Thursday, November 21, 2013
Zelda Week: The Adventure of Link Review
I know what your thinking. Of all the Zelda games to play before the release of A Link Between Worlds why did I chose this one. Well it's complicated. Back when I was a kid my friend brought over his copy of Zelda Collections, at the time I only played Ocarina of Time so It was cool that I was finally going to play some more Zelda games. However since I was still a kid I obviously preferred to play the much more current games so I play Majora's Mask and the Wind Waker Demo.
I eventually got my own copy of the Zelda collections and played through Zelda 1. However everytime I tried to play the second game I just couldn't get into it. Around last week I saw that some Zelda games were on sale to commemorate the release of a Link Between Worlds on the Nintendo Eshop. One of them was Zelda 2. I decided then and there that it was finally time to play trough it, and so I did. So is it really a bad game? Let's find out.
The story of this game takes place after the first game. Impa tells Link that there is another Princess Zelda who is trapped in never ending sleep until someone gains the 3 pieces of the Triforce and uses them to wake her. This Zelda is actually the first Princess of Hyrule named Zelda, after her brother and a mysterious Wizard tried to gain the secrets of the Triforce from her the Wizard cast a sleeping spell which also costed him his life. Distraught the Brother locks her in the highest tower in Hyrule, and declares that every Princess born to the Royal family must be named Zelda in remembrance.
In the timeline the events of the Tragedy of Zelda I must take place somewhere between Skyward Sword and Minish Cap. Although Skyloft had a Zelda, but she wasn't a Princess and at that point there was no Hyrule. This also makes me think the Zelda in this game isn't one of the reincarnations of the Goddess Hylia since I don't think you can continue to reincarnate if your previous life didn't die, and she's been alive for the majority of the Timeline as well as every alternate one. Plus she is a red head, and the majority of the alternate Zeldas which are also reincarnations of Hlyia are blond. Although I do have to wonder why she keeps reincarnating herself as members of the Royal family was she just nostalgic for the name Zelda?
Anyway I got way off topic. In order to break the spell Link must travel far and wide to find the 6 Palaces, and put the special crystals back into there pedestals. Meanwhile some of Ganon's Servants are still around trying to resurrect their Master by using Link's blood, but it's weirdly not that important to the overall plot. After Link put's all the crystals back he goes to the Great Palace where he faces the Thunderbird who can be really difficult especially if you don't know you have to use the Thunder Spell to even damage him. After defeating the Thunderbird you find an old man who has the Third Piece of the Triforce but before you can get it you have to face Dark Link who is really easy if you know how to exploit him. That's it you beat the game, you use the Triforce to wake up Zelda, and she gives you a kiss as the curtains go down.
The difference between Zelda 1 and 2 is obvious at the first glance. The first game is a top down adventure/dungeon-crawler and the second is a side-scrolling Action RPG. That right you actually have Exp Points and Leveling up in this game. This is why Zelda 2 get's so much hate, it changed up the formula and people didn't like it. However I find it plays fine so I'm all for it. The gameplay feels good for the most part, however it sometimes feels like there's a bit of a delay when your attacking and sometimes Link can be a little bit slippery. This game also get's rid of the items from the first game so no bow, however you do get spells which can be useful like the Shield and Life Spells.
Where this game shines is the presentation. The world is much better designed then in Zelda 1. I didn't get lost nearly as much as I did in Zelda 1, and I only need to look up where to go once or twice. The sprites are pretty good, and very detailed in some places. The townsfolk while still suffering from a bit of NES era dialogue are actually helpful to you, at least more so then the Old Men in the first Game.
The biggest problem however is the difficulty. This game is the definition of Nintendo Hard. Plus new to the Zelda series is lives.Which is good and bad at the same time. If you lose a life you usually start back at the beginning of the room you were in with full health and magic. However if you lose all your lives you get a game over, and you have to start off at the room Zelda is in at the beginning of the game. Meaning you have to back track all the way back to were you left off just to try again. You can get 1-Up's which are scattered across secret areas on the World Map but there very few, and far between.
Overall it's a pretty good game. It changes up the formula, and fix some of the problems the first game had. Sadly the new formula and the overall difficulty of the game will turn a lot of people off, which I think is a shame. In all seriousness if not for the difficulty I would consider this a better game then the first game. But it's still a bit to hard for my tastes.