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Quite possibly one of the most passionate episodes of the podcast yet: I go on a twenty minute rant about gender in the series, Chris shares some conspiracy theories, and Leon admits to being a huge Zelda fan. It's our Hanukkah episode! 

Link’s Awakening holds a special place in my heart, as it is the first time I ever experienced a Zelda game. When I was a kid I was really big into the original Game Boy, which eventually led to me playing this neat little game where you swing a sword and kill various enemies. It was intriguing to me at the time, as I often dreamed of being a sword wielding hero (typically Leonardo from the Ninja Turtles).

However, just because it holds a special place in my history with the series doesn’t mean it is my favorite game in said series. Certainly it does a lot right, but like any game there are things it could have done better. Still, I’ve seen some list it as their favorite; thus I will try to explain how the very first handheld experience could possibly be the very best in the entirety of the Zelda kingdom.

    A Link to the Past marked a milestone for the franchise in terms of pure achievement – it fulfilled the original dream of what a Zelda game was envisioned to be by Shigeru Miyamoto originally as he couldn’t fully realize his vision on the NES hardware. This game obviously has a special place in Zelda history, but what about it’s greatness compared to the series itself?

    As always, remember my goal here isn’t to convince you or state that this title is the best in the series, but merely why folks enjoy it so much and may place at the top of their personal favorites list. It will attempt to look at more factual evidence rather than subjective, though it’s understandable that any positive could be seen as a negative for someone else, but so is the subjective nature of folks having different tastes. As it stands, here is what I found to be the main reason some fans revere this game above all others in the series.

    Once in a great while I like to have an open conversation with our fans on the state of Zelda Informer as it stands today and give an open address as to what our plans are for the future. We do this to try and maintain some semblance of responsibility (hard to be held accountable when no one outside of the staff actually know what we’re doing) and because we want all of you involved with us, helping shape our future beyond a comment here or there or a click on our latest wiki editorial or news piece.

    Getting right into it, I wanted to let you guys know what we have planned for the rest of this year and 2015.

    Zelda games come in many shapes and sizes. They appear on both handhelds and home consoles. They span massive 3D adventures, dense top-down quests, and even a side-scrolling action RPG. Each new installment in the storied series can be very different from the last, and yet there is one thread that is a constant throughout all of the main games: the protagonist, Link. He is the hero of every game, the player character in each installment. And it is he who makes The Legend of Zelda my favorite series of video games. But what is it about Link that makes him such an icon?

    The Adventure of Link is often considered the black sheep of the Zelda family. Despite being one of the best-selling games in the entire series, many of today’s Zelda fans still haven’t played the title, while others have likely never completed the adventure. By today’s standards, Zelda II: The Adventure of Link is an extremely difficult game and lacks the mass appeal other adventures offer.

    Yet, can the black sheep actually be the best offering in the series? While the aim of this article series isn’t to convince anyone one way or the other, I will admit going in that this is my favorite game in the series. While I will try to remove some of my personal bias and stick to the facts, I wanted to be upfront about this. The Adventure of Link may be the best Zelda in the series, so let’s explore how this could be possible.

    Welcome to a new article series at Zelda Informer, where I explore every game in the series to determine why some may feel that game is the best Zelda game ever made. The goal is not only to explore the positive aspects of each game, but to give an idea of the very different reasons each of us enjoy the Zelda series, which is why no one game will ever be universally accepted as the best. No right or wrong answer exists for which game you feel is the best, but maybe this series will get you to look at some games in a new light.

    The Legend of Zelda for the Nintendo Entertainment System is one title most Zelda fans are at least aware of. It started the entire series and gave us at least one thing that has stayed true in every game to date: the theme song for the entire series. Despite being the first in the series, it can arguably stand as one of the greatest — maybe even the best depending on your personal tastes. Let’s explore what makes this game possibly the greatest Zelda game of them all.

    Pianist and composer Sonya Belousova of PlayerPianoMusic.com demonstrates her musical skill as she hears snippets of and improvises on beloved video-game themes like, Super Mario Bros., Street Fighter, Kid Icarus, and, of course, The Legend of Zelda. Since authors here at ZeldaInformer recently have put out a fair amount of literature on Koji Kondo's favorite musical themes, projects, and so forth, this video attests to the cultural and artistic capital he has gained even in performance practices long associated with classical-music traditions.

    I recently posted an article about an arrangement of Twilight Princess's "Hyrule Field at Night" and received some stimulating but conflicting responses about music in the The Legend of Zelda games. Naturally, discussion about Skyward Sword wasn't too far away, as it was the first of the series to feature orchestral music during gameplay. What interested me, however, was that some have argued that Skyward Sword featured only a few orchestral pieces (upwards of three), while others maintained that there were more than that. And that's the web I want to untangle. Exactly how much of Skyward Sword's music has orchestral music as opposed to digital music? Is there a clear answer? Have the composers even commented on such details? Does anyone really know?

    Skyward Sword is a great game.

    While watching the ending credits, I was reminded of all the fun I'd had in Skyward Sword's tremendous environments and colorful characters for 39 hours and 16 minutes. Many of the most satisfying moments of my Skyward Sword playthrough were found deep in its dungeons, or the instant I dealt a final blow to the end boss with only a lone heart and no health potions or fairies remaining. A smile was also brought to my face many times by Groose's antics, Peatrice's outrageous infatuation with Link, and the simple joy of rotating a boss key into position with the Wii Remote.

    I finished my playthrough of Skyward Sword in 10 days, but this was not the first time I played the game...