My History with the Zelda Series

I’ve loved the Zelda games ever since playing the 1st one as a kid! I’ve only played most of the older titles up to the 2 N64 titles, and having recently finished GB Link’s Awakening DX via emulation and needing to finish GBA Minish Cap. I still have my copies of Zelda 1 and 2 for the NES, Ocarina of Time for N64, and Link to the past for SNES! I could never quite get into N64’s Majora’s Mask sadly. I figured for the series 35th birthday this year in 2021, I’d write out my thoughts on those 4 titles i still have, and some thoughts on Link’s Awakening and Majora’s mask as well! One my next goals is to finally play the Game Boy Oracle series since those are the last of the older games I haven’t sat down with. In the future I may finally give Majora’s Mask another try and try Wind Waker via the Dolphin emulator if my pc can handle it! At the end of this post will be a few snapshot of pages from the Nintendo Power comic trade, and the Hyrule Historia to share.

NOW ONTO THE GAMES!!

ZELDA 1:

Zelda 1 I received with my NES and other games in 1989(?) I think I had played it briefly before with friends, but after receiving it I was able to get down and dirty and discover everything this quest had to offer. I loved it! I loved figuring things out with and without maps from Nintendo Power for both quests, and learning a few little tricks here and there, and making up a few of my own to nail down how i would play both quests! Finishing both quests as a kid was a big accomplishment to me! I wanted to try something more, so I tried runs through both quests getting only the White Sword and the Blue Ring, not bothering with the Master Sword or the Red Ring in Death Mountain. Took many many lives but i did it, and did this feat many times before. Earlier in 2021 I finally did a 1st quest run with only the White Sword and Blue Ring, and as of this writing, prepping for a 2nd quest run in the same way!

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Hack Showcase: Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time Redux (N64) Review:

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 dialogue, graphical and sound improvements. I try to stick with games that have enough changes in the beginning to show off, and when I can, try to show parts later in titles. There may be spoilers in the reviews and videos. Some of these I may stream or play on my own.

Released by Maroc and his team, this hack adds a lot to ocarina of time with quality of life improvements and more. A number of graphics were removed and others restored, the speed of text scrolls a lot faster now along with other gameplay elements. An extra hack called master Quest is included (no idea if it’s like the official Master Quest with the gamecube port) for an additional challenge. This hack can be patched normally or using the Patcher64 program where you can change the hack to your liking, along with changing some colors of link’s clothes and Navi, and change the sounds from objects! Want to make Navi squawk like a chicken instead of saying “Hey listen!”, you can! Note: this review was done with a customized OoT Redux hack patch using the Patcher64 tool.

Main Features:

  • Text speed now goes 2 times as fast as the original, matching Majora’s Mask and Ocarina of Time 3D.
  • Text revamp, restored and revised based on subsequent releases of Ocarina of Time.
  • Fixed graves behavior like in subsequent versions.
  • Properly center the “Navi” text in the C-Up button.
  • Collecting Gold Skulltulla Tokens no longer freezes the player but allows it to continue moving. This is similar to what happens in Majora’s Mask spider houses.
  • D-PAD can be used to quickly access ocarina and iron/hover boots.
  • Rupee color of the rupee count indicator now changes in color to reflect the wallet upgrade possessed.
  • Stone of Agony now works even without rumble. An icon will appear over the rupee count when in proximity of a hidden grotto.
  • Farore’s Wind does not get dispelled through time travel and can be used independently by child and adult Link.
  • The bunny hood now works like in Majora’s Mask boosting movement speed when worn.
  • Bombchu Bowling prizes now appear in fixed order instead of random (Rotation being: piece of heart, purple rupee, bomb bag capacity upgrade, bombs).
  • Fishing made easier by guaranteeing biting, but keeps the fish size RNG from the original game. Continue reading

Hack Showcase: Legend of Zelda: Link to the Past Redux (SNES)

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 dialogue, graphical and sound improvements. I try to stick with games that have enough changes in the beginning to show off, and when I can, try to show parts later in titles. There may be spoilers in the reviews and videos. Some of these I may stream or play on my own.

Zelda 3 Redux is another lovely hack released by Shadowone333 and his team. This one is a combination of his team’s work and that of the Link to the Past DX hack by Con and qwertymodo. This one added improvements to the graphics, quality of life features, and restored some censored content from the original release. The FMV opening was also restored!!

Improvements from Link to the Past DX include:

  • All new, CD-quality soundtrack (MSU-1, higan/bsnes or SD2SNES only, requires separate download of soundtrack files)
  • Improved Pegasus boots, turn while running
  • Break pots with sword
  • Collect items with sword
  • Cancel flute transport
  • Death counter no longer increments when selecting “Save and Quit”
  • Use L/R to quickly switch between items
  • Slowdown reduced (FastROM)

Changes made with Redux and more:

  • Change Link’s hair and hat to closely match his original artwork.
  • Change Agahnim colours to match the original red robe and blue skin artwork.
  • Changed Uncle’s sprite to match official artwork.
  • Change the Flute’s name to Ocarina (I don’t know in what world that instrument is a flute). This includes in-game text and Credits name changed too.
  • Change the Good Bee’s name to Golden Bee.
  • Change Faerie to Fairy. This includes in-game text too.
  • Change Pegasus Shoes to Pegasus Boots. This includes in-game text too.
  • Change all the references of the “Wise Men” to “Sages”.
  • Change the layout of the Ice Palace to that of the GBA port. No more going around the entire palace just to get to the next room!
  • King of Hyrule now has a red outfit instead of green to match the rest of the franchise’s Kings of Hyrule (Like Daphnes Nohansen Hyrule from WW).

As of v2.0, the Ice Palace new layout has been fixed to have 3 movable blocks in the new section. There was one movable block unused in one other Dungeon layout found in Room 240. (Why was it there?)

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Hack Showcase: Legend of Zelda Redux (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 dialogue, graphical and sound improvements. I try to stick with games that have enough changes in the beginning to show off, and when I can, try to show parts later in titles. There may be spoilers in the reviews and videos. Some of these I may stream or play on my own.

Zelda 1 Redux aims to fix and improve a lot of this amazing game with new graphics, font from the Famicom Disk System version, cleaner interface and other quality of life features. Released by Shadowone333 and his team, this hack improves a lot and more on Zelda 1 with different graphics, quality of life improvements, a new overworld map, increased rupee capacity up to 999, slight change in graphics for where to bomb or light a candle, and more! Optional patches include changing some of the graphics and changes back to their original, removing the annoying beeping when low on health and more! I need to give this a try on my own for both quests!

From the Changelog:

  • MMC1 and MMC5 versions. This was done so that users that want to go the reproduction cartridge route, can use the MMC1 version (and for compatibility sake). For emulation, any of the two versions can be interchanged.
  • Save manually with Up+A when in the Items Subscreen
  • Reworked heart HUD to match Zelda 2 Redux
  • Relocalization of the game’s script to better match the Japanese release, or have better hints altogether. Based on the Legends of Localization book/webpage (Except the two iconic “Take this” and “It’s a secret” lines)
  • Make the Blue tunic more vibrant
  • Increment the initial bomb max. amount to 10 instead of 8
  • Increment the bomb upgrades by 10 instead of the original 4. First upgrade should give you 20 bombs, second will be 30.
  • Faster text printing
  • Modify the Sword beam to only be active when at full health/heart, and stop shooting when the life gets to 3/4 of a heart
  • Modify certain item names to better match subsequent official names in the franchise (Rupee, Fairy, Heart Container, etc.)
  • Change the Red and Blue rings to Red and Blue tunics
  • Introduction text rewrite
  • Reimplementation of the warning screen from version PRG1 upon Game Over / Saving
  • Slight modifications to the title screen to give the “ZELDA” title a red color (modified fading palettes to match this change too)
  • Possibly also add a breakable tile hint for overworld tiles
  • Automap Plus, but modify it to have 1/4 heart decrements instead of 1/8 (this is needed in order to make space in sprite PPU for the next point (#3)
  • Visible hint for breakable walls in Dungeons (already implemented, just need sprite space for the left walls)
  • Remove the 1 Rupee flashing (couldn’t be made green due to palette limitations) Continue reading

Hack Showcase: Legend of Zelda 2 Redux (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 dialogue, graphical and sound improvements. I try to stick with games that have enough changes in the beginning to show off, and when I can, try to show parts later in titles. There may be spoilers in the reviews and videos. Some of these I may stream or play on my own.

Zelda 2 Redux by ShadowOne333 aims to make a number of improvements to Zelda 2 for the NES, known as the black sheep of the Zelda family due to it’s higher difficulty, change from overhead to side-scrolling format and more. A lot of quality of life improvements were added too, along with optional patches to change your gaming experience to the definitive version of Zelda 2. I had finished this myself a couple years ago, after never finishing it as a kid for various reasons. Discovering this made me smile and I wanted to see what this hack was all about! ShadowOne333 is also the brains behind other Zelda redux patches for Link’s Awakening DX for Gameboy and Link to the Past for SNES. This hack was finally released after a long time in October 2020, with an update in December 2020 to bring this hack to version 2.3.

The changelog for this hack is extensive! And there’s a large assortment of optional patches to improve upon the Redux experience more!

  • Changes to the Life Meter HUD: Should have hearts now instead of the old bars it had for a life meter
  • Reworked HUD to be more in-line with other Zelda titles. It also looks much better to the eye now and is more streamlined
  • Added 1/4 heart gauge by IcePenguin. Now the life meter is reduced by 1/4 parts instead of the original sliding bar, effectively letting you know exactly how much health (no longer will the meter show no life with Link still alive)
  • Reworked title screen. Now the Sword in it is the same as the one in the original US boxart, and also the scrolling text of the title screen has been entirely rewritten to be more in-line with the canon story of Zelda II
  • Manual Save Feature: You can now save the game by Pausing and then pressing Up+A on the Pause screen (both in side-scroll pause and overworld pause!)
  • Manual saves no longer count towards the Death counter in the Selection screen! Now only Game Overs should increment that counter
  • Implemented @njosro’s Restart in Current Palace patch (as a bonus) 😛
  • Link now has a Blue and Red tunic! Upon using the Shield spell with a Defense level between 1-4, you’ll get the Blue tunic. Once you get up to level 5-8 of Defense, you will get the Red tunic Continue reading