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The Legend of Zelda: Ancient Dungeon

Hack of The Legend of Zelda


The Legend of Zelda: Ancient Dungeon is a completely new way to play the original The Legend of Zelda on NES. This romhack makes The Legend of Zelda play like a roguelike. Venture through a randomized, ever-changing dungeon with progressive difficulty the further you go. Collect classic items and upgrades, and battle familiar foes throughout your journey. Every playthrough is different. Ganon is lurking deep within the dungeon, but beware, for if you perish, you’ll have to start all over from the beginning. Are you up to the challenge?

Features include:

  • Roguelike Gameplay: Every playthrough is different and it is all included directly in the ROM file. No external randomization programs needed, just load and play!
  • Dynamic Enemy Loading: Normally the overworld and each dungeon has a specific set of enemies available. In Ancient Dungeon, new enemies are loaded dynamically during every room transition. This means there are no restrictions in the combinations of enemies you may encounter in the dungeon.
  • Additional Item Abilities: Some items have new functionality specific to Ancient Dungeon. Some changes are basic, like the Stepladder, which makes new water rooms available. Others have brand new functionality, like the Recorder, which now both defeats Pols Voice and forces Peahats to land.
  • In-game Timer: A built-in timer keeps track of your runtime and is shown at the end of every run, win or lose.
  • Seeds: You can choose a custom seed value and play the game in seeded mode, which gives you the same randomized layout every time. This is perfect for setting up races!
  • Custom Palettes: New palettes have been added that change periodically through the dungeon, providing a touch of variety.

Many changes have been implemented in Version 2.0, please check the README for all the details.

ROM / ISO Information:

  • Database match: Legend of Zelda, The (USA) (Rev 1)
  • Database: No-Intro: Nintendo Entertainment System (v. 20210216-231042)
  • File SHA-1: 3701381A82FC7D52B2DD3E8892047B30A114AB43
  • File CRC32: 2BB0C56
  • ROM SHA-1: BE2F5DC8C5BA8EC1A344A71F9FB204750AF24FE7
  • ROM CRC32: EAF7ED72



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ContributorType of contributionListed credit

User Review Information

Amazing Changes That Make An Amazing Hack! Wow!

Reviewed By: peacefighter on 18 Mar 2023

This is a completely different game. I am super impressed that this works as well as it does. It feels like a version of Binding of Isaac. Very easy to get in and play for a while and then take a break. It is fun seeing how many rooms you completed and in what time. If you love Dungeon Crawlers I highly recommend this game.

I read some other reviews and I agree with others. The music is the only thing holding this hack back. I wish the rooms would have different music. It could be tied to the color of the room. I would love to hear Zelda tracks or even tracks from other games. This is the only thing that I could see improving this amazing game.

This is an amazing hack that everyone should play!

Version 2.0 Recommended - Yes

User Reviews
Amazing Changes That Make An Amazing Hack! Wow!peacefighter18 Mar 20232.0Yes
Excellent concept, but could prosper with more musicPrince Valmont16 Mar 20232.0Yes
More fun than original gameRetroDima15 Mar 20232.0Yes
Zelda with infinite replay value! (Plus a few thoughts and suggestions...)capncrunch99201 Mar 20232.0Yes
Nintendo Won't Ever Do Anything Like ThisZiko26 Feb 20232.0Yes
Isn't christmas supposed to be in December?Nintenja24 Feb 20232.0Yes
Very cool hack, but bring back start menuBlazing20 Jan 20231.1Yes
Definitely worth playing...SuperPaladinTV22 Dec 20221.0Yes
The most addicting hack I've ever played!ImNotAnEggplant14 Dec 20221.0Yes
This is Most GangstaGoogie14 Dec 20221.0Yes
Fun ideaKevvyLava13 Dec 20221.0Yes
An awesome idea!eleventhirtyfour13 Dec 20221.0Yes
The Binding of ZeldaeeHeeY13 Dec 20221.0Yes
Room 255WebSlinger13 Dec 20221.0Yes
This Is Excellent!GamingWithDrew12 Dec 20221.0Yes
The Start of Something Good!Binarynova12 Dec 20221.0Yes
Straight to the Retro Zelda ActionZetawilk11 Dec 20221.0Yes