Ocarina of Time is an action-adventure game with role-playing and puzzle elements set in an open world environment. The player controls Link from a third-person perspective, in a three-dimensional space. Link primarily fights with a sword and shield, but he can also use other weapons such as projectiles, bombs, and magic spells. The control scheme introduced techniques such as context-sensitive actions and a targeting system called “Z-targeting”. In combat, Z-targeting allows the player to have Link focus and latch onto an enemy or other objects.
It is important to be specific when referring to the different versions of Ocarina of Time. In keeping with the established Zelda tradition, pre-ordered copies of Ocarina of Time on the Nintendo 64 featured “gold” cartridges. Also, the game’s box was made of sturdy plastic instead of cardboard and exhibited the boxed phrase “Collector’s Edition.” Gold carts were the first American release of Ocarina and were only offered in a limited number, making them collector’s items.