There’s been one game tearing breakneck across the blogs throughout the day, and it’s for very good reason. Joakim ‘Konjak‘ Sandberg, the indie dev whose creations have consistently hit that sweet spot of “retro with modern processing power,” has dropped PC freeware Legend of Princess, his take on where Legend of Zelda could have gone, “for no reason but being a big damn nerd.”
Like his earlier games, notably his 2008 IGF grand prize finalist Noitu Love 2 [YouTube trailer], a beat-em-up shooter which is almost more Treasure than a good number of that developer’s own games, Princess does Zelda by way of Capcom’s cult action arcade title Magic Sword and the deep-impact of Treasure’s rock-solid melee mechanics [YouTube].
As such, it feels like the parallel-universe Zelda we never got — the game Miyamoto might’ve made if he hadn’t cold-feet reversed his move after sidescrolling with Zelda II, and had given the SNES’s all to an action game. And, to our pleasant surprise, it feels brilliant: Konjak’s interpreted all of the series’ best enemy tactics and the best of Link’s item-bag of tricks to 2D, and topped it off with as memorable a boss fight as has come from Nintendo’s own.
The hitch: it’s not a full game by any means (done “to take a break from having little motivation with Solar Plexus“), but Sandberg’s added depth by making your two secondary items selectable from the start, each set making the game more challenging than the original — expect speed-run videos to invade YouTube in short order.
If you don’t mind spoiling some of its best kept secrets (and for non-PC users burning to have a look), IndieGames’ playthrough video showcases the game well, otherwise grab the game directly here, and give us your best Zora-thrashing tactics via the comments below.
Gimme Indie Game: Gravity Bone – Offworld
Gimme Indie Game: Minotaur China Shop, happiness in shattery …
Gimme Indie Game: Daniel Benmergui's I wish I were the Moon – Offworld
Gimme Indie Game: Derek Yu's Spelunky – Offworld
Gimme Indie Game: I Fell In Love With The Majesty Of Colors – Offworld
Gimme Indie Game: Rescue: The Beagles – Offworld