Review by Omnislasher
"Eyes...hurting...must find more...batteries..."
Let me start by saying that this game is simply incredible, and anyone who owns a Game Boy Color MUST have it! When I reserved this game, I had my doubts and worries that it wouldn't be as good as Link's Awakening DX, the game that, before these two, was IMO the reigning champion among GBC games. Well, after playing the game for barely an hour, I knew that my worries were for nothing. There are two main reasons I feel these games are so good: 1. Because there are so many new features and innovative ideas added to make them more than just your average Zelda game. Aside from the obvious different dungeons, plot, worlds, characters, etc., you collect 'magic rings', which, once 'appraised', become powerful rings that you can wear to use their powers. (Example: There is a 'Roc's Ring', which makes it so that cracked floors don't crumble under you and you can stand on them for as long as you want). As expected, rings differ in value of abilities. There are 64 rings in total, and this new feature adds incredible depth and replay value to some already awesome gameplay. There are also 3 different animals, Ricky, Moosh and Dimitri, who each have their own abilities and you must befriend and gain the aid of to make it through your quest. Depending on how you play the game, you will get the Flute of one of these animals so that you can call them and use them whenever you please. 2. Probably the one thing I love best about these games: The Password System. This has got to be the most unique, innovative idea I have EVER seen in a video game. How it works is: When you beat one of the two games in the series (You can play either first), you get a password, which you can input to the other game when you start your file to continue the two-part quest, and beat the REAL enemies of the series in the end. Also, you will get passwords from certain people in one game, which you must give to the correct person in the OTHER game to get various secret items and upgrades, exclusive to passwording. You can then TRANSFER the password back to the original game using Farore, the Oracle of Secrets, to get the upgrade in the other game as well. It may sound confusing, but once you understand it, you'll find it's really a fun process.
In this game, Link is teleported to the land of Holodrum, where Din, the Oracle of Secrets, is captured by the Dark General Onox, and you must obtain the Eight Essences of Nature. Only when you beat the (unpassworded) game do you realize that there's a lot more to this story than there originally was, and you must continue your quest in The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages to finish this two-part adventure.
Same basic, solid gameplay as Link's Awakening, with brand new, unique dungeons and some new weaponry, this game is overall a lot bigger than LA. There are even two different worlds you must explore. The game plays nicely and easily as Link's Awakening (which is a good thing).
Like LA, these are some of the best graphics I've seen on GBC. The color is used perfectly, IMO, and the sprites are all drawn nicely. There are even some very beautiful cut-scenes thrown in the mix.
Some new tunes, some old ones, I found them all to be excellent, catchy, and mood-fitting, and you can't expect much more from the SFX.
Replay Value: 10/10
Probably the most impressive aspect of this game. As I already mentioned, the rings will keep you playing this game for hours upon hours after you beat it, as you'll love it so much that you'll want to complete it fully. The games are definitely good enough to replay, but there's a good point in doing so, as you'll want to play an Ages and Seasons both passworded and unpassworded, and by beating the game passworded (completing the series), you get something called the Hero's Secret, which you can enter in a new game of either Seasons OR Ages, to start off like a regular game but with the Victory Ring, and the ability to obtain (apparently) two more Heart Containers.
Buy or Rent?
No sense in renting when you're most likely going to be hooked on the game in no time, and wanting to buy it. So just buy it, buy it, buy it! It's your duty as a Game Boy Color owner to also own this awesome, awesome game.
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 05/29/01, Updated 05/29/01
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