Zelda’s 30th Birthday

Davina Lewis, Staff Writer

A stained glass portrait of Link, "Legend Of Zelda" protagonist. Pyramid
A stained glass portrait of Link, “Legend Of Zelda” protagonist.

This year, January 21, was the 30th anniversary of the video game series, The Legend Of Zelda.  Designed by Shigeru Miyamoto, Legend of Zelda has become one of the biggest Nintendo series in history.


The lovable and heroic protagonist, Link, who constantly finds himself trying to save the Hyrulian princess, and namesake of the franchise, Zelda–much like Princess Peach from Super Mario Bros, Princess Zelda never remains protected.  


The very first Zelda game was established in 1986, under the simple title of The Legend Of Zelda. It introduced Link, Princess, Zelda, Ganon, the land of Hyrule, and the very well-known symbol called the Triforce. These characteristics are continuous in the games, as they are key elements to each plotline. One year after, Nintendo released The Adventure Of Link. This game was different than its predecessor, as the technique of side-scrolling was introduced. Other aspects such as spell-casting and upgrading of ability were added into the game which made it unique.


After 4 years passed, Nintendo published A Link To The Past. The concept of parallel worlds was presented. Link has to defeat Ganon, whilst travelling between two realms.


In 1993, a new land was presented, going by the name of Koholint. In Link’s Awakening, three key elements, Zelda, the Triforce, and Hyrule aren’t present. Despite this, the renowned instrument, called an ocarina, made its first appearance in this game. In the same year, 4 months later, a new Zelda game was released. It went by the title of The Faces Of Evil or The Wand Of Gamelon. This was the first and only to be on CD-ROM format.


1998 was a significant year for Nintendo and the Zelda franchise. This was the year that the 3-D feature was used in Ocarina Of Time. The ocarina returned, hence the title.This was the game that began my Zelda game addiction. It was the first game I had thoroughly enjoyed. I remember playing this game when I was about 8 or 9. I have been infatuated with the Legend Of Zelda ever since. The year after, Super Smash Bros. was debuted as the first fighting game under Nintendo. Zelda characters were brought into this game.


Majora’s Mask, released in 2000, was a creepy game, but it was yet another great one. In this game, Link is attacked by a Skull Kid, and is taken into a parallel world, Termina. This very world is going to be destroyed in 3 days, by the infamous moon. Link must cease this near-future apocalypse, with the help of Majora’s mask. In 2001, Oracle Of Seasons and Oracle Of Ages were released. Oracle Of Seasons is an action-based version of Oracle Of Ages, which has a puzzle-themed plot. The year after, Four Swords and Wind Waker were made public. Four Swords introduces a character named Vaati, and the four sword, and Link and Zelda are portrayed as childhood friends. Wind Waker takes place after the destruction and fall of Hyrule, in which nothing but islands and the Great Sea are left. Link is referred to as the Hero of Winds.


2004 was the year The Minish Cap and Four Swords Adventures came out. The Minish Cap deals with the similar plotline as Four Sword. Four Swords Adventures takes a different route, as it tells the backstory of infamous antagonist, Ganon, or Ganondorf. Two years subsequently, Twilight Princess came out. Eiji Aonuma claims that the game takes place 100 years after Ocarina Of Time in a parallel universe.


Phantom Hourglass was released in 2007, and takes place in the same setting as Wind Waker. In this game, Link must save Tetra from a ghost ship. In 2009, Spirit Tracks came out, and occurs 100 years after the setting in Phantom Hourglass. Two years later, Skyward Sword was launched, and happens 100 years before Ocarina Of Time. In 2013, A Link Between Worlds was published. The gameplay involves a similar plot as A Link To The Past, with the added feature of merging into walls. The most recent game that was released was Tri Force Heroes. This game emphasizes co-op gameplay.
Zelda has been a big part of my life, as I really enjoy the games, and feel like I’m actually a part of it. This game series has helped me with thinking divergently/solving problems. I’m glad that the franchise has continued, and I look forward to more wonderful games. As a dedicated fan, I’d love to say happy belated birthday to the Legend Of Zelda. May you always make my life more adventurous.  

Legend Of Zelda, 30th anniversary