Game of the Week: Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

I know what you’re thinking. “Legend of Zelda is not a tabletop board game so why did you play it for tabletop leadership’s free play week?” Well, I’m sure everyone knows the craziness that has been happening recently. Classes at Miami University have been moved to online along with everyone else’s lives. This makes it quite difficult for a tabletop board game class to function. We have to improvise. Luckily, last week was free play week and this week is spring break so we have time to adapt to our new online home environments.

Many of you might have grown up with Legend of Zelda games and know all the history behind the lore and have figured out which order the games stories align in. Breath of the Wild is actually my first Legend of Zelda game. I grew up playing Battle for Bikini Bottom, Star Wars Battlefront, and Lego Indiana Jones, not the pure classics. (Though I beg to differ that Battle for Bikini Bottom is a classic in its own way). What I know about Breath of the Wild is that it is unlike any other Legend of Zelda game because it is open world. I may be wrong about that, but bear with me. I had previously played this game at my friends house a little after it first came out but I haven’t touched it again until now when I bought it for myself. It is an absolutely beautiful game with an environment that tells a story which I absolutely love. I would almost prefer to never run into the old man to hear the story about the city’s ruin and to figure it out myself. There is a main over arching quest and then several mini quests you can go on, but you can also just completely explore the landscape for yourself.

I think the hardest part about this game is the travel. Your stamina isn’t that much help starting off and it takes a while to get the paraglider and even that needs stamina and a large mountain to jump off to work. You can use horses but if you are going through a forest or up a mountain, the horse stops and is difficult to maneuver. To combat this I’ve been trying to conquer every tower to take advantage of teleporting, but getting to the towers are a nightmare when they are surrounded by enemies I am not ready to fight. Enemies are also quite difficult in this game because it is open world. I don’t know which enemies I am ready to fight and which I should avoid all together until I can come back stronger with more hearts, stamina, and better weapons which would most likely break before I can finish the enemy off.

This is a single player game so it is hard to see the leadership value in this game, but I believe it is there. You are the hero this land deserves, but you are not above anyone. You need to buy your supplies, food, and hotel stays like everyone else and if you can’t, you have to go fight or find it yourself. No one is doing you any favors, in fact you are the one fulfilling favors. As a leader, you shouldn’t expect anything from others and you should be the one helping your followers. You are guiding them toward lighter days and you should be prepared to carry the burdens. When you are working in a team, you do not single out the person who made a mistake, you bear the responsibility because you were the one who did not lead them correctly. In Legend of Zelda, you will pick up the mistakes from 100 years ago and save Zelda from Ganon.

I think my friend Gen would love this game. She is super into Pokemon and loves the new game which is also kind of open world. She would appreciate the story and the graphics as much as I do. She would enjoy the somewhat relaxing atmosphere until she kicks it into high gear to fight something. She would be amazing at this game.