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As Good As It Gets – The Legend of Zelda – 1986

In life one can sometimes just know what needs to be done. Andre Johnson knew what needed to be done to Cortland Finnegan. When it comes to The Legend of Zelda somehow I still  know what needs to be done to beat the game. 

I still remember the location of all the Heart Containers.

I still know the locations of all the Dungeons.

I still know that Level 8 has two treasures and how to get them.

I still know I have no idea how I actually know these things.

In college during my sophomore year over spring break during pinnacle of PC emulation I remember in one sitting plowing though Zelda like butter.

This past weekend I’ve done it again.

Zelda I will forever find to be a perfect video game. Born from an age before the internet and easy answers passing and sharing knowledge with others was the only way to succeed. My knowledge of the overworld I want to pass on to somebody. Either a young child or a significant other there has to be a time when I can show somebody the secrets of this game. The life memories I have from the 80′s era of gaming I don’t know how it could compare to kiddies sniping terrorists in Call of Duty. Hearing the young jerks on Xbox Live makes me sad recollecting innocent memories growing up with games of all types.

Somebody just sitting down and trying to figure out this game would be  pratically an impossible situation for for members of this generation without cheating. Figuring out where to actually go in Zelda for players accustomed to waypoints and mission logs would really try ones patience. Level 9 for the poorly equipped and prepaired would be troublesome. The game is not a walk in the park like most games on Normal difficulty are these days.

This playthough was completed using the Wii Virtual Console version. The suspending play feature is perfect for Zelda. One of the inane aspects playing on the NES was the inability to save at any time. For somebody not having a clue what to do but not wanting to lose your progress you would have to commit video game suicide to save your progress. With suspending play you can quit at any time and pick up exactly where you left off. This feature alone is going to cost me money because it works like save states in emulators without the feeling of cheating. Honestly all modern systems to some degree should have a feature like this by now.  Finishing Zelda 2 is now added to the backlog.

For my readers, especially ones who played Zelda growing up, the game still offers a fantastic experience. It blew my mind when I realized I could still remember all the hidden locations. For the future this game will always come as a good test for the mind.

Classics shouldn’t be forgotten in a hobby where publishers are now churning out yearly updates to overly popular franchises. This is something even I find myself forgetting.  If you know where to look current generation titles can come cheap making it easy to pass on a classic to move to the next big thing. Going forward I’m going to make a stronger effort to revisit experiences from the past (in any form) and be mindful to wait or avoid the latest and greatest.

That reminds me I really need to go back and beat the second quest again.

Category: Video Games


3 Responses

  1. Vo says:

    I beat this on my NES in freshman year with the perfect recall of DJ Shaw for the location of everything. It took 4 hours.

  2. vanlandw says:

    Yup took me about four hours too…hopefully DJ Shaw can read this. When he left GVSU I gave him my copy of Final Fantasy Tactics.

  3. [...] in November after an impromptu play of Zelda 1 it was logical to give the second game another stab. Going in knowing it was going to be rough [...]

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