Many games in the Legend of Zelda series have been re-released on various consoles following their initial release. A majority of these re-releases are near exact replicas, but on rare occasion, they are more similar in definition to remakes or enhanced versions.

The Legend of Zelda

Initially released on the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1987, The Legend of Zelda has been re-released on multiple platforms, most recently on the Virtual Console service in 2006 (Wii), 2011 (3DS), and 2013 (Wii U). The game was re-released in cartridge format on the Famicom (the Japanese equivalent of the NES) in 1994, as the Famicom release was originally for the Famicon Disk System. The game was also included in The Legend of Zelda: Collector's Edition for the Nintendo GameCube, and can also be accessed in the GameCube game Animal Crossing using various cheat devices such as Action Replay. The game was also re-released on the Game Boy Advance in 2004 along with its sequel as part of the Classic NES Series. A demo, called a "Masterpiece" in-game, appears in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. The re-releases of the game on the GameCube, GBA, and Wii have corrected some translation errors, most notably in the intro.

Zelda II: The Adventure of Link

Initially released on the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1988, The Adventure of Link was re-released in 2003 as part of the Collector's Edition for the Nintendo GameCube, and again in 2004 as part of the Classic NES Series for Game Boy Advance, with several changes. The death animation removed flashing colors in an effort to prevent seizures, replacing it with a solid red color (the same goes for the Virtual Console release). Several graphical and audio tweaks were made, and an enemy formerly titled Barba is named Volvagia, keeping with the naming in the Japanese release. It was released as the 100th title on the Wii's Virtual Console in Japan on January 23, 2007, in Europe and Australia on February 9, 2007 and was released in North America on June 4, 2007. It was released for Virtual Console on 3DS and WiiU as well.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

Initially released on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System in 1992, A Link to the Past has been re-released a few times. In 2002, Nintendo and Capcom ported the game to the Game Boy Advance; The Game Boy Advance version was released in North America on December 2, 2002, and in Japan on March 13, 2003. This port was packaged with a newly developed multiplayer Zelda game called The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords. The two games worked together; extra features could be unlocked in one game by completing tasks in the other. Additions to A Link to the Past include voice clips, an additional dungeon (the Palace of the Four Sword), an additional ending sequence for clearing the new dungeon, and the ability to unlock a continuous spin attack called the Whirlwind Sword Attack. Other changes include a less time-consuming puzzle in the Ice Palace and an overhaul of the game script. The GBA version received excellent reviews that considered it a faithful conversion, and it sold over 1.81 million units. On December 2, 2006 in Japan, and January 22, 2007 in North America, the game was added to the Wii's Virtual Console, where it is available for 800 Wii Points.

The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening

Initially released on the Game Boy in 1993, Link's Awakening was re-released in 1998 for the Game Boy Color. In addition to the inclusion of color, the DX version added numerous gameplay features:

One addition to the DX version was an entirely new dungeon, based on color. The Color Dungeon made use of the Game Boy Color's capabilities to deliver puzzles based on color. The reward for beating the color-based puzzles is the choice of red or blue-colored clothes, which offer a boost in offensive power or resistance to damage, respectively. The Red Clothes allowed Link to become more powerful (the equivalent of always holding a Piece of Power), while the Blue Clothes raised his defense (the equivalent of always holding a Guardian Acorn).

Another new feature of the DX version was the addition of a Camera Shop and Photo Album; certain actions trigger cutscenes in which the Photographer would appear and take a picture. The pictures could be viewed in the player’s Photo Album at the Camera Shop, and printed using the Game Boy Printer. This feature included the addition of an invisible Zora in the Animal Village as one of the triggers. Lastly, a side quest involving the Ultimate Sword was expanded upon.

Link's Awakening DX itself has been re-released on the Nintendo 3DS's Virtual Console. However, as the Nintendo 3DS is not compatible with the Game Boy Printer, it is not possible to print photographs taken in the game.

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

Initially released on the Nintendo 64 in 1998, Ocarina of Time was re-released for the Nintendo GameCube in both the Master Quest and Collector's Edition as an emulated ROM. Master Quest was offered as a premium for pre-ordering The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker in Japan and North America, as well as in a special GameCube bundle at Wal-Mart. In Europe and Australia, the disc was included in the same case as the initial printings of The Wind Waker. In Europe, it was available for a limited time through a special offer on the Nintendo website. Master Quest contains both Ocarina of Time and a modified version with rearranged dungeons and additional enemies. Collector's Edition was available in GameCube bundles in Europe and North America, as well as by registering hardware and software, or by subscribing to official magazines or clubs.

It was also released in China for the iQue Player as a demo and full game in 2003.

The game was released in Europe and Australia for the Virtual Console on Nintendo's Wii console on February 23, 2007, for 1000 Wii Points. It was released in North America on February 26, 2007, and in Japan on February 27, 2007. The only absent element is the rumble feature, which includes the use of the Stone of Agony. The Wii is capable of playing the GameCube versions of the game with the rumble feature working properly. The Virtual Console is Version 1.2 of the original game with the exception of the crescent moon and star symbol of the Gerudo, which was changed to a new design and the exception of the original Fire Temple chant.

The game was later released as an enhanced remake for the Nintendo 3DS in 2011; it utilized stereoscopic 3D effects, touch screen controls and a built-in gyroscope for actions in first person view. Like the GameCube release, it also featured a Master Quest mode, the changes consisting of a mirrored game world and enemies dealing twice as much damage. The game also featured enhanced graphics and models, and an all-new Boss Challenge mode, allowing players to fight the game's bosses again, after having defeated them once. Additionally, the port featured Sheikah Stones that provide players with hints regarding puzzles and enemies.

The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask

Initially released on the Nintendo 64 in 2000, Majora's Mask has been re-released two times to date. In 2003, Nintendo released Majora's Mask on the Nintendo GameCube as part of the Collector's Edition, a special promotional disc which also contained Ocarina of Time, as well as the original two 8-bit NES Zelda games. This disc could be purchased with a GameCube console, as part of a subscription offer to Nintendo Power magazine along with Mario Kart: Double Dash!, or through Nintendo's official website by purchasing and registering a certain number of first-party Nintendo games. The offer expired in early 2004.

Similar to some other GameCube re-releases, the game is not a port, but rather the ROM of the original game running on a software emulator; this has been proven by the ROM-dumping community, who have been able to extract N64-format ROMs from the disc that can even be booted on a Nintendo 64. The only differences are the colors of the action buttons due to the GameCube's green A button and red B button and the pause screen's use and depiction of the L button as the left page scroller, as opposed to Z. Aside from these, because it is only emulated (rather than ported to the new console), there are some timing discrepancies between the two consoles, and some of the music sounds inaccurate on the GameCube. Another issue that has been raised is that the game unexpectedly crashes on the GameCube occasionally; this is once again caused by the inaccuracies of the emulator.

Majora's Mask was also released on the Wii's Virtual Console service in Europe and Australia on April 3, 2009; in Japan on April 7, 2009; and in North America on May 18, 2009. The game can be downloaded for 1,200 Nintendo Points in Japan and 1,000 Nintendo Points in PAL territories and North America. It was the 300th game to be released on the North American Virtual Console.

The game is also planned to be released as a remake for the Nintendo 3DS in 2015, similar to Ocarina of Time.

Like Ocarina of Time, the game was later released as an enhanced remake for the Nintendo 3DS in 2015. It featured the same graphical overhaul, gyroscope controls and the addition of Sheikah Stones but also added additional features such as the Song of Double Time allowing Link to move forward to any hour in the day.

The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords

An Anniversary Edition of Four Swords, released to celebrate the The Legend of Zelda 25th Anniversary, was released as DSiWare in 2011, making it available for Nintendo DSi, DSi XL, and 3DS. Although available free of charge, its availability was limited to February 2012, at which point it was taken down. The re-release allows one to play through the game in single-player mode, as well as allowing wireless communication for multi-player. It also features new bonus areas known as the Hero's Trial and the Realm of Memories.

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker

On January 23, 2013, Nintendo formally announced a re-release of The Wind Waker for the Wii U as part of a Nintendo Direct presentation.[1] The re-release includes updated high-definition visuals, integration with Miiverse, and full compatibility with the Wii U GamePad, including Off-TV Play.

In addition to these, it also removes the Tingle Tuner (due to the Game Boy Advance having been discontinued years ago), adds a "Hero Mode", which is a harder version of the game, and last but not least, a new item called the Swift Sail is included, which allows the King of Red Lions to sail faster, and without the need of wind.

The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap

The Minish Cap was released on the Nintendo 3DS's Virtual Console on December 16, 2011; however, the release is limited to members of the 3DS Ambassador Program. A public release of this and the other Game Boy Advance Ambassador Program titles at a later point in time remains a possibility.

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess

On November 12, 2015, Nintendo officially announced a re-release of Twilight Princess for the Wii U as part of a Nintendo Direct presentation. The port includes high-definition visuals and compatibility with several amiibo.


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