The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

a game by Nintendo

Platform: SNESSNES

Genres: Action, Adventure/RPG

See also: Zelda Games

After reforging the TriForce and banishing Ganon's minions from Hyrule for all eternity, twice, Link thought nothing could tear him and the love-of-his-life Princess Zelda apart ever again. He was right. But an untold tale concerning Link's virgin voyage in the realm of Hyrule is about to take center stage on the Super Famicom: The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past takes us back in time, back before Ganon's legendary badness, back before even the NES, to Link and Zelda's ancestors (who coincidentally are also named Link and Zelda!) and a fabulous adventure.

One of Ganon's unholy colleagues, the corrupt priest Agnim, has swiped the Seven Daughters of Hyrule, shattered the TriForce, locked Zelda in a dungeon, and thrown away the key. Spring her from jail and you're only just getting your toenails wet in Nintendo's most complex role-playing maze-a-rama ever. Here's a sneak peek at this Japanese sales sensation, now available overseas for the Super Famicom and on the verge of a U.S. launch for the Super NES.

New Looks, New Levels, New Link

Zelda I ('87) and Zelda II ('89) set standards for excellence in NES swords-and-sorcery games. The Super Famicom redesign, a top-down perspective game, plays closest to the original Zelda, with a similar play interface, revamped enemies, and hot music and graphics. Our green-garbed hero's third, er, first quest spans the four comers of Hyrule and all points in-between, including waterfalls, caverns, villages, dungeons, and mountains. He does battle with all the skeletons, bats, rats, swordsmen, and rock-spitting octopuses Zelda fanatics can stand.

The first and foremost of Z III's play improvements is the incorporation of four -- count 'em four -- button inputs instead of just two. In addition to Sword (B) and Item (Y), you can lift, push, pull, and throw inanimate objects with A, and access a gorgeous, scrolling, slant-view overworld map with X. Link's tools of the fantasy trade include Swords, Shields, Bombs, Clothes, Boots, Gloves, Flippers (for swimming of course), Magic, Keys, Maps, assorted Treasures, and money in the form of Gems.

Every role-playing type title requires maze running and mapping, but rarely, if ever, is it done as well as in Zelda III. As opposed to Zelda I's basic overhead-view one-level movement, several "layers" of tunnels and passageways can crisscross all on one screen! You climb or descend ladders and walls to jump from one layer to another.

Visually the characters look like and are well-drawn upgrades of their cartoony selves. Awe-inspiring effects such as a chilling thunderstorm and the Forest's foggy environs add welcome flavor to Hyrule's many mystical locales. And music? Take a listen and you'll be spirited away to Hyrule in no time. Old and new tunes are as absorbing as 16-bit sounds get.

A Legendary Zelda

To borrow a line from a well-known TV commercial, Zelda III is "a bit more exciting, a bit more challenging, a bit more graphic, a bit more colorful, a bit more..." Heck with it, Zelda III is a LOT more of those traits and then some. No word yet on what will and what won't change between the Japanese and U.S. versions, but all indicators are pointing to a near-direct translation, so check out the following highlight tips and tricks. Look for Link's Super Nintendo debut within a month a two, at which time we'll print a blowout strategy guide. Be there or be an Octorok!


  • Plead your case to this forlorn soul and he'll fork over a weak but usable sword. Your next blade's stashed in Fog Forest.
  • Pull the right-wall lever with all your might to unlock the door.
  • Push this crossed-swords blockade to open a secret passage.
  • Pepper the gang of Darknuts with arrows from a distance and polish them off with sword-swipes. Run under the red leader's leaping stomp attacks and counter-strike when possible.
  • Heave ho, have Link lift this bush to uncover a back entrance to the palace.
  • Trap skeletons against the wall and hack 'em to bits with a fully-charged Sword.
  • Stun the jail keeper with your boomerang, move in and clobber him for the kill, and free Zelda from her too-cruel captivity.
  • Don't look down and leap feet first into this cauldron to fall into a bonus treasure room.
  • Move quickly and step on the top-left tile to unseal the locked doors in the bouncing bowling ball trap room.
  • Slash the middle bush in this section of the super-creepy Fog Forest to uncover a drop to a hidden heart piece.
  • Pick up pots for a quickie life or magic refill, then toss 'em at enemies for a one-hit knockout.

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The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past Downloads

SNES The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past download

The third in the Zelda series will make its debut on their Super NES this Fall!. This time the plot changes, as you are not looking for the Triforce of Power, but rather, you will travel back in time to the land of Hyrule before it was destroyed by the evil wizard, Ganon. You will be aided by all new allies that you must find and locate as you proceed on your quest. Battle the minions of evil and use new spells, magic and powerful weapons to help protect you in your travels. Expect to see a lot of spectacular Mode 7 effects, as you proceed through an adventure four times the size of the last game!

reggie posted a review

The Ultimate Adventure Awaits...

The ultimate adventure is about to begin on the Super Famicom. The highly anticipated Zelda 3 is finally here! Once again, you are a brave hero, you must go about the vast land of Hyrule. Destroy evil creatures and collect Ruples to help you buy supplies and weapons. The obvious enhancements are the extremely colorful and detailed graphics. The new level of detail makes the quest seem even more realistic. Link must not only endure hordes of monsters, but he also has to deal with the forces of nature. Thunderstorms, caves, deserts, forests, you name it and Link will have to overcome it. The audio has also been refined, with rich background music for each area of the game. The quest is massive, four times larger than the previous two carts. There are a ton of new items to find as well. A truly remarkable game that will definitely be worth the wait.

reggie posted a review

The Legend of Zelda has been enthralling gamers since it made its Super NES debut in April 1992. It has recently been re-issued so that newcomers to 16-bit gaming can share the Zelda experience. Zelda was also selected by Nintendo as one of its top-five SNES games of all time. Known for its complexity, Zelda's gameplay is measured in months, not hours. The game's adventures cover two huge areas, the Light World, which is the home of the diminutive hero, Link, and the Dark World, where characters show the sinister side of their personalities.

reggie posted a review

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past is a Japanese action-adventure video game developed and released by Nintendo in 1991/1992 for its Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES). The game is the third of the series and though it appeared for the first time in Japan in 1991, it was released for the first time in North America and Europe one year later.

The story focuses on Link, who travels to save Hyrule after defeating Ganon and rescue the seven descendants of the Sages. Compared to the previous games, this version has new mechanics and new equipment for the players. The game was later on released on other platforms, such as Game Boy Advance and Wii’s Virtual Console.

The above-mentioned Link is a young boy living with his uncle around the Hyrule Castle. Princess Zelda is held captive by Agahnim, a wizard.

In the beginning of the game Link is awakened by a telepathic message from Princess Zelda, who asks for help. Link ignores his uncle who told him not to go, and leaves to save Princess Zelda. When he arrives at the Castle, he finds his uncle wounded after he tried to rescue Zelda himself. Now Link receives a sword and a shield from his uncle and continues his quest to save the Princess.

In order to save her, Link has to surpass several levels and to rescue the seven descendants of the Seven Sages from dungeons scattered across the Dark World. Only the seven descendants can help Link to break the barrier around Ganon’s Tower, where the playable character has to face Agahnim for a second time.

The music of the game was composed by Koji Kondo. The theme is featured in Light World Overworld and in End Credits as well. The soundtrack of the game was released in Japan on two discs, with the first one containing 44 minutes long music. On the CD it is easy to find rearranged versions of a selection of themes from the game, but also a bonus drama track. The second disc is 54 minutes long.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past was a popular game back when released and was therefore followed by other sequels, but was also ported on other platforms. No less than 6.204 users (at the time of the review) rated the game on GameSpot, giving it a 9.5 average. Ten critics offered the game a total average of 9.3. The recent release for Wii is popular as well. 1.684 users voted the game with a total average of 9.2 out of 10.

reggie posted a review

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past is a top-down action-adventure video game (similar to the original Legend of Zelda) published and developed by Nintendo for the SNES video game console, and is the third installment in The Legend of Zelda series. It was first released in Japan in 1991, and was later released in North America and Europe in 1992. Players assume the role of Link, and their goal is to rescue Princess Zelda and save the land of Hyrule.

reggie posted a review
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