The Year of Zelda


Like pretty much everyone else in the gaming world, I’m very excited for the release of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. After the slightly lacklustre reveal of the Nintendo Switch, I’ve decided to get the game on the Wii U and hold off on purchasing a Switch until there are a few more games. But before I buy it, I want to polish off the few Zelda games I’ve yet to complete.

I’ve played almost every Zelda game out there, but there are still a few that passed me by for one reason or another. I missed out on Minish Cap on the Game Boy Advance, although I recently purchased it for the Wii U. I played Phantom Hourglass on the Nintendo DS, but I never got around to buying its sequel, Spirit Tracks. I got Skyward Sword just after its release, but six years on, I’ve still yet to play it. I’m not sure why I keep putting it off – somehow it just feels like I need to save it for a special occasion.

Well, I guess now that special occasion has arrived. The release of Breath of the Wild is shaping up to be a landmark moment for the series, and I’ve resolved to play through every Zelda game I’ve missed before buying this latest entry. That might mean I miss playing it at release in March, but I can wait – it will only make playing it for the first time all the sweeter.

Changing the season in Oracle of Seasons is key to solving puzzles.
Changing the season in Oracle of Seasons is key to solving puzzles.

At the moment, I’m about two-thirds of the way through Oracle of Seasons, one of a pair of Zelda games for the Game Boy Color that were, uniquely for the series, co-developed with an outside developer, Capcom. I remember the two games, Oracle of Seasons and Oracle of Ages, got a lukewarm reception at the time, but I’m heartily enjoying my playthrough of Seasons. I’d even go so far as to sat that – heresy! – it’s better than Link’s Awakening. Don’t lynch me!

Anyway, here’s the list of Zelda games I’m planning to play through before finally getting my hands on Breath of the Wild, roughly in the order I intend to play them. I’m leaving out Four Swords, Four Swords Adventures and Tri Force Heroes, as really they’re spinoffs (and they don’t particularly appeal to me, anyway).

  • Oracle of Seasons (GBC)
  • Oracle of Ages (GBC)
  • Minish Cap (GBA)
  • The Legend of Zelda (NES)
  • The Adventure of Link (NES)
  • Spirit Tracks (DS)
  • Wind Waker HD (Wii U)
  • Skyward Sword (Wii)

I’m aware that the two NES titles might be a slog to play nowadays, and Adventure of Link is renowned as being the worst in the series, so I may very well just dip into these rather than playing them to completion. Similarly, I’ll probably only dip into Wind Waker HD, as I completed the original back in the GameCube days, but I’m intrigued to see how they’ve tarted it up for the HD generation.

I’m also intrigued to play Freshly-Picked Tingle’s Rosy Rupeeland on the DS, starring everyone’s favourite fairy-wannabee manchild. If I can get hold of it, I might add it to the list.


Are there any Zelda games you’ve missed out on? I’d love to hear if you’re planning a similar Zelda marathon ahead of the launch of Breath of the Wild.


  1. I wouldn’t brush by the NES Zelda games; with a proper guide they can still be a lot of fun! I actually love Zelda 2 and kind of wish they’d remaster/revisit it because there are unique elements that would make it interesting even today.

    1. I also found the original Zelda on NES to be surprisingly playable after all these years – I’ve played it right the way through.

      Lewis, I also agree about the Oracle games – they were released right at the end of the original Game Boy’s life, when Nintendo were coming out with the GBA, so they have been a bit overlooked. But they’re both excellent games.

      1. Yes, I’ve been surprised by how good they are – the dungeon design in particular is top notch.

        I’m looking forward to the NES games now after reading these comments!

  2. I have played the original Zelda game and really enjoyed it. I will also be playing Breath of the Wild on the Wii U as I think it it would be the best way to experience one of Nintendo’s finest games to date one one of the most underated consoles of all time, third to the Dreamcast and Virtual Boy. I love my Wii U and feel the experience will be all the more enjoyable to play BOTW on it as opposed to the switch. Minish cap is a very good game to play. I have always played emulated versions of the game via PC, Smartphone and Wii U but it is a great game to pick up and Play.

  3. A Zelda marathon sounds fun! I haven’t missed out on a major Zelda game. And yes, I’ve even played Freshly Picked Tingle’s Rosy Rupeeland, which has to be played for its absurdity alone.

  4. I regularly replay A Link to the Past and recently went back over Skyward Sword – even more recently, I’ve been taking a bash at the original Zelda. I love this series and I am bubbling over about the chance to play Breath of the Wild!

  5. Good idea. Nothing like a good old zelda-thon!

    I tend to enjoy the 2D outings less than I enjoy the 3D ones, so I lose interest before completing them. Not that they’re not good, but what they do well is different to what the 3D ones do well, I think, and the latter is what attracts me to the series. So, really, I’m not as familiar with the 2D games as perhaps I would like to be, although I have played most of them.

    Skyward sword is generally a good game, and I think you’ll enjoy playing it if you like Zelda. There are some really cool things to do in it. However, there are definitely moments in there that require, er, patience on the player’s part…

    #I liked the switch reveal

    1. I have to say, I’m really enjoying the Oracle 2D games – there’s something to be said for 2D Zelda. Then again, A Link to the Past was my first Zelda game, so Zelda will always be 2D first and foremost in my mind!

      1. I remember playing oracle of ages a lot with my friend when I was young. It was challenging!! How are you finding it?

        Yeah that makes sense haha. Well, to each their own! šŸ™‚

      2. I’m finding the Oracle games a lot more challenging than the later 3D games – things like hearts are a lot harder to come by, and the enemies are merciless, plus there’s a lot less handholding. No bad thing though really, although I’ve had to dip into a guide a few times when I really wasn’t sure what to do next…

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