Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Legend of Zelda, Second Quest, Finale

"The young boy sharpened his sword as the sun faded behind the mountain. The slender, pointed ears visible through his long brown hair and his almond-shaped eyes belied his elven heritage. As the boy continued to prepare his equipment and rearrange his pack, he thought back upon everything that had befallen him, and had led up to this moment. The kidnapping of a princess, the many journeys through dark dungeons, facing unspeakable hardships, defeating fearsome monsters, all of this to fulfill a destiny, his destiny. To anyone gazing upon him, the boy was far too young to have accomplished everything he had in the recent past, yet here he stood, readying himself for the most daunting task yet attempted: to enter Death Mountain, forge his way through its depths, and face the evil master of this place, Ganon. At stake: the fate of the world and the life of the fair princess, Zelda. The boy stood up, threw his pack over his shoulders, strapped the magical blade, a constant companion throughout these long trials, onto his hip, took a deep breath, and thought, 'Well, Link, there's no turning back now. Zelda is waiting for you...' With one last look at the thin red line the sun had become at the crest of the mountain, not knowing if he would gaze upon its beauty ever again, Link trudged forward into the dark passageway, toward a destiny not yet realized..."

Forgive the flowery prose to start this post, but I felt it appropriate to set the scene of the final entry for the original Legend of Zelda, my assault on Death Mountain in the second quest. I prepared by refreshing my medicine back to red (I had only a blue potion remaining after the 8th dungeon), and then traveled to the upper left screen in the overworld. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I stumbled upon this entrance during a previous search of the overworld for entrances to dungeons and heart containers, but now it was time for the real thing: attempting to defeat Ganon.

The dungeon was a large one, and contained many one-way avenues, whether they be doors that closed and then would not open again, or doorways that led into a room where no doorway existed on the wall you just entered from. This made trekking through the dungeon a sometimes arduous task, as one misstep would cause a loss of time backtracking to get back to the intended path. To make matters more interesting, the Wizrobes made their triumphant return to the game, making up many of the enemies in the rooms I passed through. Having no memories whatsoever of the layout of this dungeon or the location of any of the important points (where to find the Red Ring, the Silver Arrow or Ganon) I knew I was in for a long march through the depths of this dungeon.

After quite some time roaming the halls aimlessly, I finally stumbled upon the Red Ring, which made the goings at least a bit easier. Now I could handle a bit more damage than I could with only the blue ring. In fact, I had to leave the dungeon once before finding the red ring to refill my medicine, due to the fact that for some reason I was taking a far less cautious approach to this dungeon than was probably prudent, considering the strength of the enemies. The Wizrobes certainly did their jobs, costing me more precious hearts than I'd like to count.

Later in my adventure, thanks to some diligent searching of every wall in every room I passed, I finally found the hidden location of the Silver Arrow. While on the path that would eventually lead me to this most important of treasures, I found the room that rewarded me with the map of Death Mountain, which I was pleased to see turned out to be a Mickey Mouse lookalike (well, at least his head). The Silver Arrow happened to be located in the mouse's left eye.

Now all that stood between Link and his destiny of saving the princess was finding (and beating) Ganon. So, I once again pushed into the dungeon, checking each wall of each room and pushing all of the blocks after defeating the enemies, until I came upon the secret passage that led me to the right 'ear' of the mouse, and to the room where Ganon awaited my challenge. As in the first quest, I had my trusty magical sword and Silver Arrows at the ready. Ganon made his presence known, then disappeared from sight, to throw fireballs at me while invisible. I stalked around the room, striking with my sword, to make him appear. After three sword strikes (I believe, but I could have lost count), he appeared in a brown color, and when he did, I let loose with a Silver Arrow...
And, just like that, it was over. The remains of Ganon rested on the floor, the Triforce he had stolen waiting for me to go pick it up. I did so, then passed to the next room, where the lovely Zelda awaited rescue. The fires that blocked her escape were no match for the magical blade I carried, and then Link and Zelda were reunited at last. The screen informed me that I had indeed completed the first Legend of Zelda, of which I was pretty happy.

Overall, I really enjoyed playing through this timeless classic once more, but I am happy to be finished with it. I look forward to my next challenge, which is (appropriately) The Legend of Zelda II: The Adventure of Link. I sincerely hope that you've enjoyed my accounts of the first game, and will continue to come back and read the updates I post as I start the next leg of my journey. Until that time, I'll leave you with a bit more of the flowery prose from the beginning of this post, to wrap things up...

"As Link emerged from the shadows of the dungeon, hand in hand with Princess Zelda, the first rays of a rising sun emerged from behind the mountain. It was appropriate for the moment, because the rescue of Zelda and the defeat of Ganon signalled a new era in Hyrule, an era of peace the land desperately craved. With the cruel specter of Ganon's evil ways no longer clouding people's thoughts and actions, they were free to enjoy this lush and beautiful land as they had for generations before. Zelda looked at her hero, and felt happy. She could not have asked for a more proper rescuer, and she knew that, with her freedom and with Link by her side, there was nothing that could interfere with peace and prosperity her kingdom deserved. The two of them walked, arm in arm, down the path to enjoy the wonderful days ahead."

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