The first game, released in '89, centers around a sword-and-shield-wielding protagonist named Jazeta (not Link), who must scour the land of Neutopia (not Hyrule) to find the eight medallions (not triforce pieces) in order to save the princess Aurora (not Zelda) who has been kidnapped by the dark sorcerer Dirth (not Ganon) in his Climactic Castle (not Death Mountain). Along the way, he uses innovative inventory items such as bombs to blow up dungeon walls and reveal hidden passageways, a fire rod to burn down trees and find even more hidden passageways, a jar (not candle) of Moonbeam Moss to light the dark dungeon rooms, an enchanted bell (not flute) that can open passageways when played, a jar of life-healing potion that can hold two doses at once, a rainbow drop (not ladder) that can bridge small bodies of water, and a magical compass that always points toward his next destination.
In other words, The Legend of Zelda for the TG16, but with enough changes to classify as "original content" and avoid copyright disputes.
Despite this, it is considered one of the best games for the system, and is an enjoyable play-through for any fan of the original NES Zelda.
The second game of the series, Neutopia II, released in '91, did a good job expanding upon the first game's derivative formula. The game follows the adventure of Jazeta's son, who wakes with a start one morning after his sister (mother?) receives a vision that his father was defeated by a dungeon boss and that Dirth is trying to come back from the dead and reinstate his reign of terror. Unlike his father, he can walk diagonally and swing his sword while walking. He also wields new, never-before-seen items such as boomerangs, three wands (not medallions) which cast elemental spells, a flail (not hookshot) that can grab faraway items and damage enemies from a distance, and an Aqua Lung (not pair of flippers) that lets him swim.
In other words, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past for the TG16.
This Series Provides Examples Of:
- Adam Smith Hates Your Guts: The price of bombs and potions increases drastically from your hometown / origin. Particularly bad in the second game where it's a loooong trek back to the beginning of the game.
- Ancestral Weapon: In the second game, your father gives you his sword as he is dying. His magical compass and his fire rod also end up in your hands.
- As Long as There is Evil: Dirth's final speech in both games.
- Blackout Basement: Pretty much the same as the dark dungeon rooms from Zelda 1.
- Broken Bridge
- Call to Adventure: Every darn NPC in the game (starting with your mother) continually encourages you to complete your quest.
- Chest Monster: Some treasure chests stab you if you walk near them.
- Cosmic Keystone: The medallions. Strangely enough, the first game had eight, and the second game had four.
- Critical Annoyance: Absolutely headache-inducing in the first game.
- Doppleganger Spin: Dirth's main attack is to create two images of himself, one of which is really him.
- Dual Boss: The MAGOT (sic) MOTHS in the second game.
- Electric Jellyfish: Underwater monsters in the second game.
- Empty Room Psych: And how! This game has a lot of secret passageways you can find by bombing walls or burning trees, but almost all of them contain nothing but an NPC wishing you good luck on your quest (though some give useful advice). And if that's not bad enough, tons of dead-ends are built into the map design anyway.
- Evil Overlord: Dirth.
- Exactly What It Says on the Tin: In the first game, the strongest sword, shield, and armor were literally called "The Strongest Sword", "The Strongest Shield", and "The Strongest Armor".
- Grappling-Hook Pistol: The "flail" from the second game. Though, like a certain item from the NES Zelda, it burned money every time it was used.
- Heart Container: Yes. They actually used these to represent your life force. And in the second game, you actually picked up little hearts to refill your life.
- Heroic Mime
- Inexplicable Treasure Chests
- Inescapable Ambush: Many dungeon rooms.
- Infinity +1 Sword: The Strongest Sword in the first game and the Sun Sword in the second.
- Kill It with Fire: The fire wand.
- Leitmotif: Several themes from the first game are given awesome remixes in the second.
- Lethal Lava Land: An overworld area in the second game.
- The Lost Woods: A forest in the second game, located at the top-left corner of the overworld, is actually called this.
- Save the Princess: The entire plot of the first game.
- Sequel Hook: Neutopia III was promised in the second game's credits, but never made.
- Slippy-Slidey Ice World: An overworld area in the second game. Thankfully, you get boots with better traction about three screens into it.
- Spikes of Doom: Stepping on certain traps causes floor tiles to flip over, revealing these.
- Strictly Formula: Enter dungeon, get the crystal ball, the special treasure, and the boss room key. Defeat boss, leave.
- Sword of Plot Advancement: You need the Sun Sword (which is created by taking your father's sword to the Ultimate Blacksmith) to enter some of the dungeons in the second game.
- Ultimate Blacksmith: In the second game, one of these tempers your sword into the Infinity +1 Sword.