There is no Zelda, nor Hyrule Castle, nor Ganondorf, but other Nintendo characters such as Yoshi or the mythical Goombas do appear. ‘The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening’ game added in Nintendo Switch and is, more than any other, an atypical Zelda. An adventure that for the first time in the saga would raise a solid narrative that, for more, would be inspired by David Lynch’s Twin Peaks.
The unexpected martial game for Game Boy not only became a resounding success, but it also served to lay the foundation for everything that would come later in the franchise. Now Nintendo Switch recovers that genius and adapts it in a remake for Switch. 26 years later, The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening is again a great game for Nintendo Switch.
Due to the fact that Mega Drive is a more popular console (it had more than 50% of the console park), for many our first approach to Nintendo was through Game Boy and, therefore, to ‘The Legend of Zelda’ through ‘The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening’.
With him, we did not face the most successful game until that moment, but we would be lucky to stand before the most evolved face of the saga. ‘The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening’ is, of course, the game that just laid the foundation for everything we would live after.
Much of what we have seen in later games is born precisely from that point. From the collectibles to the exchanges – a barter system that starts with an object and ends with a very special gift – also going through the help of characters, minigames, the design of puzzles inside the dungeons and even the ocarina.
With such a scenario it seems logical that a small but very important game was the one chosen by Nintendo to face its most ambitious remake to date. ‘The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening’ is a copy of what was seen in Game Boy in 1993, but with everything necessary to have it again and replay it now as exciting and essential as the first day.
An adventure as atypical as essential
With the arrival of Link to a mysterious island, an adventure begins in which our main objective will be to wake the Fish of the Wind to be able to get out of there. The perfect perfect excuse to give us a mapping loaded with villages and different biomes in which the quirky characters and the dungeons full of keys and secrets are the main claims.
In general, each new dungeon will give us an object that will serve to overcome those areas that were previously impassable. For example, a pen that will allow us to jump the gaps that were previously thrown into the void or a bracelet with which to lift the rocks that slowed our progress. This means having total freedom to explore the island, those obstacles being the only ones that in some sense guide our way a bit.
Of course, we can also do it with our favorite weapons, first with the shield and the sword, then with bombs, the bow or the mythical boomerang. The combat remains exactly the same as in the delivery of Game Boy, but it is given a little more depth when introducing the parry with the shield. If a protected enemy attacks us, we must stop him first to destabilize him and attack later.
Although the addition is appreciated, most of the fighting is as bland as it was at the time, but luckily, the dungeon bosses are equally intelligent and spectacular. In its entirety, but especially at this point, ‘The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening’ for Nintendo Switch is like a history lesson in which you can see many of the mechanics and attack routines that we would later see in countless other games.
Video Game History
Precisely because of that attention to detail when it comes to providing variety to each challenge, it’s easy to see ‘The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening’ a more introductory game than nostalgic. A perfectly affordable title so that, beyond the fact that adults relive or experience this adventure for the first time, it serves the smallest gateway to role-playing and action games.
It is a game that requires exploration, encourages orientation and memory when it comes to knowing what you should do in each moment or what X character asked you a while ago. It seems to be a fantastic exercise in learning the language of the videogame that, without a doubt, should be the star gift of the next Christmas.
The infinite walks and conversations are relieved here a bit with a newspaper that keeps the conversations held so that we do not always have to resort to memory or repeat conversations, but it is not the most outstanding novelty regarding the original delivery.
That merit goes to the object use system. A complete review of the system of exchange of objects that this time allows us to map two of them instead of having to deal with the management of the menu as we did before. It is what you have to enjoy six buttons instead of just two.
A remake with much more than new graphics
Beyond its spectacular graphic appearance , an authentic joy that gives even more packaging to its atmosphere and transforms its characters into a kind of mixture between Funko and Pinypon, the arrival at Nintendo Switch is also a new way to use the kinematics and camera games that, despite their subtlety, are tremendously exciting for those who remember what that first version was like.
And since not only pretty polygons live a game, despite being quite continuous in its approach it is possible to introduce new details such as more hidden collectibles, more teleportation platforms to move around the map with agility and, the great star of this edition, the possibility of creating our own dungeons and sharing them with friends.
As a kind of ‘Super Mario Maker‘, those rooms that we have traveled in the real dungeons will serve as an inspiration to create our own dungeon. A grateful addition that adds a little more length to a game that, on the other hand, is not a short walk at all.
Given the comings and goings and the need to always find the right path or the way to solve a puzzle – sometimes even having to kill monsters in a specific order to get the key we need – the main story can go as far as the 15 or 20 hours. Especially if we also aim to get it all.
A game that we will remember forever
For all this, The Legend of Zelda for Nintendo Switch is an even more spectacular game than it once was. Behind him is a fantastic restoration and reformulation work that results in an even more refined version than the original.
A fantastic game for all ages that serves, in turn, as a look at the past and dictionary to understand our present. A game that was already essential in his day and that after more than 25 years proves to have remained in very good shape. Of course, something that not all remakes can say.
As a kind of diorama of nice dolls, Nintendo demonstrates how his hand knows how to combine the child and the adult with amazing ease. A genius that, especially for how fun it is and the twists of its history, makes ‘The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening’ one of those video games that, hopelessly, many will remember forever.