Legend of Zelda: Ranking the Console Games

April 30, 2021

A renowned video game series, Link's adventures always deliver high quality fantasy experiences for gamers. But which game is the BEST experience on home consoles? Come count down together as we celebrate the 35th anniversary of The Legend of Zelda!

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Honorable Mention(s)

The Hyrule Warriors spin-off series provides extra narrative, new playable characters, and over-the-top fighting styles to the franchise. They are entertaining for the hack-n-slash genre a la Dynasty Warriors.

11: The Adventure of Link

The only side-scrolling entry in the series, Zelda II was an experiment which underwhelmed most fans. The gameplay departed too far from the charm of the original and Nintendo never revisited this style.

10: Four Swords Adventures

A four-person multiplayer Zelda had potential, but complicated controller / console setups to make it work bogged this title down. Using levels instead of a more open world also hampered the experience.

09: Link's Awakening

Though not featuring Zelda herself, this title delivered a quality 2D experience. A bit dated when arriving on consoles, the puzzles made you remember why strategy guides exist; this was high quality nostalgia.

08: Skyward Sword

A motion-oriented experience, the 1-to-1 controller to sword combat was impressive but not without aggravations. Some of the best and worst bosses in the series, this title had far too much padding and repetition.

07: The Legend of Zelda

The original game which blew our minds. The pseudo open world, the puzzle solving, the stellar dungeons, and a fantasy narrative. Though the series improved greatly from here, it's still a solid presentation.

06: Ocarina of Time

One of the most loved titles, OOT introduced a 3D world and polygonal characters. The pacing is perfect, the controls (mostly) on point, and the narrative important; in hindsight, the areas are relatively simple.

05: Majora's Mask

The impromptu sequel to OOT, this title utilized the N64 expansion pak. Unique new forms with cool abilities, quality storytelling, and (albeit frustrating) time regulation, this is the Hero of Time's best journey.

04: Breath of the Wild

A fanboy favorite, BOTW delivered a non-linear open world experience. The art style is gorgeous, the playstyle brilliant, and the voice-acting stellar, but the lack of dungeons made this title feel incomplete.

03: A Link to the Past

The top choice for 2D Zelda, this title breathed life into the series and established the art, playstyle, and quality dungeoning experience we all expect today. Every gamer needs to play this through once.

02: The Wind Waker

A controversial cel-shaded art style mixed with a more adventure-oriented overworld, Wind Waker is a breathtaking beauty. This title is a quality experience all throughout, but traversing the tides is tiresome.

01: Twilight Princess

A much darker narrative, this more adult-oriented title is the pinnacle of 3D Zelda. An awesome wolf form, two versions of the same world, likeable characters, and quality dungeons. The best game in the series.

Thanks for following. Everyone has their own favorite Zelda adventure which brings something new and special to this popular and impactful series.

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