Chances are good that if you play games, you’ve played The Legend of Zelda or at least seen a picture of the 1986 Nintendo Entertainment System original. The world was vast but made sense. North was north. In a free new downloadable game called Triforce, the land of Hyrule is twisted around and north could very well mean west or even send you deeper through another dimension.
Triforce is a game by Patrick LeMieux and Stephanie Boluk that completely changes how space and depth work in The Legend of Zelda. LeMieux and Boluk have a knack for playing with spatial depth in games. I recently shared their game Footnotes, , which also used some twisty effects to sometime literally fold the world into shapes like paper planes. Applying strange shapes like donuts and Möbius strips to a familiar game world poses a question: Is it the same world if we perceive it differently?
Games aren’t always limited by practical concerns the way that films or television shows are. You can move the camera anywhere and bend the world however you want. Triforce’s overworld map is familiar to me, as someone who has played the original, but still unlike anything I remember. It’s the same but also incredibly different.
There are three dungeons to explore in Triforce, each of them contorting in more and more complex ways. It starts comprehensible and begins to turn complex. Nintendo has used spatial tricks before, like the flat walls of Super Mario Odyssey, the 2D/3D switching of Super Paper Mario or quick minigames in WarioWare: Twisted!, but Triforce takes it a step further to something that really needs to be played to do it justice. You can download it for PC, Mac, and Linux so it should be pretty easy to dive into a freaky version of Hyrule.