GameCube Week | The Legend of Zelda Bait-and-Switch

GameCube Week begins on In Third Person! We start with the curious case of one of gaming’s most notorious bait-and-swich!

Flashback to the year 2000. At Nintendo’s now-defunct Space World show, they revealed the Nintendo GameCube. Though I had concerns with the console’s cutesy looks and its asymmetrical controller, one demo that was shown gave me hope. Little did I know the one thing I clung onto would lead to the ultimate disappointment.

As part of a one-minute sizzle reel to demonstrate the GameCube’s power, Nintendo showed off a demo of Link and Ganon engaged in a sword fight. Graphically, this looked to take the style of Ocarina of Time and push it in a more realistic direction. I really loved Ocarina of Time and wanted to see Nintendo push themselves out of its reputation for being a maker of children’s products. At the time, I was an impressionable teen, and Nintendo’s products had lost much of their luster amongst those in my age group. Virtually everyone got a PlayStation instead for its mature content, and I was the weird one for sticking with Nintendo.

What we ended up getting instead was…the exact opposite of what I wanted. Granted, in hindsight, the cell-shaded visuals of Wind Waker have aged better than whatever that realistic Zelda game could have been. For a number of people, Wind Waker is their favourite in the franchise. I actually own the GameCube original and the HD remaster on Wi U.

I personally could never get into Wind Waker. Partially because the game starts with a stealth sequence and I loathe stealth of any kind in games. But mostly because Nintendo let my hype get the best of me for a year before revealing what they were truly up to. It almost doesn’t matter how good Wind Waker actually is at this point, because my heart sort of still longs for the The Legend of Zelda game that never was.

At some point though, I have to give Wind Waker an honest try. It truly might be an amazing game that I’ve ignored for reasons it can’t control. Bare minimum, I need to justify the full price I paid for the original and HD remaster.

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