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Even if you were turned off by The Adventure of Links' side-scrolling gameplay, Faxanadu is still worth checking out. There's enough to the story to keep you going for quite a few hours, not something you can say about every NES adventure game.
If you're able to forgive Faxanadu for its handful of flaws, you're in for an excellent and underappreciated 8-bit adventure here. Faxanadu's been on my personal Most Wanted list for the Virtual Console for a long time, since I knew a bit about it as a kid but never actually got around to playing it. Now that it's here at last and I've finally had the chance to experience it, I'm happy to say it was worth the wait. This quest gets a definite thumbs-up from me, so go ahead and spend five bucks to download it – then start your own journey climbing up, up and even further up into the epically enormous World Tree.
Faxanadu has long been on people's wishlists for Virtual Console releases, and for many very good reasons. It's basically Zelda II without any of the flaws, and should be an absolutely essential purchase for anyone who likes either platformers, action games or RPGs.