How “A Link to the Past” Entered My Life

So I noticed a few days ago that The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past is officially 25 years old as of April 13 (at least in North America). And I thought, “HUH! …It doesn’t feel like it should be that old.” But then again, I’m that person who still thinks 2007 was maybe a few years ago. *shrugs*

I know many people who adore this game. One of my best friends contends that this is the Zelda game he feels closest to. Unfortunately, I didn’t really get the memo and play the game until maybe 12 years later.

Believe it or not, The Legend of Zelda series wasn’t a big part of my life for, well, most of the time I’ve been alive. I blame my older brother in part for this.

When I was a mere 5 years old, my brother would have his buddy come over and play the NES all the time. My brother is almost a decade older than I am, so understandably, he probably didn’t want his kid sister stealing his games from him. So he made me a deal when I asked if I could play the original Legend of Zelda. He said, “Sure. You can play it… if you don’t die.”

Three seconds later, I died, along with my chances of playing the game again.

So, yeah, Zelda wasn’t my thing for a long time. I played more Mario games than anything. It wasn’t until my brother moved out and the N64 came along that I gave the Zelda franchise a chance and grew to love it. But that’s a story for another time!

I had only played Ocarina of Time by the time I entered college. I didn’t know anything about the other games, to be honest. That is, until one of my old gaming friends starting talking about it.

He was one of the few people I really knew well in college who had a gaming system in his dorm room. I brought my SNES one year, and he would always have his PlayStation downstairs, often playing Mega Man, Brave Fencer Musashi, and sometimes Final Fantasy Tactics (He and his roomie would often argue about which was better – FF VII or FF VIII). We hung out and gamed a lot together; I would go downstairs to learn the ins and outs of the PlayStation through Brave Fencer Musashi, he would come upstairs to play Kirby Super Star with me. Sometimes we would sit together in the study lounge and he would play Kirby on his computer while I read my literature assignments.

One day, he asked me if I had A Link to the Past. I said no and that I never played it. “Is it any good?” I asked. “It’s a classic!” he replied. “I can’t believe you have a SNES and you’ve never played that game!”

I had forgotten all about that little conversation until months later one Sunday night in February, I heard a soft knock on my door. My friend stood before me with his hands behind his back.

“Close your eyes and put your hands out,” he said.

I did what he asked me, and felt something, well, cartridge-y in my hands. I couldn’t believe my eyes – he had given me A Link to the Past! Apparently, it was a very belated birthday present, and I was flabbergasted. And excited – I couldn’t wait to play!

The next day, I fired up the SNES after finishing a paper, my friend by my side. He watched as I started my first file and began my quest to save the princess and all of Hyrule! Along the way, I did a lot of dumb things. Like bumping into enemies constantly. Or falling down holes. Or getting turned around too many times in the Lost Woods. Or get smooshed by falling rocks on Death Mountain. Or getting shoved down a hole by Moldorm in the tower. It was so bad at times that my friend jokingly asked if I happened to like losing hearts ’cause I was doing it a lot. Oops… >///<

I’ll never forget when I got to Agahnim. It was a momentous occasion, and my friend was stoked that I got that far. We were sitting on the floor in my little dorm room, and I was heading into battle when suddenly the door opened behind us. It was my beloved roomie! I didn’t really realize I was doing it, but I turned around without pausing just to say hi to her, and my friend started freaking out because he thought I was going to die, haha. ^_^

cucco attack

My friend was also the person who taught me to fear the Cuccos in an unconventional way. One day when I was traipsing through Kakariko Village, this happened:

“Hey, you see that chicken over there?”

“Yeah. What about it? It’s kinda cute.”

“That’s a Cucco. Go over to it and stab it. 35 times.”

“What?! That’s so mean… and excessive. Why?”

“Just do it. It’s funny.”

*proceeds to stab poor Cucco 35 times, apologizing the whole time until a horde of enraged Cuccos chased me through the village*

*friend laughs his head off*

Probably not the best way to teach me about a Cucco’s rage, but it definitely got the point across!

While A Link to the Past isn’t my favorite Zelda game, it’s still really fun and holds up to this day, in my opinion. I enjoy traveling between the Light World and the Dark World. I really like hanging out in Kakariko Village or calling my bird buddy to whisk me away (and running as far right on the screen as I can till he catches up to me). I haven’t played the game nearly as much as I have other Zelda games, but I still really dig it a lot and I’m thankful that my old friend introduced it to me those many years ago.

What do you think? Do you enjoy LTTP? What are your thoughts on the game? Feel free to leave a comment below! ^_^

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6 thoughts on “How “A Link to the Past” Entered My Life

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  1. My opinion is about the same: it is a solid Zelda experience, but I like a lot of other entries better. And perhaps it’s a factor, but I also didn’t play it until well after its original release. 😛 I found that I enjoyed its sort-of sequel, A Link Between Worlds, more than ALttP.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yay, I’m not alone! You know, it’s funny you should say that – I started playing A Link Between Worlds for the first time a few days ago (well, going between that and Katamari Damacy, honestly!). I’ve heard it’s a great game – can’t wait to dig into it! ^_^

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I thought it was excellent- if you liked ALttP, you’ll enjoy this one as well!

        And yeah, I started getting into Zelda around the time Majora’s Mask and the Oracle games came out. Although I beat Ocarina around then as well, I didn’t get to any earlier titles for a long while later. 😛 I’ve always favored the 3D Zeldas.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Those are nice memories!

    I love A Link to the Past, but – like you – I only played it many years after its release. Partially because I was one year before it came out, and partially because English is not my native language, so I could not for the life of me figure out what was going on until I started learning it.

    The game wouldn’t rank within my Top 5 games of the franchise, since I tend to prefer the 3-D installments over the 2-D ones, but it is certainly masterful and very important to the saga, since it established many of the tropes the series would go on to be gravitate around for the next twenty years or so.

    Liked by 1 person

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