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The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past & Four Swords

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The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past & Four Swords
Four Swords Box.png
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past & Four Swords US box art
Developer(s) Nintendo
Capcom
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Designer(s) Hidemaro Fujibayashi (director)
Noritaka Funamizu (producer)
Yoshihiro Sudo (producer)
Yuko Takehara (Four Swords sound composer)
Taiju Suzuki (A Link to the Past sound programmer)
Hiroaki Kondo (sound effects)
Yuki Takamasa (sound effects)
Koji Kondo (A Link to the Past original sound composer/Four Swords sound advisor)
Release date
North America December 2, 2002[1]
Japan March 14, 2003[2]
European Union March 28, 2003
Commonwealth of Australia December 6, 2002[3]
Rating(s) ESRB: E
CERO: All
CB: G8+
USK: 6
Platform(s) Game Boy Advance
Predecessor Oracle of Seasons
Oracle of Ages
Successor The Wind Waker
StrategyWiki Favicon.png Guide/Walkthrough at StrategyWiki

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past & Four Swords for Game Boy Advance is an enhanced port of A Link to the Past coupled with an entirely new game, Four Swords. This two-in-one game was released shortly before The Wind Waker.

While A Link to the Past is largely a faithful port of the original, it does include an entirely new dungeon and a new quest as rewards for the player playing through the multiplayer-only Four Swords. Aside from these additions, it includes a number of smaller gameplay and dialogue changes, the latter of which are designed to correct a number of minor translation mistakes and inconsistencies with the original Japanese release and to unify the common terms used with the later games.

Four Swords was later released as a standalone entry with added single player option and new stages on the Nintendo DSi and 3DS, known as Four Swords Anniversary Edition. The Game Boy Advance version of A Link to the Past has not been released again in any form, nor have any of the changes made been carried over to the Virtual Console releases. Even so, the changes to A Link to the Past heavily influenced A Link Between Worlds, most notably with the inclusion of Rupee rocks and the Great Spin.

Changes and Additions in A Link to the Past

Translation

The Game Boy Advance port of A Link to the Past features a semi-new and more faithful translation in the game's localization. Several strings of in-game text were changed and a few expanded, and are paraphrased differently from the original text. A few names and references were also changed to remain consistent with the rest of the series; most notably the Seven Wise Men now being referred to as the Seven Sages and the Hylia referred to as Hylians. The prologue in the game's intro was expanded and explains the Imprisoning War in greater detail.

Among other significant changes to the dialogue, Link's Uncle no longer says "Zelda is your..." when Link receives his Sword and Shield. A similar line is however referenced in the Palace of the Four Sword, when Blind the Thief II impersonates Link's Uncle.[4]

Saving

In A Link to the Past & Four Swords, the file select screen is entirely new and is displayed before selecting either of the two games. Both A Link to the Past and Four Swords share the same file. When starting a new game in A Link to the Past for the first time on a file, the story of the Imprisoning War and the rest of the prologue is displayed before the rest of the game begins, and cannot be skipped. The player can however skip the Triforce sequence before the title screen appears, which was previously only possible in the PAL version of the game.

When bringing up the save menu, it is now possible to "Save and Continue" playing without Link dying, rather than simply "Save and Quit". A sound effect now also plays when the save menu appears and disappears. Saving and quitting no longer counts as a "game played" or death on the Quest Log, making it a lot easier to get a "perfect" game. When reloading a save file, it is now possible to start from the same location where the game was last saved from. This places Link where he last was on the overworld, or at the start of a dungeon. Saving and quitting while in a dungeon no longer forces Link outside the dungeon when the file is reloaded.

A "Sleep" option was also added to the save menu. This allows the player to leave their Game Boy Advance in a battery-saving mode and resume playing where they left off later.

Palace of the Four Sword

A new bonus dungeon, the Palace of the Four Sword, was added and can be found on the eastern side of the Pyramid of Power. It can only be accessed after completing the game and defeating Vaati in Four Swords on the same save file; otherwise a Pikku will prevent Link from entering. Link faces several powered-up versions of the Dark World bosses throughout this dungeon, which are considerably stronger and require new tactics to defeat. These bosses guard the four colored blades necessary to destroy the barrier blocking the way to the final boss. The dungeon's final boss are a group of four Dark Links, which attack Link one by one.

The Palace of the Four Sword features an alternative ending to the game and credit sequence upon its completion. After completing the dungeon, the Quest Log is also unlocked, which shows various data about the player's status in the game.

Riddle Quest and Hurricane Spin

A new sidequest, known as the Riddle Quest, is available once the player has obtained ten Medals of Courage in Four Swords and has defeated Agahnim the first time in the current game. The quest is given to Link by Q. Bumpkin, a Lumberjack that only appears in the port, and has Link fulfilling various errands and tasks to solve a series of riddles. After solving the tenth riddle, Link learns how to use the Hurricane Spin, a much more powerful version of the Spin Attack.

Other Changes

Controls

  • The R-button now performs the same actions that the A-button originally did. The A-button now functions as the Y-button did.

User interface

  • When Link's Rupee, Arrow or Bomb carrying capacity is full, the color of the amount's number changes to yellow to signify this.
  • The secondary menu in the inventory screen that held the Bottles is now merged with the main screen, creating a new column on the right side. This is made possible due to the wider screen ratio of the Game Boy Advance.

Places

  • Dungeon names (and their Level, in the case of the Dark World dungeons) are now displayed on the screen when Link enters them, in a similar manner to Link's Awakening and other games.
  • The shop to the west of the Pyramid of Power not only sells Red Shields, but also Fighter's Shields and, once Link obtains it from Turtle Rock, Mirror Shields. This is because Link can now lose his Mirror Shield to Like Likes.
  • A new shop appears in the Village of Outcasts that sells Bees, Fairies and Golden Bees.
  • The Ice Palace dungeon was altered slightly to make the puzzle requiring that Link to push a block to a lower floor slightly easier.
  • The Chris Houlihan Room is extremely hard to enter due to nearly every glitch in the game being fixed. If Link does manage to access it, Chris Houlihan's name is not mentioned in the game text, just as in the original Japanese version of the game.

Characters

Items

  • The flames from the Lamp can now cause minor damage to enemies.
  • The variant spelling Faeries rarely in use today has been changed to the much more common Fairies.
  • The Good Bee has been renamed to the Golden Bee.
  • Pots can now be shattered using Arrows or the Golden Sword. This new ability is used for puzzles in the Palace of the Four Sword. Signs can now also be destroyed with the Master Sword and its upgrades.
  • Bushes can now be destroyed using the Magic Hammer.
  • Link can now dive underwater using the Zora's Flippers. This allows him to dodge enemy attacks.
  • The Shovel now has its own inventory slot and is kept after finding the Flute. It is placed where the single Bottle icon was originally kept.
  • The Flute has a ninth destination point in addition to the original eight. This new location is at the top of the Light World equivalent of Turtle Rock.

Enemies and Bosses

  • Enemies and bosses now flash white and shake when struck, rather than flash in multiple colors.
  • Crows are now more aggressive, however their Dark World counterparts, Dactos, are less so.[verification needed]
  • Like Likes, in their original tube-like form, make an appearance. They appear in the Palace of the Four Sword and near the Shield Shop to the east of the Pyramid of Power. Much like the Pikits, they will eat Link's Shield, but will also run away and fly into the sky to prevent him from getting it back. They will even eat the Mirror Shield.
  • The cave in the Light World that can be accessed by using the Magic Mirror from outside Turtle Rock now contains Eyegores, as opposed to the Goriya it originally had.
  • Ganon's arm when holding his trident has been mirrored horizontally. This may either be a graphical glitch or an oversight.

Miscellaneous

The new title screen
  • The title screen has been slightly altered where the Master Sword is now blue in color, as opposed to purple in the original game. The background also takes up more of the screen.
  • The game has a lighter color palette to compensate for the lack of back light on the Game Boy Advance. However, the player can adjust the brightness on a file, and switching to "Dark" sets the colors closer to the original release. There is also a "Bright" option, which makes the colors even lighter.
  • There is an option to speed up and slow down the text speed.
  • The music and sound effects have been altered slightly due to the limited sound capabilities of the Game Boy Advance, resulting in some lower quality samples.
  • The icons that display at the top of the screen have been adjusted to compensate for the smaller screen size. The pause menu has also been adjusted.
  • Link now has voice samples as sound effects, which are taken from Young Link. He will yell when attacking and falling down holes, and grunt when taking damage.
  • Certain sprites found in Dark World dungeons use the same green palette that is otherwise used for the overworld, as opposed to the blue palette used in all the original game's dungeons and the Light World. This has the effect of changing the color of certain enemies, such as Bari and Kyameron.
  • Certain stones and skulls will sparkle on the overworld. If Link strikes these with his Sword, they will scatter Rupees. Link can continue striking them until they return to normal.
  • Pots make the same sound effect for shattering even if they fall down a pit, unlike in the original game.

Nomenclature

TMC Forest Minish Artwork.png Names in Other Regions TMC Jabber Nut Sprite.gif
Language Name Meaning
Japan Japanese ゼルダの伝説 神々のトライフォース&4つの剣 (Zeruda no Densetsu: Kamigami no Toraifōsu & 4 Tsu no Ken) The Legend of Zelda: Triforce of the Gods & 4 Swords

Gallery

View Gallery
A Link to the Past Gallery
View Gallery
Four Swords Gallery

References

  1. | Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past / Four Swords - Games - Nintendo |, Nintendo (archive), retrieved July 14, 2013.
  2. ゼルダの伝説 神々のトライフォース&4つの剣, Nintendo, retrieved July 14, 2013.
  3. | Games Matrix - Game Boy Advance |, Nintendo Australia (archive), retrieved July 14, 2013.
  4. "Uhhnn... Link... I didn't want you involved in this... I told you not to leave home. You must rescue Princess Zelda... You are... the princess's... ... ... ..." — Blind the Thief II (A Link to the Past & Four Swords)
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