Review Review - The Legend of Zelda – Minish Cap (GBA)

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Jul 9, 2006
The Legend of Zelda – Minish Cap
By: Bernie Yee


1. Introduction / Story
2. Gameplay
3. Graphics and Sound
4. Replay
5. Conclusion

Introduction / Story
Zelda, it’s pretty much a household name by now. The Legend of Zelda is a series of video games that changed the industry and genre of action video games forever. It has changed gaming in many ways, shapes and forms from the original 2D ones on the NES to the 3D ones you now see on the Gamecube.

This is the second Legend of Zelda game for the GBA with the first being a port of the SNES Legend of Zelda – A Link to the Past. All of the Zelda titles have always been successful and it’s no different this time around!

The game starts off with an evil sorcerer by the name of Vaati winning a sword-fighting contest in a festival to celebrate the 100th year of the Minish. The reward is a sword made by a blacksmith Link lives with, but Vaati believes it is the sacred Minish blade. Little did he know that it wasn’t and when he goes to receives it, becomes enraged and turns Princess Zelda into stone and knocks Link out cold. This is where you come into play. You must control Link and defeat Vaati and break the curse that has been placed on Princess Zelda.


Gameplay – 10
Minish Cap plays like all the other 2D ones from the Gameboy Colour ones to the SNES one. The controls are responsive, and there are moves that you can now learn! Yes, special moves from the spinning blade attack to splitting into 2 Links! Another new feature is the ability to shrink to Minish form (tiny midgets smaller than a cheese crumb) allowing you to get many hidden items. All of the Zelda games have always had quite a bit of puzzles and it’s no different in this one. I actually found this game to be much harder than the other ones, so maybe I need to play Brain Age more, =P.

The control scheme from the other titles is sort of still present in this one, A/B for equipped items, R for rolling and L to fuse kinstones with NPC. Kinstones are stones you find randomly by killing enemies, opening chests, etc. There are about 100 fusions and when you fuse them with other NPCs (the pieces must match). When this happen, something good will happen and it’s usually very random and ranges from a secret pathway opening to a chest with rubies inside.
Lots of items from older games are still present here, such as the boomerang and hookshot. And you can also upgrade a few of your items by carrying out special quests. New to the game are mysterious shells. You can exchange them for sculptures (strictly for collection and 100% purposes) by going to a building in Hyrule Town. There are about 136 sculptures up for collecting and should take you a while before you even obtain 100 of them.


Graphics and Sound - 10
The graphics in Minish Cap are very similar to the Four Swords adventure that was also included alongside The Legend of Zelda – A Link to the Past for the GBA. They are impressive and very good looking. There are no frame rate issues even when there is a lot of movement on the screen and is easily one of the better looking titles for the GBA.
The sounds Link makes when he swings his sword and the shout from the spin blade move is intense and excellent. They sound so real and you can feel like you’re apart of the game. Some classic tunes are also still here and the quality is amazing.

Replay – 7
The game has quite a bit of replay value. The game is sort of short, but you can always replay it and find all the heart pieces, kinstones, sculptures, mysterious shells, etc. One thing that stinks in this version is that there is no longer a death counter when you finish the game that tells you how many times you had to continue in the game.


The Legend of Zelda – Minish Cap is an excellent 2nd Zelda game on the GBA and it’s outstanding. Everything about the game is either awesome or very good. If you ever cross paths with a place that has this game, I recommend you pick this up. It’s so good that you might also find a sudden urge of becoming Link from playing this game and embark yourself on a journey finding candy hearts and killing evil plants in your backyard!

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