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The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past Nintendo Player's Guide was a guide produced by Nintendo of America for A Link to the Past. While previous guides such as the NES Game Atlas had covered multiple games (such as The Legend of Zelda and The Adventure of Link), this was the first Nintendo Player's Guide guide to cover a single game in extensive detail. While it was produced by staff from Nintendo Power, it was released as a separate entity to the magazine itself. It was followed by The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening Nintendo Player's Guide, which was produced in a near identical manner.
Unlike most recent guides, the majority of the book is written in an in-universe style, describing the events and world of the game as if they really existed. Events and solutions are described in the manner of a historical record of Link's adventure and what he did to escape traps and defeat Ganon.
The book is divided into five main sections, although the second and third sections make up the majority of the book's contents.
The Legend describes the events and story of the first two Zelda games, followed with a retelling of the back story of A Link to the Past. These stories are largely accurate to those contained in the manuals to each game, but include some additional details and newly produced artwork by Katsuya Terada. There are also small sections including additional details about the games themselves and their legacy.
The Light World and The Dark World
The second and third sections provide an in-depth geographical and historical tour of both the Light World and the Dark World. These sections are written entirely in-universe and contain numerous embellishing information not included in the game, such as a detailed look at Hylian clothing and discussion of a mysterious Golden Land royalty. The pages are also filled with unique artwork produced for the book and not seen in the manual. While including superfluous detail, these sections still act as the primary guide information, covering numerous locations, puzzles, secrets and maps in a loosely linear fashion so that the player can read along with Link's exploits as they progress through the game, while still leaving the player to discover much of the game play and solve numerous puzzles themselves.
Link's Journey focuses on some of the more difficult puzzles in the game in a more chronological fashion, directing the player how to solve each of the most challenging moments in the game and interspersing a number of smaller secrets and enemy information.
The final section of the book serves as a glossary, covering each of the items Link can obtain in the game, strategies and information about each of the bosses, and details on where hidden Heart Pieces, Fairies and even secrets hidden in trees are located.