Review by StephenYap3

"Thy masterpiece unsheathed"

The series started off with the original Legend of Zelda for the NES, when the game introduced an entirely new way to play a 2-D Top-View Game, starring the unusual-looking yet bad ass Link. The series was very well-known for its jubilee of treasures and items, including a bow to fire your collected arrows, a bomb to bring down tough baddies and walls, and so much more. However, the most popular title in the series was known to be the N64 masterpiece, Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. It took every single thing in the Zelda universe to 3-D and did it look stunning. Still, the older titles are good too.

One of those older titles that I'm going to review on is Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. In this game, Link awakens in his bed to be told by Zelda through telepathy that she is in danger. Link goes to the castle and sneaks into the secret passage to meet Zelda in the castle prison. After freeing her and escorting her to the sanctuary building behind the castle, Link's adventure begins there. That's all I'll say for the plot.

Moving on to the game play, A Link to the Past is similar to the past titles that are not Zelda II: The Adventure of Link. Link can swing his sword, shield off some projectiles, and many other things he could do in the original Zelda can he also do here. However, in A Link to the Past, Link can do more things than he could do. He can pick up and throw some objects at enemies, speed ahead to keep up with Sonic the Hedgehog's speed, and even swim. A Link to the Past will blow you away.

As for the objective, your objective is to obtain the three pendants from the three sanctuaries while defeating the many bosses preventing you from getting one of them. Each sanctuary houses one treasure for you to find, so that you may use it to progress through the game. Some treasures however are very vital to the sanctuary's boss, required to defeat them. Use the treasures wisely as they will aid you in the later parts of the game. Anyways, moving on; after obtaining the three pendants, you use them to get a replacement and powerful sword. And then after returning to the castle to find that Zelda has been kidnapped again, the real game starts there. You have an additional 8 dungeons to undertake instead of 3, making the sanctuaries, early in the game, a warm up.

Treasures you find in A Link to the Past galore. There's still the Bow and Arrow, Bombs, and even the Boomerang. The rest is all new: You'll find a sledgehammer to hammer on nails to make paths, a grappling hook to reach to areas across a void, and even a cape that grants you a temporary invisibility effect. Many items appear in A Link to the Past, and there are tons to look out for in this game! In expense, some of the items cost Link some Magic Power from his Magic Gauge. For instance, the cape costs magic to be invisible. And not to worry: There are plenty of Magic Power pickups in the game that will restore its gauge. Sadly, there is no Magic Container from Zelda II, though there is a way to somehow update your Magic Gauge. However, I won't tell you how to do it.

There are even empty bottles that you will find in the game, letting you hold nearly anything. From potions that restore health to caught bees that make good allies. You'll be heavily focusing on the bottles that will guaranteed be a helping hand in the later parts of the game. There are a total of four in the game, which is enough. There are also potions that will restore some of your Magic Power.

There are also Heart Containers, a staple of the series, in A Link to the Past, though this time they are split in Heart Pieces. Four Heart Pieces make up a full Heart Container to further increase Link's health. Many challenges in the game become gradually punishing, especially at the early parts of the game. So, A Link to the Past forces you to dodge and survive. The more Heart Pieces you collect, the more vital Link will be for later on in the game.

Even the bosses in A Link to the Past are quite fun. You'll be confronting a hoard of large knights, a trio of ground-burrowing worms, and even a heavy worm-like monster. Those are the bosses that guard the three pendants, but there are nine more you must defeat after that, including the final boss. Boss fights sometimes heavily require you to use their treasure in the current dungeons to defeat them while other times, you may have to have an item outside of a dungeon. A Link to the Past, much like the series overall, forces you to have skill and learn the enemy's fighting style before taking them down head on.

--Final Words--
Another lazily-written review, but that's all I'm going to write about for The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. It's one of the best titles that Nintendo made for the SNES and just recently, their titles don't seem to be as good as the SNES titles.

Rating: 9.5 out of 10

Reviewer's Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Originally Posted: 03/04/11

Game Release: The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (US, 04/13/92)

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