There’s (not a) halo ’round the moon.
Before I started up Majora’s Mask, the only thing I remembered about it was the Moon. Well, I lie: I remember the moon and the stressful countdown.
I thought about this game last night as I was falling asleep. The moonrise was haloed, creepy. “There’s a halo round the moon / so I know it’s not to blame…”
What I didn’t remember is what a trippy, drugged out fantasy that game is. There’s a popular, controversial theory that Link is dead in this game, but even without that it’s strange, unsettling. It’s not really surprising that the best Zelda creepypasta (Ben Drowned) is set in this world. The moon looms over you with a twisted, grimacing face, crying and growing closer. People seem confused, distant. They won’t let the musician practice his music, they won’t deposit money in the bank. In Clock Town, there’s not even a map (unless you buy one from Tingle who spends most of his time floating above a green field, dreaming of being a fairy). You wander from place to place, watching the time click down, always doom above and doom around.
Of course, there’s also the fact that Link is (briefly) a Deku. It’s just unsettling.
These are the formative games of my youth, so returning to them makes me feel a little funny anyway. Maybe I’m getting sick, but playing Majora’s Mask feels a bit like a fever dream. I can’t wait to fall into it again.