Last Year's Zelda anniversary celebration was as good as gold.
So, I finally managed to get my hands on one of the glorious golden Club Nintendo Nunchuks that were released in Japan and Australia, and I figure it's as good an opportunity as ever to show off the awesome swag Nintendo released as part of last year's Zelda tribute.
2011 was a great year to be a Zelda fan. We got a free downloadable version of the original Four Swords game, a symphony concert featuring music from across the series, early adopters to Skyward Sword (which was arguably the best game in the entire series thus far) got both a CD featuring some of the best tracks from the concert and a shiny, shiny golden Wii Remote Plus featuring the Hylian royal emblem, and Japan got a beautiful art book containing just about every piece of information a Hyrule historian could want. Pun definitely intended, hell yeah!
If only Mario's 25th anniversary had such cool swag!
Let's first take a look at the special Nunchuk. While not specifically stated as having anything to do with Zelda, this golden version is clearly designed with the Zelda Wii Remote in mind. The outer casing is the same two sparkly golden tones as on the remote, with the under side being slightly less glossy than the top. Both the Remote and Nunchuk have a slightly matte feel. If there was one detail I'd change, is that the Nunchuk has a standard white cable. I think a black cord would have complimented the gold much nicer. Still, the cable matches the white buttons on the Zelda Remote and it's a really nice exclusive to have. Together with the GoldenEye Classic Controller Pro, I'll never play Zelda on Wii with white controllers again!
The tan analogue stick and buttons match the Zelda Remote's D-pad.
Now they just need to make a golden Wii U Gamepad.
On to the highly coveted Hyrule Historia. You'd be hard pressed to find a Zelda fan around who hasn't heard of this wonderful treasure tome, so I'll skip over the contents and get to the impressions.
Simply put, this book is a thing of beauty.
The presentation of this book is simply incredible, befitting of the anniversary of one of the greatest video game franchises of all time. The cover design alone looks like it was lifted out of the land of Hyrule itself, with a grand classic encyclopedia feel. The title and logo are printed with reflective gold foil, making it shine gloriously in the light. True to the series' penchant for hidden details and secrets, I was delighted to learn that the gold foil is also on the inside cover once you remove the dust jacket and promotional label.
Now that's quality!
The pages are printed in beautiful vibrant color on reasonably thick glossy paper. The ink is slightly shiny itself as well, making the images on the page slightly reflective. Each segment of the book features a different border design so you can easily flip through to find the part you're looking for. Not that you'd be so careless with the pages, that is. The Skyward Sword manga in the back is on a slightly different matte paper.
The legend begins...
Just about every art piece from the series is collected here.
Anyone who hates Fi can kiss my Keese.
The sheer amount of content in the book is astounding, and it is possibly the best piece of official merchandise publishing Nintendo have made. It matters not that the book is entirely in Japanese. For those who can't read it, there are several fan translations of the book online, but it's absolutely no substitute to owning the physical thing. If Nintendo reprint the book for a fourth time, it would be advisable for any Zelda fan to import it via any means necessary. Heck, if they ever decide to publish an official English release of this book, I'd buy a second copy without question.
Let's not forget this little pack-in!
Nintendo has been extremely generous to its fans regarding the 25 year milestone of The Legend of Zelda, with each region getting their own special bonus events and exclusive merchandise. This is the kind of quality I've come to expect from Nintendo, and I'd love to see them extend this kind of love to some of their other franchises.
The logo on what is now my favorite t-shirt.
The celebration even continues to this day with the USA tour of Symphony of the Goddesses, an orchestrated concert that expands upon the one they held last year. There are still ten more events on their tour schedule. If you haven't seen it yet, book tickets now! I sincerely hope they eventually decide to take the tour overseas.
Whatever Zelda's 30th or even 50th anniversaries will hold for long-time fans, I'm certainly thrilled with the ride they've given us up until now.
As always, check out the gallery below for a couple more photos and to continue the Zelda anniversary merchandise theme, click here
to see my previous impressions on the Australia-only Ocarina Edition of Ocarina
of time 3D, the blog post that led to the creation of my Mariobilia
Thanks for reading, and check back later for more reviews of great Nintendo merchandise.