The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D

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Reviving Ocarina of Time's long-lost Ura expansion

FeatureReviving Ocarina of Time's long-lost Ura expansion

Meet the Zelda 64 modders who turned back the clock.

The Legend of Zelda series has always dabbled in alternate realities - mirror worlds, sunken pasts, waking dreams, futures that might have been. This is the story of one such lost future, a dream originally dreamt by the developers of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, kept alive by a fervent underground community of fans, modders and artists. It's the tale of a version of Ocarina of Time which is, somehow, both a tangible fact and an eternally deferred Holy Grail, always quested for, never quite grasped - the reworked "Ura" edition that was once planned for release alongside the Nintendo 64's ill-fated 64DD peripheral, tantalising elements of which can still be uncovered on a Zelda 64 cartridge today.

For its age, the 64DD was a fairly magical piece of kit, armed with internet connectivity backed up by a rudimentary gaming network, a real-time clock and support for rewriteable 64MB magnetic discs. Besides giving developers vastly more storage to play with at a fraction of the cost of the N64's existing cartridge format, it would have allowed players to craft their own textures, characters and levels into games like F-Zero and share them over the internet - years before “user-generated content” became an industry buzzword.

For a while, the 64DD was Nintendo's favourite son: in a December 1997 interview, Shigeru Miyamoto claimed that “almost every” new N64 game in production was designed to make use of it. But the add-on was a troubled project from inception, pegged for a 1996 launch only to wallow in development hell till 1999, when it saw a limited release in Japan as part of a game subscription package. By the time the 64DD was fit for public consumption Nintendo was eager to be rid of it, and the combination of an eye-watering price and N64's relatively modest installed base led to an early retirement in February 2001.

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Minigames are interesting things. They're purpose built to distract the player - to give them something different to do for ten minutes in order to break up the flow of the main game. In a sense, they're tacit admissions of the fact that sometimes games - especially long ones - can get a bit monotonous.

Live-action Legend of Zelda fan film trailer released

Live-action Legend of Zelda fan film trailer released

We Zora few before, this might be the best yet.

A team of talented Zelda fans have released a trailer for The Legend of Zelda: The Final Battle, their upcoming live-action film.

The Final Battle will centre around the finale of N64 classic Ocarina of Time, as Zelda hero Link faces off against the evil Ganondorf.

Fairy companion Navi and noble steed Epona also put in appearances.

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In her infinite wisdom, Cher once sang, "If I could turn back time, if I could find a way." Really makes you think. Mind you, the cruel and inexorable march of time is good for some things, like bringing us this bunch of video game remakes that, in one way or another, managed to surpass their progenitors. Who would have guessed back in 1998 that the one thing missing from Half Life was Paul and Barry Chuckle? Technically that's two things, but you get my meaning.

Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses 2015 concert tour dates announced

The official Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses concert tour returns in 2015 for a new round of performances.

Now subtitled Symphony of the Goddesses: Master Quest, 2015's updated set list includes new compositions and old favourites.

Among the new additions are musical and visual excerpts from 3DS adventure The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds and the upcoming Majora's Mask 3D remake.

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Nintendo adds more full retail games to the 3DS eShop

Ocarina 3D, SMB 3D Land, Star Fox 64 and Mario Kart 7 available now.

We knew that Nintendo was in the process of making more full-priced retail 3DS games accessible via the digital market and now its brought several of the platform's best games to the eShop.

FeatureFeature: A Hero's Journey

Zelda: 25 years of music and magic with Nintendo's legendary fairytale.

London, October 2011. Thousands are crowded into the Hammersmith Apollo, one of the city's most famous theatrical venues, to hear a concert of music commemorating the 25th anniversary of The Legend of Zelda. It's an emotional night. Host Zelda Williams recalls how much the series she was named after meant to her growing up, and her voice audibly cracks at the memory. As Koji Kondo plays a delicate piano solo of Grandma's Theme from The Wind Waker, grown men can be seen dabbing their eyes. Kondo rises from his seat and the audience stands, too, applauding wildly, a number of them clad in the familiar green tunic, tights and pointed hat of their hero.

3DS price cut sees Japanese sales soar

3DS price cut sees Japanese sales soar

Best week since system's launch.

3DS sales figures have shot through the roof in Japan after Nintendo's worldwide price cut took effect last week.

3DS sold 214,821 units between 8th and 14th August, according to chart company Enterbrain (via Famitsu). That's the highest weekly amount since the 3DS launched in February.

Two weeks earlier, 3DS sales were 16,415 units a week. (News of the price cut impacted sales the week after.)

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Nintendo to offer free Zelda tickets

For symphony-loving UK Club Nintendo fans.

UK Club Nintendo members will soon be given the chance to win free tickets to London's Zelda Symphony tour, Nintendo has told Eurogamer.

London Zelda Anniversary concert details

London Zelda Anniversary concert details

25th October, 33.75 for a ticket.

The Legend of Zelda 25th Anniversary concert tour will play a one-off performance at London's HMV Hammersmith Apollo on 25th October, Nintendo has announced.

Places will be extremely limited - it's the only date planned for the whole of Europe.

Tickets are priced at 33.75 and go on sale 8th August from Ticketmaster and Zelda-Symphony.com.

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UK 3DS price to be 150-155 - analyst

HMV will "pass on" discount to shoppers.

While shops discuss tactics, analyst Piers Harding-Rolls predicted that the Nintendo 3DS UK recommended retail price (RRP) will fall to between 150 and 155.

Early Ocarina of Time set in single castle

Miyamoto recalls Mario 64-esque structure.

The original concept for N64 classic Zelda: Ocarina of Time saw the game play out entirely within the confines of Ganon's castle, according to creator Shigeru Miyamoto.

StreetPass at HMV for 10% discount

Collect Mii characters for money off.

If you pop into your local HMV with your Nintendo 3DS and use its StreetPass feature to collect a "HMV store Mii", the nice people behind the tills will give you 10 per cent off a Nintendo 3DS game.

Iwata says no to Zelda anniversary comp

Nintendo of America's proposal denied.

Nintendo top brass turned down a request from its US wing to repackage classic Zelda games on a single Wii disc in celebration of the franchise's 25th anniversary this year, according to the latest Iwata Asks interview.

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D

We have such a strange attitude towards our past as gamers. Our neophilism is such that re-releases are often regarded as brazen attempts at daylight robbery. It's a bizarre mindset that isn't to be found anywhere else in entertainment. ("Remasted Beatles albums? But I already heard Abbey Road.")

Of course, there's a right way to go about it. Stick five ROMS or PC ports on a disc without bothering to construct so much as a new menu screen - I'm looking at you, Dreamcast Collection - and you deserve all the bollocking you get. But remakes - proper remakes, undertaken with fidelity, respect and enthusiasm - those are a different matter altogether. This is still a young industry, and up until very recently, technological restrictions often prevented games from being all that they could be. Remakes have the potential to realise a game's vision in a way that wasn't possible when it was first made.

That is exactly what The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D does. This is a better version of Ocarina of Time that's worth every penny of its modern-day price tag. Really, that should be all you need to know.

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Nintendo: 3DS sales

Nintendo: 3DS sales "below expectations"

But games will help turn things around.

Nintendo has admitted that sales of the glasses-free Nintendo 3DS have not been up to scratch.

The 3DS, which launched globally in March, suffered because it failed to meet fan expectations, Nintendo said.

"It's fair to say that while Nintendo 3DS had a strong launch day, the results since then have not met our expectations," Nintendo president Satoru Iwata told investors at E3.

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Out This Week - 17/06/11

Zelda! Alice! Dungeon Siege! Child of Eden!

This week sees the return of a true classic in the world of gaming - a sequel to American McGee's Alice game! Ah, we kid. We mean Zelda: Ocarina of Time in 3D.

The best thing I ever read about Ocarina of Time wasn't a nostalgic retrospective - although there have been some wonderful pieces written - or a searing critical analysis of its themes and structure - again, there are classics out there. It wasn't even a FAQ for the Water Temple. The best thing I ever read about Ocarina of Time was printed on a back wall at the Game On exhibition over in the Barbican a few years ago.

Nintendo farms out Ocarina of Time 3DS

Secret of Mana creator takes charge.

As one of gaming's indisputable all-time classic, you'd have thought Nintendo would be handling the forthcoming 3DS remake internally. Well, not so.

Nintendo dates Ocarina of Time 3DS

Plus, Dragon Quest VI, Dead or Alive, more

The 3DS remake of N64 classic The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time launches in Europe on 17th June, Nintendo has announced.

Ocarina of Time 3DS adds new content

It's "crammed with interesting things".

It seems that the upcoming 3DS revamp of N64 classic Zelda: Ocarina of Time will be more than just a scene-for-scene remake Nintendo is adding exclusive new content too.

Miyamoto explains 3DS Ocarina remake

Unhappy with framerate, fans now in their 20s.

Developer legend Shigeru Miyamoto has embarked upon remaking classic games The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Star Fox 64 (known as Lylat Wars in Europe and Australia) because those who played them back in the day are all grown up.

Nintendo justifies Zelda-free 3DS launch

Nintendo justifies Zelda-free 3DS launch

Talks up "awfully compelling" Steel Diver.

The 3DS remake of Zelda: Ocarina of Time will be out "when it's ready" and, in any case, there are more than enough launch games to satisfy the needs of core gamers picking up Nintendo's new handheld on day one, according to the platform holder.

In an interview with MTV, Nintendo US chief Reggie Fils-Aime explained, "Mario, Zelda - all of those titles are coming. From our perspective, we like to launch titles when they're ready. And so they'll be ready, they'll be ready soon. Just not in that initial time period of late March to early June."

Reggie added that the launch line-up is robust enough to satisfy the needs of serious gamers without the presence of Link and co.

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Nintendo's back catalogue is never-knowingly underexploited. In recent years the runaway success of DS and Wii has emboldened the company to keep remixing or simply repackaging classic titles in the confidence that there's no shortage of customers to hoover them up.

Nintendo hints at 3DS launch line-up

Nintendo hints at 3DS launch line-up

Ocarina of Time, Pilotwings are first up.

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Pilotwings Resort, Nintendogs + Cats and Steel Diver will be the first party 3DS launch titles, judging by a release schedule included in Nintendo's annual fiscal report.

The list, posted by GoNintendo, states that the four games are down for a Spring release in Japan.

Kid Icarus: Uprising is listed merely for 2011. Mario Kart, Paper Mario, Animal Crossing and Starfox 64 3D are all down as "TBA".

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