Sadly, I wasn't able to find a picture of X-Play's "Drunk Link" crying pitfully over Zelda to go with this post. Truly the Internet is freaking worthless. Setting that aside for the time being, we move back to the Nintendo 64 to look at, you guessed it - Starfox 64.
Wait that's not right. I'm not talking about Starfox for a couple months yet. It's Ocarina of Time that we're focusing on today. Prior to getting this game as a gift from Alex, I didn't have much experience with the Legend of Zelda games. I rented the original once, but the rental place never included instruction manuals, so I didn't know what I was doing, or to what purpose I was supposed to be doing them. Not surprisingly, I fared poorly, and pretty much ignored that franchise for the next several years. Heck, it was quite a while before I realized "Zelda" didn't refer to the guy with the sword doing all the work. Hero can't get his name in the title of his game. Except "Link to the Past", which is a horrible pun (as noted by Drunk Link, in one of the few moments he isn't crying over losing Zelda, or the Drunk Girl).
I don't know whether there's an advantage (in terms of enjoyment) to playing Ocarina of Time with knowledge of the earlier games. Maybe you get more out of it, on an easter egg level, I don't know. I just know it's a game I really enjoy. The plot is pretty standard, you as (whatever name you gave yourself) are a special child, tasked to go to the castle and bring a special stone to the princess, who then asks you to go get the other special stones, and it all goes to hell from there. The fact that the two kids' plan ends up backfiring and causing the whole mess is a nice little twist, but one that actually makes a lot of sense when you think back on it. The combat is fun, but not complicated to the point it drives you nuts (most of the time).
For me though, it was all the little things you can do that add to the experience. I wasted all kinds of time just riding around on my horse, or fishing. Not very heroic perhaps, but it's not like the story is gonna go anywhere without me right? Which is why you can take the job selling masks, or play games to increase your weapons load, or concentrate on finding the Skullta spiders to lift the curse on that one poor family. It was kind of interesting to see where people you met as a kid had ended up, and to see how they were doing seven years later, though the answer was rarely good. For example, Talon (a short, chubby guy wearing red and blue) ran a nice horse ranch when you were a kid. Seven years later, he's exiled and living in a small village, unable to return to his ranch because it's been giving to his unfriendly servant (a taller fellow, with similar facial hair, but wearing green), who had always complained of how he did all the hard work, but Talon got all the credit. So it's up to you to turn things back around, because hey, you're a good guy and that's what you do, especially when the skinny jackass tries to welch on the wager you to had. He's lucky I just took the horse, and not his head.
I don't really know what else to say about Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. It was just a lot of fun to play. Even though the story is pretty straightforward, there are enough diversions to keep you the interest level high on the second or third time through.