Well, word went public today that Atari, one of the longest lasting names in video game history, has filed for bankruptcy. And I feel really sad about that, I remember my first video game console was an Atari. And yes, I had E.T., and no, I didn’t have it mailed away to be buried in some landfill that we’re gonna see this summer if it existed or not in the Angry Video Game Nerd movie. Point is, I know a lot of people are likely grieving over the loss of Atari after so many years of it managing to stay in the game, so to help tide over the feeling of sadness and despair, here are some of my Atari jokes that will likely stop being as funny (though still as corny) when Atari does go all the way bankrupt.
How do you know you need to toss out an electronic device in your house? If it’s an Atari Jaguar.
How many good games were there for the Lynx? No one knows, we were all playing the Gameboy…or in some cases the Game Gear, ‘cuz let’s face it, Sonic the Hedgehog in the palm of your hand, know what I mean?
How do you know with 100% certainty your car needs to go to the shop? The Atari Jaguar CD started working before the car did.
If you and your significant other aren’t connecting well, what have you become? The wires in the Atari Jaguar CD.
How did Atari think the world would end last year? Asteroids.
How many technicians does it take to fix an Atari Jaguar CD? None, they tried and then they quit and turned to drugs and alcohol.
…Okay, I’m done. Hope my horrible jokes helped ease the pain of Atari’s passing. Ja né!
1972 – 2013
My day at Harbour Con-fusion, cosplaying as 90’s Kid from Atop The Fourth Wall. Also starring N.Harmonik, and a few of my friends from work, including one cosplaying as the angriest gamer you’ve ever heard. Also, I’m sorry for the crappy ass quality, I honestly don’t know what happened there. lol
Music is from Dawn of the Dead and Angry Video Game Nerd. Special thanks to everybody at Harbour Con-fusion, had a heck of a time, and let’s do this again next year. 🙂
Before I get started, I have to bring a few things up. First off, I’m REALLY sorry this is so late. I guess after the first two didn’t get much attention (neither did my Blog on a whole for that matter), I had to fight off the urge to abandon it altogether. I apologise for that.
Second, you’ll recall I said I decided to do this after seeing the Angry Video Game Nerd drive himself mad trying to figure out Zelda’s Chronology back in January ’08, though I should note I never really got around to watching AVGN until this past year. For this, I am EXTREMELY unworthy, but I digress: If you have not seen this video, check it out! For that matter, if you have not watched any of AVGN’s material, you need to at least give it a glance.
With that cheap plug outta the way, back to the Zelda Chronology, and…I kinda lied. I said I would look at both Majora’s Mask AND Wind Waker this time around, but after realising I’d bit off WAY more than I could chew doing both at ones, instead we’ll just look at the next major Zelda game to come out after Ocarina Of Time, The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask, which was also for the N64. In fact, this game was a direct sequel to OoT, taking place several months after Link was sent back to his youth at the end of Ocarina of Time (see what I meant by it only “kinda” ending?). What’s odd about this game is that, despite being called “Legend of Zelda”, Zelda only makes cameo appearances in this game, and Ganondorf is nowhere to be found. Also, the tone is much darker in this game, but I’ll get to that later.
We open to see Link riding his horse Epona through the deepest regions of the woods looking for an unnamed friend (presumably Navi since the annoying little firefly took off for no reason at the end of OoT), when he’s ambushed by the Skull Kid, a character from OoT, who stole a powerful mask known as Majora’s Mask and is being possessed by it. Skull Kid and his two fairies, Tatl and Tael, knock Link off of Epona, rendering him unconscious, and stealing the Ocarina of Time from him. When Link wakes up, he chases Skull Kid even deeper into the dark forest. However, Skull Kid gives him the slip and uses a Deku Mask to transform Link into a Deku Scrub, but abandons Tatl, who promises to help Link if he’ll give her a pass. The two find themselves in a clock tower and meet the Happy Mask Salesman, who tells them more about the masks, and tells Link to find the Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask and bring them back to him, but that he must do so within 3 days. Only then can he change Link back into his normal self again. So Link goes ahead and travels through a huge set of doors to find himself in a land called Termina, which is actually an alternate realm of sorts to Hyrule. But all is not well at all, as he finds the moon is actually falling from the sky and will impact with the central Clock Town in 3 days! However, as time winds to a close, Link finds a means of getting to the top of the Clock Tower, where he confronts Skull Kid and Tael. Tael tells them a riddle about four that could stop this, but Skull Kid just knocks the fairy away. Link manages to get the Ocarina of Time back, but time is running out. However, Link has a flashback of Zelda teaching him the Song of Time, and begins to play it, which somehow transports them back to inside the Clock Tower 3 days prior, though the Happy Mask Salesman seems to know what has happened. He restores Link to normal, but freaks out when he finds that Link doesn’t have Majora’s Mask, demanding that he get it back before Skull Kid unleashes the apocalypse on the world.
From this point, Link is able to travel throughout Termina, solving side-quests, obtaining new Masks that give him new forms, and learning more about the Skull Kid, Majora’s Mask, and the Four Giants that can stop the moon from crashing at the end of the 3 days, which you can keep from happening by playing the Song of Time to go back to the start of the 3 days, but honestly you should at least see it once. But if you don’t feel like risking it, here…
…Anyway, it turns out you have to traverse four dungeons, solve the puzzles and traps, gain new weapons and items, and defeat four gigantic monsters that have taken up residence in each one in order to awaken each of the Four Giants…Well of course, isn’t that the Zelda way? Speaking of which, I suppose it would be ignorant of me to talk about this game and NOT mention possibly one of the most controversial dungeons in all of Zelda. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, I suggest you do one or both of the following: Watch Chuggaaconroy’s Let’s Play of Majora’s Mask as he goes through the Stone Tower (heck, I recommend watching that Let’s Play anyway), or read the article “The Stone Tower: Why Termina Was Doomed” on zeldauniverse.net. Personally speaking, I don’t have a problem with the Stone Tower, but it kinda makes you wonder what they were on when they made it.
…Anyway, so you do that, go to Clock Tower on the last day, call the Four Giants, and it looks like the catastrophe has been averted…But of course things can never be that easy, so Majora’s Mask leaves the Skull Kid and possesses the moon itself in a last ditch effort, but you travel inside and kick it’s non-existent butt and set everything right again. The Skull Kid is apologetic, he makes up with Tatl and Tael, and Link and Epona ride off to go back on their adventure.
Now, that’s the main story of this game. But as anyone that’s played it can tell you, that’s NOT the entire game. This game is FILLED with frigging subquests, almost all of which circle around the mega depressed peoples of Termina and solving their problems for them. So yeah, throughout the run of this game you become a hero, horse racer, guitarist, Goron racer, postman, collector and trader of various items, and TONS more. And with all that crammed into 3 Days, you’ll find yourself travelling back through time a lot. It’s a wonder with all the time travelling Link has done the past couple of games that THIS didn’t happen…
Like I was saying, this game has a very dark nature compared to Zelda games before it. Link’s trying to stop Armageddon, a lot of the scenery in the game can be even darker and grittier than in OoT, a lot of the characters are going through their own personal crises, the moon looks flipping terrifying, the ancestors of the people are suggested to be heretics to the Gods, there’s a mask that gives you the power of an entity suggested to be the “real bad guy”, and everything is out to kill you! So, how did they follow up this release? Why, with the cel-shaded, cartoon-looking adventure on the high seas, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker.
…I wasn’t going to do it. I really wasn’t. It seemed like it would be a fool’s errand to even try, and to be honest it still kinda does. But then I went back and I re-watched the Angry Video Game Nerd attempt to pull it off. That should’ve been the end of the debates right there, but really, I think it’s only made it worse. So I’m gonna try to put this sucker to rest. This is my take on The Legend of Zelda: The Chronology.
First off, lemme just say that I’m NOT a gaming historian of any kind, nor do I play one on television. I’m just a casual gamer who loves good games and has a tendency to pick on little plot holes in games that are story-heavy. So don’t freak out if I make a mistake or you don’t agree with my views on the subject. If I make a mistake, simply tell me what I did wrong without flaming the hell outta me.
Anyway, in this first part, we’ll be looking at the first two Zelda games as well as the SNES game, so to start off, let’s look at the original Zelda game on the NES, simply titled The Legend of Zelda. It’s a very simple story (especially when compared to the others) of a young elvish boy named Link who journeys to save the land of Hyrule from the evil tyrannical boar named Ganon (misspelled Gannon at the time), who had obtained the Triforce of Power and kidnapped Princess Zelda. The only way to defeat him was to obtain the shards of the Triforce of Wisdom, which was split apart by Zelda to keep it safe from Ganon, and then take him on in the labyrinths within Death Mountain. So you go through the dungeons all around the kingdom, you fight through an endless onslaught of monsters, solve ridiculously hard puzzles, reassemble the Triforce of Wisdom, go to Death Mountain, kill Ganon with the Silver Arrows, and save Princess Zelda. The end…right?
Well no, because there was a sequel the next year, Zelda II: The Adventure of Link. In this game, Link turns sweet sixteen, but instead of a cake to blow out, he’s got a Princess to wake up. We learn that there was another Princess Zelda and another Triforce, the Triforce of Courage. Now the Triforce of Courage makes sense, since the name Triforce would suggest that there are three of them, but what’s the story on the new Zelda? And I’m quoting an article from the Zelda wiki here: “Ages ago, the King of Hyrule had hidden a third part of the Triforce, the Triforce of Courage, in the Great Palace to safeguard it from evil. Upon the death of the king, his son had searched eagerly for the missing Triforce, but its location had been imparted only to the king’s daughter, Princess Zelda. Angered upon learning this, the Prince tried to use the power of a wizard to force the truth from his sister, but when she refused the wizard cast a spell upon her to put her into a deep and unending sleep, the wizard died soon after. Only by uniting the Triforce of Courage with its counterparts could Link awake the sleeping Princess Zelda.” Oh, and apparently the Prince decreed that every Princess born from then on would be named Zelda, which explains a lot later on but then also confused a LOT MORE…
Anyway, Link finds out he has to defeat these Guardians to lower a binding field around the Triforce of Courage’s location. Making matters worse was that Ganon’s followers wanted to kill Link and use his blood in some kind of ritual to bring back their master. So Link went around, solved puzzles, defeated enemies, and switched back and forth from a top-down perspective to a 2D side-scroller before obtaining the Triforce of Courage and awakening Princess Zelda, and we see the end where it’s implied that she made out with him or something. Aw, isn’t that sweet?
4 years later, the SNES was essentially replacing the NES, and we got a new Zelda game: The Legend of Zelda: A Link To The Past. Now this is where things get a bit confusing, as once again we have a new Zelda, but also a new Link. According to the packaging for the game, these Link and Zelda are the predecessors of the ones from the original game. That would make sense, except that we now don’t know if this takes place before the Zelda from AoL was put to sleep or after, and believe me, it only gets worse from there, and continues to be made worse to this day…but I’m getting ahead of myself.
In this one, we learn a LOT more about the history of Hyrule. There was a conflict known as the Imprisoning War centuries beforehand, where an alternate realm of existance known as the Sacred Realm was invaded by a band of thieves led by a man named Ganondorf Dragmire-wait a minute, GANON?! Yeah, apparently he was originally just some thief. And what was he looking to steal from the Sacred Realm? An ancient relic left behind by the three Goddesses who created Hyrule known as the Triforce… … …Okay, NOW we’re officially running on confused, since the back-story of AoL said that the Triforce of Courage was kept separate from the other two pieces, but you could concede that the events of this game happened before all that…or so you would think, but again getting ahead of myself. Anyway, long story short, Ganondorf killed his followers, got the Triforce, and because the Triforce can apparently reflect the wishes of he or she that touches it, it turned the Sacred Realm into the Dark Realm, and turned Ganondorf into the boar-like creature we’ve known from day one. Thankfully, a group of wise men known as the Seven Sages managed to seal Ganon and the once Sacred Realm away, keeping Ganon from invading the Light Realm in which Hyrule existed in.
So what goes wrong? Well, one day disasters just kinda spontaneously start happening, until this wizard Agahnim (pronounced AY-gah-nim, by the way. I always used to pronounce it a-GAH-nim) stepped up and stopped the disasters, was proclaimed a hero, and was made chief advisor to the King at that time. But he wasn’t even close to being the hero people thought he was, as he used his power to brainwash the guards of the palace, and started kidnapping descendants of the Seven Sages in order to sacrifice them to open the way to the Dark Realm. Zelda was to be the last of the descendants to be sacrificed, but she uses telepathy to contact Link, who saves her and then goes on a quest to defeat Agahnim.
It’s in this game we’re introduced to a weapon that has existed as a major part of Zelda mythos ever since: The Master Sword. Link is sent to find obtain the sword as it is the only weapon that can defeat Agahnim, but the only way to pull it from the pedestal in the Lost Woods is to obtain three Pendants of Virtue, which are held deep within three dungeons scattered about Hyrule. So Link braves the dungeons, solves the puzzles inside, defeats the creatures taking up residence in each one, and leaves with the Pendants. He then goes to the Lost Woods, pulls the Master Sword, and goes back to Hyrule Castle to confront Agahnim…only in this game they pull the rug out from under us as we get Link up there just in time to see Agahnim, having kidnapped Zelda again, has just sacrificed her to release the seal on the Dark Realm. Naturally after seeing that you’ll wanna go and kick Agahnim’s butt, which you do, only to have him pull you into the Dark Realm.
This is where the second half of the game takes place…well, not really second half, because it’s much longer than the first half. Here we learn that Zelda and the others aren’t dead, and are merely imprisoned in seven dungeons throughout the Dark Realm that make the ones visited previously look really easy. So once again, Link has to traverse each of the dungeons, defeat the monsters inside, solve ridiculous puzzles, and rescue each girl. With each one you rescue, a bit more of the back-story is revealed, specifically revolving around Ganon who, spoiler alert, is the real villain having acted through Agahnim! Gee, what a shocker, huh?
But I digress: You save all the girls, ending with Zelda, and you go to Ganon’s Tower to put an end to it all, only for the game to once again trick you into thinking the end is here, and instead you fight Agahnim again, only this time he’s a lot harder. You beat him, and it looks like you’ve finally killed him, but then this transparent image of Ganon comes out of him and you chase him down to this temple where you first appeared in the Dark Realm, only the roof’s been blasted open so you can get in, where you face Ganon in the final battle. After a rough battle that can’t even technically be won unless you first went and got the Silver Arrows, you utterly destroy him and obtain the Triforce, restoring the Sacred Realm and putting everything in Hyrule back to the way it was.
So there ya go, a general synopsis of the plots of the first three Zelda games, and thus far everything seems to be in order as far as chronology is concerned…OR IS IT?! You see, all of this only works if you consider A Link To The Past to be the prequel to the first two Zelda games, but next time we’ll see how that theory may or may not have been blown all to hell when we look at a game considered to be the crown jewel of the Zelda franchise, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.