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Cadence of Hyrule: How To Play When You've Got No Rhythm

Cadence of Hyrule is a quirky new game which mixes The Legend of Zelda with the rhythm game Crypt of the NecroDancer in an unexpected but engaging collaboration.

Players can choose to play as either Zelda or Link and must move to the beat of remixed  Legend of Zelda music. Keep in time to defeat enemies, navigate dungeons and find the 4 instruments needed to enter Hyrule Castle and face the final villain.

The game combines classic top-down Zelda graphics, enemies and locations with rhythm game elements from NecroDancer. While fun to play, what happens if you’ve got no sense of rhythm?

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For those, like myself, who are challenged in the musical department, rest assured you can still enjoy the game. Here are some tips to help you find, and keep to, the beat.

Calibrate Your Latency

When using the dock you may find that the game appears laggy or the sound doesn’t appear to be synced to your movements. This can be because some HDTV’s have latency issues. Luckily Cadence Of Hyrule has a built in latency configuration system that can help you overcome this and ensure the best performance.

To access it simply go to the cog icon in the bottom left of the main menu or if already in game press + for inventory then R to access the system options.

You can then calibrate the Switch to ensure that your movements are as accurate as possible. While this is not as necessary in handheld mode, it’s still worth doing as it will help ensure that both your movements and the HUD are calibrated properly.

Turn On Button Movement

If you’re using a single joycon it can make the game harder. By default you will move using the stick and select items with the buttons. This can make it more difficult to keep in time as the stick is less precise. When your sense of rhythm is less than perfect it often be the difference between success and missing a beat.

If you go into the game options and turn on button movement this will reverse the two controls. You will now be able to use the buttons to move and the stick to select items. Anything bound to the L and R keys, such as Link's shield, will remain the same.

Use The Disco Floor

As a default the game displays what it calls a "disco floor" when enemies are near and the rhythm mode is activated. Disco floor flashes a predictable pattern on the floor with squares around you flashing lighter and darker in a checkerboard pattern. The floor pattern moves as you do and is always covering a few tiles around your character.

While sometimes the beat will not match the disco floor flashes, they remain predictable and can act as a metronome, visually showing you a steady and predictable rhythm. This can help you keep in time while also keeping an eye on your characters immediate surroundings.

Check the HUD

There is also a HUD which will appear along the bottom of the screen. This will give you a visual indicator of the beat. However, I found that this made the game more difficult as I focused too much on this and not enough on the enemies.

If you find either the HUD or the disco floor unhelpful then you can turn one or both of them off in the game options.

Use Fixed Beat Mode

I'd encourage all players to give the default mode a decent try but if you’re still struggling with the rhythm there is another option for you, fixed beat mode. This will allow you to ignore the beat of the music, turning the game into a different but no less valid experience.

In fixed beat mode the enemies still move in the same predictable patterns but instead of moving with the beat, they move when you do. This gives the game a more tactical feel, making it less of a rhythm game and more of a roguelike game.

During fixed beat gameplay the rest of the game is identical. It simply removes the need to keep to the beat. However, because the gameplay experience is different it will log your game statistics separately to any runs done on normal mode.

To activate fixed beat mode press R to pull up the system menu then go to options and gameplay. You will find a toggle for fixed beat mode near the button of the list. Alternatively, if you fail hard enough, the game itself will encourage you to turn it on.

Now go find your rhythm.

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