When it was first announced back in March of this year Cadence of Hyrule was immediately news worthy for several reasons. Not only was Nintendo handing over the use of one of their most prized intellectual properties but it meant the possibilities for futures crossovers started with Cadence and it definitely holds up to the gold standard that the franchise is known for.
Cadence of Hyrule is a rhythm based roguelike title developed by Brace Yourself Games and published by Nintendo and Spike Chunsoft.
The story follows Cadence(the protagonist of Crypt of The Necrodancer)as she finds herself in a mysterious new world that is being attacked by Octavo, a magical being who uses instruments to take over Hyrule Castle. Cadence then forms an alliance with Link and Zelda to help stop Octavo and bring peace to Hyrule.
The game gives you the best of both worlds with the world of Hyrule fantastically remixed with the gameplay of Crypt of the NecroDancer and to some that may not be the best. There is a strong argument to be made about what kind of gameplay can mesh well with others but in my case I think the crossover does a remarkable job at defining what makes both games amazing. Cadence again shows the depth and unlimited potential of Hyrule mixed with the clever strategical thought process that is involved with traversing your character through dungeons to the beat of whatever song is playing.
Since the game is a movement based rhythm game it is up to you to figure out the correct loadout for a specific area and the best place to find it is through exploration. The more secrets you find the more powerful items you discover making you an unstoppable force if put together properly. Some of these items are a hoot to use when properly applied. Some items are reflective to projectiles while some allow you to move an extra step in the air to prevent falling into a pit.
There are also several items purchasable with diamonds collected along the way. Diamonds can be earned by clearing all enemies from a screen which can be manipulated at times to farm as many diamonds as you can carry. Upon death you are greeted with a room full of items that you can purchase with these diamonds and unlike rupees and whatever you have on you at time of death diamonds actually stay with you forever.
In this game diamonds ARE unbreakable.
The difficulty of the game is fairly easy but progressively ups the ante the further you get. The final location is a culmination of everything you trained for during this short but rewarding venture and it really left me gratified with the work I put in to such a charming game. As stated: the game is pretty short. Roughly around 4 hours if you’re gunning towards the end of the game. As often as I found myself gunning through the game my curiosity took me through every single location in the game to find every secret hidden within.
Some areas have certain chests that are only opened if challenges are met including a timer based chest and one that will permanently lock if you take damage from an enemy. The game is jam packed full of the essence of what makes a Zelda game great that it blurs the line between which of the two franchises this game compliments while sprinkling in some fanservice for hardcore fans on both spectrums.
Cadence of Hyrule: Crypt of the NecroDancer is a phenomenal base for what could be a fantastic relationship between Nintendo and indie studios. The opportunity that Brace Yourself Games was given was not for a second squandered as they presented and delivered a unique take on one of gamings most treasured franchises. Although the game was fairly short I found the game extremely rewarding, puzzling, and immensely satisfying to listen to.