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A Link to the Past without nostalgia goggles

Joined
Sep 21, 2014
Location
Michigan
Yeah, Zelda is a very 'your results may vary' franchise. As for me personally, I actually don't think I have a favorite. I have games that I think are stronger or weaker than others, and I have ones that I feel did one thing or another thing better or worse than others. For instance, though I feel Skyward Sword is one of the weakest ones to date, it has an amazing soundtrack, strong overall dungeons, and compelling character interactions. Twilight Princess looked beautiful and has very tight combat and controls, but suffers from some weak or tedious dungeons and piss-easy boss fights. So if you're looking for someone unaffected by 'nostalgia goggles', I feel that I qualify.

Do you remember feeling very threatened in A Link Between Worlds once you got to Lorule? That general damage balance is present in many of the older games as well. I'm willing to bet you got at least a little worried the first time you took damage from a Lynel!
 

Emma

Eye See You
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Vegas
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I don't even understand nostalgia goggles. I mean, I know the effect and I know how people with it act, but I never could wrap my mind around why you'd even want to think that way. I never have trouble with putting a game in terms of what was possible in its times. I can enjoy older games just fine, but I don't let them get on a pedestal that can't be ever reached again. That being said, I do think that A Link to the Past is far superior to its "sequel" A Link Between Worlds. My first Zelda was Link's Awakening shortly after it initially launched on the Game Boy back in the early 90s. I only got to play A Link to the Past briefly on a friend's SNES. I didn't get to play it in full until the GBA remake was released and I loved it a lot. This in a time where there were much more advanced console games like The Wind Waker. I liked it more than the new console game (but I still love TWW a lot). Though I'm sure people would say that doesn't count anymore since that was well over a decade ago.
 

Curmudgeon

default setting: sarcastic prick
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grumpy
criticism of the control scheme is valid. It was irritating in 1992 too. The important thing to remember about playing an early entry of a franchise is that all of the subsequent entries didn't exist (obviously).Our reference point didn't include oot, mm, tp, etc. It had been almost four years since Zelda II. It was almost everything we had wanted in a sequel.

you can't divorce context from experience. What you've already played and seen had inextricable influence on what you play and see. Without knowing what was coming 1993-2015, it was pretty ****ing awesome.
 
Joined
Sep 21, 2014
Location
Michigan
I don't even understand nostalgia goggles. I mean, I know the effect and I know how people with it act, but I never could wrap my mind around why you'd even want to think that way.
I suspect it's not an intentional thing. Games you play when you're younger, or games that set the parameter in your mind for the experience, they tend to cement themselves like that. It's like a hatchling looking at its mother for the first time, an imprinting of a sort.
 
Joined
Aug 12, 2015
Do you remember feeling very threatened in A Link Between Worlds once you got to Lorule? That general damage balance is present in many of the older games as well. I'm willing to bet you got at least a little worried the first time you took damage from a Lynel!
Yeah sure did. I remember trying to get past the Lynels on Death Mountain in Hyrule and quickly giving up when I found no items I had were actually effective except for the sword which just wasn't feasible (I didn't have the Fire Rod at the time). I love the way the game subtly tells you "you're not supposed to go here yet" at this point without forcing you to. When I first got to Lorule I got decimated by the Hinoxes. Having actually dangerous enemies is certainly one of my favourite things in Zelda, because not only does it challenge your reflexes, it also makes bottles useful and gives Heart Pieces a purpose.

That being said, I do think that A Link to the Past is far superior to its "sequel" A Link Between Worlds.
Would you care to elaborate on that?
 

Emma

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Would you care to elaborate on that?
I didn't like its story as much. It felt dully predictable. The plot twists were not surprising. I didn't like the art style. Everything looked like it was made of balloons like those ones clowns fold into shapes. The item system felt sloppy. I didn't like renting items and the names were very stupid. The dungeons didn't feel as creative as the ones in A Link to the Past. I didn't like the wall painting gimmick. I really wish there weren't gimmicks all the time in Zeldas. Everything has to have a gimmick now. It can't just be a game with solid gameplay, good level design, good character design, and good dialogue. It has to have some silly gimmick. I much preferred A Link to the Past's darker more severe tone over the light-hearted and comical one in A Link Between Worlds.
 

Lozjam

A Cool, Cool Mountain
Joined
May 24, 2015
I didn't like its story as much. It felt dully predictable. The plot twists were not surprising. I didn't like the art style. Everything looked like it was made of balloons like those ones clowns fold into shapes. The item system felt sloppy. I didn't like renting items and the names were very stupid. The dungeons didn't feel as creative as the ones in A Link to the Past. I didn't like the wall painting gimmick. I really wish there weren't gimmicks all the time in Zeldas. Everything has to have a gimmick now. It can't just be a game with solid gameplay, good level design, good character design, and good dialogue. It has to have some silly gimmick. I much preferred A Link to the Past's darker more severe tone over the light-hearted and comical one in A Link Between Worlds.
Every single Zelda game has a gimmick though, besides the 2 NES ones
As long as the "gimmick" is well used, then that is when everything works well.
A Link Between Worlds had a 2 worlds mechanic
LA had 2D platforming and mario enemies
OoT had time travel between 2 eras
MM had the mask system and the 3 day system
OoS had the seasons mechanic
OoA once again delved into time travel
WW had sailing
TP had the wolf
PH/ST had touch screen controls
SS is motion controls
People act as if "gimmicks" are just some new thing to the series, but really, they are the things that have given the series it's longitivtiy and it keeps the games from getting stale.

ALBW's "gimmick" really did change the way you saw the world of ALttP. It was well used, really clever, and it did freshen up the 2D gameplay while taking advantage of 3D visuals.
 

MW7

Joined
Jun 22, 2011
Location
Ohio
Oddly I felt that ALBW had surprisingly bad hit detection. Going up and down slopes, it was very difficult to hit something. In contrast I don't recall ever having an issue with the hit detection in ALTTP. I played ALTTP for the first time well after its release, and it was far from my first Zelda game so I don't think I had very much nostalgia for the game if any. I genuinely think it is superior to most of the games in the series. It's simplicity gives it huge advantages over the more recent games in which you spend more time in cutscenes than the total amount of gameplay in ALTTP. I grew up playing OoT, and loved the freedom/nonlinearity, quick pacing, and emphasis on dungeons. When I finally played ALTTP, I realized that it had the strengths of Ocarina in a more concise package. As far as gameplay alone goes, it may still be the best game in the series.
 
Joined
Aug 12, 2015
I know what you mean about the slopes, though that didn't bother me much. Hit detection was spot on in any other situation for me though.

I'm going to give A Link to the Past a try sometime, seeing some of the arguments made here. Still busy with Phantom Hourglass at the moment, and yeah, I actually enjoy it even though it's not as good as Spirit Tracks so far.

*edit*



No, I am not ashamed of myself.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Oct 13, 2013
Location
Australia
The best part of Zelda SNES was the music. It was amazinng and the best of any Zelda game to date. The rest of the game is alright. Nothing outstanding, and not the hardest LoZ game by a long shot but it's still fun to play from time to time.
 
Joined
Oct 13, 2013
Location
Australia
Every single Zelda game has a gimmick though, besides the 2 NES ones
As long as the "gimmick" is well used, then that is when everything works well.
A Link Between Worlds had a 2 worlds mechanic
LA had 2D platforming and mario enemies
OoT had time travel between 2 eras
MM had the mask system and the 3 day system
OoS had the seasons mechanic
OoA once again delved into time travel
WW had sailing
TP had the wolf
PH/ST had touch screen controls
SS is motion controls
People act as if "gimmicks" are just some new thing to the series, but really, they are the things that have given the series it's longitivtiy and it keeps the games from getting stale.

ALBW's "gimmick" really did change the way you saw the world of ALttP. It was well used, really clever, and it did freshen up the 2D gameplay while taking advantage of 3D visuals.
My list of gimmics for each Zelda game would be as follows

Zelda 1 - Overworld/Underworld, 1st/2nd Quest
Zelda 2 - Spells, XP, the most open overworld of any Zelda game to date (in my opinion). Can't really say 2D platforming as that was a directional change for the series that in the long term failed hence Zelda 3 went back to top down.
Zelda ALTTP - Light/Dark World
LA - Jumping with Roc's feather, 2D platforming sequences (was a gimmic here)
MC - Kinstone fusions, the figurne lottery, big and little Link and the 4 Links
OOT - Two Time zones, fishing and the overuse of the ocarina
MM - 3 day cycle and the masks
OOS - Seasons
OOA - More time travel
WW - Sailing, all that damn fishing up junk while on the boat and the Nintendo Gallery
FSA - the 4 Links
TP - The wolf, the normal/twilight areas and those fancy secret sword moves you learnt (and motion controls in the Wii version)
PH - More sailing.
ST - The train.
SS - Grinding/farming all those materials, Above and below the clouds - the two different areas.
ALBW - Two worlds and the merging with walls mechanic

The gimmics just make doing the same core thing over and over in every LoZ game interesting. Most Loz games are completing dungeons/palaces/temples, getting tons of loot to do so, and finally beating an end boss to save someone or something.
 
Joined
May 4, 2014
Location
California
I know what you mean about the slopes, though that didn't bother me much. Hit detection was spot on in any other situation for me though.

I'm going to give A Link to the Past a try sometime, seeing some of the arguments made here. Still busy with Phantom Hourglass at the moment, and yeah, I actually enjoy it even though it's not as good as Spirit Tracks so far.

*edit*



No, I am not ashamed of myself.

That drawing is hilarious!
 

CrimsonCavalier

Fuzzy Pickles
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Mar 27, 2015
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United States
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As some might know I'm a very recent entry in the Zelda fandom, my first game being A Link Between Worlds. Hooked ever since, I've played most of the canon by now and, while waiting for Spirit Tracks and Phantom Hourglass to arrive, decided to give one of the older games a try on the Wii U virtual console.

Now I've heard a lot of people saying A Link to the Past is their favourite Zelda ever and it still holds up well some 23 years later. But I honestly just can't get into it. It's not the graphics or the sound that turn me off (I expected those), rather it's the quite cumbersome control scheme. The hit detection of the sword is really shoddy and moving around itself I find pretty unrensponsive. I also couldn't find anything else of interest (I've played up to the conclusion of the eastern palace) that other, more recent games didn't just do better.

Now I'm not here to bash the game, and seeing as how old it is, the controls not being as fluid as newer entries in the series is kind of expected. What I'm wondering is, am I missing out because I ditched the game now that Spirit Tracks has arrived? Is there more to it than nostalgia?

Again, not trying to be an asshole here - basically I want people to sell the game to me.
It's definitely interesting to see how someone sees one of my favorite games of all time having only recently played it, instead of experiencing it when it came out.

A Link to the Past remains one of my favorite games of all time, never mind one of my favorite Zelda games of all time. And it isn't just nostalgia. Sure, I would be disingenuous if I said no part of me loves the game because of the memories I had with it, but there is definitely a lot more to it than just memories.

I think one thing that is important to mention, and @Curmudgeon touched on it, is that people who played this game a long time ago played this game a long time ago. What I mean by that is, the things you were unhappy with (namely, the controls, hitbox, etc..) are things we already experience and are used to. When I go back and play the game, I don't have to relearn the controls. They're engraved into my knowledge already. I've played the game a dozen times, in various incarnations, and I can say that I hardly notice the clunkiness of the controls.

The game holds up to this day despite the controls because of everything else the game had to offer. The story was intriguing, the Light/Dark World dichotomy, the exploration, the item collecting, the music, the level design, and artistic beauty. As much as I love Minish Cap and Link's Awakening, as a whole package, I'd take A Link to the Past over any of them any day.

I'm not sure if you're going to go back and give it another try, but in either case, if you want to see a shameless plug playthrough of this game, check this out. There's a reason why I chose this as a my first ever game to play on YouTube, and it's because it's such a timeless classic.

It not only starts many of the gameplay mechanics that we still have in current Zelda games, but it starts a lot of the time-honored traditions in the series that you, as a new Zelda fan, will grow to love. It's a fun game, it's an important (in terms of Zelda as a whole) game, and despite it flaws, I think, it still holds up even after all this time.
 

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