My Top 5 Legend of Zelda Games

Posted: 15th June 2015 by cdidoned3721 in Culminating Task, Top 5

The Legend of Zelda is one of the most successful video game franchises of all time, and has developed a massive and loyal fanbase. That’s not a big surprise, considering all that those games have to offer: challenging enemies and bosses to keep you on your toes, puzzle solving to keep you thinking, and a storyline that makes you wonder what’s going to happen next. With those things in mind, here are my top 5 Legend of Zelda games.

5) Skyward Sword

Some hardcore Zelda fans might shun me for even thinking about putting this game on a top 5 list, but allow me to explain. In the Legend of Zelda timeline, Skyward Sword is the game that started everything. Even though it came out in 2011, this game tells the origin story of the land of Hyrule and the Master Sword. If you’re a Zelda fan, it is very important for you to play this game at least once.

Photo from: http://www.deviantart.com/morelikethis/289832706

This photo shows the evolution of the Master Sword throughout the game. Photo from: http://www.deviantart.com/morelikethis/289832706

Another great thing about this game is its art style. The bright, beautiful colours make playing this game seem like walking through an art gallery. Everything about this game’s style from the beautifully made scenery to the incredibly detailed characters and items makes it an amazing playing experience.

Photo from: http://kleberly.com/381610-the-legend-of-zelda-skyward-sword.html

This photo depicts Skyward Sword’s unique art style. Photo from: http://kleberly.com/381610-the-legend-of-zelda-skyward-sword.html

Some of you might be wondering why I put this game so low on the list if there are so many things I like about it. If you have ever actually played this game, you will understand why.

Have you ever had a friend that you love to be around because they’re really amusing and fun, but you also can’t stand them because they’re annoying? That’s Skyward Sword.

Despite the beauty of the game and the insightful story, Skyward Sword is as annoying as an aunt that won’t stop pinching your cheeks. I forced myself to play through it twice, and it was probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.

Wii remote, Wii Nunchuk, Wii MotionPlus. Photo from: http://www.cubed3.com/news/15517/1/rumour-nintendo-wants-flawless-hands.html

Wii remote, Wii Nunchuk, Wii MotionPlus. Photo from: http://www.cubed3.com/news/15517/1/rumour-nintendo-wants-flawless-hands.html

Let me tell you about the game’s controls. Since this game came out for the Wii, you had to use the Wii remote. Along with that, you had to use a Wii Nunchuk to move around and a Wii MotionPlus to make the Wii remote’s movements more precise. The Nunchuk was used to move the character around, and the Wii remote was used to attack. The addition of the Wii MotionPlus made it nearly impossible to play through the game without yelling the words “I didn’t want to do that” at least 20 times. Whichever way you swung the remote, your sword would swing that way. If you swung too much, it would stop working properly. In a lot of cases, you’d have to stop in the heat of battle to fix the controls, which was very annoying. If it wasn’t for the controls, this game would definitely be higher on the list, and probably be about 50 times more enjoyable. Thanks, Nintendo.

 

In almost every Zelda game, the main character, Link, has an acquaintance that helps and accompanies him on his quest to save Zelda. In Skyward Sword, we meet one of the most annoying sidekicks in all of Zelda history. I present to you, dear readers: Fi. This overgrown, soulless Smurf seems to think you need a reminder every two minutes. Whether it be for what you’re supposed to do,

One of Fi's lines from Skyward Sword put into a comic. Photo from: http://rebloggy.com/post/zelda-skyward-sword-video-games-comics/28801137310

One of Fi’s lines from Skyward Sword put into a comic. Photo from: http://rebloggy.com/post/zelda-skyward-sword-video-games-comics/28801137310

or that your Wii remote needs batteries, Fi is an overprotective mother bearing down on you and making sure you know exactly what to do at all times. As if this game wasn’t linear enough, Fi holds your hand through every challenge you face and doesn’t allow you to stray from the correct path. Thanks for caring about us, Fi, but we know how to take care of ourselves.

All in all, Skyward Sword is an okay game, but it could definitely use some revamping. Take away the motion controls and make Fi slightly less annoying, and you got a great game about the history of the Legend of Zelda. As for right now, though…it lands itself the 5th spot on my list.

From this point on, my choices are extremely close together, and I had a lot of trouble picking what places they would take. The following is what I finally decided on.

4) Ocarina of Time

Every Zelda fan knows this game. Every Zelda fan loves this game. Every Zelda fan has continuous nightmares about the evil water temple and its mind-melting puzzles… I might have lied about the last point, but you get the idea.

This photo showcases Ocarina of Time's 3D style. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/The_Legend_of_Zelda:_Ocarina_of_Time

This photo showcases Ocarina of Time’s 3D style. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/The_Legend_of_Zelda:_Ocarina_of_Time

Ocarina of Time made history by being the first 3D Zelda game ever made, and quickly became what was seen as “the best” in the franchise. My question to you is: Is it actually the best? In my opinion, no, but I still love this game like a mother loves her children. It just so happens that this is the ugly, dumb child, but I digress. Still love it.

This photo showcases the game's ability to target enemies. Photo from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Legend_of_Zelda:_Ocarina_of_Time

This photo showcases the game’s ability to target enemies. Photo from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Legend_of_Zelda:_Ocarina_of_Time

Let’s talk pros first. This was during one of the golden eras of Zelda, when motion controls were far from Nintendo’s mind. This being said, the controls didn’t make you want to throw the game out the window, and that’s always a plus. It was easy to move around, easy to attack, and easy to use items (as long as you had that item equipped). This was also the first Zelda game to include a control that allows the player to target which enemies they wanted to attack, which proved to be extremely useful. Overall, the controls in this game made playing it easy and fun.

Link and Epona in Ocarina of time. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/Epona

Link and Epona in Ocarina of time. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/Epona

You know what I hate most about video games? Long, unnecessary travel time. If I want to go somewhere, I want to get there quickly. I want to keep playing the game and having fun instead of sitting around waiting to get to my destination. Ocarina of Time understood this. This was the first Zelda game to introduce Epona, Link’s horse. You can get Epona later in the game, so some travel time is still long and tedious, but once you get her, everything becomes smoother and more fun. Why walk somewhere when you can ride an awesome horse there? Thank you, game.

For me, the storyline is my favourite part of every Zelda game. A good story makes a good game, and Ocarina of Time followed that rule. They gave fans on the franchise a more in-depth story to follow compared to previous games, and kept the players intrigued. Even if you got frustrated with the puzzles, you wanted to keep playing to find out what happened next.

Music makes the world go ’round. It also makes a good game into a great game. Every Zelda game has a beautiful soundtrack, but there’s just something about Ocarina of Time’s short, simple, and catchy melodies that I love. Out of all Legend of Zelda songs, my favourite comes from this game. I present to you, the Song of Storms:

I don’t know why, but there’s something about its upbeat melody and haunting harmony that makes the Song of Storms impossible to stop listening to. Bravo, Koji Kondo. You made a beautiful and memorable soundtrack.

As with Skyward Sword, you might be wondering, “Why is this game at number 4 if you’ve said all this good stuff about it?” Well, dear reader, I am so glad you asked. Allow me to explain.

This picture shows an artist's depiction Navi. Photo from: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/417286721696818514/

This picture shows an artist’s depiction Navi. Photo from: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/417286721696818514/

As I mentioned earlier, almost every Zelda game has a sidekick that accompanies Link. It just so happens that most of said sidekicks are annoying. Exhibit A: Fi. Exhibit B: Ocarina of Time’s very own Navi. Navi is a cute, glowing blue ball with wings that calls herself a fairy. Navi is also well-known as “the most annoying character in Zelda history”. While I think Fi is the most annoying, there is no doubt that Navi takes second place. Every time you target an enemy, she’ll tell you to “watch out!” Every time she wants to tell you something, you’ll hear, “hey, listen!” What makes this worse than it sounds is Navi’s high-pitched voice.

Annoying, right? Now imagine hearing that almost 24/7 while trying to fight enemies, solve puzzles, and play the game. The struggle is real.

This picture shows us the layout of the Water Temple, and what it looks like when you enter. Photo from: http://www.kotaku.com.au/2014/01/the-water-temple-doesnt-seem-difficult-in-these-ocarina-of-time-maps/

This picture shows us the layout of the Water Temple, and what it looks like when you enter. Photo from: http://www.kotaku.com.au/2014/01/the-water-temple-doesnt-seem-difficult-in-these-ocarina-of-time-maps/

Let’s talk about everyone’s favourite temple, the Water Temple! I talked about it briefly in the beginning , but I had to stop because I was getting horrible flashbacks and started twitching uncontrollably. Putting all jokes aside, to those who don’t know anything about Zelda games, the main objectives are completing things called “temples” or “dungeons”, which are basically just huge buildings with lots of enemies and some useful items. To those who don’t know about Ocarina of Time, the Water Temple is said to be the hardest and most frustrating temple in not only Ocarina of Time, but all Zelda games. And I’d have to agree with that statement, because of how much trouble this temple caused me. I’ve

This photo shows the battle between Link and the Water Temple's mini-boss, Dark Link. Photo from: http://www.vizzed.com/play/legend-of-zelda-the-ocarina-of-time-n64-online-nintendo-64-9066-user-screenshots

This photo shows the battle between Link and the Water Temple’s mini-boss, Dark Link. Photo from: http://www.vizzed.com/play/legend-of-zelda-the-ocarina-of-time-n64-online-nintendo-64-9066-user-screenshots

played through this game many times, and that temple has never gotten easier. Except that one time I glitched the game, but that doesn’t really count. This temple still sucks. Not to mention the mini-boss, which is an exact replica of Link, except has more skill, the power to phase through the ground, and the ability to jump on Link’s sword. Can a fight be any more unfair?

 

This photo shows young Link warning young Zelda about the future. Photo from: http://www.cubed3.com/preview/375/1/the-legend-of-zelda-ocarina-of-time-3d-hands-on-nintendo-3ds.html

This photo shows young Link warning young Zelda about the future. Photo from: http://www.cubed3.com/preview/375/1/the-legend-of-zelda-ocarina-of-time-3d-hands-on-nintendo-3ds.html

The biggest disappointment for me was the ending of this game. I’ve never heard of anyone else having a problem with it, so this is just a personal thing, but the way they ended it left me with so many questions. Spoiler warning! After Link saves Hyrule and peace is restored, Link goes back in time and warns Princess Zelda of what is to come, and the whole thing is prevented. Or, at least, that’s what it looks like. We never really get any clarification. The whole ending is left to interpretation and a bit of information from the Zelda timeline. Based on what the timeline says, the ending of Ocarina of Time splits off into 3 categories: the adult Link timeline, where Link

The official Legend of Zelda timeline. Photo from: http://kotaku.com/5871215/the-official-zelda-timeline-now-with-added-detail

The official Legend of Zelda timeline. Photo from: http://kotaku.com/5871215/the-official-zelda-timeline-now-with-added-detail

saved Hyrule, and everyone regarded him as a hero for thousands of years after; the child Link timeline, where Link goes back in time and prevents the events of Ocarina of Time from happening; and the death timeline, where Link is defeated in battle and evil takes over Hyrule. But the ending we see in Ocarina of Time is the child Link ending, which bothers me because since Link prevents everything from happening, what was the point of the game? Based on what the ending tells us, the whole game was pointless, and you saved Hyrule for nothing. It may just be a personal thing, but I want something more out of a great game like Ocarina of Time.

3) Majora’s Mask

Majora's Mask's logo. Photo from: http://creepypasta.wikia.com/wiki/Majora's_Mask

Majora’s Mask’s logo. Photo from: http://creepypasta.wikia.com/wiki/Majora’s_Mask

Majora’s Mask has met with a terrible fate by being placed third on this list, since it is my favourite game at the moment. I have very specific reasons why it is third, which will be explained later. As for right now, I’ll tell you why I love it.

The moon in Majora's Mask. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/Moon

The moon in Majora’s Mask. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/Moon

Majora’s Mask is definitely the creepiest of all the Zelda games, and, in my opinion, the most tragic. There are so many aspects of this game that make it both beautiful and sad at the same time. Since I love this game so much, I’ll briefly describe a part of it. (For what I’m about to explain, here is some background on the game: You only have 3 in-games days to complete the game, since the world’s moon is falling down to destroy the town. You can go back to the first day at any point by playing the Song of Time. After the third day, there is a carnival, and people are setting up for it on the three in-game days.) One of the side quests you

Anju (left) and Kafei (right). Photo from: http://zeldawiki.org/Reuniting_Kafei_and_Anju

Anju (left) and Kafei (right). Photo from: http://zeldawiki.org/Reuniting_Kafei_and_Anju

can do involves a couple, whose names are Kafei and Anju. Spoiler warning! Kafei was turned into a child by the game’s antagonist, Skull Kid, who also stole Kafei’s mask which would be used during the wedding. Kafei and Anju were supposed to get married the day after the carnival, but Kafei cannot face his future wife without the mask. Link talks to Anju who, find Kafei, gives Anju a pendant from her fiance, and helps Kafei

The Couple's Mask that Anju and Kafei make. Photo from: http://blueamnesiac.deviantart.com/art/Couple-s-Mask-281618693

The Couple’s Mask that Anju and Kafei make. Photo from: http://blueamnesiac.deviantart.com/art/Couple-s-Mask-281618693

retrieve his mask on the final day. When there is only a short time left until the world ends, Kafei and Anju meet each other, say their vows, combine their masks to create the Couple’s Mask (which is given to Link), and then wait to die together. I’ll be honest, that last part made me cry. I’m a sucker for sad love stories, and Kafei and Anju take the cake. That was just one of the sad stories that makes Majora’s Mask so memorable. All of the stories in Majora’s mask are tragic and beautiful at the same time, which is why I love this game so much.

Majora’s Mask is the direct sequel to Ocarina of Time, so it’s obvious that many things are the same. Many things that made Ocarina of Time great, such as its easy controls and beautiful music, made their way into Majora’s Mask, making it a great game as well. One great addition to Majora’s Mask was the opening song, before you start the game.

This is my second favourite song from the Zelda games, after Song of Storms (which is also in Majora’s Mask). This song symbolizes the people in Majora’s Mask. In the beginning, they’re happy and think everything’s okay. But by the end, they realize that something dark and evil is happening. This song was the perfect choice to have before the start of the game.

The Happy Mask Salesman and the Majora's Mask. Photo from: http://natsmall.deviantart.com/art/Happy-mask-salesman-203624286

The Happy Mask Salesman and the Majora’s Mask. Photo from: http://natsmall.deviantart.com/art/Happy-mask-salesman-203624286

As opposed to other games in the series, one of your goals in Majora’s Mask is to collect masks. Shocking, isn’t it? The main objective of the game that you receive is to retrieve the Majora’s Mask for the Happy Mask Salesman, but Link needs to collect all of the other masks to fully complete his quest. As I was playing through the game, I found it very fun to collect every mask.While other

Zelda games’ collecting quests are boring and tedious, collecting the masks in Majora’s Mask amused me. I couldn’t wait to see what mask I would get next; what it would look like, what it would do, and how it could help me get other masks. When I finally found every single mask there was, I felt like I accomplished something greater than beating the game. The reason for that is the final mask, known as the Fierce Deity mask, makes Link the most powerful he has ever been in any game. With that mask, I beat the final boss in one minute (the first time I beat it, it took my around 10 minutes). The Fierce Deity mask makes me wish every game in the series had something like that.

The complete mask collection. Photo from: http://ca.ign.com/wikis/the-legend-of-zelda-majoras-mask

The complete mask collection. Photo from: http://ca.ign.com/wikis/the-legend-of-zelda-majoras-mask

Every time I received a new mask, I had helped someone in need. I made their problems go away. Even though they would be sad again once I went back to the first day, it felt good to see the sad characters smile and feel good. Majora’s Mask makes even simple sidequests seem almost as fun and important as the main quest.

Link and his horse, Epona, in Majora's Mask. Photo from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epona_(The_Legend_of_Zelda)

Link and his horse, Epona, in Majora’s Mask. Photo from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epona_(The_Legend_of_Zelda)

Now here’s where things take a turn for the worst, for Majora’s Mask. I love this game – it’s my favourite – but I don’t really like it as a Zelda game. It has all of the things that make Zelda games great: the music, the temples, and the iconic items. However, it lacks the proper structure of a Zelda game. Majora’s Mask is the only game in the series to have the whole game time-based. With only three in-game days to complete the quest, and having to repeat those same three days over and over, it is extremely different from everything else the series has done. When I played through Majora’s Mask, it felt like a Zelda game, but it didn’t at the same time. As a fan of the Zelda series, I was appreciated the addition of classic things like Link, Link’s horse, the music, and the temples. However, the time-based aspect made the game very different from anything I had ever played before. While that isn’t a bad thing in most cases, because of that different in structure, I couldn’t but this game any higher on my list of my favourite Zelda games.

The video below shows the message that appears every time the three days are restarted.

2) Twilight Princess

As the first Zelda game I have ever played, Twilight Princess holds a spot close to my heart. I’ve played it more times than I can’t count, beaten it at least 7 times, and tried to discover all of its secrets. It is a beautiful game, and it was my favourite for a very long time. Perhaps I loved it so much because it was my first, but I will convince you that this is one of the best Zelda games.

First of all, the thing I love most about this game is the animation. This is the most realistic-looking of all the Zelda games, and I love it. The dark art style, the solid lines, the detailed shading. Everything about the animation is beautiful, and it makes me feel like I’m a part of the game. I loved exploring this game because everything looked beautiful. Some things were beautiful in a pretty way, and some things were beautiful in a creepy way. The villages in the game are all so beautiful, and they all look like places I would want to live. Even the open fields, the desert, and the snowy mountains were all places I’d love to be because of how gorgeous everything was. The animation made me feel immersed in the world.

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Some of the charcters from Twilight Princess. Photo from: http://www.sporcle.com/games/dlh1231/zelda-twilight-princess-characters-by-picture 

To go along with animation, there is character design. Everyone looked realistic compared to the cartoonish style of other games in the series. When the characters look that realistic, it makes me feel like I’m saving real people. It might sound a bit strange, but I feel more connected to those characters because of how realistic they are. This game contains many of my favourite designs for characters, especially Link and Zelda. In most games, Zelda has blonde hair. In Twilight Princess, however, Zelda was given brown hair. In my opinion, it suits her better than blonde. It makes her look less like Princess Peach from the Mario games

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Princess Zelda. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/Princess_Zelda

(Zelda looking like Peach has always been one of my pet peeves). Next, there’s Link. The fine detail in Link makes him look older than in most games. I have always had a slight problem with how young Link always was in the games, but this game shows him as a strong young man; how Link should be. However, Link’s animation also shows the young, innocent side to him. His large blue eyes show us that he has never been violent before being awakened as a hero. He is still sweet, clueless even. This game captures Link’s emotions better than any other game. We get to see sides of him that other games never see. As a fan of Zelda games, I love seeing the emotional side of Link.

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A monster from Twilight Princess. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/Bulblin

The last point I have for animation is the style of the enemies and items. Since every character looks realistic, every monster looks realistic as well. Fighting all of the different monsters makes me feel like I’m really helping. The more realistic they look, the more I feel like I’m a hero. All other Zelda games have a cartoonish style, so the enemies don’t look as threatening. In Twilight Princess, they look truly evil and frightening. As for the items, I think they all look beautiful. The realistic style of Link’s sword and every item he wields is absolutely gorgeous. My favourite items are the rupees (the currency in the Legend of Zelda) because they look like real jewels, as opposed to the fake-looking jewels from other games in the series. Overall, every bit of animation in this game is breathtaking.

Midna. Photo from: http://zeldawiki.org/Midna

Midna. Photo from: http://zeldawiki.org/Midna

I complained about Link’s sidekicks in both Skyward Sword and Ocarina of Time, but Twilight Princess is one of the only games whose sidekick I don’t hate. Her name is Midna, and she originally came from somewhere called the Twilight Realm. She comes to Hyrule because Ganondorf, the game’s main antagonist, takes control of the Twilight Realm. Midna starts off hating Link, but she eventually grows fond of him. I love her because of all her sarcastic and shrewish comments directed towards Link and other characters throughout the game. She is also very manipulative, which is a characteristic not seen in many protagonists throughout the series. Midna makes the game seem fresh and new, compared to other Zelda games.

As I have done with every previous game on this list, I will be talking about the storyline. Twilight Princess was the very first Zelda game I have ever played, and the story captivated me so much that I want to play every other game in the series. As with Majora’s Mask (but not quite to that extent), the story is dark and unsettling. Throughout the game, Link has to save the kingdom of Hyrule from being completely covered in permanent darkness. When parts of the kingdom are covered, the people living in those areas turn into bodiless spirits, floating around without a clue what has happened to them. Link, however, is not made into a spirit. He is transformed into a wolf whenever he enters the darkness. To add to the sadness, Link’s childhood friend, Ilia, loses her memory of him.

In Twilight Princess, Link not only has to save Hyrule, but he also has to save the Twilight Realm from Ganondorf. Link starts off as being just a humble farmhand, and then out of nowhere he has to become a hero and save two different worlds from evil. We can even see during the game that Link is still very young. We can see it in his eyes and his face; his emotions are that of a young, sweet boy, not an adult. This game makes me feel sympathy for Link, because he is forced to become a hero when we can clearly see how young and innocent he is. He is manipulated by Midna, driven crazy by a vision, forced to save two different worlds, and has to defeat countless monsters just to keep himself alive. While Link has to save Hyrule and defeat monsters in most Zelda games, this is the only game I have played that truly shows Link’s emotional side. I feel bad that he has to do all of that, when he seems so sweet and innocent.

Epona - Twilight Princess. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/Epona

Epona – Twilight Princess. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/Epona

On a brighter storyline note, Twilight Princess sees the return of Link’s horse, Epona, from Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask. The addition of Epona makes the game seem less dark, because Link has his horse for comfort. Just like children are allowed to see their pets in the hospital in certain cases, Link had Epona.

To top everything off, the music in this game is absolutely beautiful. I have listened to the full soundtrack (all 6 hours of it) at least 5 times. Every song perfectly fits the themes of the game: darkness, helplessness, and the occasional burst of happiness. The music was beautifully crafted, just like everything else in this game. The video below is one of my favourites from the soundtrack.

The beauty of this game’s story, mixed with the beauty of the animation and the beautiful music, makes this game one of the best in the series.

1) A Link Between Worlds

Many people believe that the original Legend of Zelda is on of the best in the series. Those people, in my opinion, are somewhat right. What makes a Zelda game great to me? All of the things I’ve talked about: animation, music, sidekicks that aren’t annoying, no motion controls, and storyline (including dark themes). This game has given me all of that, and more. But before I go into that, let me bring your attention to the title of the game: A Link Between Worlds. It’s a pun. The hero’s name is Link, and he’s the link between two worlds. With that out of the way, let’s jump into the details.

Link looking at Hyrule (top) and Lorule (bottom). Photo from: http://zelda.com/link-between-worlds/

Link looking at Hyrule (top) and Lorule (bottom). Photo from: http://zelda.com/link-between-worlds/

The 7 paintings Link must collect. Photo from: https://www.pinterest.com/browniefox/legend-of-zelda/

The 7 paintings Link must collect. Photo from: https://www.pinterest.com/browniefox/legend-of-zelda/

First, the animation. This game takes place in two worlds: Hyrule, where Link is from; and Lorule, the exact opposite of Hyrule (for example, Hyrule has Princess Zelda, and Lorule has Princess Hilda). Even though Lorule is mostly destroyed, it is just as beautiful as Hyrule. Lorule is gorgeous in a dark and evil sort of way, whereas Hyrule is gorgeous in a pretty and good sort of way. The characters are also beautifully animated. They are animated to suit their personality: happy, bubbly characters have

Princess Hilda (left) and Princess Zelda (right). Photo from: http://www.gamereactor.eu/previews/95454/The+Legend+of+Zelda%3A+A+Link+Between+Worlds/

Princess Hilda (left) and Princess Zelda (right). Photo from: http://www.gamereactor.eu/previews/95454/The+Legend+of+Zelda%3A+A+Link+Between+Worlds/

bright clothes and hair; and mysterious, creepy characters have dark clothes and hair. However, my favourite thing about this game’s animation are the paintings. 7 people are transformed into paintings, and Link must save them. The paintings were beautifully animated, and looked like real works of art. Walking around each kingdom and seeing all of the characters and scenery made my love this game. Occasionally I would just wander around, looking at everything. I was never bored, because there was always something nice to see.

The Bard and the Flute Boy. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/File:Bard_and_Flute_Boy.png

The Bard and the Flute Boy. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/File:Bard_and_Flute_Boy.png

Another beautiful thing about this game is the music. Every song did exactly what they were supposed to: they made the player feel how they were meant to feel while playing. The music was catchy, fitting, and beautifully composed. My favourite songs were the ones played by a man with a guitar and a boy with a flute. I loved their songs because they remixed songs from previous games, like Skyward Sword and Ocarina of Time. It always made me smile listening to whatever remix they would play. The video below is a remix of the main theme song for the Legend of Zelda:

Next on the list is one of my favourite things about this game: Link has no sidekick! Praise Princess Zelda, because that alone made this game 10 times better. One of the things I hate most about Zelda games is constantly being annoyed by Link’s helper. I just want to play the game. A Link Between Worlds gets that. This game knows that sidekicks are annoying, so they made Link fly solo. He can get help, however, but only by paying a price. I think this is a good thing to do in Zelda games, because it encourages the player to explore and figure things out on their own. Whereas the addition of a sidekick for Link removes the player’s ability to wonder what to do, because they are

told exactly what they have to do. This game allowed the player to be free, which is something that all games in the series should do.

This game also did something else all Zelda games should do: not have motion controls. Since this game came out on the 3DS, there are absolutely no motion controls involved. Everything is done on the DS, so there’s no arm swinging required. This allows the player to focus on the enemies and environment, rather than their own movements.

Now, the story. In every game, there is something called the Triforce, which is the source of all the power in all of Hyrule. Spoiler warning! The kingdom of Lorule used to have a Triforce like the one in Hyrule, but it was destroyed. When this happened, Lorule became a wasteland. When Princess Hilda found out about Hyrule and their Triforce, she wanted it for her kingdom. When she and her minion, Yuga, were defeated, she gave up on trying to take Hyrule’s Triforce for her kingdom, because it was the right thing to do. When Link and Zelda returned to Hyrule, using the power of their kingdom’s Triforce, they were able to give Lorule a new Triforce. Beautiful, isn’t it? In my opinion, it was the perfect end to the perfect Zelda game.

Ravio - The items salesman. Photo from: http://zeldawiki.org/Ravio

Ravio – The items salesman. Photo from: http://zeldawiki.org/Ravio

The original Legend of Zelda. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/The_Legend_of_Zelda

The original Legend of Zelda. Photo from: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/The_Legend_of_Zelda

That covers everything I talked about with the earlier games, but there are a few things about this game that make it special. Going back to what I said in the introductory sentence for A Link Between Worlds: many people think the first Legend of Zelda game is one of the best. The reason people say that is because that game allowed the player to explore anywhere they wanted to go, and enter whichever temples they wanted to enter. There was no order. That game encouraged exploring more than any other game in the series. Until, dear reader, A Link Between Worlds came out. Take everything great I had explained about this game, now add the fact that you can basically explore wherever you want, whenever you want. I think I need a tissue, because that’s just too darn beautiful. The player gains access to almost every single item in the game very early on, so that allows for limitless exploring. There are a few temples you have to go in before others, but for the most part, you get to choose which one you enter next. This game is bringing Zelda back to its roots, and I can’t wait to see what the next game in the series can give us.

While this game did go back to original Zelda ideas, it also gave us a brand new idea. A Link Between Worlds used StreetPass (a feature on the 3DS which allows other people with a 3DS near you to connect to yours) to allow players to battle against other players. Did you hear that? My mind just exploded. The enemy you face is called a Shadow Link, and it is the exact replica of the other player’s Link. As the name “Shadow Link” implies, yes, they are difficult to beat like Dark Link from Ocarina of Time. However, that doesn’t mean I don’t like fighting them. It gives me a chance to test my skills, and allow myself to get better. I hope the next Zelda game includes a feature similar to this.

Nintendo did amazing with this game. Everything was perfect, and I can see myself going back to play with game countless times throughout my life. Now all I have to do is wait for the next game in the series to come out. If that game can have everything this game has, and somehow make them better, then that game will become the best thing since sliced bread. Get to work, Nintendo!

A screenshot from the next Legend of Zelda game. Photo from: http://www.gamespot.com/the-legend-of-zelda-wii-u/

A screenshot from the next Legend of Zelda game. Photo from: http://www.gamespot.com/the-legend-of-zelda-wii-u/

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a giant Legend of Zelda fan. These games have been a part of my life growing up, and it will continue to be a part of my life until either I die, or the series dies. Tell me, is anyone else a fan of this franchise? If so, let me know what you think of my choices, and tell me what your top 5 would be. Or, if you would prefer, keep it a secret to everybody.

The Perfect Human Project (Short Story)

Posted: 14th June 2015 by cdidoned3721 in Culminating Task, Short Stories

I hated job interviews. If I wasn’t making a fool of myself, I was staring in silence attempting to remember what I had practiced the night before. Suffice it to say I don’t get many jobs. And when I do, they don’t last long; I usually get laid off within the first few months of working at a new place. I was 34 years old and had never had a solid career. I was desperate.

Then one day, I received a letter in the mail. It was like nothing I had ever gotten before: it was sealed with red wax, the stationery was beautifully detailed, and the letter itself was written in calligraphy. The contents read:

 

Dear Jacob Robinson,

You have been selected to be one of the participants in an excellent opportunity. The PH Project will become the future of mankind, and you will be a part of history in the making. There is a map in the envelope; go to the circled location. No interview or evaluation will be required, and you will be paid handsomely for your contribution. We look forward to meeting you.

Yours Truly,

Dr. Bayfield

 

It was as if an angel had come down to Earth to save me. I was getting a job, without having to apply. It seemed almost too good to be true; like I was being pranked. But that didn’t matter, because it was an opportunity I needed to take.

 

I went to the location that was circled on the map the next day. When I got out of my car, I was standing in front of an old warehouse in the middle of nowhere. The writing on the map told me to come after 11pm, so it was pitch black outside, making the area look like a scene from a horror movie. I was a bit sceptical, but I proceeded nonetheless. I searched around for an entrance to the building, and found one along the side. I knocked confidently.

A few moments went by, and then a short, pudgy woman answered the door. She had small round glasses and wore her brown hair in a tight bun. When she spoke, her voice was small and mousy. “Mr. Robinson?” she asked as her eyes wandered up and down my body.

“Yes,” I said, in the same confident manner as my knock. “I received a letter telling me to come to this location. I was told there is a job here for me.”

The woman nodded slowly, then turned around. “Follow me,” she said, waddling away.

I did as the woman said and followed her into the warehouse. The main room was filled with various scientific equipment that I knew nothing about, and had never seen before. She walked past everything and proceeded to a room to the right of the main area, where she stopped in front of the door leading into it.

She looked up at me with a blank expression, said, “Dr. Bayfield is waiting for you,” and walked away.

I straightened out my clothes, cleared my throat, and confidently opened the door. When I entered, however, all of my confidence stayed in the other room.

 

The room didn’t fit the appearance of the rest of the warehouse. It was elegant, like a rich man’s study. Two red velvet chairs sat facing a large dark-wood desk at the back of the room with a small table lamp on the left side. The chair behind the desk was the same red velvet as the other two chairs. There were four bookshelves in the room: two against the left wall facing two against the right wall. In the centre of the roof, there was a beautiful crystal chandelier which probably costed more than I’ve made in my entire life. The most notable thing in the room was the large painting of a little girl in a wheelchair at the back of the room.

A bald man with large, round glasses sat behind the desk. When he saw me, he stood up. He was wearing a long white lab coat and plain black pants, and he was at least 5 inches taller than me. His smile was intimidating. “You must be Mr. Robinson,” he said. “I am Dr. Bayfield.”

“N-nice to meet you,” I said, shaking. I knew almost nothing about the man, but I was already scared out of my mind just standing in the same room as him.

“The pleasure is all mine, Jacob. May I call you that?” he asked, widening his smile.

“S-sure.”

“Calm yourself, Jacob. There is no need to be nervous. I am just a normal man like you, after all. The only differences between us are age, money, and intelligence.”

I could tell that this man didn’t want to be my friend.

He turned around and faced the painting at the back of the room. “Do you know who this is?”

“No, sir.” Dr. Bayfield seemed like the type of person who loved to make other people feel stupid, and remind them that he is superior.

He placed one hand at the bottom of the painting, stroking it lightly. “This is Ellie Bayfield. My daughter.”

I studied the painting after he said that. She had long blonde hair, soft features, and looked about as intimidating as a kitten. She looked almost nothing like him, except for the same round glasses perched on the bridge of her nose. “She looks very nice,” I said.

“Indeed she was.” His gaze left the painting and landed on the floor.

“Oh… I’m sorry, doctor,” I said, awkwardly fidgeting. I was never good at comforting people.

“Do not be sorry, Jacob. I did not request your presence for that.” He sat in the chair behind the desk and gestured to the chairs in front of the desk. “Please, sit.”

I walked up and sat  in the chair on the right. The chair felt nice. I wasn’t used to that sort of comfort, since all the furniture in my house costed about $1000 in total. I sat there for a few moments, waiting for him to speak.

He placed his elbows on the table and crossed his fingers. When he spoke, his voice was low. “I assume you noticed some of the equipment in the main room?”

I nodded.

“That equipment is part of a very important, very secret project. Only a select few know of it’s existence.”

“May I ask a question, sir?”

“Speak, Jacob.”

I leaned forward slightly. “If this project is so secretive, and only a few people know about it, then why are you trusting someone like me with knowing of it?”

His smile looked almost evil. “I know more about you than you think, Mr. Robinson. Given the position you’re in right now, you would do anything for a steady job, wouldn’t you? You wouldn’t question the tasks given to you either.”

I said nothing.

His smile widened. “Come back tomorrow at 6am if you want the job. Training and whatnot will be provided. Hold on.” He rummaged through his desk. “Before you go,” he said, pulling out a stack of $20 bills, “here’s a fraction of what you can expect if you work for me.” He stood up and faced away from me. “I assume you can see yourself out.”

I stood up and, without saying a word to anyone, left the building.

 

The next few days were difficult, but rewarding. Waking up every morning at 5am and not getting home until around 7pm took a toll on my mind and body, but I was paid $1000 every day just for showing up and listening to Dr. Bayfield ramble on about his project. He explained that the project was meant to create people. It was known as the Perfect Human Project.

“This project,” said Dr. Bayfield, “was inspired by my darling daughter.” He looked down at his hands. “She had ALS and, sadly, I could not save her. So, using this project, I will replicate her exactly. Except for her disease, of course.”

“So, uh… What will you do with this project once you succeed in doing that?” I asked.

He turned to me and smiled. “I will make profit, dear Jacob. You see, everyone wants love, but not everyone can find someone who is perfect for them. The PH Project does the finding, or ‘creating’, for them. Every couple wants the perfect child, but children end up becoming ungrateful little brats. With the PH Project, that couple can create their ideal child.” He opened his arms wide. “Think about all the possibilities, Jacob! Once I master my project, I might even be able to create immortal beings! The thought of it sends delightful chills down my spine.”

Dr. Bayfield was the mad scientist you never thought actually existed. If I had the chance to tour his mind, I’m 100% positive I would be emotionally scarred. Nevertheless, he paid well, so I did whatever he told me.

 

Throughout the first two weeks I worked there, the only thing Dr. Bayfield was able to create was weird monster-looking things. Their bodies were disproportionate, limbs were in the wrong places, and they constantly screamed in agony. It was terrifying.

Finally, in the middle of the my third week, he did it. He created an exact replica of his daughter.

“E-Ellie?” he said, his voice shaking.

“Daddy?” the girl replied, sounding extremely groggy. “What happened?”

Dr. Bayfield grabbed his daughter and pulled her into a tight embrace. “Oh, Ellie… I am so happy to see you.”

For the next hour, Ellie was running around the warehouse, fascinated that she could walk. Occasionally, she would bump into things because she did not have her glasses yet. As she ran, Dr. Bayfield stayed cooped up in his office, so I was in charge of his daughter. It was necessarily difficult, but her questions were annoying.

“Who are you?” she asked. “Why are you here? Why does my dad like you? You look nasty; are you homeless?”

I ended up ignoring her questions, and eventually she just went back to running. Finally, after what seemed like a decade, Dr. Bayfield came out of his office.

“Jacob! A word, please.”

I walked over to where he was standing. As I reached him, he put his arm around me. “What would you say if I told you I found the perfect way to make us both filthy rich?” he asked, smiling.

I felt my eyes light up. “I would say that’s amazing! D-did you?”

“Yes, Jacob. Yes I have.” He pulled away from me and began walking forward. “Imagine it: a world where only the perfect,” he turned his head to face me, “and the rich,” he turned his head back, “can live.”

My smile faded. “I’m confused, doctor. What exactly are you getting at?”

His smile turned evil. “Genocide, dear Jacob.”

I took a step back.

“We would kill anyone who could not pay our price,” he said.

I stepped back again.

“There would be no homeless people, no diseased people, no imperfect people.” He began to walk towards me. “And we would be the richest men in the world. Imagine it, Jacob. Imagine…”

“You’re psychotic,” I said, walking backwards.

“For wanting a perfect world? I want my darling Ellie to live in the best possible world; a world that her genius father created.” He pouted childishly. “Do you not want us to be a happy family?”

“Genocide is not the answer,” I said angerly. “You’re crazy if you think that’s the ‘perfect way’ to get rich. Not to mention you’d be a murderer! Do you really think your daughter will love you, knowing what you did to the world?”

“Take it back.” He was looking down. His hands were made into fists.

“Oh, and news flash: she isn’t even your real daughter! She’s some thing you created in your lab. She’s not Ellie. The real one is de-”

“I said take it back!”

He lunged at me, and I staggered backwards. I struggled to get my feet to run, but I managed to take off the second he grabbed a knife. He chased me to the other end of the warehouse, where the exit was. Before I could reach it, the pudgy woman that let me into the building every day blocked it. Panicking, I turned in a different direction. I ran until I got to the middle of the room, and then I turned to face Dr. Bayfield.

“Listen to me!” I shouted. “You’re acting crazy! Just calm down, forget about the whole ‘genocide’ plan, and we can pretend like this never happened.”

He continued to walk towards me, the knife grasped firmly in his hand. “You have angered me, Mr. Robinson. And I do not like being angry.”

Before I could say anything else, he threw the knife at me. I quickly dodged his attack, and the blade hit a strange tank behind me, sticking in the side.

Dr. Bayfield began to panic. “Wanda! Quickly, get the knife out and seal the hole! QUICKLY!”

The pudgy woman waddled from the exit to the middle of the room. It was my time to escape.

I bolted as fast as I could to the exit, not looking back even once. I pushed open the door and frantically rushed to my car. As I drove away, I heard an explosion.

I pulled over and got out of my car. I looked in the direction of the warehouse. It was completely destroyed, and consumed by fire. As bad as I felt about what had happened, I sighed in relief. There would be no genocide. No “perfect” world.

 

I spent that entire night on my couch, watching TV. I felt bad about watching it, since I had bought the TV with the money Dr. Bayfield had given me, but I watched it anyways.

I was flipping through channels when I got to the news. They were covering what had happened at the warehouse. I leaned forward and listened.

“The devastating explosion destroyed almost everything in the warehouse, including all of Dr. William Bayfield’s life research,” the reporter said. “However, it appears that angels are looking down on him.”The camera moved to face him, and my heart skipped a beat. “What do you have to say about the incident, Dr. Bayfield?”

Bayfield looked directly at the camera. “I will not give away the identity of who it was that caused this mess to happen, but I will say this: I know who you are, I know where you are, and I will not be forgiving.”

I felt my stomach jump to my throat.

Happily Ever After (Short Story)

Posted: 12th June 2015 by cdidoned3721 in Culminating Task, Short Stories

“Good night, darling. I love you.”

“Good night. I love you too.” The Skype call ended.

I closed my laptop screen and laid my head back against my wall. I sighed and closed my eyes, daydreaming about him. His golden blonde hair, his perfect skin, his gorgeous blue eyes…

I missed him already.

I refused to open my eyes and let his image leave me. The longer I daydreamed, the more vivid it became. Before I knew it, I was living full scenarios inside of my head. The two of us hugging, kissing, and holding each other for hours, never having to let go. Us getting married, having a family, living happily ever after…

I wanted that more than anything.

I finally opened my eyes. I picked up my phone off the floor and crawled into my bed. When I was under the blankets, I unlocked my phone and opened the weather app. The default area was Toronto, Ontario, where I lived. I slid my finger across the screen, and the app changed to the other location that was set: Boston, Massachusetts. I looked at the temperature for the morning. 16°C. I sighed happily and locked my phone, setting it down on my nightstand. He won’t be cold at work.

I closed my eyes again and drifted off to sleep, content that he would be okay tomorrow.

 

I have been in love with him for what seems like forever. We met online two years ago, and became close friends very quickly. I had developed feelings for him after only a short period of time, and he did as well. We finally decided to try a relationship, to see if it would work out. We’ve been together and in love ever since.

It’s hard to believe that someone I’ve never met could mean so much to me, but stranger things have happened. He is everything to me. Since I met him, I couldn’t imagine my life without him. I love him more than anything.

He’s never had a lot of money. I don’t have much money either, but I’ve never struggled to survive. He used to spend most of his money on his family, but since the day we met, he’s been saving up to visit me. I’ve told him not to; I’ve told him to use his money to buy something for him or his family, but he always says the same thing, “Nothing would make me happier than holding you in my arms and kissing your soft, delicate lips.” How could I ever say no to that?

The time was close. He had saved his money to buy a car, so all we needed to do was set a time for him to visit. He begged his boss every day to let him take a week off, but his boss wouldn’t let him. He worked every day, and he asked every day. Eventually, his boss caved. His boss let him take a week off, but only because he wouldn’t stop asking.

The day came nearer, and I counted down until it arrived. Four days. Three days. Two days. Tomorrow. Then finally, it was here. The day I would finally meet the love of my life.

I talked to him on the phone as he was getting ready. I talked to him as he left his house. Then he had to hang up. I didn’t want him getting into an accident, after all. My love needed to be safe.

He would arrive around 5:00, so I would have dinner waiting for him. I started cooking at 4:30, and finished at 5:10. I sat around anxiously, knowing that he would be here any minute. To pass the time, I sat in the living room and watched television.

I sat there and waited, watching whatever programs were on. I continued checking the clock every time a show was done.

5:30. 6:00. 7:00.

I wondered why he was so late. I assumed there was heavy traffic, so I continued watching my shows.

8:00. 9:00. 10:00.

I was getting bored now. All of the shows on TV were repeats, and most of them I didn’t even like. But I had to do something to pass the time.

11:00 rolled around. I was sick of watching shows, so I decided to turn on the news. It had just started.

“-devastating crash on the highway started at 4:27 today when a semi-truck tipped over onto another car. The driver was crushed under the intense weight of the truck, and was identified as a tall, muscular white male. The driver was also a tourist from Massachusetts, according to his license plate. Identification was found and loved ones will be contacted. Other cars had-”

I couldn’t hear anything. My ears were ringing. It felt as if my whole body went numb.

It wasn’t him. It was impossible. That could never happen to him. He was so careful, so sure. He couldn’t die. He was invincible.

He was just a bit late, that’s all. I would wait as long as I had to for him. He’d come eventually.

I waited for hours. For days. For months. For years. Then I was brought to a new home. People in weird clothes studied me and did things to my brain. They said they were trying to help me, to fix me. But they didn’t understand that I was in love. There was nothing wrong with me. There was nothing to fix. I was waiting for the love of my life, and I would wait forever if I had to.

He was coming. I know he was.

Depression (Short Story)

Posted: 9th June 2015 by cdidoned3721 in Culminating Task, Short Stories

I was hesitant at first. I knew what they were going to say; they weren’t creative. They always said the same things. Day after day, week after week, month after month. Always the same.

Maybe I was expecting something different. Maybe I was expecting them to change, to be nice. But deep down, I knew they wouldn’t. Eventually, I faced them.

“You’re so stupid,” one said.

“Why do even try?” said another.

You would think that the more I heard it, the less it would affect me. But every new time I heard them, it cut deeper. Every negative thing they said was like a bullet to the chest.

“No one likes you.”

“Your parents don’t want you.”

“Your friends hate you.”

The more they said those things, the truer they seemed. My parents spent less time with me. My friends went out without me. No one would even look at me. Everything they said was true.

“You’re never going to succeed.”

“Everyone is better than you.”

“You can’t do anything right.”

My grades started to fall. I lost my job. My fingers froze every time I did anything. I can’t do anything. Everyone else is perfect. I’m a failure.

“You’re a waste of oxygen.”

“You should give up on yourself.”

“Just end it.”

I held the razor blade in my hand. No matter what I did, their words would always sting more. Their words would always cut deeper than any blade. Their words would never stop.

My hand shook as I placed the blade down. As much as I wanted to end it all, I couldn’t. I knew that it would never solve anything. They would follow me anywhere. Even in the afterlife. I could never escape them, no matter how hard I tried.

Fighting back the tears, I stepped away from my mirror.

Online vs Offline (Blogger of the Week)

Posted: 31st May 2015 by cdidoned3721 in Blogger of the Week

We live in a world surrounded by technology. We live in a world surrounded by people. Both technology and people are a daily part of our lives. We use technology to interact with people we know, and people we have never met before. Online interactions make the world a better place. Or do they?

The Facts

If you interact with people online, you might notice that they seem to act oddly. If you know them in person, you might notice they are different online. Even someone you think you know really well could change how they are when they are online. So, why do people act differently online compared to in real life? Here are a few reasons[1][3]:

1) We know we’re being watched.
The best way to boost someone's self-esteem online.

The best way to boost someone’s self-esteem online.

This reason is simple: the more “likes” we get on something, or the more people we can impress, the better we feel. It boosts self-esteem, and makes us feel better about ourselves. If we have to bend the truth to get those likes, then we will.

2) We choose what information about us can be seen.
What Facebook can do. Photo from: http://hyperrealuniversity.blogspot.ca/2014/05/online-personas-and-realness-of.html

What Facebook can do.

If something embarrassing happened in the past, and you don’t want people to know, would you tell anyone? Of course not. On the other hand, if you have a boring life but want people to think your life is exciting, what are you going to do? Lie, or only talk about and share the exciting things that happen. The internet is a place where we can pretend to have the life we want.

3) We can get too comfortable.
Getting too comfortable.

Getting too comfortable online.

When you’re with someone you don’t know, you tend to be shyer and don’t always say what you want. When you’re with your best friend, you are yourself and you say whatever you want. This is similar to the online world. When you’re new to the internet, you can be hesitant, but once you get comfortable, you say and do whatever you please. While this isn’t true for everyone, this was the case for me and a few other people I know.

4) Invisibility
You never know who you're talking to online.

You never know who you’re talking to online.

This one mostly applies to online gaming, unless you have an anonymous account on social media. People think that since no one knows who they really are, they can do whatever they want. They believe that they can say and do anything and they will never get in any trouble for it, because they won’t say their real name, or show their real face. People use the invisibility effect many different ways such as to say anything they want anonymously, mess with their friends, or even simply because they don’t want their information online. The invisibility effect could also be used to pretend to be someone your not, such as pretending to be a 16 year old boy when you are a 65 year old man. Tread carefully, because you never really know who you’re talking to.

 

What online disinhibition effect can seem like.

What online disinhibition effect can seem like.

While the internet can be a scary and unwelcoming place sometimes, it can also be a great and very welcoming place. We can talk to anyone in the world, stay connected more easily with friends and family, and learn many different things. But there is something that everyone has to look out for in their friends, family, and even themselves. It’s called the online disinhibition effect. [2]

 

 

The online (right) and offline (left) personalities of someone with ODE.

The online (right) and offline (left) personalities of someone with ODE.

 

Take everything you know about society and social conventions and throw it all out the window.  The online disinhibition effect states that certain people lose the need to act civil online. They still act normally in person and normal face-to-face interactions, but can be the rudest, most disrespectful person you’ve ever met when they’re online. The effect also states that the longer people spend online and the less time they spend with people in person, the more likely they will lose their social conventions online, and the worse it will become.

The Experience

The more I researched this topic, the more I realized that everything I was reading was the same. But as an avid Call of Duty player, I’ve had many experiences with people online. I’ve witnessed the different personalities of people, and I have watched my own personality change. The following information is what I have gathered during my online gaming time, and it easily proves that human beings tend to act completely different in an online setting.

1) Life as a “girl gamer”.
A normal gamer.

A normal gamer.

Certain girls are used to attention. They’re used to boys talking to them and wanting to be around them. I’ve never been one of those girls. On Xbox though, it’s a different story. I get attention, good and bad, even though I don’t want it. Two of the types of guys I’ve encountered on Xbox are the ones who harass me, and the ones who insult me.

First, the harassers. These guys say whatever pick-up lines that pop into their heads. Whether they’re cute, inappropriate, or just plain stupid, they’ll say them. Some won’t give up until I leave or mute them, and some give up as soon as they get rejected. I don’t know the exact reason why they do it, but I think they do it because they can. They do it because there’s no consequence. I can’t call the police if it gets too bad because I don’t know a single thing about them except their name on Xbox. They can do it, and then move on to the next girl to repeat the process.

The life of a girl that plays video games.

The life of a girl that plays video games.

Finally, there’s the insulters. Take every stereotype about women that you know. I’ve heard all of them at least 5 times. Every bad word you can think of, every assumption about women you’ve ever heard, and every old-fashioned, sexist comment ever invented. They’ve all been directed towards me. Boys on Xbox think it’s “funny” and “cool” to disrespect girls on Xbox because they’re immature and there’s no one online telling them they can’t. There’s no one to stop them, and there’s no consequences for doing it. The anonymous online world is a place where people can do whatever they want, and get away with it.

Some boys harass and insult girls in real life, but most are scared of the consequences. On Xbox, in a game where you’ll never talk to those people ever again and they don’t know a single thing about you, there are no consequences. People do and say whatever they want.

2) Girl vs Girl
Girl Gamer (left) vs Normal Gamer (right)

Girl Gamer (left) vs Normal Gamer (right)

It is very clear that girls love each other. Going out for “girl’s night”, going to the bathroom in groups, and standing in huge mobs around the school blocking parts of the hallway. Gossip is also a very important part of a female friendship, and is often directed towards other girls. What you would never see, however, is a girl going up to another girl who she’s never met before and starting a fight with her. A bit uncalled for, right? Welcome to Xbox, where everything you know about society is left behind the second you turn on the console.

Almost every time I have joined an online game that contains a girl, a fight starts between us. For some reason, girls find the need to fight each other online, for what I assume is “dominance over the game”. As soon as I open my mouth, a fight commences, for no other reason than to prove who is the dominant female. If it was up to me, no fights would start because I don’t see a point to them. I have never seen anything like that happen in real life, and I’m almost positive it doesn’t happen often. I assume they do it because they feel threatened by me for some reason, and because they want attention.

The following video is an accurate representation of almost every encounter I’ve had with a girl on Call of Duty:

3) Stress Relief
Relieving stress using video games.

Relieving stress using video games.

Everyone has had bad days, and we all have our own ways of dealing with stress. Some are better than others, and some are horrible. I had a bad habit of taking my stress out on my friends, because they were always the ones closest to me. It was a bad thing to do, so I needed a new stress reliever. So I went on Xbox.

I used online gaming to get rid of my frustration. I would yell at people I didn’t know, and it made me feel better. Doing that was still bad, but it was better than taking it out on my friends. I didn’t care about those strangers, and they didn’t care about me. We would never meet again. There was no consequences to doing it, so I did it. I would never yell at a stranger in real life, but in an online setting, it is more acceptable. There is no one telling you you can’t do it, and if someone judges you, you can easily leave and pretend it never happened. You can turn invisible, and everyone will forget you.

4) Friends?
Having multiple personalities.

Having multiple personalities.

My friends and I have known each other for a very long time. I’ve known the ones who have Xbox since the early years of elementary school. For the most part, I know how they act, what they say, and most of their personality traits. When I’m on Xbox with them, they become completely different people.

My best friend is the nicest, most polite person I have ever met. On Xbox, he starts fights with everyone, insults everyone, and screams at the top of his lungs for no good reason. My other friends are all usually shy, just like me, but in an online setting, we say whatever we want. I don’t usually talk to anyone unless I know them well, but on Xbox I’ll talk to anyone just because I’m bored. Xbox brings out my outgoing side, and it does the same for my friends. We all become different people, and while that can sometimes be a bad thing, it can also be good.

 

The internet has changed me. As soon as I enter the online world, I become someone else. I become a better version of myself; the me that isn’t afraid to say what’s on her mind, and the me that can talk to people with no problems. I also become a worse version of myself; the me who insults and yells at people for no good reason. Even though online disinhibiton isn’t a good thing, we all need a break from society every once and a while. We all need to let loose and let our feelings and frustrations out, and the internet is the best place for that. Things will be deleted and forgotten. We act differently online because we can. We act differently because we get to have a break from what is considered “right”. It’s nice to pretend to be someone else every once and a while, but don’t forget who you are, and don’t go overboard. Other people might forget what you do, but you will always remember.

The evil (left) and good (right) sides of the internet.

The evil (left) and good (right) sides of the internet. Photo from: http://www.scoop.it/t/online-identities-and-virtual-identity

 

Questions

1) How much time do you spend online per day? Do you interact with people?

2) Have you ever interacted with someone online who you don’t know? If so, what was it like?

3) Would you say you act differently online compared to in person? Why or why not?

4) Do you know anyone who acts differently online? How are they different?

5) Have you ever created an anonymous account online? If so, what was it used for?

 

References

Photos:

“What Facebook can do.” Photo from: http://hyperrealuniversity.blogspot.ca/2014/05/online-personas-and-realness-of.html

“The best way to boost someone’s self-esteem online.” Photo from: http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2012-10/05/boosting-facebook-like-stats

“Getting too comfortable online.” Photo from: http://thenoob.net/post/internet/sunday-funday/tinyur1-co-edit-any-website-share-and-troll-your-friends/attachment/tactical_trolling/

“You never know who you’re talking to online.” Photo from: http://www.thedatereport.com/dating/communication/how-you-can-tell-if-someone-is-lying-to-you-on-an-online-dating-site/

“What online disinhibition effect can seem like.” Photo from: http://feminspire.com/vanquish-self-defeating-devil-shoulder/

“The online and offline personalities of someone with ODE.” Photo from: http://newageoccultplan.blogspot.ca/

“A normal gamer.” Photo from: http://www.planetminecraft.com/skin/girl-gamer-requested-by-bro10/

“The life of a girl that plays video games.” Photo from: http://www.gamnesia.com/articles/its-time-we-stopped-gaming-gender-stereotypes

“Girl Gamer vs Normal Gamer” Photo from: http://imgbuddy.com/gamer-girl-vs-girl-gamer-meme.asp

“Relieving stress using video games.” Photo from: https://ironyca.wordpress.com/2013/03/02/right-and-wrong-gamer-girl-edition/

“Having multiple personalities.” Photo from: https://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&site=imghp&tbm=isch&source=hp&biw=1366&bih=623&q=facebook+like&oq=facebook+like&gs_l=img.3..0l10.4945.10567.0.10961.15.8.1.6.7.0.101.656.7j1.8.0….0…1ac.1.64.img..0.15.696.VyWvmnwpamM#hl=en&tbm=isch&q=multiple+personality

Facts:

[1]”Facebook Psychology: 7 Reasons Why We Act Differently …” 2012. 28 May. 2015 <http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/11/facebook-psychology-7-reasons_n_1951856.html>

[2]”Why Do We Act Differently Online? – NR Media Group.” 2014. 28 May. 2015 <http://nrmedia.biz/act-differently-online/>

[3]”Six Causes of Online Disinhibition – PsyBlog.” 2010. 29 May. 2015 <http://www.spring.org.uk/2010/08/six-causes-of-online-disinhibition.php>

My Top 5 Anime Opening Songs

Posted: 17th May 2015 by cdidoned3721 in Top 5

Kon’nichiwa, reader! I’m a fan of both anime and music, and my favourite songs just happen to be from animes. There’s just something about Japanese music that I can’t get enough of. Here are a few of my favourites.

5) Jason Paige – Pokemon Theme (Pokemon)

There’s no doubt that this song is great. It’s simple, gets the point across, and is also pretty catchy. However, I’ve never really liked Pokemon, and the song itself isn’t Japanese, so that’s why this song is only at number 5. Sadly, it’s just not the very best.

4) T.M. Revolution – Resonance (Soul Eater)

I get angry when Netflix skips this opening. The whole point of an opening theme song is to get people ready for the actual show, and that’s exactly what this song does. It gets your heart pumping and gets your mind ready to watch the show.

3) Yousei Teikoku – Küsö Mesorogiwi (Future Diary/Mirai Nikki)

This song is perfect for Future Diary. It’s so tense and creepy, just like the show. It has some sweet, quiet parts, but then comes right back and smacks you in the face. Both this song and the show it opens for are roller coasters that aren’t for the faint of heart.

2) Linked Horizon – Guren no Yumiya (Attack on Titan)

As with the previous song, this one fits perfectly with its anime. This song brings us on an adventure with its sound and gets us ready for the adventure that is Attack on Titan. This song lets you know that you won’t be let down.

1) Yui – Again (Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood)

Yet another song that fits the anime perfectly. Yui’s slowly draws us in with her beautiful voice, then sucker punches us with her fast rapping. This is similar to Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood: you’ll think everything’s okay and good, and then you’ll get hit with the truth or something you weren’t expecting. Overall, this song is perfect for this anime.

Is anyone a fan of anime, or Japanese music? Let me know in the comments. Arigatō!

Romeo and Juliet: Song Analysis Act 3

Posted: 7th May 2015 by cdidoned3721 in Romeo and Juliet

I think Beat it by Michael Jackson best fits act 3 of Romeo and Juliet, because many of the lyrics are similar to things that happen to Romeo in the play.

Romeo is banished in act 3, and this song talks about someone leaving and never coming back. In the song, it says: “You better run, you better do what you can. Don’t wanna see no blood, don’t be a macho man,” which could resemble what would happen if Romeo returned; he would most likely be fought and ran out of town again. This song is all about someone being “banished” and no one wanted him to come back, which is what Romeo goes through in act 3.

Since the themes of the song and act 3 are very similar, someone being banished and not being able to come back, I think this song is best suited for act 3 of Romeo and Juliet.

Romeo and Juliet: Song Analysis Act 2

Posted: 7th May 2015 by cdidoned3721 in Romeo and Juliet

I think Love Story by Taylor Swift best represents act 2 from Romeo and Juliet. The song directly references them many times, the themes in the song match what happens in the act, and the music video shows a lot of old-fashioned things that would be seen in the time of Romeo and Juliet.

Many times throughout the song, Taylor Swift will reference Romeo and Juliet by name, and the song is also supposed to be from the point of view of Juliet. The song’s lyrics say: “Little did I know that you were Romeo, you were throwing pebbles, and my daddy said, ‘stay away from Juliet’.” This line proves that this is a direct reference to Romeo and Juliet, from the point of view of Juliet.

If you were to read through the lyrics with knowledge of Romeo and Juliet, you could see that many themes are similar. For example, the song says: “So I sneak out to the garden to see you. We keep quiet, ’cause we’re dead if they knew,” which is a reference to the balcony scene (Act 2, Sc. 2). The song also talks about Romeo proposing to Juliet, which is another thing that happens in the play.

The music video itself has a lot of reference to Romeo and Juliet. The main point being that most of the video is set in older times, similar to the time when Romeo and Juliet was set. The outfits the people wear, and the ball theme with the people dancing can all be showing similarity to the play.

The song references the play many times, it has very similar themes, and the video looks like it could have come from a movie adaptation of the play. Based on everything I have said, I believe that Love Story by Taylor Swift is a perfect match for act 2 of Romeo and Juliet.

Sketches – The Binding of Isaac

Posted: 23rd April 2015 by cdidoned3721 in Culminating Task, Sketches

I’ve loved video games for as long as I can remember. If I’m not playing them or watching someone else play them, I’m most likely doing something involving them. Whether it be writing fanfictions or sketching, I always have ideas when it comes to my favourite video games. The most common video game I sketch is the Binding of Isaac, and the purpose of this post is to showcase some of my sketches. Feel free to comment and ask questions, and let me know what you think. With that said, here are a few of the sketches I’ve done.

The Harbingers (Horsemen): Famine, War, Pestilence, and Death

The Harbingers (Horsemen): Famine, War, Pestilence, and Death

Isaac and the 7 Deadly Sins: Gluttony, Envy, Lust, Greed, Sloth, Wrath, and Pride

Isaac and the 7 Deadly Sins: Gluttony, Envy, Lust, Greed, Sloth, Wrath, and Pride

Isaac and the first set of bosses (more will be added): Larry Jr., Monstro, Pin, the Duke of Flies, and Gemini

Isaac and the first set of bosses (more will be added): Larry Jr., Monstro, Pin, the Duke of Flies, and Gemini

Bosses

Second set of bosses: Widow, Fistula, Peep, Chub, Gurdy Jr., and the Blighted Ovum

Bosses

Third set of bosses: Gurdy, Monstro II, Loki, the Husk, the Hollow, and the Carrion Queen

Isaac

Fourth set of bosses: Daddy Long Legs, Scolex, Mask of Infamy, Krampus, the Fallen, Blastocyst

I will be sketching more from this game, so look for new additions over the course of the semester.

The balcony scene in Romeo and Juliet: perhaps the most iconic scene in the entire play. It’s the scene that everyone remembers, and everyone has a different vision of. I’m going to be shining a little light on two adaptations of this scene: the 1968 movie version, and the 1996 movie version.

The scenery in the 1968 adaptation.

The scenery in the 1968 adaptation.

First, let’s look at the scenery. In the older movie, the location is the same as the original play: Verona, Italy. It has the iconic balcony, a garden with bushes and trees, and is set in the time period of the original play. In the newer movie, the location is a fictional city named “Verona

1996

The scenery in the 1996 adaptation.

Beach”. Contrast to the older movie, there is no balcony where Juliet stands, there is a pool instead of a garden, and the time period is modern day. The reason, I believe, for the change is the director for the 1996 movie wanted to make a more relatable  version of Romeo and Juliet by making it look like modern times. The 1968 movie, however, wanted to keep the lore of the original play.

Next, there’s the dialogue. Juliet’s dialogue is almost, if not exactly, the same in both adaptations. Romeo’s dialogue, on the other hand, is different. The whole point of the 1996 movie adaptation was to make a version of the play that was modern in every way, but kept the same dialogue of the original play. In the 1968 adaptation, Romeo’s dialogue was slightly different, and this is my opinion on why that is. In the original play and the newer movie, Romeo compares Juliet to the sun and tells her to “kill the envious moon” (2.2.4). Since the 1968 version removed the allusion to the Roman goddess of the moon, Diana, in the first scene, that could be why the contrast of the sun and the moon was removed from this version. Since the 1996 dialogue is the same as the original play, it kept the allusion to Diana and the contrast of the sun and moon.

1968 movie clip:

Placement of Juliet - 1968

Placement of Juliet – 1968

Finally, the detail that stood out the most to me, the placement of Juliet. In the older movie, the iconic placement in the iconic scene stayed the same: Juliet was on a balcony looking down at Romeo. The placement of Juliet on the balcony symbolizes how Romeo sees her: superior to him.

Placement of Juliet - 1996

Placement of Juliet – 1996

The newer movie, in my opinion, ruined the balcony scene solely based on the placement of Juliet. Rather than her being on a balcony, like in the old movie and the original version, both her and Romeo were on the same level, and even fall into the pool. Since Juliet is on the same level as Romeo, it gets rid of the idea that Romeo sees her as superior to him, and suggests that her attractiveness is the same as Romeo`s. It is known as “the balcony scene” for a reason: Juliet is supposed to be on a balcony. The new movie didn`t manage to do that scene justice.

As a fan of the play, I was disappointed to see the 1996 adaptation of the balcony scene. While the 1968 adaptation removes the contrast between the sun and moon, and the newer version kept most of the same dialogue, the older version is still the better one, in my opinion.

 

Photos:

“The scenery in the 1968 adaptation.” Photo from: http://scalar.usc.edu/works/romeo-and-juliet-act-2-scene-2-through-the-years/balcony-scene-setting-changes

“The scenery in the 1996 adaptation.” Photo from: http://corrierino.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=588548&sid=bf2e58447f5f3a17f7122538362f8d3f

“Placement of Juliet – 1968” Photo from: http://www.romeo-juliet-club.ru/location.engl.html

“Placement of Juliet – 1996” Photo from: https://ginadebacker.wordpress.com/2012/03/06/rewatching-william-shakespeares-romeo-juliet/