The Legend of Zelda series is home to some of the most acclaimed video games of all time. The original Zelda game showed just what the original Nintendo Entertainment System was capable of, while the most recent game, Breath of the Wild, has mastered the open world formula in ways that no one would ever have dreamed was possible. Link has graced almost every single Nintendo console, and as such, has occasionally drifted into the worlds of other video game characters.
We are here today to look into Link’s many sojourns into the worlds of both his Nintendo contemporaries and his rivals. From the spiky haired member of SOLDIER to the alliance of evil that threatened to take over the animated Hyrule.
Here are 15 Times The Legend of Zelda Crossed Over With Other Games!
15. Final Fantasy VII
Link and Cloud Strife have been unofficial rivals since the late nineties. This is due to the fact that they both starred in two of the most highly acclaimed games of all time, that happened to be on rival systems. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is considered to be the greatest game on the Nintendo 64, while Final Fantasy VII is one of the most beloved titles on the original PlayStation.
The two characters finally had a legitimate chance to meet in battle in 2016, when Cloud appeared as a DLC character in Super Smash Bros. for 3DS/Wii U. To many fans, Cloud’s inclusion felt like an ending to the long-standing rivalry between Sony and Nintendo. The days of the “Bit Wars” and the childish name calling between companies has long since ended. Sony even recently congratulated Nintendo on the release of the Switch. Cloud’s appearance in Smash Bros. was Nintendo admitting that their competition had made a lot of classic games and iconic characters of their own. The fact that Link and Cloud can battle each other at all is a testament to how much the video game industry has grown.
The original Bayonetta was a highly acclaimed action game for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. While the game took some flak for its overly sexualized protagonist, there was no denying Bayonetta‘s excellent gameplay and visual style. Work began on a sequel, but financial difficulties at Platinum Games almost sank the project. Nintendo stepped in and offered to fund Bayonetta 2, on the condition that it would become a Wii U exclusive. This partnership would eventually lead to Bayonetta appearing in Super Smash Bros. for 3DS/Wii U.
An updated version of the original Bayonetta was also released for the Wii U. One of the new additions to this port was a costume based on Link from The Legend of Zelda. This outfit was called “Hero of Hyrule” and it gave Bayonetta a version of Link’s classic clothes. The outfit would also change all of the halo items into rupees and transformed the Shuraba blade into the Master Sword.
13. Star Fox
There are certain popular video games that have had all of their files extracted and examined, in the search for unused content and secrets. Games like Half-Life and Pokémon Red & Blue have been thoroughly torn apart, in the search of dummied out elements that the player was not meant to see. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time has also had its files sifted through by fans. In Ocarina of Time’s case, the fans found something very interesting.
With the use of GameShark codes, it is possible to spawn an Arwing from the Star Fox series. The game will show a brief cutscene of the Arwing arriving before it launches its attack on Link. It is possible for Link to fight back and destroy the Arwing, with the aid of ranged weapons, like the Bow or Boomerang.
The Arwing was programmed into the game as a means of testing the flight pattern for Volvagia, the boss of the Fire Temple. It was never meant to be discovered by players and was scrubbed from the 3DS version of the game.
Link and Kirby have been battling each other regularly since the release of the first Super Smash Bros. game. They were the first chosen representatives of their series, and they have appeared in every Smash Bros. game since.
The first fight between Link and Kirby actually happened several years before the conception of Smash Bros. In The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening for the Game Boy, it is possible for Link to encounter Kirby within the Eagle’s Tower dungeon. In the English localization of the game, this creature is referred to as Anti-Kirby, which suggests that this is an evil version of the character. The Japanese version of Link’s Awakening simply refers to him as Kirby.
When Link encounters Anti-Kirby, he will be greeted with a twisted smile. This affable attitude won’t last long, as Anti-Kirby will try and devour Link whole. The only choices Link has are to run away or to kill Kirby’s evil doppelganger.
11. Donkey Kong Country 2
The Donkey Kong Country trilogy on the Super Nintendo contains some of the greatest platform games of all time. Rareware managed to be better than Nintendo at the thing they were best known for and created platform games that managed to outdo the Mario titles on the SNES. It took the creation of Super Mario 64 for Nintendo to reclaim their title as the king of the platform games once more.
At the end of Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest, the player will be judged on their progress by Cranky Kong. A screen showing Cranky’s Video Game Heroes will rank the player, depending on how many of the hidden DK coins they found in the game. If the player has found less than eighteen, then the third place winner will be Link from The Legend of Zelda. The second place belongs to Yoshi (who has 29 coins) and Mario will be in first place, with 39 coins. You need to find all 40 coins to make it to the top.
10. Super Mario Bros. 2
As most Nintendo fans are probably aware, the game we know of as Super Mario Bros. 2 was originally a totally different game, called Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic. The game was retooled for an international release and had all of its characters changed into members of the Mario cast. Some of the elements from Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic have made their way into the main Mario canon, such as the Shy Guys and Birdo.
The end boss of Super Mario Bros. 2 is a giant evil frog, named King Wart. He is attempting to take over the realm of dreams and it is up to Mario to stop him. In The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening, King Wart returns as the leader of the Frog Choir. He is referred to as Mamu, which is his original Japanese name.
9. Super Mario Bros. 3
The Mario and Zelda series have been closely linked for a long time. Link has battled Mario’s enemies on numerous occasions, as they have attempted to invade Hyrule on their own. Mario has also conquered several different Zelda-themed levels throughout his career.
One of the recurring Mario enemies that have appeared in numerous Zelda games is the Chain Chomp. These are the black spheres with razor sharp teeth, that are connected to a length of chain. They debuted in Super Mario Bros. 3 as one of Bowser’s servants. Chain Chomps would later appear in A Link to the Past, where they would attack Link within the Turtle Rock dungeon.
The Chain Chomps have not always been enemies, as Link uses one as an ally in Link’s Awakening. This is also true of the Mario games, as Baby Mario & Luigi used a Chain Chomp as their unique item in Mario Kart: Double Dash.
8. Metal Gear Solid
While the Metal Gear Solid games are mostly associated with the PlayStation, the series actually started out on different consoles. The original Metal Gear was first released on the MSX, and would later be ported to the Famicom/Nintendo Entertainment System. It took the release of Metal Gear Solid on the original PlayStation for the series to finally reach a mainstream audience. This game would later receive an updated port on the Nintendo GameCube, called Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes.
One of the most memorable boss battles in the series involves a psychic, named Psycho Mantis. One of Psycho Mantis’ many amazing feats involves reading the memory card that is plugged into the system. In the original PlayStation version of the game, Psycho Mantis can detect if the player has save files from other Konami games and would make comments about them.
In Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes, Psycho Mantis will read the memory card inserted into the GameCube. If the player has a save file for The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, then Psycho Mantis will comment on it.
The original Soulcalibur is considered to be the best game on the Dreamcast. It was the second game to ever receive a perfect score in Famitsu magazine (after The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time). Sadly, the Dreamcast was doomed for failure and the next Soulcalibur game moved on to different consoles. Soulcalibur II was being developed for the PlayStation 2, the original Xbox, and the GameCube. Each version of the game had a unique character that was related to each console. The PlayStation version of the game had Heihachi Mishima from the Tekken series and the Xbox version starred Spawn, from the comic of the same name. By far the most impressive version of Soulcalibur II was the one on the GameCube, as it contained Link from the Legend of Zelda series.
In Soulcalibur II, Link can use a range of weapons from the Zelda series. He starts out with the Master Sword & Hylian Shield combination and can upgrade to weapons like Biggoron’s Sword, the Megaton Hammer, and a version of the Soul Edge that has taken on the form of the Master Sword.
6. Super Mario RPG
Before Nintendo and Squaresoft fell out with each other in the 32-bit era, the two companies worked closely together on many projects. The first six Final Fantasy titles, as well as numerous other classic RPGs (like Chrono Trigger), appeared on Nintendo consoles. One of the final Squaresoft games to appear on the Super Nintendo was Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars, which was a turn-based RPG that was set in the Mario universe.
In Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars, Mario can travel to the Rose Town inn, so that he can rest and regain his health. Link can be found sleeping in the inn, and cannot be woken by Mario. If you approach Link and click on him, then the sound effect from the Zelda games that you hear when you discover a secret will play.
5. Fatal Frame
Fatal Frame (also known as Project Zero in Europe) is a series of a survival horror games that is based around using a camera to see spirits. The first three games in the series all appeared on the PlayStation 2, but the series shifted to Nintendo consoles from the fourth game onwards.
The fifth game in the series is Fatal Frame: Maiden of the Black Water, which was released on the Wii U in 2015. One of the main elements in the game involves how wet the characters clothes are. The wetter a character is, the more powerful their attacks will be (at the cost of lower defense). As such, there are numerous different outfits for the protagonists in the game.
When Fatal Frame: Maiden of the Black Water was localized for release outside of Japan, there were two new costumes added into the game. Princess Zelda’s dress from Twilight Princess, as well as Samus Aran’s bodysuit, could be worn. These were created to replace two other costumes from the Japanese version of the game, which was considered to be way too skimpy.
4. Sonic The Hedgehog
Sonic Lost World was a game released on both the Wii U and the 3DS. It was created as part of an exclusive deal between Sega & Nintendo, and it is considered to be one of the best modern Sonic the Hedgehog games.
The Wii U version of Sonic Lost World features a free downloadable level, known as “The Legend of Zelda Zone“. This level is heavily based on The Legend of Zelda games and allows Sonic to travel around a small version of Hyrule. Sonic wears Link’s costume from the Zelda series, as he battles enemies on Hyrule Field. The rings that Sonic usually collects have been replaced by rupees. Sonic can encounter the Link from Skyward Sword throughout the level, as he flies past on his bird mount.
Once he has escaped Hyrule Field, Sonic must travel through a circular version of Death Mountain and dodge the Gorons that love to burst from the ground. At the end of the course, Sonic must find the Triforce in order to complete the level.
3. One Piece
In 2014, a game called One Piece: Super Grand Battle! X was released on the Nintendo 3DS in Japan. The game is based on the highly popular One Piece anime/manga series. One of the most interesting things about the game involves its amiibo functionality. All nine of the One Piece protagonists have alternate outfits that are based on Nintendo characters.
The connection to The Legend of Zelda series involves the character of Roronoa Zoro. In One Piece, Zoro is a pirate who fights with three swords at once (one in each hand and one in his mouth). If you use a Link amiibo in the game, then Zoro will don the gear of the Hero of Hyrule. Zoro will wear Link’s outfit, and one of his three swords will be replaced with the Master Sword.
Sadly, One Piece: Super Grand Battle! X has yet to be released outside of Japan, and likely won’t be at this late stage in the 3DS’ lifespan. This is a shame, as the game offered one of the most diverse uses for any collection of amiibos.
2. Monster Hunter
The Monster Hunter series was a huge cultural phenomenon in Japan. This was tied to the success of the PlayStation Portable in its home country. It was a common occurrence for strangers on a train to play Monster Hunter together, and fight giant dragons as a team. The series would move over to the Nintendo 3DS, which finally allowed Monster Hunter to be played online. This aspect is what helped the series to become popular in the West.
Due to Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate appearing on the Nintendo 3DS, there were several quests in the game that allowed you to unlock weapons and gear from popular Nintendo franchises. You could unlock Link’s classic outfit from The Legend of Zelda series, as well as the Master Sword/Hylian Shield and the Hero’s Bow.
In order to prove that you are worthy enough to don the gear of the Hero of Hyrule, you need to complete one of the most difficult quests in the game. The “Three Virtues” quest involves a consecutive battle against a Zinogre, a Kirin, and a Rajang, all of which are tricky enough to fight on their own.
1. Metroid, Punch Out, Kid Icarus and Dragon Quest
In 1989, a cartoon series called Captain N: The Game Master was first released. The series acted as a crossover between numerous Nintendo titles, as the main character was a boy who was trapped within the world of video games. Around the same time, there was a cartoon based on The Legend of Zelda games being broadcast. This show was notorious for giving Link an obnoxious accent, that made him sound like Joey Wheeler from Yu-Gi-Oh!
The two shows would eventually crossover, in an episode of Captain N, called “Quest for the Potion of Power“. Kevin from Captain N arrives in Hyrule, in order to prevent the resurrection of Ganon by an unknown group. The culprits are revealed to be the regular villains from Captain N; Mother Brain from Metroid, Eggplant Wizard from Kid Icarus and King Hippo from Punch-Out!!
While most fans of Captain N/The Legend of Zelda are familiar with the first crossover episode, the two actually teamed up on several occasions. The final crossover episode was called “The Trojan Dragon” and it featured Kevin and Link teaming up to fight the Dragonlord from the first Dragon Quest game.