GR: A Link to the Future.
I sit somewhere outside the mainstream Zelda fan. I only played Ocarina of Time for the first time on 3DS recently, but I’ve played A Link to the Past (LTTP) on both Super Nintendo and Game Boy Advance. I’ve always been satisfied with the predecessor to the "Greatest Game of All Time," as the structure of adventuring from temple to temple got perfected in 1991, not 1998. Discovering the tools Link needs and meeting the Gorons and Zoras have been staples of the series, but LTTP was just low-fi enough to leave a lasting storybook sense of wonder.
Ocarina of Time instills fear—it’s dark and ominous—but the 2D adventure on SNES defined a 3D future, and I still think LTTP is the better game today. When I picked up the latest Legend of Zelda game subtitled A Link Between Worlds, I didn’t expect to love its new system for handing out items or how heavily it plays on its Super Nintendo predecessor, but I do. In subverting now tried-and-true Zelda formulas, A Link Between Worlds celebrates players as a hero lost in time and innovates on franchise hallmarks that have grown stale. 4.5/5