One thing will be made clear right now. Hyrule Warriors Legends on the Nintendo 3DS is mostly the same game as Hyrule Warriors on the Wii U. How in the world did they get a Wii U game to run on a 3DS? It probably took a lot of time because this game is actually quite playable and comes fairly packed with content! With Hyrule Warriors redone for portable use, here is how it panned out.
The most obvious difference is the graphics. Clearly, 3DS performance is nowhere near the Wii U, so a lot of things had to crash through the floor harder than accepting the “low” graphics setting on a PC game. And yet, the result is not disastrous. It still looks like Hyrule Warriors! All the characters look acceptable, the animations are still awesome, the effects work fine, and the textures and colors are still there. It actually is a good-looking 3DS game. There are some major issues, like the draw distance. Environment draw distance is noticeably short, and character draw distance is only twenty feet in a crowded area; enemy pop-in happens a lot here. Fewer enemies are also drawn because it would otherwise crash the framerate. Framerate is classified as “barely playable” on a regular 3DS, but props need to be given to the visuals team because it is incredibly consistent in pretty much every scenario.
Sound…it is exactly the same as the regular game, just running through 3DS hardware. The music is still awesome. It contains incredible high-energy remixes and covers of iconic Legend of Zelda music. They make for incredible listens outside of the game too!
The next largest difference in Legends is the amount of content compared to the regular release of Hyrule Warriors. In Legend Mode, you have all the story missions from the Wii U version, but wait, there’s more! You also get story missions for the much-publicized Linkle. There are scenarios for the antagonist Cia, and there is Wind Waker content with Wind Waker maps and music included! The story is actually not bad considering it is a game made for Zelda fans. There is Free Mode, which allows for play on any passed story scenario with any unlocked character, and adventure mode, which works just like the Wii U. There gallery is just like before, and the same applies for collectables and character upgrades, with a few tweaks. New is “My Fairy”, where you do dress-up, feed food, increase skills and have this companion aid you during battles. The rather sizable amount of story scenarios is actually quite a lot more than what you got on the standard Wii U release, and that is fantastic. The vast adventure mode map should help satisfy an avid Hyrule Warriors player for a good amount of time.
The gameplay feels just like it did on the Wii U, but now portable! This means that you can still be the one-man army going around just wiping out hundreds and thousands of enemies with utter satisfaction and massive firepower. Due to the graphical limitations of the Nintendo 3DS, fewer enemies are on screen, so that epic fifty-kill attack is now more like…twenty. A great new addition is now you can switch characters during scenarios, and give buffs during boss fights when grouped together. Being able to switch characters makes a big difference when everyone is spread out on the map. Sadly, the grunts and peons that consist most of your armed ally force still forms the most useless military in the gaming world. The AI remains laughably stupid. Fights still feel like a one-man (or four-man) effort. Stupid AI aside, if you are looking for spectacular wave-wiping massive fast-paced action, then Hyrule Warriors has it.
That is Hyrule Warriors Legends. Very much like the Wii U version, Hyrule Warriors Legends is a fantastic entertaining spectacle that does a great job making the crossover of Dynasty Warriors and Legend of Zelda happen. The only major loss is the graphical quality. Legends also inherits the same flaws, so the AI is dumber than dirt and the gameplay is not what you call deep at all. Legends also faces the issue of pretty much being the same as the Wii U game, but with some more missions. The person who buys Legends is looking for a portable Hyrule Warriors. That said, if you are looking for a portable Hyrule Warriors, I am happy to say that Hyrule Warriors Legends is not a tragic port-down job, and is still very entertaining just like the console version.
Final Score: 8.0/10