The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Anniversary Edition
The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Anniversary Edition is a DSiWare remaster of the Game Boy Advance game, Four Swords, also available for the Nintendo 3DS. The remaster includes the full game of Four Swords, minus A Link to the Past, which was originally paired in A Link to the Past & Four Swords. The remaster features several changes and additions not present in the original, including a single-player mode.
Released as part of the 25th Anniversary of the Zelda series, the remaster was made available as a free download between September 28, 2011 and February 20, 2012 internationally via the DSi Shop and Nintendo eShop. It was later made available again as a free download between January 30 and February 2, 2014 in North America, exclusively via the Nintendo eShop, after the release of A Link Between Worlds to celebrate its critical acclaim, including the Game of the Year award from GameSpot.
Changes and Additions
The game now features a single-player mode originally absent from the original game. In this mode, only two Links are used as opposed to four, which the player can select the color of the second Link's tunic. The leading Link is always green. Similarly to Four Swords Adventures, the second Link will follow the leading Link. The player can switch between the two Links by pressing the R-button, which will also separate them. The Links can be reunited at any time by pressing the X-button, which has Link blow a whistle and immediately summons the other Link back to him, regardless of how far apart they are.
When both Links are necessary to complete a task, the other Link will automatically assist the user's Link. Large blocks and rocks will be pushed and lifted by both Links at once. When one Link picks up a Nokkun, the other will move to the other side to slash as it is thrown. Likewise, when one Link touches the handle of a Hikkun, the other Link will assist in pulling it apart. Much like the two-player and three-player modes in the original game, the stage maps will update so they are possible to complete with the given number of Links. In rooms where there are four switches needing to be pressed, two statues will be provided to make up for the lack of the other two Links. Other tasks however still require that the Links work separately, such as fighting bosses. In certain boss battles where a Link needs to slash a projectile to another Link, the projectile will home in towards the direction of the other Link.
In single-player, Medals of Courage are no longer awarded after completing a stage, and are only available in multiplayer.
While using multiplayer mode, the game now uses local wireless rather than link cables. The game does not support online co-op.
Stages and Unlockables
As the game is no longer paired with A Link to the Past, the Master Sword and Hurricane Spin that could be unlocked in that game and carried over to Four Swords are now obtained in two new stages: the Realm of Memories and the Hero's Trial. Like Vaati's Palace, these stages feature three doors, each leading to different areas, which are gradually unlocked as the Links clear each area. Unlike other stages in the game, the areas in both stages are not randomized every time the Links venture into them.
The Realm of Memories has three different levels within, each based on various locations from The Legend of Zelda, A Link to the Past, and Link's Awakening. It is unlocked after beating the game once. Completing the Realm of Memories unlocks the Master Sword.
The Hero's Trial is a difficult stage that features more challenging versions of the three main stages. The third area of each level is based on Vaati's Palace. It is unlocked by either collecting 30,000 Rupees or 5 Medals of Courage. Completing the Hero's Trial unlocks the Hurricane Spin.
- Some of the original GBA sound effects have been enhanced into better quality. The soundtrack has also been given a few instrumental enhances.
- The game now has its own file select screen, instead of a shared one as in A Link to the Past & Four Swords. Link can now also be named.
- In reflection of the new stages added, the map screen has been slightly updated.
Hyrule Castle in the Realm of Memories
North American trailer
Robin & Zelda Williams trailer
- Pete Davison, The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Anniversary Edition Available for Free from September 28, GamePro (archive), published September 13, 2011, retrieved July 14, 2013.
- Jim Sterling, Zelda: Four Swords out now for 'limited time' (Update), Destructoid, published September 28, 2011, retrieved July 14, 2013.
- ゼルダの伝説 4つの剣 25周年記念エディション, Nintendo, retrieved July 14, 2013.
- "4 Swords, 4 Days, 4 Free! To celebrate the critical acclaim for The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, we are making The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Anniversary Edition available for free in the Nintendo 3DS eShop through Feb. 2." — 4 Swords, 4 Days, 4 Free!, Nintendo's Official Facebook.
- "[Four Swords] will be available for free in the 3DS and DSi shops between September 28, 2011 and February 20, 2012." — Four Swords Anniversary Edition: release date and new levels, Zelda Universe, published September 13th, 2011.
- GameSpot's Overall Game of the Year 2013, GameSpot.
- "These include new stages, some of which are based on The Legend of Zelda, A Link to the Past and Link’s Awakening." — Four Swords Anniversary Edition: release date and new levels, Zelda Universe, published September 13th, 2011.
- "You conquered the Realm of Memories and obtained the Master Sword! Your sword will now shoot beams when your life meter is full!" — N/A (Four Swords Anniversary Edition)
- "You have cleared the Hero's Trial and learned the Hurricane Spin! Press the B Button repeatedly during a spin attack to do continuous Hurricane Spins!" — N/A (Four Swords Anniversary Edition)