Nintendo Switch: Breath of the Wild

I was hesitant to get into this game. I'm not a huge Zelda fan, I did play Ocarina of Time and enjoyed it overall. My main problem with that game was just staying interested in the story over what I consider a long duration.

I started the game, put it down for a long time, used a gameshark somewhere in the middle, then put in a real push to beat it. Didn't feel very satisfying to complete due to what I considered cheating with a gameshark and forgetting the story before finishing it.

With this newer Zelda game, I figured I'd learn from my mistakes with Ocarina of TIme. Going into it, I made a decision to not look anything up and to play it through without a large gap in the middle. 50 hours later I finished and enjoyed it overall.

Spoilers below:

I started in the big open world, really enjoying everything that was happening. Progression was slow, but still satisfying enough that I'd keep playing for hours.

Around the 30 hour mark I started getting impatient. Along with the awesome open world, were tedious game tropes that degraded my experience:

- A _stealth escort_ mission, where certain actions over a 20 minute period had to be done in a sequential way. I missed a small thing early in this mission, got to what I thought was the end twenty minutes later and there was nothing to do. Had to back-track. Escort missions are bad enough, but the two additional layers of forced sequential actions and stealth (I dislike both mechanics) made this immensely frustrating.

- To expand your inventory, a NPC in a random location (I spoke to a lot of NPCs trying to find out where exactly) has to be given items. Collecting stuff is super fun, why they decided to wall it off behind a random encounter is beyond me.

- The final boss fight has a boss-mode that can only be beaten with a few moves in the game (moves that I rarely used and didn't think to try). I could have spent a couple hours trying every conceivable attack, dying and getting frustrated until the stars aligned... but invincible attack-specific bosses are pure cheese. Give him more health or something, instead of breaking the mechanics I've been playing the entire game with for the last 49 hours.

- (not as bad as the others) To get some exposition around the story, I had to find random places and take pictures.

I had to look up the first three issues, and didn't finish the last. Why there couldn't be a hint via simple exposition for these? Spirits literally telepathically talk to you throughout the game, it wouldn't have been that much of a stretch.

Anyway aside from those three issues, I found the game to be otherwise perfect and extremely addictive. The graphics despite being primitive were good, combat was fun, puzzles were simple but fun, and collecting items was fun but not great (durability negated getting cool weapons).