the artistry and psychology of gaming


Turtle Rock (Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening DX)

Turtle Rock (Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening DX)

While upon a voyage to Hyrule, I was once caught in a terrible storm.  Winds shredded through the ship and a terrible deluge fell from the sky as lightning illuminated the horrific spectacle.  I was helping the crew in a vain attempt to keep the ship afloat.  The wind and rain were so heavy that each droplet felt like a little rock being hurled at me from a sling.  As the storm raged on, and I clung to the ship for dear life, I heard a loud noise and saw a bright flash; I don’t know if it was lightning or something else entirely.  The next thing I remember, I had awoken on a beach; I was soaked to the skin with sand and other unidentifiable detritus caked in my hair.  Luckily, I’d been wearing sturdy boots, or I’d have likely lost my shoes as well!

I was on a small island with a very wide range of biomes; there were plains, forests, deserts, marshes, and even mountains.  The strange thing about the island is that there were a lot of ruins of which the inhabitants had very little knowledge.  Most of these seemed to be temples of some sort, and each one was decorated very differently.  There was a gigantic, elaborate tower; one that was partially submersed in water, the entrance of which resembled the open mouth of a catfish; and many others.  The one that I found to be the most interesting was a dungeon called Turtle Rock, which contained several pools of magma.

The entrance had the claws of a dragon to either side of it, as though the dungeon were in its belly.  I entered to find rock walls of deep red and floor tiles with ornate designs of varying shades of orange.  There was also a swirling vortex of red-orange energy that I dared not touch.  The next room had a river of deep reddish-purple magma running right through it.  There must have been something about the properties of the rocks in this mountain that made them a different color than you or I would expect to see when they are molten.  Carefully crossing, I wound up in an area that had a gigantic pool of it, as well as a strange device.  Upon touching the device, it felt like it had absorbed my mind, as though I were inside of it.  It immediately proceeded forward through the bubbling muck, paving the floor as it went.  I was able to control its direction with my mind, and in so doing, I made a path for myself in order to progress.  When I awoke from my trance, I found that my body hadn’t moved the whole time; my suspicions must have been correct.  I ascended some nearby stairs surrounded by some darker orange tiles.

I was in an area that was a bit more like a cave that you’d see deep within a mountainside.  The rock walls were an austere shade of purple, but the true spectacle was that there was ice here.  Here, above a pool of magma, when heat tends to be pushed up by cold.  They appeared to have some level of sentience, too; they had eyes, and constantly rolled in a circular pattern – without actually moving all that much – changing their various shades of blue as they did.  Normally I’d have melted them in order to progress, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it, so I headed back down and took a different path, which wasn’t difficult to do; this place was quite large, and its layout was anything but straightforward.  At one point, I found a staircase that actually led outside, along a mountain path, and back in again.  It was at that point that I’d realized why the name, Turtle Rock, had sounded so familiar; I’d been to a somewhat similar place with the same name in Hyrule’s Dark World.  Reentering, I found myself in an area with broken floor tiles; spending too much time upon any of them would’ve sent me spiraling into abyss the depths of which I could not fathom, so I’d decided to tread quickly and lightly.  A bit further on, I entered a room that had both types of orange floor tiles – making a very cozy aesthetic – but they were covered by cracked purple blocks, which appeared as though they could be destroyed by some sort of concussive force.  Had I even managed to find the bombs I’d lost in the shipwreck, they’d certainly have been ruined, rendering them useless anyway, so I just moved on.

I found myself in a very dark room with a checkerboard pattern on the floor.  I used my thermal talents to light the two lanterns and get a better look at them; they were orange and brown, which was an unusual color combination, but they worked well together, along with the rest of the dungeon’s aesthetics.  In the adjacent, dimly lit room, I leapt over a large gap and descended the staircase next to which I’d landed.  I was in a cavern with deep pools of blood red magma – yet another color atypical of molten rock – which had fireballs with eyes leaping rhythmically out of them.  I eventually found the deepest part of the cavern: a room with a large, elaborate dais at the back.  Sitting upon it was a drum with a pair of drumsticks – later revealed to be the legendary Thunder Drum – that pulsated every color of the rainbow.  Knowing better than to touch them, I left Turtle Rock, concluding my adventure there.

It is a strange thing being underground.  The entrance is above ground, and sometimes has no obvious incline.  Despite that, it is not uncommon to travel so deep into the planet that magma can be found.  Because it is impossible for us to travel through the dirt and rock itself, being in such a place makes it possible to see things that we would be otherwise unable to see.  It certainly gives cause to wonder what sorts of treasures are hidden in areas where we cannot tread.

One Comment

  1. Subscribed to your blog, many thanks

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