The Legend Of Zelda: The Ocarina Of Time

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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.

Another Legend of Zelda concert announced for London

Another Legend of Zelda concert announced for London

London Symphony Orchestra prepping their ocarinas for next July.

Another musical celebration of Nintendo's The Legend of Zelda series will be held next year in London.

The Symphonic Legends London concert will take place at the Barbican on 13th July 2014 and feature both the London Symphony Orchestra and London Symphony Chorus.

The event is a separate venture from Nintendo's own Zelda concert tour - which began in London in 2011 and returned to the capital earlier this year.

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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.

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.

FeatureNintendo's Eiji Aonuma

Extensive video and text interview with the spirit of the Zelda series.

If you're going to start working in games development, you might as well begin on one of the greatest games of all-time. That was the rather serendipitous position Eiji Aonuma found himself in, hired by Nintendo to work on the momentous first 3D instalment of the Zelda series.