“The Legend of Zelda” (NES)

The Legend of Zelda

NES Zelda (Title Screen)

          What can possibly be said about this video game that hasn’t already been said 100,000,000 times? Versatility. Frustrating dungeons, tight controls, unforgiving deaths, tons of exploration, with weapons and items galore. Kinda sounds a lot like a “Souls” game–but before they existed.

          Often mistaken as the first open-ended action/adventure game, that honour goes to Hydlide, a 1984 NES game that came out 2 years before NES Zelda (1986). It was, however, the first game to implement an internal battery with which progress was saved to a part of the cartridge. So, the next time you’re in a sweet videogame sesh and have to save, you can thank the original “Legend of Zelda” for making that sort of thing possible.

          So, okay, it brought a new staple feature of games to the table–but what was the actual game about? Like, “What’s so awesome about the game that I have to care about whether or not I can save my progress or not?” Well, Mr. Double Negative, I’m glad you asked!

          See, NES Zelda was super innovative since, aside from a text crawl with some backstory, you didn’t really have any guidance or clues. There was no “go here, there’s the first level, get all of these things; also there’s a Princess. OK.” You were literally thrown into the game with no weapons, no items, and no money. All that, with no direction, can really leave a player confused and misguided–but that’s why this game shines so brightly! It was up to you to determine where you would go. It was your decision which dungeon you’d go into or not, regardless of what order you were attempting to complete them in. I mean, sure, they were all numbered where you could see, “Oh, this is Level 2, and I haven’t done the 1st one, yet.”

If you wanted to throw caution to the wind and try to fell the boss anyway, you could!

If you wanted to turn tail and come back later when you thought you would do better, you could!

It was 100% up to you how you should go on your adventure.

          Of course, a lot of dungeons will be way easier if you have an item/powerup or two from the previous dungeons, but, if you wanted to go through with attempting a dungeon prematurely, then you could even go in there with no sword if you chose–and there’s people who have! (There’s people who’ve been able to go all the way to Ganon without even using a sword once!!)

          And that’s probably the best thing I can say about the original “Legend of Zelda”: It wasn’t a matter of “being the best game” or “having the most fun combat”, it was a videogame epic that was all about you and your choices. It gave you, the player, all of the control for direction; which, in doing so, ensured that your experience of rescuing the Princess would be unique to you.

          With multiple ways of tackling and defeating the game, “The Legend of Zelda” for the NES will forever be a golden example of how to make a piece of merchandise something personable.


Just my quick thoughts on the original "Legend of Zelda" for the NES that started it all.
Nintendo Fever


  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Myspace
  • Google Buzz
  • Reddit
  • Stumnleupon
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • Technorati
Author: Arthur6413 View all posts by
Hey, y'all. I'm just here making little articles about various topics! :D I hope y'all enjoy reading what all I post, and I appreciate you for having me. I'm on Twitter, and I'm super into: Nintendo, Pokemon, and Yugioh! I'm dating the most absolutely gorgeous girl on the planet!