My four-year-old daughter loves The Legend of Zelda. This pleases me to no end.
I think it all started when she saw me playing the original a while back and ended up asking me all kinds of questions. What are those bombs for? What’s in that cave? Where was that fairy hiding? And why is that octopus shooting rocks at you?
Since then I’ve been showing Lily random Zelda-related tidbits here and there, and her interest hasn’t waned. I’ve made it a point to try and avoid the cartoon (on account of Link being an obnoxious tool-sack with personal space issues), but she absolutely loves watching a pretty nifty playthrough of The Wind Waker we found on Youtube. It’s fun to see random Zelda-isms pop up with her; she constantly wants to hear the theme song (which she recognized me humming one day!) and often times wants to play Pony-Zelda. This involves her My Little Pony toys questing around for random treasures while avoiding ‘bosses’ like dinosaurs and Nightmare Moon. Good times!
Like any dad, I spend a good amount of time with the phrase “Wouldn’t it be cool if…?” and thinking about random ways to entertain my daughter. And wouldn’t it be cool if I could make something like The Legend of Zelda for Lily that we could play through together?
A few years back, some random dudes made a version of LOZ for the computer. The wonderful part about that is when they finished programming it, they realized that the system was pretty customizable and could be used to make their own Zelda-esque adventures. There is a thriving community of modders out there, and the best part is that, with a little bit of practice and tutorial reading, it’s very easy to do. I’ve toyed around with the idea of making a game for some time now; Lily’s recent interest in Zelda was just the push I needed.
And good news, friends- I’ve actually already been hard at work on this!
There is an Overworld and seven Dungeons, all of which (excluding a few tweaks) are done; I still need to lay out some enemies, but the world itself is intact and playable. The beauty of ZeldaClassic is that it gives you a lot of room to customize the game, so I’ve got a few ideas for boss encounters that I’d like to test out. The big thing that I want to do is to edit our hero, and turn him into the heroine. Because wouldn’t it be cool if Lily looked at the game and noticed that the main character looked like her?
Like many that came before her, she of course thought that Zelda was our green-clad hero at first. But why not have a female as the main character? No, I’m not going for the Zelda-Saves-Link trope; as a matter of fact, I’m trying not to have a rescue in there at all. My goal is to reflect that our heroine is here to save this world because they need her help, and it’s the right thing to do. I’m not here to shift any paradigms; I’m just trying to make something cool.
So yes! That’s my plan. And now that it’s out there, other people know about it. And now that other people know about it, it is my sincerest of hopes that you will PESTER THE HELL OUT OF ME and make sure I’m working on it!
Well, maybe not that bad, but you get the idea…
I’ll keep you posted!