The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time has always been one of my favorite games. However, until recently, I felt that its story paled in comparison to that of other games in the Zelda franchise. To me, it always felt like a straightforward adventure story; young boy inherits magical powers and must save the world, blah blah blah. I’d seen this same story so many times by the time I played Ocarina for the first time that I could predict every twist the game had to throw at me. To me, the pinnacle of the Zelda franchise’s storytelling has always been Majora’s Mask. Majora is a masterclass in atmosphere; everything about the game elicits a sense of impending, pervasive doom in the player, from the moon hanging ominously over Termina to the three-day time limit.
However, this video provided some food for thought on Ocarina’s story and made me reevaluate my feelings about it. The underlying sense of melancholy in Ocarina never really hit me because I was too caught up in the sense of adventure that the gameplay was pushing. I never thought I would recontextualize Ocarina’s story as a subtle exploration of the death of childhood.