The Legend of Zelda is one of the most iconic RPG’s of all time and is a part of the majority of NES and Famicom collections. This review was originally posted in the early 2000’s by Admiral MM (Matt)
When you think of the original Nintendo Entertainment System, what games come to mind? For me it is Mario and Zelda. The master of video games, Shigeru Miyamoto, created both games. Mr. Miyamoto defined Nintendo as a power in the video game market, and his talents still define the best games I have played. He helped revive the dying market after the crash in 1984, and back in the late 80’s, people did not say they were playing video games: They were playing Nintendo.
The Legend of Zelda remains one of the most popular video game series to ever grace this planet. The series has six games, and each one is top notch. Only a few series can claim the success that the Zelda series can. It was a definitive game for the system and at the time held the record for being the game that had the most copies sold (later usurped by another Nintendo game, Super Mario Bros. 3).
The games story was simplistic. The land of Hyrule was in danger. The magic artifact, known as the Triforce of Power, was stolen by Ganondorf Dragmire (Ganon) to help him take over Hyrule. He was searching for the other Triforce, the Triforce of Wisdom. However, Princess Zelda split the Triforce into eight pieces and hid them throughout the land. Ganon’s forces eventually captured Zelda, so her nursemaid, Impa, went out to try and find a hero to save the land. She found Link. His mission was to find the eight pieces of the Triforce of Wisdom, and then face off against Ganon and save the princess.
The game is played from an overhead view, which was the standard for most Zelda games, and most RPGs at the time. The game itself is very solid. The gameplay is great, and the story is very good. There are nine dungeons to explore, and a very large overworld to explore and even get lost in from time to time. The puzzles are not that difficult but can be at time somewhat frustrating. At the end of each dungeon, you face a boss monster. The bosses do repeat sometimes, but not that often. This was one of the first games I bought on the NES back in the day, and I played it over and over again. I still play it today. I cannot get enough of the sword slashing action.
The graphics were pretty good for their time. Although compared to today’s games, they are terrible, but at the time they were very good. The game was very impressive. The graphics were some of the best I had seen in the NES.
The Legend of Zelda has also some of the most memorable music in any game. You play the Zelda theme, and I can bet that just about anyone of the “Nintendo Generation” will recognize the themes from the game. The overworld theme is probably one off the most recognized video game themes there is out there. It is probably only second to the theme from the original Super Mario Bros.
The game was also one of the first to use a battery back up on the cartridge. This allowed you to save your progress throughout the game. The battery lasted for years and worked very well. As a matter of fact, the battery in mine still works after almost 15 years. This was a revolutionary feature at the time and was very impressive. Was nice to stop and comeback later to finish the game I had started.
The Legend of Zelda was one of the first games on the NES and helped define not only the NES, but also its predecessors, the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and the Nintendo 64. Each subsequent game in the series was better than the last. I cannot wait and see what Mr. Miyamoto has in store for us with the next chapter in the Legend of Zelda.
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