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Universal acclaim - based on 81 Critics What's this?

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9.0

Universal acclaim- based on 635 Ratings

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  • Summary: The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds is a new game with a new storyline set in world of the Super NES classic The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 79 out of 81
  2. Negative: 0 out of 81
  1. 100
    No two ways about it: if you own a 3DS, this Zelda is a must. It’s an intelligent and entertaining action game, brimming with fresh ideas and fascinating worlds. [Issue#237]
  2. Nov 14, 2013
    100
    Painting over any cracks that were starting to appear in the Zelda series, A Link Between Worlds is a refreshing experience and another Nintendo 3DS masterpiece.
  3. Nov 14, 2013
    96
    A stellar game all the way around. A Link Between Worlds maximizes the concept of depth, from the 3D, to the 2D mechanic, to the characters. This game certainly fits well in the pantheon of amazing Zelda games.
  4. Nov 14, 2013
    90
    It’s not just a nostalgic trip; A Link Between Worlds is an excellent game on its own. That said, this title functions most effectively as fan service to us old heads — the references to the source material are as numerous as they are captivating.
  5. Dec 11, 2013
    90
    A Link Between Worlds boasts excellent characterisation and spacial design. Even a too-shallow difficulty curve can't hold this long awaited entry back.
  6. Nov 27, 2013
    90
    Even the most stalwart, traditionalist series fan should be able to appreciate A Link Between Worlds for what it is: the most interesting new Zelda game since Wind Waker.
  7. Nov 14, 2013
    65
    A Link Between World's main problem at the end of the day is a complete lack of heart. There's no defining moment, no memorable villains or characters, and no truly "new" items that make their mark on the series. It's certainly playable in every sense of the word, but I didn't feel the magic I had felt so many times before.

See all 81 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 9 out of 153
  1. Nov 22, 2013
    10
    What initially looked like a game leaning on the aging crutches of A Link to the Past has turned out to be a thoroughly poignant, vivid and immensely satisfying game worthy of standing on its own two feet. Set in the world of A Link to the Past, Link Between Worlds makes the serendipitous combination of a reinvigorating spark with a meaty hit of nostalgia. Presenting freedom of choice gameplay not seen since the original, The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds makes no effort to hold the players hand through the richly dense world of Hyrule and it works brilliantly. Rather than following in the footsteps of Game Freak and introducing the franchise to a new generation of audiences at the risk of patronising its long term fans, (I’m looking at you Pokémon X and Y) Link Between Worlds pays homage to those of us who have followed Link since his debut over 25 years ago all whilst paving the way for a reinvention of what it means to make a Zelda game. The puzzles in Link Between Worlds are, as aforementioned, immensely satisfying. I could almost hear the pieces of a riddle snap together in my head as I strived to calculate the answer. It’s a feeling experienced whilst playing the Professor Layton series, but puzzle-solving in this game is made relevant and interesting by the vivid world, close to perfect combat and awe-inspiring imagination. This is a beautiful game, presenting a colourful and vibrant world that just seems to radiate adventure and exploration. The characters are complex and interesting, but perhaps the biggest achievement in terms of its presentation is the silky-smooth 60fps frame rate which stays consistent throughout this 18 hour adventure even with the 3D effect turned on. Expand
  2. Nov 29, 2013
    10
    I have to admit, A Link Between Worlds blew me completely away. Stunned, was the word. Stunned by how good it was. I've been a long-time Zelda fan, and A Link to the Past has been the mainstay of that franchise, in my mind. This game both pays homage to, and in some ways, surpasses, that title. It is incredibly polished, smooth gameplay, fluid animations, gripping story, challenging dungeons, and so on. A must-have for any Zelda fan, and any 3DS owner. It blows Ocarina of Time 3D away. Expand
  3. Dec 27, 2013
    10
    Fun for all ages. This chapter in the Legend of Zelda franchise is the same as the last top down zelda games but with a few new gameplay elements that take advantage of this being a 3d rendered world. If you like zelda or are just getting into it, this is the game for you. Expand
  4. Nov 22, 2013
    10
    Best game ever!!!! I haven't play such good game for a month, I could say that this game is the best game that I have played. Do not hesitate buying it, you won't regret it!!! Expand
  5. Dec 21, 2013
    9
    Every time a new Legend of Zelda game comes out, it once again raises the bar for what fans have come to expect. It’s a series that has very rarely delivered anything below a fantastic experience. But for all series, a time comes when it must change. A link between worlds has done just that. The latest entry has similarities to a link to the past, but it’s full of innovation and surprise.
    The one thing that disappoints here is the story, which is bland, boring and very functional. After Skyward Sword’s fantastic plot and characters, I can’t understand why the story here is as thin as toilet paper.
    Fortunately, everything else is near-perfect. The graphic style is immaculate, making ALBW the best-looking 3DS game of 2013. All areas of Hyrule and Lorule are gorgeously presented. I strongly advise to play with 3D on as the visuals are not so much enhanced as completely different with it on. Yes, this is a 2D Zelda, but 3D really does make a huge difference. The music is of equal quality, with a mixture of remixes of previous tunes and new ones. All the music and sound effects here are to a very high standard.
    But ALBW’s greatest triumph is how it ditches the usual Zelda structure. There are still dungeons full of puzzles and combat, but instead of going to the dungeon, getting its item, using the item then defeating the dungeon boss, now all the items are available from the start in a shop. This means that you can get any item you want, if you have the rupees, right from the get-go. It also means that in the second half of the game you can tackle dungeons in any order you want. This is a brilliant idea for a number of reasons, for example it gives more reason to collecting rupees so you will never be disappointed if you find them in a chest: over my playthrough; I used over 10,000 altogether. However there is one flaw- the dungeons you choose to do later are as a result considerably easier and though all are well-designed, with challenging puzzles and enemies, you will find the later ones easier. A hard mode unlockable after completeing the game normally does add challenge as enemies do 4 times the damage.
    Dungeons do have one inconsistency, and that’s the boss battles. Zelda is known for its outstanding bosses, but ALBW’s bosses are mostly easy and unmemorable, save a few.
    But largely, ALBW throws away what had gworn stale in the franchise, but it brings back something that was missing in the last few titles: the exploration. Hyrule is full of secrets, and the more you explore, the more you uncover. Finding pieces of heart and other items requires clever thinking and as well as that a lot of exploration of Hyrule and its dark opposite, Lorule. The more you explore, the more you find and as a result, the exploration of the kingdom is unpredictable and it always feels as if you are finding something new, something unprecedented. There are not so many side quests at all, which is very different, but there don’t need to be: the kingdom of Hyrule has it all.
    One addition to the game which deserves a mention is the ability to become a painting and then move left and right in the wall. It doesn’t sound like it adds much, but for me this was what really settled ALBW as an excellent game. It adds a new dimension to the puzzles and it makes exploring Hyrule even more fun.
    A Link between Worlds is a Zelda that does so much to the series. It completely reinvents the franchise and it never stops giving. At round about 20 hours from start to finish, it certainly isn’t the longest Zelda, but the amount of countryside there is to explore adds on so much more to that length of time. Finding every single secret will take much longer.
    Expand
  6. Jun 22, 2014
    9
    The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds is the reason why I play video games. Visually great, intuitive gameplay and outstanding level design. The only negative thing I have to say about this game is the fact that it is kind of short and easy. The best 3DS game yet without any doubt. Expand
  7. May 12, 2014
    2
    Let me start by saying I specifically registered this metacritic account to post this review, hence the user name, and am a huge Zelda fan (twilight princess triforce tattoo included).

    So when I say I was horrendously disappointed by this game, I feel the need to share why and think the single best word to describe it would be "uninspired". That said, maybe you need a bit more of a break down.
    1) Mini-games - Hoping for shooting galleries? bomb-chus? Deku sprout flying? Prepare to be disappointed, usually the "most" fun gameplay, instead the completion-ist in you is almost deciding to pass on playing, luckily they're beyond easy so you won't get 'bored', you'll just get done ASAP.
    2) The flattening gimmick - Its like combining annoying camera angles but because of the tool "Rental" system your going to use it non-stop to check for dead ends 4 screens away. Because walking back and forth is fun! (It's really not).
    3) "Rental System" - Do you not completely suck at games, and have played 1 or more Zelda games previously? Prepare to have more money than you care about. Rent everything the first time you have enough money, cause boy you aren't going to ever need to scrounge!
    4) Easiness of puzzles - Thinking water temple hard? Nope, not even close, in fact, if not for all those blind alleys and walking back and forth (see above), you could do every dungeon practically at a dead run!
    5) Characters - Nope, no minish cap sassy companion, no dark mask vendors, no good or evil midna, I mean even a robot with no emotion is more interesting than nothing.
    6) Storyline - You would think with all of the content, they would of nailed the "nostalgia" factor atleast, unfortunately the storyline is such a direct rip-off/merge of the single most popular Zelda title and the one it stole its title from that you don't care about anything or anyone in the universe.
    7) GAMEPLAY - Gimmick aside, it plays like a Zelda for SNES. Now you may be thinking (I liked that game, it was fun to play) but really, from trains to touchscreen controls the handheld titles have been the creative platform (and cause motion controls suck - sorry guys) for numerous innovations, this one adds nothing.

    In summary, uninspired. Thanks Nintendo. It's pretty bad when Ocarina of Time remakes are somehow more original than your newer titles. Give us Majora's Mask remastered and I'll consider forgiving you....maybe.
    Expand

See all 153 User Reviews

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