As crowdfunding is becoming the go-to place for indie developers hoping to break into the gaming industry’s development scene, so to is it becoming a place for the ever present mediocre chaff; saturating our beloved industry. When you’re talking with your friends about what you would like to see in upcoming video games, a common path for the conversation to take is, “do you know what I think would make a good game?”
Something I find myself saying with increasing frequency is, “Just because you can make a game, doesn’t mean you should.” Some games just shouldn’t exist, whereas others drive the video game medium forward. One such example is (predictably) The Legend of Zelda. One of the OG’s of video gaming that showed players just what a game could be, and how intricate an art form a good game really is. The Legend of Zelda is a video game franchise that has been around for a very long time; originating in 1986, it has endured multiple console generations and even successfully crossed over to the handheld market.
One thing that the Zelda community loves more than anything else is its video game ancestry, and as such, they often request that certain titles get remastered or remade. When The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was remastered and re-released in 2011, the game was met with staggering sales success and critical reception, this was the feather in Nintendo’s cap for quite some time regarding 3DS software.
Since then there has been no mention of other titles in the series being remastered and released once again, but unsurprisingly the community endeavours to change this with endless petitions and fan projects. Such an example would be easy to find amongst the countless fan projects, there’s Theophany’s orchestral scale reworking of The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask’s soundtrack that was launched in December of 2012m or the persistent coverage and efforts of the Operation Moonfall community to name only two of the most successful. But despite all of this, Nintendo has never actually stated officially that a remake of Majora’s Mask would ever happen, there are nods to the series everywhere and vague answers are given when questioned on the matter, but never anything concrete.
Some claim that a Majora’s Mask remake isn’t happening because of financial issues within Nintendo, others believe that it’s best to leave the original as it is, in its unaltered form so it can be appreciated as a classic for the sake of posterity. It has even been said that a remake would not happen because of low predicted sales, but we all know that’s nonsense.
So, being a Majora’s Mask fan myself, I thought it would be fun to imagine a world where the largest names in video game development weren’t afraid to rely directly on their consumers to help in the creation of their games. Imagine a world where Kratos was the result of a group of thousands of gamers voting and deciding on his design, or where the Master Chief was given a face to go along with his name because the community voted on it. Imagine if a game you’ve been waiting on was going to get expensive day one DLC, but if enough of you helped fund the title, the DLC would be included for free, for everyone! Or better yet, pledge a certain amount, and you will get the game for free upon its completion!
I liked the idea so much that I acted upon it, and so in this series called “Kickstarting The Past” I will be showing you how it may have looked if a popular title from gaming’s greatest hits was originally brought into being through the crowd funding platform, Kickstarter. And to kick things off (no pun intended), we will begin with The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask.