a legend, on her own terms?