Difference between revisions of "The Legend of Zelda"

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Nintendo Power - 1988-06 - 035-037.jpg|Nintendo Power, 2nd Quest, part 6.
Nintendo Power - 1988-06 - 035-037.jpg|Nintendo Power, 2nd Quest, part 6.
Nintendo Power - 1988-06 - 054-055.jpg|Nintendo Power, levels 8 and 9.
Nintendo Power - 1988-06 - 054-055.jpg|Nintendo Power, levels 8 and 9.
Legend of Zelda - NES - Design Notes - 1.jpg|Design notes - Dungeon layout?.
Legend of Zelda - NES - Design Notes - 2.jpg|Design notes - Sprite map.
Legend of Zelda - NES - Design Notes - 3.jpg|Design notes - Unused dungeon entrance graphic.
Legend of Zelda - NES - Design Notes - 4.jpg|Design notes - Early over world map.
Legend of Zelda - NES - Design Notes - 5.jpg|Design notes - 2nd quest, dungeon layout 1.
Legend of Zelda - NES - Design Notes - 6.jpg|Design notes - 2nd quest, dungeon layout 2.
Legend of Zelda - NES - Design Notes - 7.jpg|Design notes - Dungeon time line?.

Revision as of 10:26, 7 July 2017

File:Legend of Zelda, The.jpg
North American box art.

The Legend of Zelda is an action-adventure game by Nintendo released in 1986 and the very first game in the Zelda series. It is my second favorite Zelda game, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, being my favorite.

I first played this game in the late 1980s when my brother borrowed it from a boy down the street. My brother accidentally deleted the boy's near-complete save game file, and we struggled to get all his items back before having to return it to him. Later, we ended up getting our own cart, and it quickly became one of our favorites. As we neared completion, I faked being sick so I could stay home from school and keep playing. I was able to find the last heart container and the red ring, but I didn't get to Gannon. My brother beat it first, showed me how it was done, and then I was able to beat it too. The second quest took a lot longer because several of the puzzles were more complicated, but I did end up beating it too.

The font used on the box art on the "ZELDA" logo is Zapf International Demi.


I own the original gold cart, the revised gold cart, and the gray cart. I have beaten the game many times with 100% completion. I've beaten the second quest with 100% completion. I once hand-mapped nearly every bomb/burn site for both quests.


  • Overall: 8/10
  • Best Version: NES


  • Considering the constraints of the media, there is an unbelievable amount of game here! Fitting everything into 64K was a serious feat of engineering.
  • The game manages to be very long without being unnecessarily difficult. Though, a beginner will certainly want the manual and map with them.
  • Even without the second quest, the game is wonderful. The addition of an entirely new underworld was delicious icing on the cake.
  • The slow progression of items you can buy and through the exploration of dungeons keeps the game fresh the whole time.
  • I like how the underworld monsters are more sinister and gruesome than the over world monsters.
  • Despite having very little space for music, it manages to be memorable and not become annoying. The title music is especially good.


  • The game requires a lot of trial and error to find all the hidden rooms and treasures. Thankfully, the vast majority of these are optional.
  • I wish there were more red/blue versions of the various enemies, items, etc. This seems like an untapped area. For example, there are no blue Like-Likes, red Wall Masters, Red Gibdos, or Red Manhandlas. Some of them are backward was as well, like the Red Tektites being harder to kill than the blue.
  • Unless you're familiar with Japanese mythology, a lot of the monsters will seem particularly unusual and abstract.
  • The "Pay me for the door repair charge" annoyingly punishes you for exploring.
  • Some of the items seem to be poorly placed like when you get boomerangs from both the first and second dungeons. Although this may have been on purpose to introduce the idea of upgrading items early on.
  • Dungeon 7 is particularly out of place with a, by then, sissy Aquamentus for a boss, and the red candle for a treasure.
  • In one of the second quest dungeons, it is possible to become trapped in a couple rooms closed off by a shutter door, and, if you don't have any bombs, you need to reset the game.


  • Nothing. This game is sheer brilliance.