The StarSoldier

ZELDA II: The Adventures of Link

Artist touch: The sword here looks cool but there isn't much else overall. Cover art rating: 5/10

(Nintendo, July 1987)

Month it won: May 2006

Special note: Like the Legend of Zelda there are two different editions of this NES game available. One cart is gold while the later version is standard gray.

Introduction and Story:

My not so special look back at the Nintendo Entertainment System is almost over and in my fifth edition of the NES Dud Series here I wanted to find a game that did not live up to the huge hype that preceded it. After Nintendo had success with the first Legend of Zelda on the NES the public demanded a sequel. Unfortunately, it looks like they were under too much pressure to create a completely new Zelda adventure because if you never played this game before; The Adventures of Link is a 2D action/role playing platform game that's almost plays nothing like the last Zelda.

Here's why you're here this time: Nintendo copies the whole Sleeping Beauty story line because Princess Zelda is fast asleep and Link the elf has gotta wake her up by placing 6 crystals in haunted palaces of Hyrule and then get that magical TriForce thingy to finally snap her out of it.

Controls and Game Play:  

Although the first Legend of Zelda was a huge hit for Nintendo, if you were expecting the same open ended action/adventure experience you're in for a big shock this time around. Link can still run around a overhead map but all the action now takes place in new 2D platform scenes similar to other NES games like Faxanadu. The new jumping and ducking controls work fine enough and all, it just feels weird in a Zelda game.

Sure, the new side scrolling action takes some getting use to but the game is still pretty fun to play and I really like some of the new changes as well. As Link kills enemies he can gain experience like in other role playing games like Final Fantasy or Dragon Warrior. The best part about this feature is the option to upgrade either your defense, magic, or strength when you have right amount of points. Sadly, you can only upgrade you skills 8 times though so it doesn't feel has deep as other RPG's where you can usually go has high as level 99.

The game also includes new towns to explore. Not all the towns are friendly but many of the people will try to help you with advice, power ups, and each village has it own wise man that gives Link a special ability. All that is great but why do all the people in this game talk so damn slow!? Here's a example: "IF..... ALL.... ELSE...... FAILS.................... USE.......... FI.........RE". One town even has a guy named Error in it. I don't know about you but I would really like to meet his other brothers Glitch and Fu*% Up here, eh?

Graphics and Sounds:  

Yeah, you're playing a elf in a green mini skirt here!
Zelda II's graphics also look way different as well. Just imagine Super Mario Brothers with Zelda characters you get the idea here. The game has some good animation with some of the characters but the backgrounds lack detail especially compared to other NES games like the dark scenery in Batman the Video Game for example. After playing the game for a few hours a found the music, although good, got really repetitive but the various sword strikes and grunts sounded fairly realistic here.
The Bottomline:  

OK, the Adventures of Link may have let some of the original Zelda fans down since the game plays so differently now and there is no second quest here either so once you finish it you're all done. Still Zelda II was a very fun game here and it is filled with tons of mystery and danger in every dark dungeon so it's hard to put down the controller till everything is completed here. If you are looking for a long and challenging adventure/action game The Adventures of Link is still a great choice but Nintendo, should really lay off the crack the next time you do your sequels, eh?

What were they on, this isn't Zelda?
*Battery back up game
*500 points on the Nintendo Wii

ZELDA II: The Adventures of Link
overall rating: 83/100
Find this game on eBay here!
For 1 player only
graphics: 6/10
sound: 7/10
gameplay: 8/10
replay: 5/10

(Ryan Genno) 2006

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