Five Things You Might Not Have Noticed About Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

Most of the focus during today’s Zelda: A Link Between Worlds announcement was on the more obvious stuff: the game’s overhead perspective, an A Link to the Past-inspired world, and the ability to meld into walls as a kind of hieroglyph to navigate dungeons in unique ways. The gameplay appears to consist of a healthy mix of old and new elements.

However, we’re serious Zelda nerds, so we looked a little bit deeper than what was described and came up with a few more obscure observations…

He Sounds Like Toon Link, But Isn’t

From the overhead perspective, the incarnation of Link in A Link Between Worlds looks almost like a pure re-coloring of the Toon Link model used in Phantom Hourglass and Spirit Tracks. His outfit definitely looks more like the one he wore in A Link to the Past, complete with browner sleeves, yellow brim on his hood, and darker reddish-blond hair. He also sounds like Toon Link, borrowing the same vocal performance used since The Wind Waker.

However, upon closer inspection, it’s clear Link isn’t just a new version of Toon Link. It’s simply a 3D render of the Link from A Link to the Past.


Just look at that face! He doesn’t borrow the facial features used by the Toon Link style at all! He’s got normal eyes with fully-detailed pupils, just like his original form. The proportions of his model may be fairly close to Toon Link’s, but I presume that’s more a consequence of the perspective and the need to display characters in a distinguishable way that looks nice from a bird’s-eye view. After all, the 2D sprites were never particularly “realistic,” either.


The Magic Meter Returns

After a long absence since The Wind Waker, it appears the Magic Meter is back in business. You can see it as a vertical green bar on the left-hand side of the screen in most of the official screenshots.

CTRP_Zelda_scrn05_Ev04Unlike the previous Magic Meters, this one doesn’t require Magic Jars to refill – it’ll regenerate automatically as long as you aren’t using items or abilities that consume magic. So far, actions that require magic include using a charged Hammer or Bow attack and utilizing Link’s new “drawing” power to creep along the walls.

Given that it’s connected to the Hammer and Bow, it’s also possible that it could be a more all-purpose Stamina Meter instead. However, given the vertical alignment and the fact that this is after all a sequel to A Link to the Past, we prefer to think it’s actually magic.

And we might stick to that, even if we wind up being wrong. We old-school fans are a stubborn folk.

Life and Magic are Now Displayed at the Bottom of the Screen

This one might border a bit on obsessive-compulsive, but we couldn’t help but notice that the Life and Magic Meters have been bumped from their usual place at the top of the screen to the bottom.

alttp-life-magic CTRP_Zelda_scrn04_Ev04

It’s a bit of an odd change, and likely doesn’t really mean much, but it’s one of those things that a small group of hardcore fans might actually explode over. Maybe.

The Shield Seems Really Important

zelda-3ds-shieldUsually when I see the shield pop up in a Zelda trailer, its appearance winds up being pretty insignificant. Just another gameplay feature, as it were. In A Link Between Worlds, the shield doesn’t seem insignificant at all. Apart from the Hammer, it’s actually the most-used secondary item in any of the footage we’ve seen.

It also seems much more robust than in A Link to the Past. While we haven’t played the game to confirm anything, it appears it can be activated at will, rather than simply passively as in the older 2D games. It can also block attacks that previously weren’t blockable, including the dive-bombs of the crows.

I Spy a Legendary Blade…

While I’d like to avoid jumping to any unfounded conclusions, there’s a sword in A Link Between Worlds that looks and behaves similarly to the Master Sword from A Link to the Past. See the blue hilt and the sword beams? Compare that to the sword seen throughout most of the trailer, which has a plainer hilt and doesn’t fire beams when Link has full life.

CTRP_Zelda_scrn03_Ev04 CTRP_Zelda_scrn01_Ev04

Did you notice anything interesting in the A Link Between Worlds footage we’ve seen so far that you’d like to share? Tell us in the comments!

More on A Link Between Worlds:

  • http://twitter.com/AngelCiiz Angeℓ

    I noticed evertything, unless the sword thing, maybe the beam one is the Master sword oviously, oh and i like that the lifeand magic metter are now in the bottom of the screen.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Will-VanZant/1124721797 Will VanZant

    As a game designer, switching the health from top to bottom is a brilliant choice. In a game with two screens, it is the object of attention to make sure the player should be able to focus on both as well as possible. It may seem small, but having to dart your eyes up and then down instead of just down if you want to check your health and the bottom screen is better for this type of game. I can just imagine the QA department high-fiving when somebody suggested it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jugglaj91 Joe Onley Jr

    1. I noticed it almost from the beginning.

    2. Was extremely obvious.

    3. The game is still in development and I would not be surprised to see it back up top or on the bottom screen.

    4. Shield is usually important, but apparently you think you can just run through everything.

    5. That is a little harder to spot with everything going on, but cool nonetheless.

    • zdog

      Don’t try to fool us with your name, we all know you are really McKayla Maroney…

  • http://www.facebook.com/Nintend0wn Max Miller

    Why was #5 “Hey, is that the Master Sword?” Of course it is. It’d be silly to speculate about the Master Sword’s confirmation in a ZELDA game. :P

    • http://www.gengame.net/ Alex Plant

      It could be a look-alike, like the Phantom Sword or Lokomo Sword from the DS games. The Master Sword does, after all, “sleep forever” after A Link to the Past.

  • Nintendocan

    I spotted all 5. :P

  • http://www.facebook.com/CheatMasterK Adam Miller

    Also, they brought back a lot of sounds from ALttP; The sword beam sound, the charging sword sound, even the heart collection sound.

    • Ernesto Reyna

      Those may just be placeholders as this is still in developlement.

  • MusubiKazesaru

    I think the transformation into the drawing uses magic

  • Mseevers95

    Looks like this could be the perfect mix of 2D and 3D Zelda we’ve all been hoping could exist someday.

    Now the only question is where will it be in the timeline of doom

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mike-Nmg-Morris/100002482327346 Mike Nmg Morris

    so i’m not the only one bothered by the hearts being at the bottom and they are like 4 time the size of the hearts in the first one

    • Giovanni Alex Adamo

      remember that this is just a demo?

  • Kaya

    No one noticed, but Link can now hit the green walking fish dudes that used to electrocute you when you swung your sword at them.

    • Adlez Eluryh

      Those are “Chus”, like those green blobs in the Adult link Timeline games. And yeah, I noticed, but only because they really bugged me as a kid, even after I got the boomerang to stun them (I also thought they were walking fish things).

      • Kaya

        so THATS what those are! Lol I see it now, though how on earth can a chu electrocute you? Maybe that was a LttP exclusive thing. :P Also, I have to say – I am SO STOKED for this!

        • Adlez Eluryh

          There are electrified Chus in later games, though I don’t recall the green ones ever being able to do that, aside from ALttP (If they ARE Chus, a recent comment that may or may not be sarcastic has recently shaken that belief to it’s very core).

          • Caden Collier

            Green Chus electrify you in the Oracle games.

            • Adlez Eluryh

              I didn’t even remember them being in the game. Thanks for the reminder. I don’t remember much from the oracle games, mostly just that I played Seasons too much and got sick of it.

            • Michael

              Also Link’s Awakening (DX obviously)

            • http://www.gengame.net/ Alex Plant

              Buzz Blobs. Not Chu Chus. They are different creatures.

      • http://www.gengame.net/ Alex Plant

        No, those are definitely Buzzblobs. They’ve probably been neutered to behave more like Chus, though.

        • Adlez Eluryh

          Wasn’t their original name Chu in ALttP? or was that just in the remake (or possibly a friend giving me the wrong info?)?

          • http://www.gengame.net/ Alex Plant
          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000859375827 Miles Metts

            Buzzblobs and Chus (/Chuchus) are seperate entities, primarily noted by the electrocution upon attack.

    • Vitamin E

      I think that the Level-3 or 4 sword in ALttP can wound Buzzblobs without stunning them. I’m not 100% on that, though.

      • Kaya

        I am gonna need to replay the game to see. This announcement has me excited, so now I am on a Zelda binge. Lttp first, then OoT, then TP. Hopefully it will be October by the time I 100% all of them again.

  • Caden Collier

    There’s a spot in the trailer where bombs drop from grass but they’re picked up so quickly that it’s really hard to find.

  • Ericzander

    Pretty sure that’s a stamina meter..

    • Adlez Eluryh

      I disagree. The bar goes down when he uses the bow, we can’t see the bottom screen, but I don’t think there’s any arrows and that Link uses magic to fire his bow. Magic could give the hammer it’s power, and if none of that is true, why would the bar empty when he attaches himself to walls?
      Of course everything I said could be wrong, we don’t know, but since it’s a sequel to ALttP I’ll be the same as Alex Plant and call t a magic meter anyway.

      • Othy

        The meter goes down when he goes flat because going flat makes Link tired. :p

      • http://www.gengame.net/ Alex Plant

        Anything that’s not health or magic is displayed on the bottom screen.

        • Adlez Eluryh

          The demo showed no arrow counter on the bow, or anywhere else on the bottom screen where it would be available. The bar has got to be magic, and that’s Link’s source of ammo (for the bow at least).

          • http://www.gengame.net/ Alex Plant

            Or it could be a quirk of the demo.

  • Adlez Eluryh

    I like the health and stamina closer to the bottom of the screen, easier to keep an eye on when checking the bottom screen, it was pretty obvious that the green bar is the magic bar, I don’t know why it made this list… Killing the Chus without a boomerang is different, and I’m not sure I like it. Something not mentioned, but shown above is a boss from ALttP, Moldorm (the big worm thing), in nearly (if not then it IS) the exact same boss chamber.
    As a side note, if that IS the master sword (which I don’t know if I like or dislike as an idea) that would mean Ganon IS back, but considering the number of hearts, this is INCREDIBLY unlikely. The master sword (for most games with obvious exceptions) is obtained after gathering 3 items related tot he triforce, pendants, spiritual stones, but always 3 of them. In all Zelda games (excluding Skyward Sword) Link starts the game with 3 hearts. So three mystic items = 3 bosses = 3 extra heart containers (Wind Waker gave you all 3 pearls with 2 bosses, but then you had to beat the tower of the gods), so he would need at LEAST 6 hearts for that to e the master sword, he has 5 in the image.

  • Truth

    No, the Master Sword won’t be used by Link in this game.
    If you recall, in the end of ALTTP, it specifically said the master sword was put to rest “forever” and is also the last game in its timeline that uses the master sword.

    • Adlez Eluryh

      That’s assuming that neither the White Sword nor Magic Sword in the original Zelda game is the master sword. Also, I recall reading somewhere that the lvl 3 sword in the Oracle games is also the master sword, though that is… Less likely to be true.

      • http://www.facebook.com/Kayube Tom Holmes

        The Oracle games do explicitly have the Master Sword available in them. Though it’s only available through a sidequest in a linked game, so it may not be canon.

        • Adlez Eluryh

          Then the Lv 3 Shield was also the Mirror Shield as well (canon or not)?
          Also, Ganon as the final battle is canon, why wouldn’t the linked and other side quests be?

        • smcrzgi

          i figure in the oracle games its a master sword copy,, seeing as there were master sword copies in a link to the past, as well as the fact that one of the ways to get the master sword in the oracle games was not pulling out of a pedistal.

  • zdog

    Holy crap you are observant. I’m always amazed that the zelda content that comes out of gengame is way better than zeldadungeon. That isn’t just flattery, I went there first to get the takeaways from today’s Nintendo Direct, and it amounted to “They’re making a new game, and we’re very excited!” and their “take a closer look” basically pointed out the magic meter without even mentioning that it could be a stamina meter. Well done over here. When they first announced the title my thought was “Huh, how are they going to do his pink hair?” Well, so much for that.

  • http://www.facebook.com/CoyoteAshley Dylan Thompson


  • Guest

    It’s totally the Master Sword. They can easily bring it back. It was also in the oracle games as well as Link’s awakening(l-2 sword, it had the SAME exact concept art as the master sword)

    • smcrzgi

      … that was the seashell sword. also, i figure in the oracle games its a master sword copy,, seeing as there were master sword copies in a link to the past, as well as the fact that one of the ways to get the master sword in the oracle games was not pulling out of a pedestal.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004047914984 Krishna Moorthy

    link has 5 hearts in the scene where he wields the “master sword”. since we usually start with 3 hearts and get one at the end of each dungeon, we get the master sword right after the 2nd dungeon!

  • http://www.facebook.com/thatonelonelykid Lyle Angelo D Aparece

    The “Hieroglyphic” Link looks strikingly similar to the image of the “Hero in Green” in the beginning sequence of Wind Waker.

  • http://nerdreviewstechnology.blogspot.com/ Nicholas Alexander Jabbour

    I noticed all those things except for the automatically replenishing magic meter. As long as they balance it well, I much prefer it that way, rather than having to grind for magic or use bottled potions to replenish.

    Anyway, the only thing I dislike about this link’s appearance is his expression… it looks more like Young Link in Ocarina of Time than the more serious, badass-looking expression had by aLttP’s Link in the concept art.

    I’m also INCREDIBLY happy that it looks like you actually can activate the shield. The way the shield would randomly block/not block stuff in aLttP felt so cheap to me (until you got the mirror shield, where you blocked freaking everything).