Listen, I like The Legend of Zelda as a series, I really do, but Skyward Sword was…well it wasn’t the worst thing ever, but let’s just say it was fairly average. If anything it really displayed that the Zelda franchise needed a bit of a shakeup.
For A Link Between Worlds, the newest entry in the series on the 3DS, Nintendo is changing things up a bit. For instance, the introduction for Between Worlds in incredibly short as opposed to the lengthy tutorial of Skyward Sword, and the game no longer relies on the typical Zelda progression of slowly unlocking a large number of items that are more or less exclusive to the dungeon they come from (something that was fairly rampant in Twilight Princess). You can now rent any item in the game at any point from the merchant who moves into your house, but you lose them if you die (you can also buy them permanently later on, although this is expensive). The dungeons can also be tackled in any order as well. Couple that with the fast travel and this is the Zelda game with the most sense of exploration and freedom since, well, A Link to the Past, which this game is a direct sequel to.
The isometric presentation works great too, and this game runs at a speedy 60 frames per second even in 3D so the action is nice and crisp. The music is also fantastic, and features an updated remix of the classic Dark World theme from A Link to the Past. While Zelda games on the Nintendo handhelds have by and large been pretty good, they usually haven’t matched the caliber of a full-fledged console Zelda. A Link Between Worlds blows this notion out of the water and gives us a pretty good look at how Nintendo is planning on making Zelda a different beast for future games.
Has anyone else played A Link Between Worlds? What do you think of it?