Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Four Swords For Free

This is probably the biggest news for me personally from the Nintendo press conference. As part of the 25th Anniversary celebration they will release Four Swords FOR FREE as DSiWare. They wanted to have a new Zelda release for each platform and that's why they're doing this.

However, there was no further information about this. Is it a new game or a re-release of one of the previous Four Swords games? Since it's for free, I guess it's a simple re-release. And since the DSi doesn't have the power to display GameCube games, I guess it's the GBA version.

Also, the logo suggests, that it definitely isn't Four Swords Adventures, because then they wouldn't have removed the "Four Swords Adventures" lettering from the logo. And the original Four Swords didn't really have it's own logo (except ingame), there was the A Link to the Past logo on the package and Four Swords was just an addition to it. And I doubt that they will give you A Link to the Past for free as well, this time the game will be a standalone game. Which is why they used a improvised logo for now.

But then what's with the connection to A Link to the Past? Originally beating Four Swords and collecting 10 medals of courage would unlock a new dungeon and a new sidequest in the GBA version of A Link to the Past. And on the other hand new sword techniques like the Sword Beam or the Great Spin Attack would be available in Four Swords. But I guess they can just give you those techniques from the start or make them unlockable in other means. Like beating the game once gives you the Sword Beam and collecting ten Medals of Courage gives you the Great Spin Attack. These were the original achievements required to unlock content in A Link to the Past, so this would be a natural choice. Also, that way the medals would still serve a purpose. Well, it's not a Virtual Console game, which means it's not a simple ROM dump and they can change things.

But another idea would be a connection with a later release of A Link to the Past as part of the 3D Classics. Miyamoto already stated he wanted to see this game getting the 3D effect treatment. And if you got Four Swords, both games will be connected. But I guess the other solution works best, especially since such a revision of ALttP might take a while. And even there they could just simply give you the additional content (the Four Swords Palace and the Riddle Quest) without Four Swords.

And the most important question is: Will it be online? If yes, all my prayers about Four Swords are finally heard!!!! But since the game is for free, I'm not expecting much. But if it would be playable online, then this is a second coming of the game. It's the least played Zelda game and the only Zelda game, which I haven't beaten yet due to the lack of a second player. Online playability would change everything. But even without online, it will be much easier to play the game. To play the game right now, you would need to find someone, who still has a GameBoy Advance and a copy of A Link to the Past / Four Swords. And you would need a cable. But as a downloadable free game for the Nintendo DSi/3DS this game will become much more accessable. Lots of people will download and show interest in it, since it's entirely free. It's a good move to give the least played Zelda game ever some more attention. So, I hope there will be more information soon, I'm really hyped about this. My hyped than about all the other news.

And thanks, Nintendo! This is truly a nice gift. It will be available in September and hopefully also downloadable in the 3DS eShop.

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