2012 Student Research Conference:
25th Annual Student Research Conference

"Link"ing Monomyth and Video Games: How The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time Connects Myth to Modern Day
Carli E. Wrisinger
Dr. Mark Smith, Faculty Mentor

Critical theory suggests cultural myths that tap into deeply held emotions reflect on and help us understand the human experience. This critical study seeks to better understand how myth emerges in storytelling in the video game The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Connecting elements within Ocarina of Time to Joseph Campbells seminal work, The Hero with a Thousand Faces, this analysis explains the games mythic ties as seen in its characters, storyline and themes. The study breaks new ground in two areas: 1) because monomyth is typically applied to literature and traditional media, rather than video games; and 2) as such, aspects of Campbells myth require adjustments to address the nature of the video game medium. Interactivity allows the player to fill the role of the hero, and, effectively, become the hero (to the extent the games code will allow), making the story (and myth) all the more accessible.

Keywords: Communication, Legend of Zelda, video games, critical theory, monomyth, Joseph Campbell

Topic(s):Communication

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 315-1
Location: VH 1010
Time: 1:00

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