'Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening' Remake Announced for Nintendo Switch

Nintendo has announced a remake of the 1993 classic The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening.

Nintendo dropped the surprise announcement that a new Legend of Zelda game would be released this year by showing a 2D cartoon of Link struggling with his boat while in a storm at sea. We then saw Link wash ashore on the mysterious Koholint Island, the site of Link's Awakening.

Originally released for the original Game Boy, Link's Awakening is one of the few games not set in Hyrule and doesn't involve classic parts of the Zelda franchise like Ganon, the Triforce or even Zelda herself. Instead, Link travels around Koholint Island searching for 8 magical musical instruments to awaken the mystical Wind Fish in order to return home.

The remake appears to mix modern graphics with Link's Awakening's 2D style. Link's look is deliberately simplified - not quite like Toon Link, but not nearly as detailed as his Breath of the Wild form. The game also appears to mostly use an updated version of the classic 2D overhead style seen in older games. While in 3D, players are mostly limited to a grid-like map. We'll note that Link's Awakening was the first game to allow Link to jump and also had some side-scrolling portions, which also seems to have gotten remade as they appeared in the trailer.

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This isn't the first time that Nintendo has updated Link's Awakening. Nintendo also released a colorized version of the game back in 1998 for the Game Boy Color.

No one was really expecting a new Legend of Zelda game this year and it looks really gorgeous, a perfect blend of retro gameplay and modern graphics. The game will be released in 2019.