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Eff It, I'm Going Through The Whole Zelda Series (And Then Some) Until I Get Bored (Now Playing: Zelda's Adventure)

Kzinssie

(she/her)
So I recently decided to fire up Zelda 1 again and, for the first time, it properly clicked for me and I ended up playing through the whole thing over the course of 24 hours. That then inspired me, hey, what if I just played through all the Zelda games in release order? And not just the mainline ones - all the weird spinoffs, Satellaview games and CD-i games and Tingle games and the like. And while I'm there, why not read all the manga and watch the cartoon and such? And hell - there are several Nintendo games that might not technically be Zelda, but are in the same vein and worth appreciating in that context if I'm going that whole hog on it.

Long story short, I have compiled a list of 112 Zelda things, and I'm going to go down that list until I inevitably lose interest. I'd like to at least get through everything pre-OoT before I get there, though - that's where the series really finds its brand identity, and most of the weird stuff comes before it. While I do so, I'm going to do little mini-reviews of everything there. Before I start, though, here is my list so far - I'm open to suggestions on other Zelda-likes especially, but at minimum I'd like them to be Nintendo games - no Binding of Isaac or other non-Nintendo games clearly inspired by Zelda, or we'd be here for years.

  1. The Legend of Zelda (86)
  2. The Mysterious Murasame Castle (86)
  3. Ran Zelda 1 Manga (86)
  4. Adventure of Link (87)
  5. Ran Adventure of Link Manga (87)
  6. Game & Watch (89)
  7. Mishouzaki Zelda 1 Manga (89)
  8. Animated Series (89)
  9. Game Watch (89)
  10. Valiant Comics (90)
  11. Molblin’s Magic Spear (90)
  12. Captain N Zelda Episodes (90)
  13. StarTropics (90)
  14. Mishouzaki Adventure of Link Manga (91)
  15. Link to the Past (91)
  16. The Crystal Trap (92)
  17. The Shadow Prince (92)
  18. Link to the Past Comic (92)
  19. Kaeru no Tame ni Kane wa Naru (92)
  20. Link's Awakening (93)
  21. Faces of Evil (93)
  22. Wand of Gamelon (93)
  23. Zoda’s Revenge: StarTropics II (94)
  24. Zelda's Adventure (94)
  25. Link’s Awakening Manga (94)
  26. Oath of Riruto (94)
  27. Cagiva Link to the Past Manga (95)
  28. BS The Legend of Zelda Map 1 (95)
  29. BS The Legend of Zelda Map 2 (95)
  30. BS Marvelous: Time Athletics (96)
  31. Marvelous: Mouhitotsu no Takarajima (96)
  32. BS Marvelous: Camp Arnold (96)
  33. BS The Legend of Zelda: Ancient Stone Tablets (97)
  34. Ocarina of Time (98)
  35. Ocarina of Time Manga (98)
  36. Ocarina of Time German Club Nintendo Comic (98)
  37. Link’s Awakening DX (98)
  38. Super Smash Bros. (99)
  39. Majora's Mask (00)
  40. Majora’s Mask Manga (00)
  41. Space World 2000 Demo (00)
  42. Oracle of Seasons (01)
  43. Oracle of Seasons Manga (01)
  44. Oracle of Ages (01)
  45. Oracle of Ages Manga (01)
  46. Super Smash Bros. Melee (01)
  47. Oracle of Seasons Novelization (01)
  48. Star Fox Adventures (02)
  49. OoT Master Quest (02)
  50. Link to the Past + Four Swords (02)
  51. Wind Waker (02)
  52. Oracle of Ages Novelization (03)
  53. Soulcalibur II (03)
  54. 4-koma Nautical Logbook (03)
  55. Four Swords Adventures (04)
  56. Four Swords Manga (04)
  57. Minish Cap (04)
  58. Himekawa Link to the Past Manga (05)
  59. Link and the Portal of Doom (06)
  60. Minish Cap Manga (06)
  61. Freshly-Picked Tingle's Rosy Rupeeland (06)
  62. Twilight Princess (06)
  63. Tingle's Balloon Fight (07)
  64. Phantom Hourglass (07)
  65. Link's Crossbow Training (07)
  66. Super Smash Bros. Brawl (08)
  67. Captain Rainbow (08)
  68. Phantom Hourglass Manga (09)
  69. Too Much Tingle Pack (09)
  70. Ripened Tingle's Balloon Trip of Love (09)
  71. Spirit Tracks (09)
  72. Ocarina of Time 3D (11)
  73. Four Swords Anniversary Edition (11)
  74. Skyward Sword Webcomic (11)
  75. Skyward Sword (11)
  76. Skyward Sword Manga (11)
  77. Hyrule Historia (11)
  78. Nintendo Land: Battle Quest (12)
  79. Wind Waker HD (13)
  80. Link Between Worlds (13)
  81. Sonic Lost World: The Legend of Zelda Zone (14)
  82. Hyrule Warriors (14)
  83. Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS (14)
  84. Hyrule Warriors: Master Quest (14)
  85. Super Smash Bros. for Wii U (14)
  86. Hyrule Warriors: Twilight Princess (14)
  87. Hyrule Warriors: Majora's Mask (15)
  88. Majora’s Mask 3D (15)
  89. Hyrule Warriors: Boss Pack (15)
  90. Tri Force Heroes (15)
  91. Twilight Princess Manga (16)
  92. Twilight Princess HD (16)
  93. Hyrule Warriors Legends (16)
  94. My Nintendo Picross: The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess (16)
  95. Hyrule Warriors: Link's Awakening (16)
  96. Art & Artifacts (16)
  97. Hyrule Warriors: Phantom Hourglass & Spirit Tracks (16)
  98. Hyrule Warriors: A Link Between Worlds (16)
  99. Encyclopedia (17)
  100. Breath of the Wild (17)
  101. Breath of the Wild: The Master Trials (17)
  102. Breath of the Wild: The Champions' Ballad (17)
  103. Creating A Champion (17)
  104. Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition (18)
  105. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (18)
  106. Cadence of Hyrule (19)
  107. Link’s Awakening Switch (19)
  108. Cadence of Hyrule: Octavo Update (19)
  109. Cadence of Hyrule: Symphony of the Mask (20)
  110. Age of Calamity (20)
  111. Skyward Sword HD (21)
  112. lmao botw2 (???)

With that out of the way, here are my thoughts on the first 3 things I did this with, which I think show the breadth of this project pretty well:

THE LEGEND OF ZELDA (1986)

As I mentioned at the top, I've tried to play this several times and it never quite clicked - for whatever reason, though, this time it fell into place. I honestly think part of it was my decision to map the game manually, which got me far more invested in exploring the edges of the map and seeing what I could find. My big complaint is that the combat never quite felt fun to me - the arcing slash introduced in later games definitely did a lot for top-down Zelda. Relatedly, starting you with 3 hearts every time you continue was just cruel and made the game much grindier than it needed to be. That's all my complaints, though - it was a fun time otherwise and I blazed through it. I opted not to do the Second Quest, at least not as part of this project. Really, what's there to say here that hasn't been said? It's Zelda 1.

THE MYSTERIOUS MURASAME CASTLE (1986)

This is the first of the "Zelda-likes" on my list - it's built on the same engine and released as a sort of companion game, so it's worth including. I gotta be honest here - I didn't have a great time with this one. I'm not generally huge on these sorts of twitch action games at the best of times, let alone on an engine with movement as janky as Zelda 1's leading to a lot of unfair hits. The biggest problem, though, is the lack of variety - you run through basically the same pair of levels, a village and a castle, 4 times in a row with different palette swaps and layouts, but never enough to make them feel meaningfully different. You can find every single powerup in the game within the first level! There's barely any enemy variety, with you dealing with the same ninjas for almost the entire game with a handful of more "elite" enemies that still don't manage to feel all that different. The final level, Murasame Castle itself, brings with it a different tileset and a new set of enemies, but it's too little too late. It's especially baffling considering this was a launch title for the FDS - the other three, Zelda, Metroid, and Kid Icarus, all boasted sprawling worlds with a ton of variety for the time, whereas I see no real reason for this not to have just gotten a normal cartridge release. In spite of all these gripes, though, I can't quite bring myself to hate it - maybe it's the music I'll probably be humming forever, or the goofy ninja sprites. It's a shame this never got any sequels, I could have easily seen it becoming a great franchise in a different timeline.

ZELDA NO DENSETSU: THE HYRULE FANTASY (RAN) (1986)

This is the first non-game media on my list, a single-issue manga published very soon after the game's original release. Only the first handful of pages have been translated, so from there I read a surprisingly detailed plot summary and just flipped through the rest of it for the art. It actually seems like a pretty good adaptation to have been so early on - most of the bosses and characters from the original game are pretty well represented here, most amusingly the old man who gives Link the sword seated between two torches in a pitch-black room, but there are a handful of oddities, like flying Octoroks. Unsurprisingly there's a bunch of new content added to pad things out - Link meets a local monster hunter who is later killed by Stalfos, befriends a village boy, ends up leading a peasant uprising against Ganon, that sort of thing. Link has a wisecracking parrot sidekick named Watto/Watt for some reason, and in an oddly prescient move he uses a slingshot before receiving his sword. I'm honestly a bit disappointed by how non weird this is, but looking at my list we've got plenty of bizarre pre-OoT interpretations of Hyrule to get through anyway.

Next up on my list: Zelda 2! I'm actually quite fond of this game and have played through it several times already, so I'm using this excuse to finally check out the Redux patch. I'll be back with my thoughts on that, as well as its manga and the Zelda Game & Watch, once I'm through with them.
 
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Beowulf

Son of The Answer Man
(He/Him)
I'm intrigued and slightly intimidated by your thoroughness. There are games on this list that I've never heard of and I'm now totally curious about.
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
I control-Fed "Game & Watch" and I see you're way ahead of me on that, so I have subscribed to this thread.
 
Huh, I started something similar on twitch a few months back but not nearly as in-depth. Just doing the official Nintendo-published games, but that includes the BS Zelda games, which I just finished this last weekend and had never played before. I look forward to hearing about these expanded universe tie ins.
 

4-So

Spicy
Consider me intrigued. Zelda 1 is still my favorite of them; interested to see how far you get and what your thoughts are on evolution of the series.
 

Kirin

Summon for hire
(he/him)
THE MYSTERIOUS MURASAME CASTLE (1986)

I looked up a playthrough of this on youtube - interesting (if, as you say, not very deep) game I'd never seen before. Love the background music in the level with all the skulls and oni (I guess that's Murasame). I was not, however, expecting Ode to Joy as the ending music.
 

Kzinssie

(she/her)
It really is a tragedy they never made any followups - it reminds me of Metroid 1 in that it's a somewhat janky and imperfect take on a seed of something great, but unlike Metroid it never got a chance to develop beyond that. I guess it never getting a cartridge or non-Japanese release was a factor? Hopefully they can at least put Takamaru in Smash - the rest of the FDS launch crew already is, and despite all the swords we still don't have a proper samurai.

Also, I've just finished up Three Eye Palace in Zelda 2. I'll save most of my thoughts for the post-game review once I've beaten the Great Palace, but I think I'll have a lot to say about both the game in general and the Redux patch I'm using.
 

Kzinssie

(she/her)
ZELDA II: THE ADVENTURE OF LINK (1987)

I actually really like this one, and have for some time! When people defend this game they often focus on the structure, which is good but really nothing super impressive. The big draw of this game for me is actually the combat - it's conceptually pretty simple, but there's plenty of depth with the high and low blocking on both Link and enemies. I don't think any other games went for this except maybe Nidhogg, too, which is a competitive game and thus very different - I'd love to see this sort of combat combined with Punch-Out style tells. I also kind of wish I'd been able to play this one for the first time as part of this, since I'd love to play it "old school" and try to solve all the puzzles, but I already knew all of them going in.

Something I don't hear brought up much about this game is how weirdly convoluted the plot is for a game that barely has any in the game itself - a different Zelda than the one from the original game? You're going to the palaces to put shit into them instead of recovering things? And meanwhile, unrelatedly, some guys are trying to revive Ganon. The bestiary in this game also always struck me as kind of weird in the context of the greater series, since there's a ton of enemies that are functionally identical to enemies from Zelda 1 but have new names (Bots for Gels, Aches for Keese, Iron Knuckles for Darknuts), which I kind of wish became a series tradition beyond the occasional Bulblin or Deku Scrub.

As for the Redux patch I played this with - overall I think it's definitely the ideal way to play Zelda 2, but I do have a few gripes. The big positive changes are the ability to continue from temple entrances if you get a Game Over in them and 1-up dolls becoming permanent upgrades to your life count when starting the game instead of one-use resources, both of which are vastly appreciated. On the other hand, they made magic much cheaper, which kind of makes the game too easy IMO, and a lot of the graphical "upgrades" feel like they're made just for the sake of having nice-looking screenshots, and I'd prefer a version of the patch that uses the original UI and Link sprites. Probably my favorite change is that the different encounter theme from the FDS version is used for battles on the eastern continent, which fits the more intense battles in that part of the game quite well. Overall, this is definitely the version of the game I'd recommend to new players, despite my gripes.

Next up: a whole bunch of weird miscellany before we get to my personal first Zelda game, Link to the Past. I'll probably do these multiple entries per post? We'll see.
 

Lance Noble Aster

did his best!
(he/him)
Not a Nintendo Zelda-y thing, but if you're looking for more Zelda 2-y combat, Shadowcrypt is your game.


I know it looks very Soulsy, but I promise it predates that era. No dodge rolls here. It's built around a knockback mechanic, so if you read what an opponent is going to do next, you can push them out of their attack range right before they attack (see above).
 

Kzinssie

(she/her)
THE LEGEND OF ZELDA 2: LINK NO BOUKEN (RAN) (1987)

This is a direct sequel to the Zelda 1 Ran manga, starring the same version of Link with his parrot partner and all, but I couldn't find a plot summary anywhere and, once again, only the first chapter of it has been translated - which is a shame, since this one seems much more interesting. Much like in the Zelda 1 manga, there's a lot of faithful representations of areas and enemies from the original game, and there's the expected expansion on the town sidequests (including Link having to do some Mr. Miyagi style chores for the old man who teaches him his first spell), but there's also a lot of stuff that absolutely wasn't there in the original game. (The present day) Zelda sets off on her own and dresses up in a cute Robin Hood outfit in a move that sort of predicts the Sheik/Tetra idea before ultimately teaming up with Link, so that was something people wanted even this far back (seriously, BotW2 better give us a proper playable Zelda). She gets killed and, though she's eventually brought back to life, her blood is used to revive Ganon, bringing him back as a villain and the true final battle after Link obtains the complete Triforce. He even gets a cool skeletal/zombie form after Link thinks he's beaten him. Miscellaneous thoughts: Link has a nightmare sequence where he gets captured, enslaved, and fucking crucified. They decided to put a ton of animal people in this, presumably based on the horse head guy from the original game. All in all, I really hope this one gets a proper translation eventually, it seems really interesting. Also, something I just now noticed - on the covers of both this and the first manga, Link has pink hair. Possible origin of that on his Link to the Past sprite?
 

Kzinssie

(she/her)
THE LEGEND OF ZELDA (GAME AND WATCH) (1989)

I played this via the Pica-Pic LCD archive, itself archived via Flashpoint. It's a faithful recreation of the LCD device via Flash, complete with sounds of buttons being pressed. I only got one Triforce shard before getting a game over, so I then watched this complete playthrough to see the rest of the game and ending, since I had basically seen all the Content already. It's pretty fun for what it is! You could do far worse for long car rides in the pre Game Boy era, and I appreciate that it is a whole-ass game with proper progression and even an ending. Pretty impressive, but not surprising for such a late Game & Watch - I have to imagine this was one of the last ones?
 

Kzinssie

(she/her)
ZELDA NO DENSETSU (MISHOUZAKI) (1989)

This is the exact sort of thing I was hoping for when I started this project - just an incredibly good manga adaptation (fully translated this time) that I would have never even thought of reading if I wasn't doing this. It's a very loose adaptation, the kind where the majority of the original gameplay is contained in a "and then Link got all the Triforce pieces" montage, but it was just a great story. Once again Zelda gets to be a huge badass before her capture, and we also get more of a fleshed-out backstory for Link - he's the bastard half-elf son of the previous Princess Zelda, and therefore the current Zelda's half-brother. The real highlight here, though, is the art - especially the way monsters are drawn. Goriyas are bafflingly interpreted as buff Pillar Men types and there's a bunch of real good fucked up dragon things, but the real highlight is the depiction of Ganon as a shadowy, indistinct mass of evil drawn in a completely different style from the rest of the manga, which is too good to hide behind a link:

This one gets my highest recommendation, but now I have to watch the animated series, which feels like it's going to be some whiplash.
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
Woah dang; that is a hell of a glow-up for Momma Dorfs little boy.

Kind of a predecessor for Calamity Ganon
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
THE LEGEND OF ZELDA (GAME AND WATCH) (1989)

I played this via the Pica-Pic LCD archive, itself archived via Flashpoint. It's a faithful recreation of the LCD device via Flash, complete with sounds of buttons being pressed. I only got one Triforce shard before getting a game over, so I then watched this complete playthrough to see the rest of the game and ending, since I had basically seen all the Content already. It's pretty fun for what it is! You could do far worse for long car rides in the pre Game Boy era, and I appreciate that it is a whole-ass game with proper progression and even an ending. Pretty impressive, but not surprising for such a late Game & Watch - I have to imagine this was one of the last ones?
It was released in 1989, and was the penultimate Game & Watch. The one that came out after it was a Mario-themed remake of Ball called Mario the Juggler, so Zelda is the last elaborate Game & Watch they made, really, in the original run. I'm glad you thought it was neat! I finally ordered one, though it's in Japan so I'll probably get it later this month (weirdly, the listing on Mercari Japan said that the Zelda Game & Watch was not released over there, but I can't find any other information corroborating that, so maybe the seller was mistaken? Dunno). I have played it on Game & Watch Gallery Advance a bit, but I'm looking forward to playing it full screen.
 

Kzinssie

(she/her)
The manga isn't very long, so if you're interested I highly recommend checking it out! There's a bunch of other neat things I didn't mention to keep the review from just turning into a plot summary, like the White Sword being turned into an elven artifact with Lore.
 

Kzinssie

(she/her)
I'm only three episodes into the animated series but I can already feel stockholm syndrome setting in. Help
 
Reading these early notes/entries and looking at linked images makes me think about "eras" of Zelda. It is interesting that you mention wanting to get through at least pre-OoT media, because I think -- much like Mario -- there is a distinct era break with the N64. Both Mario and Zelda seemed to become more "on brand" after that point, although maybe that's just because there was a lot more hand drawn, printed material during the first eras. Perhaps some of those later mangas of Skyward Sword, Twilight Princess, etc can challenge this notion as well.
 

Kzinssie

(she/her)
It's been ages since I read any of the latter-day Zelda manga, but if memory serves they're relatively on-model and mostly focus on character work, especially fleshing out Link as a character in his own right.
 

muteKi

Women want fish fear meme
ZELDA NO DENSETSU (MISHOUZAKI) (1989)

This is the exact sort of thing I was hoping for when I started this project - just an incredibly good manga adaptation (fully translated this time) that I would have never even thought of reading if I wasn't doing this. It's a very loose adaptation, the kind where the majority of the original gameplay is contained in a "and then Link got all the Triforce pieces" montage, but it was just a great story. Once again Zelda gets to be a huge badass before her capture, and we also get more of a fleshed-out backstory for Link - he's the bastard half-elf son of the previous Princess Zelda, and therefore the current Zelda's half-brother. The real highlight here, though, is the art - especially the way monsters are drawn. Goriyas are bafflingly interpreted as buff Pillar Men types and there's a bunch of real good fucked up dragon things, but the real highlight is the depiction of Ganon as a shadowy, indistinct mass of evil drawn in a completely different style from the rest of the manga, which is too good to hide behind a link:

This one gets my highest recommendation, but now I have to watch the animated series, which feels like it's going to be some whiplash.

 

Kzinssie

(she/her)
I can feel my brain turning to mush even trying to formulate my thoughts on the episodes so far as a whole, so I think I'm going to have to do my Animated Series review rapid-fire, episode by episode, as I watch them. Here goes:

THE LEGEND OF ZELDA (ANIMATED SERIES) EPISODE 1: THE RINGER (1989)

Link is a soldier without a war and bored of his life at the castle after defeating Ganon (who is still around for some reason? this is not in line with the timeline), and spends his free time now creeping on Zelda. Link is fucking awful in this show. He's an unlikable whiny little shithead, and that's before we get into the fact that he is textually a sex pest. Ganon, meanwhile, is hilarious - the decision to have him just fucking run around in his stupid robe is a brilliant one. I don't have a lot of specific thoughts on this episode in particular that I can remember, though, but that might just be because it's no longer fresh in my mind, and there's no way in hell I'm going back and rewatching it. Thought that applies to these overall: this being originally part of the Mario show means every episode ends with Lou Albano doing his stupid little shimmy, which really just adds to the bizarre vibe of this entire experience.

THE LEGEND OF ZELDA (ANIMATED SERIES) EPISODE 2: COLD SPELLS (1989)

Link fakes a cold to get out of doing chores around the castle while Ganon hatches another scheme. Somehow they keep letting him get into the castle? That seems like a problem. I'm also pretty sure this is where Sprite first appears, a tiny fairy who is just really, unreasonably horny for Link. Why is everyone horny in this show? Why is this the direction they took for the Zelda cartoon?

THE LEGEND OF ZELDA (ANIMATED SERIES) EPISODE 3: WHITE KNIGHT (1989)

A handsome prince, extremely subtly named Prince Facade, appears and woos Zelda, but it turns out he's actually a huge coward who refuses to get dirty. Link dresses up in a ridiculous prince outfit to try to woo Zelda, while Sprite tries to hop on Link's dick some more. It's still extremely fucking horny, but I actually had a fun time with this one for some reason. Maybe it's the fact that Zelda just fully tells Link to go fuck himself? Seriously, I cannot overstate how much I hate Link. Whenever he is onscreen, the show is worse for it.

THE LEGEND OF ZELDA (ANIMATED SERIES) EPISODE 4: KISS 'N' TELL (1989)

Link accidentally kisses a Gibdo glamoured to look like a beautiful woman and turns into a frog person. To break the curse, he has to consult the Witch of Walls, a surprisingly cool-looking mosaic-y witch who lives inside a wall. When she first appears, Sprite says "what is this, ugly people day?" which got a genuine laugh out of me. The way to break the curse is to be kissed by a princess "of her own free will" (yikes!), so Link goes after Zelda. As she's about to kiss him, Sprite says "this'll be good!" with her words just dripping with glee, but Zelda is interrupted and Sprite does it instead - turns out she's a fairy princess and this just never came up before. Ganon captures Zelda and he also tries to fucking kiss her! I feel genuinely bad for Zelda in this show, she's a fun character but every man in her life just wants to kiss her. I actually liked this one when it wasn't horny - it was a fun little fantasy story that actually meaningfully expands on the world of Hyrule. But everyone in this show being a huge creep - Link especially - really does just bring the whole thing down, and I see no sign of it ever getting any better in that sense.
 
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Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
Link kissed a mummy and that’s canon now as far as I’m concerned.

It is the only part of the cartoon which is canon.
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
Link accidentally kisses a Gibdo glamoured to look like a beautiful woman and turns into a frog person.
This sentence makes me want to watch the animated show, and that is the first time in my life I've ever had that desire. Given the rest of your post, I won't watch it, but that sentence, there, rules, as far as I'm concerned lol
 

Kzinssie

(she/her)
Honestly that one episode might be worth watching, as long as you're prepared for how painfully horny it is. I'm hard on it, but the show does have its moments - Ganon is a fun villain, especially. It's just that Link drags the whole show down.
 

Beowulf

Son of The Answer Man
(He/Him)
The Valiant Comics follow the same setup and themes as the cartoon show, but I remember them being generally better written and less obsessed with kissing.
 

Kzinssie

(she/her)
THE LEGEND OF ZELDA (ANIMATED SERIES) EPISODE 5: SING FOR THE UNICORN (1989)

Jesus Christ, the King of Hyrule is Link's wingman in his attempts to fuck his daughter. I hate this show. I don't know if I've brought up King Harkinian until now - he's a pretty standard "jolly doofus" type, but he's fun enough. (The CD-i version is better, though.) It does strike me here that I actually like the basic setup of Link as a wilderness adventurer guy forced to adapt to cozy castle life and constantly looking for chances to do heroics, but the show barely uses it for anything except making Link whine. Oh yeah, this show has a plot. Ganon decides to kidnap the king and hold him for ransom to get the Triforce of Wisdom. The opening action sequence where Link tries to chase Ganon's pegasus (?!) before he gets away with the king was pretty solid for a cheesy 80s cartoon - that's actually been a constant here, the animation is not terrible for what it is. As always, it's immediately undercut by Link being a huge creep - in this case, faking his own death to get Zelda to kiss him in his dying breath. The pegasus is actually a big part of the plot, since it turns out Ganon captured it. The king struggles to remember Link's name, which makes it extra fucked up he tried to help him fuck his daughter. Ganon puts the king in a genuinely kinda fucked up torture trap where the floor slowly disappears from under him, giving him less and less room to stand before he falls into a pit. Zelda activates an Armos seemingly just for the fun of it. A friendly ninja named Sing is here for some reason, depicted very racistly - when she speaks it's literally gibberish put through some kind of filter to make it sound high pitched. Link tries to kiss her, of course. Turns out Ganon stole her famous Japanese unicorn. "One more zap and you're de-energized, Ganon!" Link actually uses a warp whistle to summon a tornado home! This review probably sounds incoherent, but that's because the episode is - there's just kinda two or three plotlines happening at the same time with no clear dilineation.

By the way, this was the episode used for that "Legend of Beavis" video posted already. Just watch that instead, honestly.
 
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