Why The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess is one of the greatest games ever made

With the reputation of quality that the Legend of Zelda games have, nearly any title in the series can be considered to be one of the best games ever, but The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess is particularly special. It delivered everything we've loved from the last two decades of Zelda games and piled on a heap of new, gratifying experiences to create an epic adventure, culminating in one of the greatest games ever made.

Twilight Princess was like a spiritual successor to the Nintendo 64's Ocarina of Time. There was a similar world map, the majority of the Hero of Time's items made a comeback, and even Link's horse had the same name--but those parallels to N64's classic were welcome alongside the plethora of new locations and gameplay variety throughout the adventure. In typical Zelda fashion, Link's quest to free Hyrule from the Twilight realm's moody veil lead you through a variety of dangerous locations, including fiery mountains, deep lake beds, gloomy alternate dimensions, and ancient prisons. But Twilight Princess was much more than just a dungeon hopper.

There was plenty to discover just wandering around the massive overworld. You'd find dank caves, abandoned towns, and haunted graveyards full of secret treasures and story revelations--and it was all an absolute pleasure to discover. Between the mind-bending dungeons, heart pieces to uncover, and the vicious enemies to battle, Twilight Princess still managed to keep the gameplay varied with memorable plot-based events and chill hangout spots, like the majestic fishing hole.

Even with familiar locations and encounters, like meeting with the sumo wrestling Gorons and swimming with the fish-like Zora, there was always something new around the next corner. You'd never expect to find the bizarre-looking Oocca while breaking pots in the depths of a dungeon, transform into a wolf, snowboard down Hyrule's snow capped mountains with a Yeti, or chase down a burning carriage on horseback--but it all happened in Twilight Princess. Even the revisited locations, like Death Mountain, Kakariko Village, and Hyrule Castle had their own Twilight spin to them, making the adventure nostalgic but fresh all at the same time.

Many years ago, Lorenzo Veloria was a Senior Editor here at GamesRadar+ helping to shape content strategy. Since then, Lorenzo has shifted his attention to Future Plc's broader video game portfolio, working as a Senior Brand Marketing Manager to oversee the development of advertising pitches and marketing strategies for the department. He might not have all that much time to write about games anymore, but he's still focused on making sure the latest and greatest end up in front of your eyes one way or another.