Is it just me, or do some games just magically appear in your backlog from time to time? Link’s Awakening is one such instance, and I don’t know where it came from!
Out with the New, In with the Old
After my recent playthrough of the wonderful Link’s Awakening remake, it had me thinking about the original game. Partly, because I’m tempted to revisit it so I can compare it to its most recent iteration, but mostly because for the life of me, I can’t remember how I came to acquire my copy!
You see, up until the release of A Link to the Past, I kind of only had a passing interest in the Zelda franchise. The original on the NES was released when I was too young to really understand it and the second was so obtuse that even now I find it hard to get into. So, when we were graced by the glorious Game Boy entry, I didn’t really feel that urge to ask my parents for a copy. But then you might say something like, “Patrick! Link’s Awakening was released a whole two years after A Link to the Past!”. Which is true, but there was also another big caveat to this story, I didn’t own a Game Boy!
I mean, I absolutely loved A Link to the Past, so I’m guessing that if I did have one of those fancy handhelds, I probably would have wanted the game, but I can’t change the past. And I certainly wasn’t going to ask for a console just to play one game. These were my younger years, which apparently meant I was more rational. Go figure.
Anyways, it wasn’t until a year or so later that my tune would change. When Nintendo released a piece of tech that blew my mind. A piece of tech that would bridge the gap between handheld gaming and the power of a TV tethered console. A piece of tech named the Super Game Boy! Which basically allowed you to plug in any Game Boy game and play it on your Super Nintendo! I was ecstatic because the possibilities were endless! A whole new catalog of games was opened up to me and I could finally experience a brand new Zelda!
Here’s the kicker though, I don’t actually remember owning a copy of the game OR a Super Game Boy at the time. No, I would only get a taste of it on the yearly family trips we would take to some resort, where we’d stay a few nights with a few other families that my father knew through his work. And one of those families had a Super Game Boy and a treasure trove of Game Boy games. This would be where I’d fall in love with Link’s Awakening, Tetris and Super Mario Land, among others. And this would be where I’d vow to own my very of copy of each of those games AND a Game Boy.
Late But Still Forgotten
But it wouldn’t be for another couple of years, before I would. When the Pokemon games were released and everybody and their dog wanted a Game Boy to play them. I was no different. Honestly, it was a perfect excuse to really dive into the catalog. And every chance I would get, I’d be banging my head off the deceptively cute Koholint Island trying to uncover its secrets and wake the Wind Fish. All the while, humming along to it’s serene music. To this day though, I can’t remember where I acquired my copy of Link’s Awakening. And for that matter, my Super Game Boy.
I recall playing both endlessly, but it’s almost as if they just kind of appeared in my collection. I say that because I don’t think I ever ended up asking my parents for them as gifts and I certainly didn’t buy them new. Maybe I just “inherited” them from that family we would only see once in a great while at that resort. You know, when they conveniently “forgot” to take it with them after they left. Or the more likely story is that I just found them second hand in a used game store and they got lost in memory like all of the other games in my backlog.
I will say this though, I’m glad I have it, and I will absolutely have to revisit it now that I’ve finished the remake.
Do you have any games in your collection that have always been there? Or that you forgot how you acquired them?
How about Link’s Awakening? Have you played it? How you you rank it when compared to the other Zelda games out there??