Hyrule Warriors was a surprising delight on the Nintendo Wii U. Despite the Wii U’s commercial failure, the system had a fair amount of excellent titles. Hyrule Warriors is a mashup title of The Legend of Zelda and Dynasty Warriors series’, and it does quite a good job of maintaining a balance between the two. The gameplay is a lot of fun, the story is somewhat crazy but excellent, and there are aspects that are explored but unable to in a mainline Zelda game. There are also an abundance of game modes, endless replayability, and countless characters to choose from. The port for the Nintendo Switch, the Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition takes all the DLC from the previous version and puts it into one package. Not to mention it’s now portable. The game may not be a proper Zelda game, but it’s incredibly enjoyable and ranks as a solid entry in the franchise.

Gameplay

Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition Review

Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition consists of a hack-and-slash style gameplay. Each character is given combos they can perform that they unlock as the game goes on by way of collecting materials. Weapons can also be collected on each stage, allowing your character(s) to continuously grow.

Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition Review

By visiting the Bazaar, you can access the Badge Market, Training Dojo, Apothecary Station, and the Smithy. At the Badge Market, you can unlock combos, abilities, extended power-ups, superior defense on certain stages, etc. The Training Dojo allows you to level your character up with Rupees. Apothecary lets you use materials in order to enhance your chances of receiving better materials, weapons, and so forth. Finally, the Smithy allows you to appraise skills and fuse weapons, transferring one skill to another base weapon.

Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition Review

The gameplay is addicting. There are also numerous Gold Skultullas to find that fill in multiple puzzles which is a cool twist. With each combo you unlock, your character gets even stronger and taking keeps gets easier. Each stage has a primary mission and a secondary mission. You can also switch (no pun intended) between playable characters at any time to accomplish tasks with ease. Each character brings something unique to the table, and it’s a breath of fresh air to be able to play as characters in the Zelda franchise you never thought possible.

Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition Review

Not to mention, playing as the villains is a particular treat. Whoever thought you would be able to trek through the Gerudo Desert as Ganondorf, swords in hand?

Game Modes

Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition Review

Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition has four game modes: Legend Mode, Free Mode, Adventure Mode, and Challenge Mode. My Fairy is unlockable in Adventure Mode, and you can find a fairy to accompany you throughout the game, even in Legend mode. They are completely customizable and can deliver devastating magical attacks.

Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition Review

Legend Mode is the game’s campaign. It contains 32 stages if you include Linkle’s Tale, Cia’s Tale, and The Wind Waker stages. Free mode is essentially the same as Legend Mode, except you can use any playable character on any given stage.

Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition Review

Adventure Mode consists of nine maps, although originally just one in the original, which you earn rewards and defeat the Dark Ruler of Hyrule. Each stage gives you a ranking based on your performance and the further you go down the list, the more difficult the maps get. The maps are in grid form, and some grids require cards, which take the form of items from the original Legend of Zelda. It is a definite challenge and gives the game near-infinite replayability. Challenge mode throws a number of near-impossible challenges your way, although it is incredibly rewarding.

Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition has so much to do it’s hard to even know where to start.

Story

Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition Review

Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition is very much a love letter to The Legend of Zelda. The narrative is whacky crazy, but it works. It’s a lot of fun, unlike Breath of the Wild. It incorporates everything a classic Zelda should, and is one of the best Zelda stories despite it not being canon. Eiji Aonuma described it as taking place in a separate dimension and the “Avengers” of the Zelda universe. This could not be a more true statement. Time travel, classic new characters, classic old characters, the Triforce, Ganon; they’re all present. This is what was missing in Breath of a Wild.

Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition Review

Lana, in particular, stands out. She’s bubbly, upbeat, intriguing, and let’s be honest: there’s plenty of fan service to go around. I hope Lana makes a future appearance in the franchise, as she’s the best newcomer to the series since Midna. When it comes down to it the story is a love letter to the franchise and it could not have been executed any better.

A Fun-Filled Zelda Adventure

I was skeptical when I heard of all games, Hyrule Warriors was getting a port to the Nintendo Switch. It turns out that this gamble paid off though. By combining the Wii U and 3DS versions, Koei Tecmo has created a magnificent game with infinite replay value. It’s a love letter to a 30-year-old series and it shows every step of the way. Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition may not be the most refined game on the Switch, as Dynasty Warriors games rarely are, but being Zelda, it’s non-stop fun and non-stop action, which makes for a perfect combination.

Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition Review

There are also some quasi-puzzles in the game. Koei Tecmo put forth a lot of effort to make this game as authentic a Zelda experience as possible, and they succeeded. It may not be the best game on the Nintendo Switch, but it’s incredibly fun. Being able to play it portably is fantastic, as well as the co-op mode.

Now all Nintendo has to do is give us a port of Twilight Princess HD and The Wind Waker HD.

Please?

Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition Review (Nintendo Switch)
Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition is a love letter to the Zelda franchise through and through, full of non-stop action and a story only The Legend of Zelda could tell.
Overall Score8.5
Pros
  • A whacky, yet excellent, story
  • Abundance of playable characters
  • Infinite replayability and a fun combat system
Cons
  • Unrefined gameplay
  • Cia's Tale is Boring
8.5Great
Reader Rating: (0 Votes)
0.0

About The Author

Founder/Owner/Editor-in-Chief

Morgan Lewis is a Video Game Journalist and is the Founder, Owner, and Editor-in-Chief of VG Culture HQ. He has been writing about games for over four years and has written over 1,500 articles during that timespan. He first fell in love with gaming when he received A Link to the Past for Christmas when he was six and is the guywazeldatatt. He also loves anime and anything that has to do with gaming culture and Tetsuya Takahashi games. He is also a huge anime and Star Wars fan.

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