Minit is one the best games to grace the Nintendo Switch this year, and it’s due to one simple thing: it is a Zelda game that doesn’t waste your time – not that normal Legend of Zelda games are particularly time-wasting. Yet, Minit goes far and beyond to ensure that every single second of your playthrough is meaningful. It achieves that with a combination of amazing level design and one particularly interesting mechanic.
One thing that really differentiates Minit from Legend of Zelda is that our little nameless character dies after 60 seconds. Yes, in this game you have only one minute to do something before you die and respawn at a safe house. This simple (and not that unique) mechanic, makes this game feel fast, and makes your consider every single move.
Time mechanics in this game would be nothing but frustration if not for the amazing level design. Every minute in this games counts, thanks to the fact that the each screen is masterfully designed and that everything just makes sense. You barely ever have to wander around clueless thinking “what the hell do I do now”, as the environments and level structures give you more than enough clues to figure it out on your own. Only once did I have to look up a clue online at what to do, and that was on my second run, and was caused only by my own negligence.
What do you do though?
What is it you actually do in the game? Well to put it simple, you gather items (like in Zelda) that give you new abilities which then help you progress further in the world. Some items are quite easy to come by such as the sword or watering can, whilst other require you to complete a quest or a puzzle. The beauty of Minit, that is also present in The Legend of Zelda games, is that hunt for treasure, which often requires quite a bit of thinking from yourself. More often than not, to be able to go to a certain area you need to first get an item that helps you figure out a puzzle. At the end of that puzzle you get another item, that then will help you get to that next area. It’s awesome!
All the items are quite self-explanatory as are the obstacles. This means that, commonly, if there is some obstruction between you and your goal, you automatically know what skills is required to pass through it.
How does it control?
Minit is as simple as it gets in terms of control. This game could be played with an NES controller without a problem. You use either a D-Pad or the left thumb-stick to move our funny little protagonist, and use the A-button to attack which ever way you are currently facing. The only other button that does anything in the game is the B button which kills you, which can be pretty useful and save you the trouble of going all the way back to your safe house.
I love the way Minit looks. It’s simplistic, yes but in my personal opinion that is great. It does have this Gameboy style, though it’s black and white instead of green and dark green. The sprites are also very distinct and you always know what is what, despite a lack of details. This style also makes it seem more unique and stand out from other Zelda-likes such as Blossom Tale or Ittle Dew which tried to mimic The Legend of Zelda aesthetics.
Minit is a perfect game. It’s a familiar concept with a new twist, that makes the old formula feel fresh. It is quite a short game though, yet it has a lot of replayability due to its non-linear design. Overall it is a great game, and it fits perfectly on the the Nintendo Switch.