A Link to the Past GBA Review
Back in the day The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past was well ahead of it’s time and easily one of the best SNES games, not to mention video games, of all time. Years ago, Nintendo released a port of the game on the Gameboy Advance. Not only could you play A Link to the Past, but the game also came bundled with a brand new multiplayer addition, Four Swords. In addition, anyone who beat the Four Swords game unlocked a secret dungeon in their A Link to the Past save. In other words, players got excellent value for money when they bought this port. A Link to the Past may be an old game, but it still holds up so well to modern gameplay standards. If you haven’t played this game already you should dust off your old Gameboy Advance and seek a copy of it (which will come dirt cheap by the way), and here’s why.
Nintendo also made a few improvements in porting over A Link to the Past to the Gameboy Advance. Aside from a few bug fixes, a sleep mode has been added, allowing you to take a break and continue your adventure right from where you left off without having to waste too much battery power. The graphics have been improved a little bit, and the menus and item screens flow faster than on the original.
The formart of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past is very similar to most 2D Zelda games. You play the game from a top-down perspective, and you have a giant overworld to explore at your fingertips. You progress from dungeon to dungeon defeating bosses, whilst doing quests inbetween your dungeon trawling. This is all done extremely well. There are two versions of Hyrule in A Link to the Past – the “light” world, and the “dark” world. Link must travel between both worlds obtaining items, solving puzzles, and rescuing princess Zelda. The integration between these two worlds is impressive, with some puzzles requiring you to manipulate objects in both. The dungeons are fairly easy to start off with, but they get rather challenging as the game progresses. The dungeons are also large, packed with secrets, and it’s a joy to explore them. Link eventually gets access to a large amount of items to help finish his quest, and many of them, such as the magic wands and ranged weapons, are very fun to use. There are also some hefty side-quests to complete, adding even more to an already content-filled game. A Link to the Past is a challenging, epic quest that will keep you occupied for plenty of time.
If that weren’t enough, then remember the Four Swords addition mentioned earlier? This game is much shorter and easier than A Link to the Past, but it’s still great fun and a sizeable addition to a great package. A multiplayer mode for Zelda was a great idea on Nintendo’s part. As you progress through The Four Swords, you unlock more content in A Link to the Past. The only downside to this is that you can’t play The Four Swords single player, yet you’ll find it difficult to find anyone to link up with in order to play the game these days, especially since each player is required to have his own cartridge. Generally, you won’t get to play Four Swords Unless you know a dedicated Zelda fan in real life. I wouldn’t get too disheartened if you end up never playing the Four Swords, though, since A Link to the Past alone is enough reason to buy this game!
Two new titles are in the works – Ocarina of Time 3D and The Legend of . But we should never forget about the classic games of any console system or game series, because they nearly always offer a compelling gameplay experience. Plus, it’s nice to get away from the big flashy graphics of modern gaming and settle down into some old-school 2D sprite-based environments once in a while.