To commemorate the upcoming 20th anniversary of A Link to the Past, Nintendo Power is included an article in their April edition about one of the most arguably acclaimed as well as underrated games in the series.  They believe this title may be the greatest “link” in the series.  Find out more after the jump!

It’s hard to believe it’s been 20 years since the release of A Link to the Past, but it is still revered and loved by many.  Among the many reasons that make it such a great game, Nintendo Power cites some of the innovations that it provided not only the series, but to the world of video gaming as well, including its emphasis on story telling.  A Link to the Past also provided us with pieces of hearts and the trademark spin attack that our hero is well known for.  Their number one reason goes to the opening sequence, which they say despite the technological limitations of the time was able to provide a sense of impending doom an suspense.

Oh, and who could forget these guys?


What do you think? Do you agree with Nintendo Power, and that A Link to the Past may very well be the greatest Zelda title ever? Let us know in your comments!

Source: Nintendo Power (via GoNintendo)

  • Ben

    One of the better ones but not THE best of them all


    i guess "best zelda game ever" would depend on many different factors such as innovation etc, but personally, i think what made zelda different was its focus on story-telling. for me, twilight princess is the best zelda ever because of it's story.

    it also ripped a hole in my face with its awesomeness.

    • DOm

      Agreed. It seems like few people want to admit it, but TP did everything right. Some critics want to attack it because it wasn't original, but as SS showed, sometimes it's better to be good than original.

      • I love TP and always will because of its amazing graphics and powerful story. SS hasn't done as well either because the older audience will see the art style as more childish, especially the Sony and Microsoft fanboys.

      • TheMaverickk

        I'm sorry but Twilight Princess was a weak Zelda game for too many reason to count.

        It was an entertaining game overall but poor by Zelda standards.

        Also I'm not sure how SS showed us that it's better to be "good" then original. SS scored 27 perfect scores…. Twilight Princess 23…. you make it sound as though SS didn't succeed at all.

  • Callin


  • Hylian1seven

    Honestly, you can’t compare a 3D game with a 2D game, especially with zelda cause 2D zelda games and 3D zelda games are different in so many ways

    • TheMaverickk

      Actually that's really simple minded thinking…. Link to the Past and Ocarina of Time share so many similar things. Ocarina of Time just changed how would navigate the world. Doesn't mean you can't compare the story, and game play elements, all of which have a lot in common.

  • Meh, OOT was #1 game for years. That says it all. XD

    • Harry Pothead

      Honestly I've preferred MM over OoT

      • Heriod77777

        So do I, OoT isn't on my top 3 list.

        • TheMaverickk

          Link to the Past was #1 game for 7 years before Ocarina of Time XD….

          Not to mention that a lot of what made Ocarina of Time great came directly from Link to the Past. So yeah still not as simple as one being better then the rest.

      • Prada

        yeah but without OoT– MM wouldn't have happened!

        • Prada

          I love the dark overworld theme!! talking about awesomeness incarnate

        • dan

          Using your logic. the original was the best because you wouldn't have any of the other games without it.

        • Shaelyn

          and without ALttP, OoT wouldn't have happened. OoT is ALttP redone in 3D, essentially. the same basic elements exist in both.

  • VanMarVan

    One of greats for sure, but not the best. You have to give it mad props for the type of game it was when it came out, there was nothing like it really, but you can say the same for a lot of Zelda games, especially Ocarina of Time.

    • Fizz

      There was a game like Ocarina of Time. A Link to the Past.

  • Harry Pothead

    Best 2D Zelda game for sure!

  • TriforceofCourage

    I'm hesitant to call it the best Zelda of all time, but it is certainly the best 2D Zelda of all time.

  • Cuber456

    The best Zelda game of all time is a subjective thing. This may not be a popular opinion but I don't really care all that much for LTTP. It is a decent game but compared to other Zelda games, I just find the game and story to be dry. In my opinion, if I had to narrow it down between what could be the 3 best Zelda games, I would choose MM, WW and SS. But like I said, this is a subjective thing. Commence forth the people who think LTTP is amazing and people who stereotypically choose OoT because it was a game they played when they were a kid and haven't bothered to play more recent Zelda games.

    • TheMaverickk

      Not only is it sad that people don't play newer Zelda titles… but it's sad that people haven't played those games released before Ocarina of Time either.

  • None

    It is indeed the best Zelda ever. It established the formula for the games to come and it did take storytelling to new heights and by doing so, it truly exploited the emotional side of the game for the first time, not to mention the fact that, unlike what many people say, it introduced Zelda’s lullaby, Ganondorf’s theme, a blue ocarina, the hookshot, etc.

    • Link and Cuccos

      It also introduced the Master Sword for the first time. 😀

      • Banooru

        and the Master Sword actually is rusted from age. I think that is cool. The sword loses it's power and must be restored in other games, but the master sword in ALTTP actually has a lil' bit o' rust on it. Kind of interesting that it was the first appearance.

  • I think the best 2 zelda games are a Link to The Past and The Wind Waker.
    I think that Ocarina of Time took alot from a Link to The Past and alot of what it took is what people love about Ocarina of Time

  • Brandon

    How can it be both "one of the arguably most acclaimed" and "underrated" at the same time? That sounds like a self-contradiction three words apart in the same sentence!

    A Link to the Past is definitely one of the most notable entries in the series, though. I can make a list of all the innovations it added that Zelda games are still using today. I'd say it was the first Zelda game that can be called genuinely fun. The first two have their novelties, but by modern standards just aren't as fun as other Zeldas. And it was my first Zelda, so I have some nostalgia for it.

    • Fizz

      I think its because people seem to forget it under the shadow of Ocarina of Time, which is just the more well-known game, so in that respect it's underrated.

    • hyruleshero89

      Like any zelda game, ALttP has fans who love it and others who don’t, and of course those that are in the middle. Many who love it believe it to be the best in the series, hence the critically acclaimed part, but it is constantly in the shadow of OoT when it comes to reviews hence the underrated. Sorry if that part was muddy, but thanks for the comment! 🙂

  • Bubbah

    Ugh, I really hate these "best Zelda game" debates. Because truly, when it comes down to it, it's really a matter of opinion and your personal preferences for a game. For example, I enjoyed Twilight Princess for its unique plot, challenging puzzles, different gameplay, & realistic characters. My best friend thinks it tried too hard to be a darker game and certain areas (such as Hyrule Field) lacked depth. Neither of us is right or wrong because it's simply our OPINIONS-not like I could present irrefutable evidence that the plot is unique because the term "unique" is relative.

    That's why this whole "best game" thing comes off as a bit petty to me, no offense to anyone who really gets into it. All I mean to say is that in my opinion, there can be no best game because no two gamers are alike.

    • Twister2

      i agree Bubbah gamers are different i have never played this game so i can’t say anything about it. the only zelda games i have ever played are. sky ward sword. ocarina of time 3d. links awakening dx. spirit tracks. and phantom hourglass. all good so my personal all time favorite game is S.W.S aka sky ward sword.

  • Matthewzfan

    I love Link to the Past!!! It's the game that got me into the series, I remember renting it at the video store and playing it on the Super Nintendo during my high school years. It's one of my favorites and one of the best Zelda games.

  • ZeldaPlaya

    Its in my top 5 thats for sure.

  • Trikeboy

    Best 2D Zelda yes, best over all, no. Anyone else get the feeling this is being used to generate interest in LTTP for the upcoming 3D remake of the game that has been hinted at for months?

    • Fizz

      We can only HOPE.

  • LegendofMerah

    Best Zelda game or not, come on Nintendo, release it as a 3D classic!

  • Hyrule’s Shadow

    I have not played ALTTP so i cannot say anything but for me my favorite Zelda games have to be Link’s Awakening, Minish cap and OoT. It would be cool if Nintendo released it for 3ds as a classic game. If anyone could tell me what Zelda is? (I’ve watched videos of the game ALttp and I am confused when your uncle tells you Zelda is your…. and I have no idea, anyone care to tell me?)

    • Fizz

      I believe this was changed for the GBA release, it was a bit of a mistranslation. She's meant to be his destiny, I think.

      Also, if you loved Link's Awakening, you'll love ALttP. I consider both games to be a pair. Link's Awakening was, at the time, a direct sequel.

      And you'll love the Oracle games too. Now those are underrated.

  • Fizz

    Anyone who recognises me from any of my comments here knows my thoughts on this; A Link to the Past is THE Zelda game from which the series spawned; it perfected what was started with the first two games, and while the games have gone into 3D, they have not necessarily IMPROVED, except perhaps in storytelling.

    While the story is not deep, it's still one of the darkest stories in the series, and for the time it was in fact incredibly deep when compared to the NES games. Perhaps you had to own the manual with its extravagent telling of the lore to really appreciate it, but this game basically came up with the ENTIRE backstory of Hyrule, the same story that people credit OoT for was contained within ALttP. Ganon's history is explained, the creation of Hyrule was explained, and the existence of the Triforce was explained. Not only that, but it introduced the Master Sword. Even though OoT is a prequel to ALttP, Skyward Sword is the only time they've really dared to go further back into the history of the series.

    Anyway, for me, its the gameplay. Everything just feels so satisfying, running at full pelt into trees and enemies, knocking monsters down holes, pelting gigantic bosses with arrows (with those iconic sound effects) and even doing dungeons out of order. And it's the simple things like picking up bushes and chucking them at monsters and sprinkling Magic Powder on enemies to turn them into Slimes that really make it feel so much fun to me.

  • LilGhirahim

    Can't we all simply accept that every Legend of Zelda game redefines "epic" and stop arguing?

    • YoYo

      Couldn't agree more

  • Goron

    Twilight princess for the Wii is the best legend of zelda game ever end of disscusion

    • audioblogs12

      Challenge accepted.
      Sure, the spin attack is quick, but it makes no sense that a wolf's tail should shine at all, and the graphics SUCK worse than any game I have EVER seen.
      Meanwhile, ALttP beats TP 100 to -1000, no questions asked. Look at the FACTS:
      – the art style isn't the overrated 3D "Realistic" that hardcore N00BZ like
      – It DEFINED Zelda
      – ALttP introduced the concept of Link turning into an animal when he enters another dimension(i.e. turn into a bunny when Link enters the Dark World or turn into a blue-eyed beast in the Twilight Realm).

      • Goron

        You do have some good points and Link to the Past is my second favorite legend of zelda and what do you mean the graphics suck?? They are WAY better than Link to the Past. Besides a wolf is way cooler than a bunny.

  • all personal opinion, Im gonna have to go with oot or mm.

  • heroofmasks

    to me itsa not the best to me non of them are the best there all equal but as a 2d zelda yea its the best zelda 1 2 alttp are all long and very good gaqme links awakening to along with ooa/oos but mc as good as it is is just alittle bit to short wich started short 2d handheld games with only 4-5 dungeons not including the last dungeon but still there are no best zelda games i get the same funniest out of all of them

  • heroofmasks

    i will say this only one of the zelda games im not the happies about and its tp the overworld was to big and bland nice game play but ya rarly had to do anything there just 2 side quest and 3 have to don part of the story besides that just bland rarly went into when i got the ability to always warp

  • Lucius Optimus

    A Link to the past is the best of the 2D Zelda games. I am not sure if it is fair to compare it to the likes of Ocarina of Time, Twilight Princess or Skyward Sword. However, I give it a solid second place next to Skyward Sword.

  • Sanity's_Theif

    It's in my top 5:

    1) MM
    2) TP
    3) OOT
    4) ALttP
    5) LA

    DEFINITELY a great game

  • TheMaverickk

    Considering how much of Ocarina of Time is BASED on Link to the Past it's definitely arguable that Link to the Past is the best Zelda of all time.

    Not to mention that it was so amazing that it basically trumped during the 16-Bit gen as probably the best game of that time. I always remember getting my Nintendo Power magazine and it would have the Power Charts, and Link to the Past was always in the top 10.

    Seriously though here is just a sampling of how many elements emerged from LttP;

    – Master Sword
    – 3 pendents/jewels/pearls mechanic to unlock the Master Sword
    – 3 Goddess and Triforce creation myth, as well as the balanced heart to make a wish
    – Zora's who aid Link, giving him the ability to swim
    – 7 Sages (The 7 maidens were descendents of the sages, with again Zelda as the leader)
    – Two alternate worlds that you must travel back and forth from in order to progress
    – Hookshot, Hammer, Red/Blue/Green potions, Bottles and Fairy catching
    – Using the Master Sword to reflect attacks back (Agahnim Battle… basis for Phantom Ganon)
    – Ganon's Tower
    – Dungeon Item used to beat Dungeon Boss mechanic
    – Zelda's Lullaby, Ganon's Theme both originate from this title
    – Ocarina (called flute in the game)
    – Kakariko's first appearance

    Link to the Past actually introduced so much that it's hard not to consider it the best Zelda game. Ocarina of Time is nearly just a 3D version of Link to the Past with more cinema scenes.

    • trollolol

      I thought the alternate worlds was from the original game, but traveling between them was new…

  • Abdul

    The Best Zelda is open to opinion, but i will say that it is one of the most ambitious game in the Zelda Franchise in both scale an content

  • Vladislak

    Well, I'll always be partial to Link's Awakening, it was the game that got me into video games in the first place. But I'd have to say that if that wasn't my favorite then A Link to the Past would definitely be number one.

    It made so many advances for the franchise, but more than that, it just had phenomenal gameplay. The items, the enemies, the story, the dungeon layouts and puzzles, it's a hard act to beat.

    I can't wait to see if Nintendo follows through with Miyamoto's suggestion of remaking it!

    • TheMaverickk

      Personally I don't want to see Link to the Past remade….

      What I'd like to see is that they create another Zelda game that references the style of Link to the Past (the dark world especially). I mean look at all the enemies in the game that have yet to be brought into the 3D realm.

      Helmasuar King for example would be amazing…. seeing how they they handled Molderach and it's scorpion tail it would be great to see that boss brought back.

      Or what about a boss battle like Blind the Thief? There are other design elements that are extremely unique…. I mean the dark world was actually a pretty disturbing place…. Skull Woods and it's dungeon? Village of Thieves? The game is possibly the darkest of the Zelda titles with it's settings.

      Also why haven't we been attacked by Geldmen in the desert yet? A sand monster that rises from the very sand you walk on. That would be a relatively neat enemy for the Zelda series to bring back.

      Anyways just saying so much unexplored potential for the next 3D Zelda title.

      • anonymous

        I agree. ALttP was perfect in its NES form, thank you very much. We don't need to change its feel radically like we did with OoT, RIP.

  • DFM Marlink

    My favourite is Link's Awakening, with A Link to the Past a close second, but I do agree with sentiments that A Link to the Past is the most *important* and most vital game in the Zelda series. Nearly everything people love and acclaim about modern Zeldas got its start in that one terrific SNES game. If you say you're a Zelda fan, you *need* to experience A Link to the Past to understand what the series is at its core.

  • trollolol

    Ocarina never was good. It's overrated. ALttP FOREVER!

  • TotalDeath

    All Zelda games are awesome. Some may have opinions as to which is the best, but people are entitled to their opinion. I personally like OoT the best. And others like LttP, or TP, or even AoL. This is all preference. No one Zelda game can be the "best". They are all too good.

  • Brian

    I think I might have to agree that it is the best…it's the one I come back to the most, the one that (despite technological limitations) delivers the best mood, and it's the one I tend to get all the "Zelda sounds" from (rupee pickup, themes, sword shooting, etc.).

    And while OOT took Zelda into 3D, all the elements that make Zelda what it is are perfected in A Link to the Past.

    Just my 2 cents 🙂

  • fourswordslink

    my favorite would be wind waker. I thought that game was perfect with cool graphics, interesting characters, zelda wasn't a damsel in distress, awesome boss fights, creative areas and very memorable moments that were EPIC. I loved the music as well and wind waker also had my favorite ganondorf( I mean I know he is the same one from OoT but what I mean is he was the most interesting in wind waker). One more thing, to me it had the saddest parting with your partner. I ha tears in my eyes when the King of Hyrule drowned him and Hyrule just so Link and Tetra could have a better future. Those are my reasons why Wind Waker is my perfect Zelda. I want to get a Link to the Past though…

  • MushroomzKiller

    Wind Waker 😉
    Of course, Link to the Past will always come a close second!


    I keep hearing it is great but whenever I try to play it, it just doesn't catch on. I feel bad for myself for missing out on a supposedly amazing game.