Skyward Sword is my favourite ever Zelda game and maybe just my favourite ever game. Clearly this is not a widespread notion, and I won't try to persuade you it's good if you don't already like it: Zelda fandom is a broad church, and I realise most people prefer the freedom to glide over to that mountain over there, or select mushrooms from a menu to drop in a pot. But Skyward Sword's whole vibe just works for me - as clear as a crush, as true as a laugh. Which is strange, because at first I thought it looked crap: too pale and twee, and there was this annoying shot in an early trailer of Zelda making a wet, adoring-anime-girl expression, beneath a fringe that looked like it'd been cut by a monk with a bowl.
But then I played the game, and it opens with the sight of two Loftwings flying to an island that floats in the sky. The music is lush and full and symphonic - even a bit Hisashi? A bit Laputa, a bit Nausicaa? - and then it goes quiet as we see Zelda, who begins to play a harp and sing. It's The Ballad of the Goddess (which is Zelda's Lullaby but backwards), and it's beautiful - sweet and true and somehow familiar, like a memory caught on the wind. And now I'm smitten. Actually her bangs look great. But she only gets two lines in before her Loftwing lands to take a letter to Link - her childhood friend, predictably asleep. A lazy link and a singing Zelda and an adventure that spilleth over with music and colour; with series-best dungeons and some brilliant bosses (the Koloktos fight!); with singing dragons and wiseguy moles and Moblins with animated nipple rings (?!). But also, with romance.
I find it easy to love Skyward Sword, because it runs on love; heroics in a major key, with sword in hand and a heart full of hope. Link here is often wide-eyed with wonder, and even the world is sort of blushed throughout with pinks and purple, deep-enchanted by music so good I asked my piano teacher for a 'Zelda Special' lesson just to play Fi's Theme.