10 Forgotten Legend Of Zelda Games
Trivia 10 Forgotten Legend Of Zelda Games



10 Forgotten Legend Of Zelda Games

VOICE OVER: Johnny Reynolds WRITTEN BY: Johnny Reynolds
"The Legend of Zelda" is one of Nintendo's most beloved franchises, but even it has some forgotten releases. For this list, we'll be looking at entries in Nintendo's fantasy series that have been mostly lost to time outside of diehard fans. Our list includes "Freshly-Picked Tingle's Rosy Rupeeland" (2006), "BS The Legend of Zelda: Ancient Stone Tablets" (1997), "Link's Crossbow Training" (2007), and more!
Script written by Johnny Reynolds

"The Legend of Zelda" is one of Nintendo's most beloved franchises, but even it has some forgotten releases. For this list, we’ll be looking at entries in Nintendo’s fantasy series that have been mostly lost to time outside of diehard fans. Our list includes "Freshly-Picked Tingle's Rosy Rupeeland" (2006), "BS The Legend of Zelda: Ancient Stone Tablets" (1997), "Link's Crossbow Training" (2007), and more! Have you played any of these obscure “Zelda” games? Let us know down in the comments!

“Link’s Crossbow Training” (2007)

The Wii was a monster hit for Nintendo, putting motion controls at the forefront of gameplay and pleasing players of all ages. With that success came a multitude of various peripherals, such as the gun-like Zapper. This “Twilight Princess” spin-off came bundled with the Zapper and tasked Link with shooting tons of targets and enemies with a crossbow. It’s a short experience, beatable in less than an hour, though it does have its charm. While it’s one of the most recognizable on this list, it’s still a one-off oddity that seems like it could have continued. The Switch’s Joy-Cons could allow for improved gameplay in a follow-up. But a dungeon crawling bullet hell would also be a stellar fit.

The Philips CD-i Games

If these aren’t forgotten, then it’s for all the wrong reasons. Three unofficial “Zelda” games were created from the ashes of a failed deal between Nintendo and Philips in the early 90s. Nintendo had no input in their creation, which is immediately clear. “The Faces of Evil” and “The Wand of Gamelon” released on the same day and have become infamous for terribly animated cutscenes and poor controls. The third game, “Zelda’s Adventure,” didn’t fare any better with fuzzy graphics and abysmally acted live-action cutscenes. At least two of them had Zelda as the playable protagonist, though. That’s more than we can say about the main series.

“BS The Legend of Zelda” (1995)

In 1995, Nintendo released the Satellaview, a Japan-only peripheral for the Super Famicom. It let players download games through satellite broadcasts. And through this process, Nintendo released three “Zelda” games that never made it outside of Japan. The first was a 16-bit remaster of the first game. The better graphics make the game feel more timeless. This version also used the Soundlink system, which allowed for games to stream alongside live voice acting and an orchestra. Because of this, the game could only be played live at certain times of day. Impressive, but we’re just bummed we don’t have a 16-bit version of this classic.

“Freshly-Picked Tingle’s Rosy Rupeeland” (2006)

Tingle is one of the strangest NPCs in the “Zelda” series. That didn’t stop Nintendo from giving the fairy-obsessed mapmaker a starring role, however. Released in Japan and Europe, this DS title followed Tingle as he attempted to gather as many Rupees as possible to make it into Rupeeland, a supposed paradise. It features some similar gameplay to “The Legend of Zelda” as Tingle must explore different towns, solve puzzles, and conquer dungeons. But the player also has to keep their Rupee amount up as it serves as Tingle’s life force, but also a way to unlock areas or features from NPCs. It actually did well enough in Japan to warrant a sequel, “Ripened Tingle’s Balloon Trip of Love,” in 2009

“BS The Legend of Zelda: Ancient Stone Tablets” (1997)

Another game for the Satellaview, “Ancient Stone Tablets” is a forgotten sequel to “A Link to the Past.” It utilized the Avatars from the user’s account rather than Link and picked up 6 years after the first game’s events. The player character is transported to Hyrule and begins a quest once monsters begin to return. While we did get the pseudo sequel “A Link Between Worlds” on the 3DS, it’s a shame that this entry has been all but lost to gaming history. Originally, it was only playable once a week during a certain time. It’s possible to find emulations, though these naturally don’t include any live aspects the Satellaview offered.

“My Nintendo Picross: The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess” (2016)

The “Picross” series is great for puzzle lovers. Nintendo has released several entries based around beloved franchises like Mario and Pokémon over the years. To commemorate the launch of My Nintendo in 2016, Nintendo released a “Twilight Princess” themed version of the puzzler exclusively through the rewards program on the 3DS. With the simple but addictive gameplay that “Picross” normally offers intact, there isn’t much change in how you play. But solving block-based puzzles to unveil “Zelda” images is a definite treat for fans of both series. Unfortunately, it was never available outside of the rewards program.

“BS The Legend of Zelda: Triforce of the Gods” (1997)

“A Link to the Past” is one of the most respected entries in the “Zelda” franchise. It got two sequels, one canonized. And it has been ported to many other platforms, including the Game Boy Advance with a new multiplayer mode. But one port seems destined to be forgotten. “Triforce of the Gods,” as the game was known in Japan, was ported to the Satellaview add-on. But unlike the other two “BS Zelda” games, it could be downloaded and played at whatever time the player wanted regardless of the Satellaview’s broadcast schedule; it also didn’t use the Soundlink system. However, it did come with a playthrough counter. After playing 5 times, the game would then need to be redownloaded.

“The Legend of Zelda Game Watch” (1989)

Nelsonic Industries partnered with Nintendo to release many game watches in the late 80s and early 90s. Mario, Donkey Kong, Star Fox, and, of course, Zelda all got watch-themed minigames to take on the go. Released in 1989, the “Zelda” game watch is played across grid-like rooms. Link moves through four areas, fighting enemies and defeating Aquamentus to collect a piece of the Triforce. Upon doing this four times, the game resets. It’s a neat minigame for the time, though it has understandably become a bit of a collector’s item. This watch, along with others like it, are products of their time. We can’t say we’re too bummed we didn’t get to try it, but it would make a lovely addition to a “Zelda” fan’s collection.

“Tingle’s Balloon Fight” (2007)

Before My Nintendo, there was Club Nintendo. And it saw a plethora of great rewards and exclusives released. One Club Nintendo exclusive that was only released in Japan was “Tingle’s Balloon Fight” for the DS. With a fresh coat of paint and Tingle in the protagonist’s role, the release didn’t change much from the NES original. Not that it needed to; “Balloon Fight” is a classic for a reason. But utilizing the handheld’s dual screens to expand the playable area was a nice touch. Unfortunately, many of us have likely never tried it. It seems Nintendo thinks Western players aren’t too keen on Tingle.

“Zelda” Game & Watch (1989)

Before the Game Boy, Nintendo found success with the Game & Watch line. These portable consoles housed only one or two games and several Nintendo characters received entries. The “Zelda” Game & Watch featured an entirely new story with Zelda being kidnapped by eight dragons instead of Ganon. Reminiscent of “Zelda II,” Link traversed dungeons from a side-scrolling view, battling monsters and a dragon boss for each level. With every dragon’s defeat, Link gained a piece of the Triforce. It’s incredibly simplistic now, but in 1989 it was a great novelty. And we were more than pleased to see Nintendo pay tribute with a new “Zelda” Game & Watch in 2021.