Anyone else have a problem with Zelda 2?

Thomas Ennis

Well-Known Member
Jun 24, 2013
Super NES
When the Adventures of Link came out on the old NES, I was super excited. Zelda was such a classic, a timeless jewel that even my parents played for hours on end. I borrowed Zelda 2 from my cousins before we purchased it. Games were pretty expensive back then, so I wanted to make sure I liked it. Imagine my shock when I started playing.
Nintendo changed the whole formula of the game! No longer was it a top down adventure, except for the parts where you are traveling. The dungeons and random encounters felt more like Castlevania then Zelda. While Castlevania is a great game, that style does not belong in Zelda in my opinion. What a let down this game was, and man they overdid it on the difficulty.
Did anyone here enjoy the game? Am I alone in my dislike for it?
I didn't like it nearly as much as all other Zelda's, but I beat it. It shouldn't have been called Zelda IMO. It should have just been something else. I never understood why it had a picture of Ganon when you died, but he never appeared in the game! It is still better than a lot of games though. I never compared it to Castlevania, but that is a really good point, the dungeons did feel a bit Castlevaniesh!
Yeah, I think 2 is pretty much regarded the odd one out of the Zelda games by most people.
I think it's the side scrolling aspect of things that was different to the first and which was never again used in a Zelda game that makes it so different.

It does have that classic top down view for parts though, although its more like Pokemon or final fantasy in the way enemies just randomly attack.

There's a really good review of it by the Angry Video Game Nerd that you might enjoy here ""

I think he about nails it on the head!
The angry video game nerd nails it well. I don't mind the difficulty as much as a mind the complete change in formula from the classic Zelda. When a game designer hits the nail on the head with a game like Zelda, they should follow the same formula in the sequel. Perhaps as the series advances, try new things, but in the direct sequel to a classic, stick with what works.
I replayed the Adventure of Link many times in the past and loved it, despite getting stuck during the first run-through. The maps in Zelda II were pretty brutal but very rewarding to memorize (I actually cheated by sketching my own maps on paper). I also enjoyed the puzzle-solving, talking to townsfolk, and leveling up (!), which I assume they were borrowing from Dragon Warrior/Dragon Quest by Enix.

It was very courageous for Nintendo to change the gameplay for the sequel, and I do believe the game was successful. I love Zelda II dearly to this day. The only thing that's stopping me from playing it today is the crazy bosses. I definitely don't want to fight
Dark Link
again--that was some serious adrenaline drainage.

:eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek:
Maybe I just never got far enough into the game to appreciate it. Zelda 2 just didn't hold my interest at the time, but perhaps that was because I was a little bitter at the fact they changed the gameplay so much. If I get a chance, I may just try to download it on the WII. A fresh perspective on the game may lead me to enjoy it.
Zelda 2 was my very first zelda game back then so I had no preconceived notions and thus could judge it on its own fairly. As such, I thought it was fine. The challenge was heavy sure (the game over Ganon was really scary when you were a little kid), but it was just as deliberate in its combat as the previous game. The lack of a dungeon map meant you REALLY had to get good at exploration and surviving, and frankly, there is little to nothing like it these days except for maybe the Dark Souls Series. I'm GLAD it didn't stick to any design conformations, and it provided a strong but fair challenge, as that is the principle criticism of the series.
I didn't care for Zelda II: The Adventure of Link when I first played it at a very young age, mainly because I was too turned off by the departures from the original's formula. (And yet, at the time, I had no problems with what-we-North-Americans-thought-was Super Mario Bros 2!)

Much later, I revisited Zelda II and gave it the proper chance that it honestly deserves--and found that I absolutely love it! I now consider it be a true NES classic on par with the original Legend of Zelda!

I salute how it attempted to incorporate more traditional RPG staples like magic spells, proper towns populated by NPCs, and experience points-and-levels into the Zelda experience. (Turn based combat and parties of characters would have been a bridge too far though. At that point, one may as well play Dragon Warrior or Final Fantasy instead!)

The shift to side-scrolling dungeon crawling added a platforming aspect missing from the original Legend of Zelda game, but given the choice I do prefer the original's top-down dungeon crawling perspective. Thankfully, we've had the best of both worlds with a three-dimensional perspective from the N64's Ocarina of Time onward!
never say never, but if there is one i'll never play again, this is it. i basically finished just to say i did it. it's cool and all, but just too tough i guess
There are definitely a few stretches of The Adventure of Link that are a bit tougher than the usual Legend of Zelda game, e.g. Death Mountain--if you're not sufficiently powerful. The addition of experience point/levels into the game's mechanics introduces a necessary evil familiar to fans of other RPGs: grinding with encounters in the backwoods until you're finally powerful enough to tackle the next level/boss!

In addition to that, I also consider the Thunder Bird to be one of the most unexpectedly difficult final bosses of the (S)NES era--right up there with Dr. Wiley in Megamans 2 and 7!

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