Even Evil Geeks fight, or should I say disagree. Today at the lair we started a discussion about old Super Nintendo games because there’s a guy on eBay selling every one ever made and I pointed out that most of them probably sucked. Yes, I’m a buzzkill and I realize that but the conversation moved to how in the big scheme of things that we’ve been given a lot of good games, but also a ton of really bad ones that we forked money over for through the years. The first one that I threw out to the group was Zelda 2: The Adventure of Link and most of the nerds agreed, except Biff. You can check out his argument for why this is a good game right here, but I’m not buying it…So we’re going tit for tat on this one!
Okay…Lets save us a Princess!
Alright, so if you haven’t played the original The Legend of Zelda then you should be shot, just kidding… in all honesty you should play it, in fact you just have to. Although the graphics are not what you see in todays games, the concepts and the tactics that you use to solve puzzles and defeat enemies even in todays games are there, in fact they were born there! Zelda gave us an overhead view which seemed weird in a world of side-scrollers like Mario, but it really worked. It also gave us a huge world to play in that was completely open. Inside the world were dungeons that you descended into that seemed to triple the games size. It was amazing at the time and you have to understand, this was pre-internet so you had to play with your wits. The one thing that I do remember is an oversized map that you could get if you subscribed to Nintendo Power magazine, but that was about it from a resource standpoint, well that and your friends!
Oooohhhh Boy….Master Sword is like Excalibur…This game has to be awesome! (It’s called sarcasm people!)
So after such an amazing high that was The Legend of Zelda, every kid in America not only wanted but needed to get their hands on the much awaited sequel, The Adventure of Link to further explore what Hyrule had to offer! Again it was 1988, so there was no internet and only a couple of magazines that talked video games, one of the main ones being Nintendo Power so rather than an honest review you kinda got a sales pitch with a couple of pictures which got you super psyched for the game. To further make this game seem special the cartridge wasn’t the crappy looking gray color that was common for Nintento, but rather it was gold…GOLD I TELL YOU! When you turned the game on it went to this really cool shot of the Master Sword in a rock a’la Excalibur… it really had everything going for it, that is until you got past the start screen.
Yeah, like you wouldn’t be fooled when you saw this? It was 1988 dammit!
The game combined the overhead view from the first one with a side scroller element to it as well. The overhead view is basically what traverses you through the Hyrule landscape and when you enter a building it switches to the side scroller. In my opinion its really the side-scroller that makes this game suck so much, you basically go forward and backward and that is it. I know that is what a side-scroller is and I really like them in other genres, but when you look at the depth that the first game gave you in mobility and then you play this piece of garbage you cant help feel like the game is lacking. As far as combat goes, one of the coolest things that Link had at his disposal along with his sword and shield were extra weapons like bombs, arrows, and boomerangs. Well, they’ve been taken away for the most part and instead Link learns magic…Yay 🙁 C’mon I want a link that is less Harry Potter and more Legolas dammit! The combat system in the first game was real time and made you think on your feet to defeat bosses, this one is sooooooo slow and clunky, you can basically move back and forth, use your shield or sword and crouch. Yup, its even boring to write about. The bad guys were mehh…You had some originals (like Moblins, Octoroks, and Moahs) that were re-imagined from the first game and then some new ones too. There even were these pain in the ass Bird Knight guys who were called Fokkas…yeah read that again out loud and try not to laugh. The bosses were kind of what you’d expect, harder versions of the regular bad guys and in the end the big bad was your own shadow named Dark Link? Huh? Thats right the game goes all Peter Pan on you… but no Gannon.
I think the reason that I dislike it so much is because as a 9-year old kid I just felt cheated by Nintendo. In fact I remember the first time I launched this baby up, it was at C-Mart’s house. I had just got it and brought it over, we drooled over the gold plated game cover and the cool illustrations in the instruction manual. We booted it up to the opening screen and put a name in the Game Save file (Totally used Link by the way!) and off we were to Hyrule…only to realize that Hyrule became a fucking dump. The game was totally unfamiliar, had a ridiculously steep learning curve to it (especially when the first one was inviting,) and even mocked you when you died! We might’ve given the game an hour then moved onto one of our older ones. At the end of the day all I have to say is Boooooooo Zelda 2!
And when you lost, you were mocked by Pig-Man! Urrrgghhh…
So all in all I recommend that you do not play this game as it will frustrate the hell out of you, especially if you really like the Zelda franchise. Hell, after this they went back to real-time battles, extra weapons, and an open world. Granted, this game has a couple things going for it like the introduction of the 3rd Triforce and Dark Link, but all in all you just found out about that here, so no need to play it… ever.
Use the TriForce…Do yourself a favor and play any other Zelda game!
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