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The new Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom commercial is thoroughly depressing
Nintendo's new Tears of the Kingdom advert isn't what you'd expect
Nintendo just released a new Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom commercial, and it will probably give you an existential crisis.
The advert paints a forlorn picture as we see a middle-aged man riding the bus to his dead-end job with other miserable commuters in tow. He stares vacantly out of the window, only to see a sea of grey clouds and his somber reflection staring back at him. It’s an all too familiar feeling for many.
Upon returning home, the man lets out an exasperated sigh – one that’s seemingly charged with disappointment at the life he’s created. His wife, who is already departing to bed, gently taps him on the arm. She bids him goodnight with the faintest of pleasantries – clearly, their marriage is on borrowed time – and the man prepares himself a tall glass of water. He doesn’t even get the comfort of a home-cooked meal or a much-needed hug.
➡️ The Shortcut Skinny: Tears of the Kingdom ad
😅 Nintendo’s new Tears of the Kingdom commercial is unexpected
😢 It shows a rather sad depiction of modern-day life
😭 The trailer aims to inspire hope in what can often be a miserable world
📆 Tears of the Kingdom is out May 12, exclusively for Nintendo Switch
Finally, a smile breaks out on the man’s face as we see him playing Tears of the Kingdom. He takes pleasure in trying to craft a sea-worthy vessel, which brings him a semblance of joy for what I’m presuming is the first time in years.
After staying up until the early hours of the morning, the man then takes his Switch OLED on the bus to continue his open-air adventure. He defeats a few Bokoblins, lets out a little celebratory “yes!” at his achievements, and then marvels at the blue skies that have now formed outside in the real world.
Suddenly, things are ok again. Life is worth living. Thank you, Nintendo. Thank you, Tears of the Kingdom.
I mean, what the hell, Nintendo? What even is this soul-crushing depiction of modern-day life, particularly adulthood? I get that games are a form of escapism for many, but I wasn’t expecting this to be the angle Nintendo went for with its Tears of the Kingdom marketing campaign.
I’m now genuinely worried about this man’s future more than I am about saving Hyrule again. What will happen to him when he completes the game? When did things start to fall apart? Is his wife having an affair?
Compare the Tears of the Kingdom commercial to the launch trailer for Breath of the Wild, and the contrast is even more stark. It features upbeat music, plenty of gameplay, a man who clearly has something to live for, and who actually uses headphones when the console is in handheld mode. The middle-aged man, however, apparently plays with no sound at all because it might cause some sort of sensory overload or spark too much joy in his cold, cold heart.
While I’m as hyped as anyone about Tears of the Kingdom dropping on May 12 – which is bound to be one of the best Nintendo Switch games – this advert has made me more excited for my upcoming therapy session than anything. Way to go, Nintendo. You got me, but probably not the way either of us intended.
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