Dance to the slashing of my sword
Do you crave for more Legend of Zelda? Do you love music as much as killing monsters? Then you will surely love Cadence of Hyrule: Crypt of the NecroDancer featuring the Legend of Zelda universe and characters. The greatest pairing since salt and pepper, the game beautifully merges the both franchises together aesthetically and mechanically.
When Cadence of Hyrule was announced, I was already dancing with joy. Not only does it look gorgeous while retaining the classic pixelated look, there were many Zelda mechanics incorporated into the game. Thankfully it was far from a reskinned Crypt of the Necrodancer and had much more depth to its gameplay.
At a first glance, you will be surprised because it feels so much like a Zelda game. The look and feel of it all is reminiscent of A Link to the Past remastered with a chessboard-like overlay on the ground. Any old fan of Zelda games would definitely appreciate the lengths that Brace Yourself Games has taken in order to replicate the feel of classic Zelda games into Cadence of Hyrule, from world design to music.
The entire soundtrack is made up of reworked music from the Zelda series and the tempo can changed based on the mechanics of the game. There are even some nostalgic remixes that players will no doubt be highly fond of. Players will have to bob and dance to the tempo of the remixed soundtracks in order to move and beat monsters and this is where the game mechanics come in.
Personally, I am very impressed with how they managed to seamlessly merge the two mechanics together. There aren’t any mechanics that felt out place. Only during the initial stages, Zelda players may feel slightly out of place.
The player attacks by moving from one chess board grid to another. Therefore, to carry out an attack, the player has to “move” towards that direction. However, once the players have a few minutes of gameplay under their belt, it will feel just as natural as it has always been.
The nostalgic music of Zelda plays as you move around the chess board to the beat of the game. You are essentially dancing with the monsters, memorising their tempos and patterns in order to learn how to best attack them. Will you reflect a deku seed or use a bow to shoot them from afar? All of this is done while matching the rhythmic beat of the music to gain extra combo points and deal more damage.
At a glance, players will instantly recognise all the Zelda mechanics incorporated into the game. Starting with the broadsword that deals damage to a large sweeping area in front of you, to the classic bow and arrow. These are staples of Zelda games and I, for one, am glad that they have incorporated it into this one.
Unlike the original Crypt of the Necrodancer, the world of Hyrule here is not randomised after every death. This allows the player to explore each screen and return to the screen which was previously too difficult. This is just as expected from a traditional Zelda game where the player is expected to explore and discover new places while progressing through the story.
This is the first time Nintendo has loaned out the Zelda IP and I must say that the outcome far exceeds my expectations. If you told me that this game was made by Nintendo team themselves, I would have fully believed you. Cadence of Hyrule is an outstanding game that deserves a try from every fan of Zelda games and Crypt of the Necrodancer alike.