Legend of Zelda II – The Adventure of Link

I might as well make my first post about the game that started it all: Legend of Zelda II – The Adventure of Link. The Legend of Zelda franchise spans a few dozen games, spanning every Nintendo game system and as I write this has been around for 30 years.  There is a huge following for this series and everyone has their favorite game/generation.  Everyone also has their own interpretation on how the story line is suppose to go and what order in which to play the games.  For those of you who are reading this, and you would like more information on that, check out the following sites:
Legend of Zelda Wiki
Zelda Universe

This article though, is about my experience playing Legend of Zelda II – The Adventure of LinkPlease note, this is not a walk through in the slightest, there are plenty of sites out there devoted to walk-throughs and play-throughs.

Legend of Zelda II - The Adventure of Link - Sleeping Zelda

I didn’t start playing Zleda like most people, with the first game…so the characters of Link, Zleda, and Ganon were pretty new to me.  It wasn’t until much later did I discover this wasn’t the first time Ganon attempted to do something to the world of Hyrule.  Legend of Zelda II – The Adventure of Link starts out with Zelda put under a sleeping spell, and Link standing ready to adventure out, find a cure, and save the day.

I loved the mechanics and leveling of this game more so than any other version of Zelda.  Link is awarded experience points, and after so many points, one of his stats (Life, Magic, Weapon) increases.  You start out at level one in each category and max out with level eight.  Other versions of Zelda required Link to find heart pieces and heart containers.  Another feature that was different about this, than any other version of Zelda was that you started the game with three lives.

Link fighting in the forrest.

The game play of this version of Zelda also provided a top/down and side scrolling play style.  Adventuring throughout Hyrule was done by moving over trails, through plains, forests, deserts and swamps, but beware, adventuring off the trail could spawn an easy or hard monster looking to kill Link and use his blood to bring back Ganon.  Once engaged in battle, or if advancing through a town or dungeon, play style switches to side scrolling.  One big feature I loved about combat with this version of Zelda is that you can make Link jump, guard, stab, cast spells, and upward/downward thrust (once taught).  This is complex programming for an NES game.

The essential story line for this game is after Ganon’s defeat in Legend of Zelda, Ganon’s forces placed a spell on Princess Zelda which put her into a deep sleep.  Link, the champion of Hyrule must go out into Hyrule and gain the necessary strength to retrieve the Triforce of Power and save the Princess.  (Please note: It’s been a while since I have last played this game, so the method used to save the princess may vary).  Ganon’s forces are on the look out for Link, so they can kill him and use his blood to resurrect Ganon.

Game_Over_(The_Adventure_of_Link)I spent months playing this game…months.  Very complex and difficult game for a 12 year old to play.  This game has always been one of my favorites in the series, and will remain in my list of top video games of all time.  Which may have to do with the fact that it was my first Nintendo game.  I still think the graphics are amazing, given the technology.  The game play works great, the story line is pretty solid, and the difficulty still holds true today as much as it did back in 1987.  Nothing pisses me off more than the red screen with a “chuckling” Ganon looking back at you.


2 thoughts on “Legend of Zelda II – The Adventure of Link

  1. Anthony

    I remember playing this game. It was fun but a nightmare – especially the final castle where you fought shadow link. I needed a walk through to finish this game.


    1. I didn’t have the luxury of a walk through. I had to go by rumors from friends, or glimpses from Nintendo Power…if someone happened to have the copy with the hints or clues. But yes, beating that final dungeon was a nightmare. You start each game in the same place Hyrule Castle, where Princess Zelda sleeps. You walk through Hyrule, and hopefully you can make it to the final castle with all three of your lives…and if you make it through to the castle with all three lives, you hope you can make it to Shadow Link with those lives (or the extra one found in the castle) because facing Shadow Link was a nightmare.


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