Game review: Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom


Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom released May 12, 2023, and sold over 10 million copies in the first 3 days of release.

After six long years, a new Zelda game has come out. Critics have already highly praised this new addition, but what about the people playing? I’m personally questioning how it has differed from its previous game, Breath of the Wild

Tears of the Kingdom starts a couple of years after Breath of the Wild, with the two main characters, Link and Zelda, going into the depths of the castle to find out ancient history. They end up releasing a great evil on the world, and the player is introduced with a cutscene leading into a tutorial. It’s overall a strong start for the game and gives the player just enough story to have them sitting on the edge of their seat. 

Although it’s using the same surface map, it has new lands, new story, and new game mechanics that makes gameplay different from its successor. The biggest new addition is using Link’s new arm for all the powers you receive. The story is filled with mystery, time travel along with an entirely new area underground, and in the sky as well. 

The first problem that I have with it is that it’s too similar to the original game. This game was originally meant to be downloadable content (DLC), or paid extra content, but was turned into a sequel instead. For something that feels like DLC at times, I feel as though it should not be priced at $70.

A lot of past characters, mechanics, and areas also returned. Some of these characters include Link, Zelda, and Ganondorf, who are all the protagonists of the story. Mechanics such as the sheikah slate (now the Purah pad), and garments with abilities are all in the game as well. The main map, Hyrule, is the surface area and where most of the story takes place. It has some minor changes but stays mainly the same with its beautiful landscape. 

This game improves a lot on the first game, with the world feeling more alive, alongside newly added flora and collectibles. There’s some added realism, with weapons rusting and breaking faster. 

Music is a vital aspect for any game, especially the Zelda series. While the music in Breath of the Wild was extremely lacking and even reused old pieces,  Luckily Tears of the Kingdom improved their orchestral pieces and added new beautifully done pieces to the game. Their new soundtrack has a nice harmony to it which fits into each scene perfectly. The boss fights and intense cutscenes have an emotional ring to them, which brings the player to their full attention and feel what the characters are going through.  

In my opinion, Tears of the Kingdom is a great addition to the series, even with its high price and flaws. It improves a lot of past mechanics, and has even added past items from previous games from years ago, which is a nice touch for some original players. I’m very satisfied with how much I’m enjoying the new game, and cannot wait for what comes next in the Zelda series.