Welcome to the 69th issue of the GBAtemp Recommends Revival Project! This project is a weekly feature where we share our favourite games and applications with you. The titles we recommend may be "old school" games, a piece of Homebrew, a ROM hack, sleeper hits, an application, etc, but one thing's for certain, we think they are fantastic and deserve your attention! It's the last of a special four week look at GB/GBC titles and I was going to be a hipster douche and do Kaeru no Tame ni Kane wa Naru but thought I'd go mainstream with one of the finest video games...ever. The Legend of Zelda: Links Awakening Nintendo have pretty much owned the dedicated handheld gaming space ever since the Game & Watch appeared way back in the early 80's. Then they released a console that has become synonymous with handheld gaming and each handheld console since has pretty much dominated the market since (Virtual Boy doesn't count btw). The reason for this is that Nintendo knows the market. While the likes of Sega at the time just offered cut down versions of their hits, Nintendo made all new entries that are considered as good, if not better than the console counterparts. This game has almost been out for 20 years and time has been extremely good to it.The story starts after Oracle of Seasons/Ages (though this game was released before those two...and also the two N64 games). Link goes aboard to train himself up so that he is a better warrior, while he is on his way, he encounters a storm and it destroys his boat. Link washes ashore, shipwrecked on a island called Koholint. There he is rescued by Marin and she takes him to her home to recuperate. Once he is better he tries to leave the island, however he cannot and is confronted by a mysterious owl who then informs Link that he must collect the Eight Instruments of the Sirens and wake the Wind Fish in order to get back home. I have to say that this story is one of my favourites in the series, it's different to the usual "save the Princess/defeat Ganon/save Hyrule" arc. The gameplay is pretty much A Link to the Past only with less colours. By no means is this a cut down pint size version of Zelda, it's every bit as rich and full as that SNES title...in fact more so! The game follows the same top down action/adventure perspective with the emphasis on exploring. The dungeons get harder and larger as you go on. At the end of each dungeon you must defeat a "Nightmare" boss creature in order to gain a instrument of the Sirens. What is different however is that there are now side-scrolling platform sequences, kinda like Zelda II only you know...playable. There are side-quests and missions to take part in along the way, collectable shells so you you can have a much more powerful sword and trading mini games. Also worthy of note, this is the first Zelda title where Link can fish as well as play songs on the Ocarina. Another thing is that this is also the first title where you can assign items to the A/B buttons, this has now been adopted to every proper Zelda title. Graphically it's one of the best GB titles going. It's full of character and detail and you also get to see cameos from the world of Nintendo. The backgrounds are as varied as you would expect, despite the lack of colour. The sound pushes the GB. Fantastic, memorable original scores compliment the gameplay. The game was later ported to the GBC, this time it was in colour and had an extra dungeon. This was no cheap port job, Nintendo took a lot of care in retaining the greatness of the original and also making sure that it was every bit as amazing. All in all rather than just be a portable Zelda title, Nintendo improved the gameplay and despite the 8-bit limitations actually modernised the series further. What started as a port of A Link to the Past has easily become one of the best Zelda games, improving on the games that came before on such modest hardware. It's not just an essential GB title, it's just essential for anyone who loves a great videogame that has a rich story and charm. Genre: Action/Adventure Release Year: 1993 (GB) / 1998 (GBC) / 2011 (3DS Virtual Console)Developer: Nintendo EAD Published by: Nintendo Directed By: Takashi Tezuka Released For: Gameboy / GBC / 3DS Virtual Console If you enjoyed this week's edition of GBAtemp Recommends! please leave a comment in the thread. This helps us monitor feedback and ensures we keep posting these articles in the future. There will be a special bonus edition this Thursday to celebrate the anniversary of a classic franchise...that kinda went meh. If you would also like to write a GBAtemp Recommends! article, let me know.