The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening is the most bizarre and ridiculously amusing Zelda game I have played yet. The entire concept seems utterly insane, and when I started to read about how the story was snuck into the game because a certain high profile Nintendo overlord didn’t want there to be much of a story, it’s even funnier. Of all Zelda 2-d games, this one’s story stands out the most. I’m not saying it is my favorite, but this game’s plot of being locked away in a dream, fighting off nightmares, unlocking instruments to wake yourself up, and all in a world filled with Mario-like creatures, is completely fascinating. I’m convinced one of the characters is Mario, that one of the songs is also in (I believe) the original Paper Mario game, and that I am fully in the right to obtain and utilize a chain chomp, in real life, as a pet and defender of my honor.
One part of the story I was really surprised by (I did not play the original ever) was the sense that you were almost discovering yourself to be the villain. It was clear, from all the hints in the game, and from things random side characters would say that they didn’t want you waking up or the world to end. Or it was at least clear to me. The one girl never got to express her true feelings to me, the chain chomp didn’t get to go on one last “walk” with me, the ghost returned to her grave (at last) to move on now is annihilated, the entire world was simply erased like a “Thanos snap” in the blink of my waking eye. That got me thinking about dreams. Have you ever had a dream, or perhaps many, in which you don't want to wake from it? One’s so vivid and wonderful that you can still remember them to this day? That stirring moment is one of the most miserable experiences ever in those first few seconds. That’s what beating this game made me feel like. As if I just wiped out the existence of a wonderfully charming land. Maybe I was, in fact, the villain?
The gameplay is what one would expect from a top-down Zelda adventure, though I will admit I sort of missed the ability to go into the walls that we got with Link Between Worlds, as we returned to a more simple Zelda time here. Still, I love this kind of gameplay. The game can’t be penalized for its lack of innovation here as it was trying to stay true to the past game. It’s easy, doesn’t require leveling up a bunch of things (I did not unlock the final sword, nor did I collect even close to all the hearts). If there is a call for more complex over the top Zelda experience, it should not be expected here.
Have I mentioned how adorable this art style is? Just when Nintendo makes one amazing style, they continue to reinvent themselves. From Yoshi’s Island, to Yoshi’s Story, to Paper Mario, to Animal Crossing, to Yoshi’s Wooly World, to Kirby’s Epic Yarn, and finally to Yoshi’s Crafted World, they continue to amaze with new art styles that are uniquely adorable. And now this. This beautiful, Wallace and Grummet take on Zelda. This claymation masterpiece. Bravo, Nintendo, BRAVO!
Originality: 15 /20
Graphics: 10 /10
Art Style: 15 /15
Story: 25 /30
Music: 5 /5
Controls 5 /5
Is it fun? 15 /15
90 / 100
Non-story – 93 / 100
*For you people that don’t value story more than anything else in games, the non-story review doesn’t take it into consideration. In this case, that means 65 /70 = 92.85714285%
*My average game review is 79% after this review.