One of my fondest nerdy memories is of watching my dad play the Zelda franchise games as I grew up. I’m going to warn you, I was one of those girls who put the game paddle in their mouth for a picture. Can I be forgiven if I was only a baby?
My memories don’t go that far back, but my brother and I were always told that we spent a lot of time as babies chilling in the bouncer and watching dad play the Super Nintendo. Zelda has become a family thing, one of the few things that my dad, my little brother, and I can still bond over. For me, my memories began with The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. I could remember the dazzling switch between the light world and the dark world and specifically the spinning tiles in one dungeon.
Appealing to my sentimentalism, my husband got me a NES and A Link to the Past before I left for college. That semester, my little brother and I spent most of my birthday stuck in my dorm room and taking turns at playing Link to the Past after he helped me to finally hook the NES up correctly.
What I remember more distinctly is Ocarina of Time. It has been and will always be my favorite Legend of Zelda game. The fantastical story of a quest to free demi-gods from a sorcerer totally connected with me. I was dropped into a visual world of fish people, forest children, faeries, and freaking talking owls. Melodies stuck with me so much that when we had to create our own dulcimer song in music class, I knew when another student had ripped off Zelda’s Lullaby.
While everything after that didn’t quite measure up, I still have a soft spot for it. Anything to do with this naive elfish hero and the princess that helps save the day will always be my favorite. Even Skyward Sword, which I found to be a bad mash-up of Ocarina of Time and Windwaker.
Now that I’m living with my husband, I’m suddenly aware that I don’t actually own these games for myself. Even sadder is that the only Nintendo systems in our house is my old NES and our gameboys (which are mostly used to play Pokemon anyway). Back home, my little brother has the old Nintendo 64, the Gamecube, and the Wii.
Needless to say, I find myself to be a little bit jealous.