The Legend of Zelda: The Adventure of Link

Publisher: Nintendo Developer: Nintendo
Reviewer: Abe Released: 1989
Gameplay: 78% Control: 77%
Graphics: 87% Sound/Music: 47%
Story: 4% Overall: 73%

Let me start out by stating this game is highy underrated, mostly because a lot of the long time fans of the RPG genre don't like Action RPGs that much. And The Adventure of Link blended traditional and Action/RPGs to something extremely unorthodox.

Now that that's over with, the actual review. As for the Story line, the absolute WORST feature of the game, it's horrible. And I mean that in the worst way possible. It's your regular save the Princess plot, with no twist. I swear if I have to save Zelda one more time... The only reason I gave it 3%, rather than 0%, was that I found it interesting that Link ended up fighting his shadow rather than Gannon at the end of the game. And the ending? I won't say anything, it would be a complete spoiler, but trust me, it's bad. It made me wonder why I spent so much time on the game anyway.

As for sound, it was alright. The little swishing sound Link's sword makes when he swings it is nice, but a little loud for all the times you're going to have to swing it. The other sound effects are just what you'd expect from a Zelda game, and does not dissapoint. Why did I only give it 47% percent if the sound was that good though? The music! Just like in The Legend of Zelda, the music sounds good for about 5 minutes. Then it drills into your head. Then it plays some more. Then it's making you crazy. By the time you get done playing the game, you'll be looking for a sledge hammer to smash your NES with. Later on, you'll find your family and friends ready to strangle you for humming it.

The Graphics while in the overworld are downright hideous, but once you get into the sidescrolling levels it's a different story. Enemies and characters look very good, almost hand drawn. Animation is smoother than you'd expect from a NES game, too. The Backgrounds aren't quite up to par with such NES games as Ninja Gaiden III and Defenders of Dynatron City. It deserves the 89% rating I gave it, and then some.

Control in the sidescrolling levels is great, and very smooth, nothing else to say about it. However, on the overworld, it was poorly done. I find myself extremely annoyed at the fact that link STILL can't move diagonally! It still gets 77% though, because of the side scrollers.

Gameplay is the thing you'll find yourself happiest with. Let me see if I can describe how it all works. Gameplay is devided into two different types of levels, the overworld, and the SideScrolling levels. In the overworld, there are 6 different types of terrain. Paths, clearings, woods, water, swamps, and deserts. You're safe as long as you walk on paths, but if you venture out into other terrain, you can encounter enemies. You'll encounter different types of enemies depending on what type of terrain you're on when you're encountered. Enemies are also devided into strong and weak types. During encounters, or dungeons, you'll find yourself in sidescrolling levels. RPG loyalists may not like the all action and very little exploration approach taken by The Adventure of Link in these levels, however if you give it a chance you may find it very rewarding. Fights with the Stalfos are FUN, letting you defend and attack in creative ways. Boss fights are just plain great, each boss having a weakness you need to learn to defeat them. Towns are sidescrolling too. Now, this wouldn't be anything close to an RPG if there weren't items to collect and a character growth system. Items are all automaticly equipped on you, so it's a simple system as far as that goes. The character growth is also relatively simple. Everytime you kill an enemy, you get a certain amount of experience points. Collect these to power up your magic, life, and attack. Unluckily, the amount of experience points you have is reset everytime you turn off the game. You can also learn spells and special moves for attack by talking to warriors and wizards in towns.

Overall, the game is fun, but extremely hard. You'll find youself having an easier time putting it down than picking it up. But if you like Action/RPGs, there's a good chance you'll like The Adventure of Link.


A rare blend of traditional and action RPG elements made Zelda 2 unique.

Though looking weak now, Zelda 2's graphics were great for its day.

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