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The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Islands

Hack of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

Description:

A Link to the Islands is a Wind Waker-inspired hack of A Link to the Past. It was originally called Lyra Islands and developed by SePH in 2004-2005, but it wasn’t finished. In 2015, the Lyra Islands project was once again restarted with the goal of finishing the game one day. New overworlds and dungeons were made, and the original LTTP graphics were restored. The project was eventually renamed A Link to the Islands.

Expect to see:

  • New overworld designs and maps.
  • New Dark World design (Areas 43, 45, & 47 ONLY!).
  • Hyrule Castle re-located.
  • Kakariko Town re-located.
  • New Lost Woods-style puzzle.
  • Eight new dungeons and one mini-dungeon.
  • Ganon gets his own tower in the Dark World.
  • New monologue and in-game clues.
  • New sprites.
  • MSU-1 support.
  • ASM hacks added.
  • New ending cutscenes.
  • Customized ending credits.

A few irreparable problems that popped up during development are documented in the readme included in the zip file. These problems do not affect gameplay and the game can be completed normally.

Unlike Parallel Worlds and Goddess of Wisdom, both of which are notorious for their unforgiving difficulty levels, A Link to the Islands is a game that’s fair to everyone. There are no super tricks, stunts, or logic (i.e. masked objects, bomb jumping), while still having a decent level of difficulty. Though, some backtracking may be required at times. Still, you won’t ever have to use save states. You will not be frustrated while playing.

Update 1/5/2021: A review pointed out three rooms with bridges in the forest dungeon (Level 4) where it was possible to go out of bounds because there are unintentional openings in the lower level under the bridges. This has been fixed. I also added an in-game hint on what to do if there are no switches or levers to blow up an exploding wall.

Update 1/10/2021: I fixed a softlock that I apparently overlooked in the Royal Crypt (graveyard mini-dungeon). It was possible to run out of keys and get stuck with nowhere to go not only due to a one-way shutter, but also because of the absence of the Magic Mirror. During development of this game, I stupidly placed the Magic Mirror next to the “stolen” Master Sword at the end of the Royal Crypt, which in turn created the softlock. I ended up moving the Magic Mirror to Level 3: Sky Tower (it was placed in a big chest next to the Magic Cape) to fix the softlock. Other than that, no other changes were made to existing rooms in the Royal Crypt.

Update 1/13/2021: I disabled the MSU-1 introductory video to fix a critical bug involving the L&R item switch ASM feature. This bug would occur when playing with MSU-1 and starting a new file, and the screen would glitch out if the player tried to use the shoulder buttons to switch items (this bug would go away with the player saving & quitting).

Update 1/31/2021: A buggy staircase in the Ice Palace that I apparently overlooked has now been fixed.

The MSU-1 soundpack for A Link to the Islands can be downloaded here: https://1drv.ms/u/s!Ai3idpRXoXu17Xpmwxg5frUy8Q0k?e=uBKn8R

ROM / ISO Information:

  • Name: Legend of Zelda, The - A Link to the Past (U) [!]
  • Size: 1,048,576 bytes
  • Checksum: CRC32 777AAC2F

Links:

Screenshots:


Credits:

Credits
ContributorType of contributionListed credit
SePHHackingOriginal Hacking
Darklink7884HackingHacking Adjustments
ConnHackingASM Hacking
MathOnNapkinsHackingASM Hacking

User Review Information

Slightly Unpolished but Fun!

Reviewed By: Rabbi Raccoon on 05 Jan 2021

I had a lot of fun playing this hack. It’s always exciting to see a new take on this game, and this was no exception. The dungeons are all unique and offer their own challenges, and progression feels natural. It’s very good about pointing you in the right direction. You won’t spend hours looking for the next dungeon. There are no extreme challenges, but there a few slightly more difficult than the rest puzzles in dungeons that lead to Heart Pieces, which was a neat idea that worked well.

My only complaints as far as the dungeons are concerned was a puzzle in a dungeon where you shoot an arrow into a statue to blow up the wall. There’s no indication that I could see where it was possible to do that (It wasn’t a blue eyed cyclops like in the original, it looked just like any other). I ended up having to look up a video walkthrough for that one. Looking back, I can see where the spike trap in front is supposed to resemble the shooting gallery, so maybe that’s the hint.

The final dungeon was fantastic. It’s still a gauntlet like the original, but it also puts a lot more of your puzzle solving skills you’ve developed to the test, but without overstaying it’s welcome. I did have to fight Kholdstare twice there because I took a wrong turn. Another small issue I had throughout the game is if I took a wrong turn, I didn’t realize it until I was several rooms away. It didn’t take away from my enjoyment, but I felt it worth mentioning.

There’s a few bugs here and there, mostly with positioning of Link versus obstacles, but nothing that causes a soft lock. They all fix themselves pretty well. One thing the creators should be aware of is that in level 4, there’s a big room that has a bridge with exits to the left and right over your head. There are unintentional openings on the lower level under those doors which leads to being under the map of the next two rooms and lets you go into an “exploration zone”.

The end, after the 6th Crystal, feels pretty rushed. All the missing items, save one, are all thrown at you and you go right to the last main dungeon.

Oh, and the magic regen was VERY welcome a couple times.

It was a great hack, and I’m really glad I played it. I’m always on the lookout for hacks of A Link to the Past and I look forward to anything the creators of this will put out, if they keep making them.

Version 2.1 Recommended - Yes

User Reviews
HeadlineAuthorDateVersionRecommended
Worth the waitMAOT66616 Dec 20212.5Yes
Should have stayed dead.Blazing27 Feb 20212.5No
Dull & BuggyLunaria09 Jan 20212.2No
Good ideas held back by bad overall designdudejo05 Jan 20212.1No
Slightly Unpolished but Fun!Rabbi Raccoon05 Jan 20212.1Yes