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Reviews Comments: I SEE why it's great, but just don't feel it The Legend Of Zelda A Link To The Past game review by MJTR

And now I commit the cardinal sin of Zelda fans: I don't like Link to the Past... As much as a lot of other Zelda games. I mean, just being in the series at all really is a sign of quality to me, I don't dislike any game in the series, and really don't consider any of them worse then "Good". But when the scale begins at "Good" and continues to "Great" "Amazing" and "Greatest game ever", Link to the Past is solidly just in "Good" territory.

I think perhaps my main problem with Link to the Past is I just don't ever feel a ton of reason to care about what's going on. And that's not all the game's fault, there were still plenty of kinks in video game storytelling to be worked out. But take the rescuing of the maidens for instance. Your quest entails you save a number of maidens who are descended from the sages, but who are they as people? They deliver a number of interchangeable expository monologues and except for Zelda, that's it. A few people in the gigantic map have notable personalities and I care about saving Hyrule for them. I like Sahasrahla as a mentor, Zelda herself is fine, Flute Boy's scenes did touch me a little, but I just don't ever care about Hyrule that much. And when this Zelda game is often praised for its story, I can't help but feel like I kind of got the short end of the stick.

My issues are mostly pretty minor, and even a little ironic. The Dark World has a really great atmosphere, but I kind of hate how I have to spend so much time traversing a land so ugly. Same deal with the Dark World dungeons. I get the bleak feeling and the hopelessness motif, but man, I honestly remember so little about most of the later game dungeons, their bosses, anything... Except for Thief Town, with it's awesome twist ending and the ensuing fight. Double points for having a little cool lore to go along with it.

Even having said all that, the game is really more Seinfeld Is Unfunny to me than anything. If I grew up with this one instead of Ocarina of Time, maybe I'd overlook these shortcomings and love the good stuff, such as the the music, combat and crapload of items, even more. Even with a lot of my complaints, it is still a well made game and I do understand all the love it gets. I love it too, just a smidge less than most of its relatives.

Comments

  • Darthrai
  • 30th Aug 15
I agree with your points. While I haven't beaten ALttP myself, I find that it suffers heavily from Seinfeld Is Unfunny, but it just feels lacking compared to modern Zelda games, including OoT of course and even Twilight Princess, my personal favorite.
  • GallowsNoose
  • 25th Apr 16
You started playing after Oo T didn't you? Not being snarky or anything, but I would like to note that there's a completely different feel from that point out. Which is fine. Everyone has the right to like what they like and I can see your point, but since I started playing in the very first one so I grew up with A Ltt P so I come in with a different base of reference. No one should blast you for your tastes.
  • HappyMan
  • 22nd Jan 17
I know this game is a Sacred Cow, but there\'s a diference in saying that this game was good for its time but didn\'t age well, to say that it was never good to begin with.

To be fair, this game was never praised by its storytelling, but more for its gameplay mechanics, such as the Light World/Dark World dual gameplay, the puzzles, the more structured gameplay, and so on.
  • MiinU
  • 22nd Jan 17
To be fair, this game was never praised by its storytelling

Actually, it was.

At the the time of its original release, it was noted for having a deeper narrative than the previous two games. It was also the game that introduced the Triforce mythos, the legend of the Wisemen's seal, and the Sacred Realm. It laid the blueprint for the rest of the series.
  • HappyMan
  • 23rd Jan 17
@Miin U Well, I mean storytelling in the sense of dialogue and characters, not narrative. The backstory is pretty good, but it\'s explained in the form of several badly placed Info Dumps, and

Forgot to mention that the creators did agree with you about the maidens being little more than talking Mac Guffins, as in other games in which you need to rescue sages, the sages are actual characters that you meet long before they need to be resuced (with the exception of Rauru and to a lesser extent Nabooru).

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