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Majora’s Mask: Link’s Afterlife

With the hype building over Hyrule Warriors and the tantalising drip release of information concerning the open world Zelda, I decided to revisit my favourite Zelda game: Majora’s Mask.

I have spoken before about why I prefer this game over Ocarina of Time so I won’t go into too much detail on that. Suffice to say is that I think that the overall tone and atmosphere of the game just pops it for me. Obviously many would not agree with me on this.

A while ago someone passed on to me an intriguing article claiming that Link is most likely dead or in some kind if purgatory in the form of Termina. Upon hearing that, and playing through the game again, it is hard to come to any other conclusion.

The whole of Termina is filled with people living with crippling regrets and restlessness of spirit. Whether it is the fratricidal composer brothers, the Ikana residents unable to rest in their graves or Kafei cursed into a child’s body on the eve of his wedding; all the residents of Termina seem to be suffering and obsessed with regret. In addition to this, Termina seems to be infested with unquiet spirits and the restless dead. The endless three day cycle with the threat of impending doom really does have a strong sense of a purgatorial setting. The appearance of familiar figures from the Ocarina world, particularly the departed Koume and Kotake does nothing to dispel this feeling.

But if this true, what then does this make Link? Is he merely another restless spirit? Or something more? The obvious answers seem to be that Link is either being morally tested, or that he is some angel-like figure offering redemption and easing regret filled souls. I’m not sure what answer I prefer, but it is definitely an interesting question nonetheless.

Perhaps this is one reason why I really live this game. The content matter really is very dark and mature, but wrapped up in the colourful charm of the Zelda universe. All I know is that it will take one hell of a game to dislodge Mask as my favourite Zelda game. But an open world Zelda game could come awfully close…


4 responses to “Majora’s Mask: Link’s Afterlife

  1. thegaminggeek ⋅

    I tried playing the collector’s edition version of Majora’s Mask on the Gamecube but didn’t play it long enough. I didn’t like the time pressure element of the game, and I knew there were minor issues with the emulation. If the rumors are true that this’ll be released on the 3DS, I’m definitely going to buy a copy.

    • The time element is not for everybody and put a lot of people off. For my part I really enjoyed the complexity that this brought to the game and enjoyed weaving different actions together to see how they affected the narrative. That being said I understand the frustration people feel at being constrained by it. In terms of a 3DS remake, unless they actually add to the game I’d be surprised if this happens as you can already download it on the wiiU and Wii online stores but then again I suppose that is also true of Ocarina. I suppose it just comes down to how many nintendo think they could sell.

  2. Hitsuji ⋅

    I don’t know if Termina is a purgatory or if Link is in it as a resident or as an angel of redemption but to me, this is the Hero of Time’s real epic : because of the timesplit, he only achieved a third of his story (retrieving the 3 sacred stones and the ocarina) on this timeline, therefore his “legend” hasn’t been recorded. He might be regretful about that (*spoilers* Twilight Princess kind explored that aspect), and saving Termina might be his “true” ordeal.
    I have a thoughtful question : Is Termina a real place or a dream-like dimension created under Majora’s influence? If the latest, is it formed from a specific soul (Link’s or Skull Kid’s) or from the accumulation of regrets in Hyrule?

    • I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Termina was a dream-like dimension, which would explain the ability to manipulate time in a rather Inception-like way where time in dreams is mutable. I very much like the idea that it is formed by the accumulation of Hyrule’s regrets and dark history.

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