Should The Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past be released on the 3DS Virtual Console Soon?
With 2D Zelda games seemingly back in fashion and The Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past 2 hitting the 3DS later this year, it seems like a whole new generation of Zelda fans may be introduced to SNES era style Zelda design. But should the original Link to the Past be released as well, perhaps as a Virtual Console game that’s available to buy for the 3DS eShop? I think it should be, and here’s why:
1. The game can be a good introduction to the series for those interested in the sequel
First things first, I think rereleasing the original Link to the Past on 3DS would be a good idea simply due to how long it’s been since people have played it. Okay, it’s available on the Wii as a Virtual Console title, but not everyone owns a Wii or even cares for Nintendo home consoles. And with A Link to the Past 2 being a direct sequel set in the exact same version of Hyrule, it’d certainly help to have the original game available to compare to.
Above: Being able to switch between the games easily would let people notice what locations reappear and how the map stays consistent between them.
Additionally, I think the game could work as a good introduction to the general gameplay style of its sequel and other 2D Zelda titles as a whole. After all, these games don’t play like the 3D ones or the somewhat mediocre Phantom Hourglass/Spirit Tracks, and quite a few newer Zelda fans might not know what to expect from the sequel because of this. Making the original Link to the Past serves as a good intro to 2D Zelda gameplay and fixes all these problems.
That’s not the only benefit though…
2. With Four Swords Anniversary Edition out, they could rerelease the GBA one and tie the two games together
Nope, the other benefit of this is that we already have a (mostly free) copy of Four Swords available on the same system in the form of the Legend of Zelda Four Swords Anniversary Edition.
Why is this useful to know? Well just remember what title came packaged with Four Swords on the GBA back in the days of yore…
That’s right, it came with A Link to the Past! Except this one didn’t keep the two games as entirely seperate entities, but added a new dungeon and new unlockables that you got by beating Four Swords. So why not bring this back and have both games connect to one another?
I think this could be a pretty neat little gimmick that could encourage people to get multiple games. Just have things like the Palace of the Four Sword available in the Link to the Past rerelease, and then have the game check for Four Swords Anniversary Edition save data when unlocking it. Hence you’d reward people who downloaded or bought Four Swords and played it through, as well as let them carry over special abilities like the Hurricane Spin or Sword beams to Link to the Past.
Perhaps then they could even tie the 3DS sequel into this whole concept too. So that if you played it after beating Link to the Past and Four Swords, you unlocked a second quest of sorts to reward you for your gaming skill.
And finally, here’s what one more reason it’d be a good idea…
3. Fans could test out how such games work with 3DS controls
Yes, it’d work well as a sort of ‘trial run’ for the 3DS sequel for people unsure about how the controls work. Because while in theory you can play the game on an old Game Boy Advance/DS or Wii…
Above: Wii and GBA controls don’t really match those on the 3DS
In practice the control schemes these consoles use and the button layouts present are very different from those the 3DS itself makes use of.
But rereleasing A Link to the Past could get round these problems, and act as a nice way to get Zelda fans used to the 3DS and how it works with a 2D Zelda game. It could also help people move straight from the first Link to the Past to the sequel, simply by having both games use the exact same control scheme.
So yes, I think rereleasing A Link to the Past on the 3DS Virtual Console could be a great idea, especialy if they made a couple of minor tweaks to let it interact with Four Swords Anniversary Edition.
What do you think about this? Do you want to see the original Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past made available on the 3DS as a sort of ‘practice’ for its soon to be released sequel?