The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time's Story is Elevated by This Video Essay
As if Ocarina of Time needed another reason to be considered the GOAT
As if the 20-year-old classic The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time needed more points to add to its GOAT status, a new video essay by Javed L Sterritt on his YouTube channel Good Blood provides an unparalleled look at reading between the lines of Ocarina of Time‘s story, gameplay, and world. “OCARINA OF TIME – A Masterclass In Subtext” takes its viewers on a journey as to why Ocarina of Time delivers the saddest story in the Zelda franchise. You may watch the video below.
The entire video is a treat. I don’t want to spoil the video’s style, approach, or core points too much. The video explores the narrative of Ocarina of Time through the lense of perpetual sorrow that is often the driving force behind Zelda games’ story. It’s wonderfully animated, researched, and edited. Going beyond the 1s and 0s that make up the game, the video branches out into the real world and the elements that shaped Ocarina of Time into the game it became.
This video is also the beginning of a video series for Sterritt, aptly titled The Hyrule Journals. The mission of this essay series is to explore the cross section of storytelling and game design in The Legend of Zelda series. On the series’ website, there seem to be four episodes planned. You can read all about this first episode and its behind-the-scenes here, although I highly recommend watching the video first.
Last year, Ocarina of Time turned 20. It has the highest Metacritic average of any video game and is often lauded as gaming’s best by fans and critics alike. It’s been re-released numerous times and shaped the franchise’s formula for years to come. I am excited to see where the rest of this video series goes whenever it returns.