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A Remake Done Right? - Zelda’s Links Awakening

Have you noticed all the remakes coming out these days, are there no original ideas left in the minds of developers and publishers? Is our taste in games only to be satisfied through nostalgia glasses? Are we really looking for original games? No, yes,mMaybe. Link’s Awakening is everything you want and desire, even though it is a remake of the strangest Legend of Zelda game.

The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening — Overview trailer (Nintendo Switch) — Nintendo UK

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Whenever Nintendo shuttles out a new game from HQ, you can always expect it to be a hit, though sometimes really weird creations like their new Ring, most of what they send us is fun. Link’s Awakening remake is no exception to this rule as everyone who played it seems to enjoy it. Most have noted that the Chamber Dungeons are by far the least appealing portion of the game but to each their own. If you don’t know what the Chamber Dungeons are, they are the equivalent of Super Mario Maker levels; you are able to design dungeons based of dungeons you’ve completed throughout the game.

What should you expect from the remake?

Chain Chomp hiding in grass waiting to bite Link.
Chain Chomps are in the Mario universe.. so how?

In true fashion for remakes, the graphics have been updated and by updated, I mean, they have been updated to fit modern standards. No, it’s not going to look like Breath of the Wild, it’ looks more toy like, in fact I would go off on a limb and say everything in the game looks like they could be part of the amiibo collection. Am I wrong? That said, even though the toyish design does look much different than other Zelda games it works because of the quirky nature of the game.

Remember everything is set within a dream world, I mean, have you ever seen a Chain Chomp or Goombah appear in Zelda games outside of Link’s Awakening?

A new addition to the game is Fairy Bottles. We’re all used to having Fairy Bottles on hand ready to heal or revive us when we make a ‘mistake’ and get killed. The original Link’s Awakening didn’t have it so if it wasn’t included, in this day in age when Fairy Bottle’s are now a staple, that would have been very weird.

The best sword in the game could only be aquired by finding 20 seashells scattered throughout the world, but this time there are more seashells to find. I don’t know the exact count but it’s around 50. That said, after finding the 20 seashells your given the Seashell Senor which let’s you find the remaining seashells by pinging, like the Shiekah Slate, when they’re near.

Link awakening in a mysterious house next to Marin.
After being lost at sea, Link awakens in a strange new land.

To summarize, everything else,

  • Redone animations,
  • Redone sound effects,
  • Orchestrated musical scores
  • Quality of life improvements
  • More buttons to use!

Okay, so ‘more buttons to use sounds’ odd, but playing the original you only had two buttons to work with and you really needed one of them for your sword for the majority of the time so having X and Y makes things more comfortable.

The last thing I want to bring up is Chamber Dungeons. I’ve mentioned that people who’ve tried it out found it to be hit or miss. The biggest complaint is that because you only unlock new dungeon rooms after completing the same dungeon you are essentially going to recomplete the same rooms. This meant rooms were self-contained and by that I meant they are independent from one another, whats in the room, stays in the room.

The new Dungeon Chamber mode for Link’s Awakening, similar to Super Mario Maker 2 level design.
The Chamber Dungeon mode is a hit or miss with fans. I’m sure someone will make something really good and it’ll become popular though,

I personally don’t mind this, but with more freedom such as individualizing assets of a room to be placed within other rooms would probably make the previous gripe non-existent.

Freedom to create because Nintendo already created that expectation by giving us Super Mario Maker, why not include it here? That said, I’m sure a lot of people would be able to make a Chamber Dungeon that is incredible and creative all while fitting within the constraints given.

As a final word, remakes should be faithful to the original, to a point. That point should be done with keeping the story and game feel intact but improvements to graphics, sound, experience and QoL should be done. This is exactly what Nintendo has achieved. They managed to take an old game and outfit it with modern graphics, though they really do remind me of amiibo’s, level up the sound, created a better experience by improving things like the map and seashell hunts and generally added new features that let you know your playing a remake while also letting you know that the game is new.

Link holding up a honeycomb, though he doesn’t know what it’s for.
We’re not sure how a remake was so good, but it did happen. Clap of Approval to you Nintendo.

They did a great job and should be give the claps of approval.

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