The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2 is still far from being released. And if you can’t wait to finally get your hands on Link and Zelda’s next adventure, there’s one game you absolutely shouldn’t skip.
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity is that game. A spin-off of Breath of the Wild, Age of Calamity swaps the calm, collected exploration of the Nintendo Switch launch title for something faster and more action-packed. And it has a really good discount as part of Amazon’s Prime Day deals.
As such, now is an excellent time to check out an underrated Zelda gem. Age of Calamity is largely lacking in basic Zelda tropes like dungeons and puzzle solving, but it more than makes up for that with developer Omega Force’s excellent ‘1 vs 1,000’ hack and slash gameplay.
If you can’t wait for Breath of the Wild 2, here’s why you shouldn’t sleep in Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity.
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity comes courtesy of Koei Tecmo Omega Force studio. The developer made a name for itself with the Dynasty Warriors franchise, but has decades of experience making spinoff games with this ‘musou’ gameplay formula.
Many of these spinoffs were owned by Nintendo. Age of Calamity itself is a pseudo sequel to the original (and awesome) Hyrule Warriors, first released for the Wii U in 2014. However, while that game felt like a ‘biggest hit’ of Zelda games’ past, Age of Calamity is specifically centered around Breath of the Wild.
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity takes place a century before the events of Breath of the Wild, during the titular event that completely wiped out Hyrule. It’s an ideal setting for a Warriors-style game, providing an excuse to mow down Moblins, Lizalfos, and Wizzrobes by the thousands.
It’s also a great reason to provide the player with tons of playable characters. Link and Zelda are present, of course. As well as fan favorites like Impa, Revali, Urbosa and even the Great Fairies.
Plus, each character has their own bespoke move set, and they all have radically different playstyles. The level of creativity here is simply astounding, and there isn’t a single character that seems boring to play.
Content pump bags
And when I say that Age of Calamity will last until the release of Breath of the Wild 2, I mean it. In true Warriors style, Age of Calamity has what appears to be a bottomless pit of content to play with.
You have the main story, of course, which is where you’ll find most of the game’s most immersive missions. It’s even complete with lengthy cutscenes and the entire voice cast returning from Breath of the Wild.
But there is more. A lot more. The entire map of Hyrule serves as the main menu and base of operations. It’s loaded – and I mean loaded – with bonus missions and side content.
Completing these smaller objectives does more than just fill in a completion rating. They often unlock items like new weapons, clothing, crafting materials, and more. Some are also character-specific, and completing these quests can expand the warriors’ moveset or increase their stats.
You can also work towards unlocking better weapons for all characters, dyes for Link’s various outfits, and occasionally taking on special missions that have him piloting one of Breath of the Wild’s monolithic Divine Beasts.
Since there’s a lot of content, I think Age of Calamity is best played in shorter bursts. The main campaign is a decent length, but if you want to see and do absolutely everything the game has to offer, expect at least 100 hours. Even more so if you grab the decently priced Expansion Pass that adds new missions, characters, and weapon types.
As a longtime fan of the Zelda and Omega Force games, I can’t recommend Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity enough. It’s by far one of the developer’s best Warriors outings so far, and absolutely not to be missed if you’re after something a little different to help you through to Breath of the Wild 2.