“The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening” is a bright and whimsical modern adaptation of its 1993 Game Boy version. It is filled to the brim with all sorts of Easter eggs, dungeons, and puzzles. It is a classic adventure game. The game features plenty of stunning dreamy graphics and detailed background noises that make it all the more immersive to play.
By far, “Link’s Awakening” is one of the oddest adventures in “The Legend of Zelda” franchise. There’s no Hyrule, Zelda, Ganon, the Triforce, let alone any mention of the Goddess Hylia. It’s just the small island of Koholint, a girl named Marin who bears a striking resemblance to Zelda, and a Wind Fish sleeping in a giant egg at the top of a mountain. Not to mention, a few familiar faces from Nintendo’s “Super Mario” series. Link has to wake up the creature from its slumber to return home by using a series of magical instruments scattered across the island, hidden inside of its dungeons.
The map is much smaller compared to some of the other Zelda games but certainly doesn’t feel any more empty. It’s dense with all sorts of secrets to find, almost like a maze, with all of the little things spread about.
The game progresses as you earn more key items. It has a very linear plot, which is quite the opposite of “Breath of the Wild’s” open-world concept Nintendo previously created. In turn, it can feel a bit restrictive to some players, but it has plenty of surprises nonetheless.
The biggest change made to the game would be the Chamber Dungeons. It allows players to set up their dungeons by reusing other dungeon pieces, almost like a puzzle. Although there is no way to share your creations, other than through the use of an Amiibo.
The game itself runs up to $59.99, which has plenty of fans questioning whether it’s worth the price. Especially considering there are very minimal changes in the gameplay itself, compared to its older version. As a matter of fact, it is identical to the original version that is being sold around $5. It’s almost as though they strove too hard for accuracy, even though they have the technology to make more interesting gameplay or decor. “Link’s Awakening” is very akin to a Nintendo DS game or a Game Boy game, except animated in 3D. The toy-like art style is very cute, but it could have featured a bit more in terms of player experience, especially when games like “Breath of the Wild” or “Super Mario Odyssey” exist on the Switch console.
Needless to say, the game is still very much enjoyable and bears a sense of nostalgia through its more vintage style of gaming. It’s easy to get lost within the game, and it’s a whole new journey to dive into, especially for newcomer players.
Zoya Rizwan // Staff Writer