Hack Showcase: Zelda 2 – Amida’s Curse (NES)

 

Hack Showcases and RPG Hack Showcases are a series where I show off various game and rpg hacks. I try to stick with hacks that improve gameplay or add quality of life features, completely or partially change the plot and characters, along with additional content, dialogue, graphical and sound improvements. Non-rpgs I try to give a full run to, or at least enough for a solid review. Rpgs I will stick with titles that have enough changes in the beginning to show off, and when I can, show parts later in the games where more differences appear. There may be spoilers in the reviews and videos. Some of these I may stream fully in the future or play on my own. Reviews are open to later revisions due to bug and content updates or me playing them and finding anything new I wish to bring up.

Created by Ok Impala!, this Zelda 2 hack changes the game from the ground up with a new story, revised graphics, different gameplay and more! The game is more balanced and there’s less grinding and combat isn’t a chore as in Zelda 2 itself. Temples and towns are redesigned for this new world and you’ll still find all the elements of Zelda 2 here someplace: the magic spells, items, stat building and more. In this hack, Link finds himself in an all new world, trapped there until he discovers the secret of Amida’s Curse.

Features:

  • 9 new temples to explore (vs 7 in vanilla Zelda II).
  • 11 new towns to visit (vs 8 in vanilla Zelda II).
  • New soundtrack.
  • Brand new overworld.
  • New story.
  • New graphics.
  • Animated tiles on the overworld.
  • Balanced difficulty, no cheap deaths.
  • No random encounters on the overworld.
  • Loads of gameplay tweaks (building on Zelda II Redux).
  • Lives you find are permanent.
  • No grinding necessary.
  • Enemy rebalancing, no more huge HP pools.
  • Press A as a Fairy to instantly return to your normal form.
  • Temple stones give fixed EXP.
  • Fairy can’t fly through doors.
  • Save anywhere by pressing up and A on the start menu. Be aware though, that you’ll be warped back to the starting point of the game. So, only use this option when you want to stop playing.
  • And so much more…

SO HOW IS IT? This is one of the best hacks I’ve ever played. You’ll see the differences right from the start with the new graphics for the opening story scroll and when you load it up. The new graphics for Link look great and look a lot cleaner than that for Zelda 2 itself, and the new and old enemies you’ll fight got a makeover as well. Animations in the overworld like moving grass and water were restored from the FDS Zelda 2 as well. graphics for the towns and temples look wonderful and the textures do look different than that from vanilla Zelda 2 which is a nice touch. The new overworld looks great as you’ll progress from one area to another by walking, caves, or by water.

Dialog from townspeople is actually useful in this unlike most of Zelda 2! Some clues can be a bit ambiguous but you can figure them out with some exploration and trying new things. Each town also has someone to heal your magic and health! Explore everywhere in each are aof the overworld. You never know where a spot may open up to a side-view scene and you can get extra xp, a heart container, magic jar or a 1up. Unlike Zelda 2, 1ups save when you save your game either through a quick save or a game over, so next game you’ll start with more lives!

The gameplay is much more refined and easier in this hack too, and quality of life stuff will make you wish Zelda 2 was more like it. Enemies aren’t as hard as they are in Zelda 2, though the Ironknuckles are still annoying as hell and the tougher enemies where jump thrusts are their weakness still abound. The bosses have about the same weaknesses as they do in vanilla Zelda 2 also. You don’t need to grind for your stat boosts in this, but it does help especially once you find spots in the overworld where enemies will respawn when you leave and return.

The 9 palaces are all a wonder to explore and have their own secrets, and you’ll find some enemies in the palaces easier than they were in vanilla Zelda 2, like the floating skulls! Each palace has new equipment and a boss somewhere in it, once you find your way through and locate the keys. Mapping does help. Exploring everywhere helps since you can find yourself where you need to go, if you just fall into a bottomless pit sometimes…

In conclusion, this is one the best hacks i’ve played and a wonderful hack of Zelda 2!

GAMEPLAY VIDEO:

I GIVE AMIDA’S CURSE 4.5 OUT OF 5 HEART CONTAINERS!!

LINKS:
https://www.okimpala.net/ – Ok Impala’s Website
http://www.romhacking.net/hacks/6292/ – RHDN link

 

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