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Legend Of Zelda: A Link to the Past, The gba Game Reviews
Legend Of Zelda: A Link to the Past, The
Critic Score
Metascore: 95 Metascore out of 100
User Score  
8.6 out of 10
based on 30 reviews
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How did we calculate this?
based on 64 votes
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[Metacritic's 2002 Game Boy Advance Game of the Year] Two Legendary games in one Pak. In the one-player mode, A Link to the Past, Link receives a telepathic message from Zelda, imploring him to help. He must find the Master Sword, then travel to the Dark World to defeat Ganon and restore peace to the land of Hyrule. In the multiplayer game, Four Swords, between two to four players take on the roles of young adventurers who answer a challenge from the Triforce. They must brave the dangers of multiple dungeons in a quest to find the Master Sword. Their strength will be tested by fierce monsters, their wisdom tested by complex puzzles, and their courage tested by having to cooperate with each other to overcome obstacles.

DEVELOPER: Nintendo / Capcom
GENRE(S): Adventure
ESRB RATING: E (Everyone)
RELEASE DATE: December 2, 2002

What The Critics Said

All critic scores are converted to a 100-point scale. If a critic does not indicate a score, we assign a score based on the general impression given by the text of the review. Learn more...

A long, challenging quest that holds up well to repeated play. Younger players who never had a SNES will find this game an excellent warm-up for the soon-to-be-released "Legend of Zelda: The Wind Walker" for the GameCube.
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An indispensable game, combining arguably the finest RPG/adventure the 16-bit era ever produced (even compared to the likes of Secret of Mana and Final Fantasy VI) with an expertly realised multiplayer rendition of Zelda.
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A flawless masterpiece, Link to the Past drastically improved upon its predecessors by introducing a more linear framework for the player to explore (rather than the vast open-endedness of the two previous games), a better interface and controls, and dungeon puzzles and layouts designed in such a manner that can only be called perfect.
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Play Magazine
A Link to the Past is one of the best SNES games ever made, and it's found a new home on GBA, losing absolutely nothing in the translation. [Dec 2002, p.93]
"Four Swords" is the perfect multiplayer Zelda game. It combines amazing cooperative gameplay with competitive gameplay at the same time. The end result is a multiplayer game like no other.
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The puzzles are still clever, the dungeons are still brilliantly laid out, the control is spot-on, and the graphics still look sweet. [Jan 2003, p.64]
GBA Central
The adventure is long, involving, challenging and presented to perfection with beautiful graphics and a stunning soundtrack.
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A thoughtful, huge, rewarding classic.
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Nintendo Insider
Four Swords is the perfect multiplayer Zelda game. It combines amazing cooperative gameplay with competitive gameplay at the same time. The end result is a multiplayer game like no other. You’ll be up with your friends late into the night trying to save the Princess in this four-player frenzy.
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Nintendo Power
Incredible level design. [Dec 2002, p.222]
GamerWeb Nintendo
While Zelda Advance is really two games on one cartridge, each is brilliant and very solid in its own right.
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Four Swords is Nintendo's way of giving gamers something completely new and different in the Zelda environment, and it's one heck of a good time in each play through.
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There are certain games that come along, a few very generation, and they are the pinnacle of a genre, or an ideal. Such is A Link to the Past. The game is as close to flawless as is humanly possible.
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Electronic Gaming Monthly
"Four Swords" is the most fun I've ever had with a four-player GBA game. [Jan 2003, p.212]
GamingWorld X
This is a great opportunity for old schoolers to enjoy some excellent nostalgia (while kicking friends around in Four Swords) and new schoolers to partake in one of the greatest adventures of all time (er, while kicking friends around in Four Swords).
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Pocket Games
So much fun that you'll play 'til the batteries run out. You simply cannot miss this game. [Spring 2003, p.28]
By coupling one of the memorable SNES games ever released with an incredibly novel and addictive multiplayer mode, this version of A Link to the Past is an extraordinary game with awesome replay value.
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Game Informer
This title is the definition of perfect pacing. [Jan 2003, p.121]
Games Radar UK (Pre-2006)
A huge 30 hours-plus adventure but it never feels intimidatingly big. Whether you're a games novice or geriatric you'll be able to play it. [NGC]
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A great handheld port of one of the greatest games ever released for Nintendo's 16-bit system.
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Armchair Empire
A classic no matter the platform.
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To the untrained eye, the Link To The Past cartridge may well appear to be nothing more than another videogame for kids and others who refuse to grow out of childhood. However, it is much more than that, being as worthy a narrative as many popular books out there can be.
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Cheat Code Central
But the most amazing feature is that an entirely new game has been added. It's a multi-player game that is worth the price of admission alone. It's more than Gauntlet and it's not just another Deathmatch, it's a stand-alone game that makes this one of the best GBA buys in history.
Although A Link to the Past represents some of the most fabulous game designs you're ever likely to see, it also suffers from some criminally unforgiving sections that today's gamer-on-the-go is likely to scoff at. Not quite the vision of perfection that it once seemed to be.
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From finding all the unique items to helping a boy stuck between the worlds to rescuing all the maidens to finding out who is behind everything, the game has tons of adventure to spare. This is simply one of the must-haves for the GBA.
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GMR Magazine
Not having to dig out the SNES and clean out the cartridge port is nice enough, but to play this classic game on the bus? Pure Nirvana. [Feb 2003, p.74]
My Gamer
This new type of multiplayer is worth the purchase of the game itself but the only down fall is trying to find another player (or three) that owns a copy of the game.
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All Game Guide
A must-have title that, if nothing else, represents the missing "link" of Nintendo classics destined to appear on the color handheld.
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Gamer's Pulse
While Mario has aged well, A Link to the Past feels a little old. Unlike other GBA ports, the game definitely shows its age graphically, especially when compared to Four Swords.
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The control of the game is where this really shines.
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What Our Users Said

Vote Now! The average user rating for this game is 8.6 (out of 10) based on 64 User Votes
Note: User votes are NOT included in the Metascore calculation.

l. v gave it a9:
IT is a great game, but no one has another copy where i live. I cant paly 4 swords. :( Some sound effects are annoying, but other than that, it rules.

Nathan H. gave it an8:
It's Zelda!! But the graphics are old, the bosses are boring, dungeons easy and short... But it's Zelda!!

Jeff G. gave it a10:
Always a great game to play. looks lovely on the GBA. And I mean the "Zelda: A Link to the Past" didn't care enough to play the 4 swords. But yes a must have for all Zelda fans and classic gamers.

Steve P. gave it a5:
OK sorry to all the Zelda fans out there but I don't like this game. It was good for about 2 maybe 3 weeks, then it got hard, to hard. I understand makeing a game challenging but I hated killing 500 whatevers then being killed by some boss, that i didn't even know why i was fighting it, then start all over again. And when i finallly bet it, it gives me so dum ring, or sword, or par of underware, that gives me some lame power I never use. Oh and the story is real creative, a princes gets kidnapped by an evil wizard who wants to take over the world. That kinda sound like the story to ever Cheap Excuse For An RPG. But if your a Hard Core RPG fan this game will be fantastic.

Salv M. gave it a10:
Great game.

David D. gave it a10:
One. Great. Game. The best 2D Zelda there ever was, and I haven't tried Four Swords yet (because hardly anyone I know bought it)

Baby doll gave it a5:
I voted 5 because i think you could of done a whole lot better on the gameboy advance zelda games like cmon mario cart has heaps better graphics and in the game cube for the legend of zelda the four swords is like a cartoon character.

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