[Review] The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (1992)

Published on January 12th, 2014

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The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past commonly known as Zelda 3, (following on from Zelda II: The Adventure of Link for the Nintendo Entertainment System), saw a return to the traditional drop down view that featured in the original The Legend of Zelda. Many of the fans nowadays, particularly the die-hard dedicated fans of the series, remember the second title as the Black Sheep of the entire series, especially since the original is much more fondly remembered. From the US release of the Super Nintendo in 1992, Nintendo released what is now considered to not only be one of the greatest titles for Nintendo`s 16- bit system, but also one of the greatest games of all time.

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For the first time in the series saving the princess of Hyrule was just the beginning of your quest.
Link starts out, like any other video game protagonist,  stripped of any real powerful skills and abilites. With each new item you discover on your journey you gain a new ability; such as the ability to Charge with ‘Pegasus` shoes’, or the ability to swim with ‘Zora’s Flippers’. There are so many treasures and surprises that finding every piece of heart or bottle, for example, requires real dedication and close observation.

The game`s look and feel is timeless. Zelda 3 has not aged at all, to this day the graphics remain vibrant and colourful. The worlds are so immersing that one feels that time has been loyal and faithful to 1991/1992. Some may even find it hard to believe that The Legend of Zelda: A Link to The Past is now over 22 years old since its original release in Japan. The Controls are brilliantly sharp and responsive, pressing a button once is enough, there is not much memorisation required, for these reasons the controls feel natural, and the aesthetics certainly lend to it’s overall theme.
The atmosphere of the game feels very real: the sound Processor of the Super Nintendo conveys the sound of the storm realistically and dramatically. The legendary Koji Kondo san`s beautiful notes are conveyed as heavenly as usual, giving myself as a 3 or 4 year old a real sense of fear during the sudden beginning when lightning struck outside and Link went off to find his uncle. The music made me feel as if I was Link when I hadn’t even started playing the game then.

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The quest simply drew the player in more and more as the player progressed through the game and found the next item or solved a new puzzle. The western release of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, included a hint book to guide the player in solving the game`s puzzles, whenever the player felt lost or perhaps simply didn`t know what to do next in the game.
This game has a special place in my heart and would be of course fondly remembered by any fan; many compare it and say it surpasses The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (one title regarded today to be the greatest game of all time by many). Nintendo fans, fans of the series or simply casual RPG fans would debate this matter for the next fifty or so years.
On the 22nd November 2013, a sequel was released: The Legend of Zelda: A Link between Worlds, set thousands of years in the future it is not a direct sequel. The many references there are to The Legend of Zelda: A Link to The Past would make long-time fans of the series long for the 16-bit masterpiece.

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The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past can now be purchased for only 800 Wii points in under ten seconds: the fact that this is possible is amazing and is the blessing that is technology, and of course Nintendo`s service. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past is a title not even the most casual of gamers should ever miss, I forgot to mention the story, one word can simply describe the game`s story that is: epic.

 

Original release date:
JP November 21, 1991
NA April 13, 1992
EU September 24, 1992
Developed by: Nintendo EAD
Genre: Adventure, RPG
Also known as: Zelda 3
System released on: Super Nintendo

 

Guest article provided by the mysterious James C, let him know what you think by leaving a comment.

 

All images sourced via the official Zelda website: http://www.zelda.com/
All rights for The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past reserved to Nintendo

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