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Zelda II: The Adventure of Link (NES)

100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
5 point score based on user ratings.
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Link has just turned sixteen, and discovers a strange birthmark on his hand. With the help of Impa, Zelda's nursemaid, Link learns that this mark is the key to unlock a secret room where Princess Zelda lies sleeping. When young, Princess Zelda was given knowledge of the Triforce of power which was used to rule the kingdom of Hyrule, but when a magician unsuccessfully tried to find out about the Triforce from Zelda, he put her into an eternal sleep. In his grief, the prince placed Zelda in this room hoping she may wake some day. He ordered all female children in the royal household to be named Zelda from this point on, so the tragedy would not be forgotten. Now, to bring Princess Zelda back, Link must locate all the pieces of the Triforce which have been hidden throughout the land.

Each piece of the Triforce is in a temple guarded by a powerful monster which must be defeated. At the same time, Ganon's underlings are still around and gaining in strength and number. It is said Ganon could be brought back to life by sprinkling the blood of the one who defeated him on the ashes - which was Link himself.

Zelda II: The Adventure of Link is an action role-playing game, and a sequel to The Legend Of Zelda. The gameplay alternates between a top-down view (when traveling the land) and side-scrolling perspectives (when fighting, in a temple, or town). In the top-down view, Link cannot do much except for walking: in the side-scrolling action view, however, he can fight, cast spells, collect items and talk to people.

When Link encounters an enemy in the wilderness, or enters a location which contains enemies, he can fight them with his sword. If Link is at full health, his sword can be thrown, but when he is hurt, he can only fight in melee. Link has a shield which protects him against some of the enemies' attacks if they strike the shield. Touching an enemy or getting hit by their attacks decreases Link's health. If he runs out of health, he loses a life. If he loses all his lives, it's Game Over. Link can replenish his health completely by encountering a fairy in the wilderness, or by using the services of a healer in a town.

Link also has a "magic" meter. He can cast spells (as long as he has learned them) if he has some magic power left. Spells cost a various amount of magic power. They have various effects: they cure Link, allow him to jump very high, shoot fireballs etc. The magic power meter can be refilled by collecting blue and red jars sometimes left behind by enemies.

When Link slays an enemy, it might leave behind an item, or give Link some experience. When Link gains enough experience, he gains a level, which allows him to buy weapon power, maximum magic, or maximum health upgrades for his experience points. The player can also decide not to buy anything and stockpile his experience points for later use.

There are some items to be found that are necessary to get past certain points in the game. The Adventure of Link features a battery backup so games can be saved without needing a password system.


Zelda II: The Adventure of Link NES I have to hurry, the bridge is collapsing under my feet!
Zelda II: The Adventure of Link NES The entrance to a temple
Zelda II: The Adventure of Link NES Using fire magic to kill jumping spiders.
Zelda II: The Adventure of Link NES I'm using the down-stab attack.

Alternate Titles

  • "リンクの冒険" -- Japanese Spelling
  • "Zelda II: Link no Bōken" -- Japanese title
  • "Zelda II: A Aventura de Link" -- Brazilian title

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Different. And excellent Cor 13 (171997) 4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars
Nowhere to run but left and right in this Zelda game--and it's a masterpiece J. P. Gray (111) unrated
Definitely the most challenging Zelda J O (9) 4.6 Stars4.6 Stars4.6 Stars4.6 Stars4.6 Stars
Will last you a long time Pixelspeech (955) 4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars
Is that a child in your pocket? Adzuken (739) 1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars
Not That Bad Actually MasterMegid (897) 3.6 Stars3.6 Stars3.6 Stars3.6 Stars3.6 Stars
A lackluster game when it comes to other games in the series, but it's still one of the better games on the NES. JohnLennon224 (16) 3.8 Stars3.8 Stars3.8 Stars3.8 Stars3.8 Stars
Clearly a separate WIP title with Zelda IP added in late development Zaghadka (68) 2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars
The game that should never have come out. skl (1138) 1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars
The toughest Zelda release cinthya gomez (2) unrated

The Press Says

NES Archives Mar 09, 2008 A 100
GameCola.net Dec, 2005 9.2 out of 10 92
The Video Game Critic Apr 05, 2008 A- 91
Joystick (French) May, 1990 90 out of 100 90
Gaming since 198x Dec 23, 2010 4 out of 5 80
Game Freaks 365 2005 8 out of 10 80
Nintendo Land 2003 79 out of 100 79
Megablast 1992 71 out of 100 71
Dragon Oct, 1993 3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars 60
Lens of Truth Aug 28, 2011 6 out of 10 60


Topic # Posts Last Post
So this is the black sheep?.. 33 Cor 13 (171997)
May 30, 2012
Only one who like this more than the first? 5 雷堂嬢太朗 -raido.jotaro- (58471)
Jun 15, 2010



Zelda II: The Adventure of Link was the only other Nintendo-licensed NES title to have the honor of being a gold cartridge besides the original Legend of Zelda.


Inside a house within one of the towns is an NPC who simply says "I AM ERROR" when talked to. While many gamers at first found this to be a mistake in the code, there is another NPC later in the game that tells you Error knows a secret, proving that Error is his name and not an error.

It is possible that Error’s name was originally "Errol" (like the Australian-American actor Errol Flynn), but due to the letters "R" and "L" being allophones in Japanese, the programmers mistyped the name as "Error" in translating the game to English.


As of 2005 Zelda II is the only game in the series to use a standard jump button that doesn't require the use of a power-up, or running off the side of a ledge to clear a gap.

Town names

Many of the villages share their names with characters from Ocarina of Time (Ruto, Rauru, Mido and Saria, etc.)

Interestingly enough, Ocarina of Time is considered to be the first Zelda game continuity-wise, so it's possible the villages are named in their honour, at least in the case of the Sages (Rauru, etc.).

Information also contributed by CaptainCanuck and Mark Ennis

Related Web Sites

Servo (55783) added Zelda II: The Adventure of Link (NES) on Sep 26, 2002
Other platforms contributed by ResidentHazard (3251), Michael Cassidy (9905) and gamewarrior (5064)