Earlier this year, the creator of cult indie hit Crypt of the Necrodancer, Brace Yourself Games, unexpectedly announced a team-up with Nintendo to create Cadence of Hyrule—a unique experience set in the world of Legend of Zelda.
Ahead of today’s release on the Switch eShop, some gameplay was shown off during the Nintendo Treehouse.
The graphical sensibilities reflect the 16-bit era of Zelda, resembling A Link to the Past, with its colourful, sprite-based graphics. This suits the grid-based movement system as well as strongly reflecting the style of Crypt of the Necrodancer.
Players need to do everything to the beat of the music. Moving, attacking, opening boxes all needs to be correctly timed, like strumming the bar in Guitar Hero. A metronome-like meter shows the rhythm in the bottom, but, with so much action going on, players will often needs to rely on their ears and sense of timing.
The developer says that it has aimed to create a balance between the hardcore roguelike of Crypt of the Necrodancer with the more player-friendly aspects of Legend of Zelda to make the game more accessible to those who are drawn by nostalgia for classic Zelda games or the bright and colourful art style.
As part of this drive towards accessibility, even a failed attempt resulting in death will result in some positives for the player, as collecting diamonds can unlock permanent upgrades, as well as keeping revealed areas of the map available.
Iconic characters and enemies are present and correct. Players can choose to play as either Link or Zelda, taking advantage of Link’s shield or Zelda’s magical powers, with each character having its own characteristics. Different weapons can also be picked up to suit different play styles. The enemies will also be familiar, featuring Stalfos, Octoroks and Tektites.
As with any rhythm game, Cadence of Hyrule lives or dies on its music. The game features some fast-paced rock and dance remixes of recognisable Zelda music, including the classic Overworld theme from all the way back in the 8-bit era and fan-favourite track Valley of the Gerudo from Ocarina of Time. Even the sound effects will spark nostalgia, with the iconic ‘secret’ sound also popping up when something new is discovered.
Cadence of Hyrule — Crypt of the NecroDancer Featuring The Legend of Zelda is on sale now in the Nintendo eShop, priced at USD$24.99/GBP£22.49.
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