Meaningful Dungeons

March 22, 2010

What´s so frustrating about recent Zelda-games is how random the dungeons are included into the game world. At some point, you get the object to retrieve three whatever, therefore you have to enter the x-dungeon, the y-dungeon and the z-dungeon. X, y and z being replacements for fire, water and so on. However, WHY do these dungeons exist? I mean, for some reason there are these dungeons, filled with enemies, filled with puzzles and a boss-enemy. Why?

Twilight Princess finally attempted to give these places more meaning, though it wasn´t nearly enough. You have the temple of time, which was a well-known place. You had the Arbiter´s Ground, which was explained to be a prison. You had the fire temple aka Goron mines, which, obviously, also had a natural purpose. Still, why were these places taken over by enemies? No or not much explanation, even less about all the puzzles being in there.

What I am thinking of is somthing like “For hundreds of years, the ancient inhabitants of this area sacrificed one woman per year to the god of the deep well. Ever since then, many years passed. It is unknown if there is still something of meaning down there…or something evil.” Or something like “Ganon plans to attack Hyrule, so he took over that castle to gather his troops there.” Or maybe “Have you heard of that swamp behind the dark forest? It seems Ganon sent a lot of troops there to guard something until he arrives.”

All the examples would put meaning and reason into their dungeons. And not just be big excuses to collect some arbitrary item.


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