Remembering Zelda’s Re-release Bonuses

Matthew Hadick
Games Nintendo
Games Nintendo

Well, it seems the rumors are at least somewhat true: activating the Wolf Link Amiibo, packaged with copies of the upcoming The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD for Wii U, will in fact unlock a brand new dungeon, called The Cave of Shadows. This announcement was made official by a trailer released by Nintendo today. This dungeon, however, might not be exactly what fans are hoping for.

Rather than traditional dungeons, which are defined by Zeldapedia as “generally underground labyrinths that contain various types of traps, enemies, and puzzles, usually with a boss at the end, and often a mini-boss near the middle,” the Cave of Shadows is an endless series of enemy encounters, similar to Twilight Princess‘ Cave of Ordeals. These horde modes are always fun in their own right — and with the Wolf Link amiibo saving a record of your progress, there seems to be an additional layer of replay value with the Cave of Shadows — but referring to them as dungeons isn’t exactly accurate.

The video also revealed how the other Legend of Zelda Amiibos will impact the game:

  • Both Link and Toon Link will refill the player’s arrows.
  • Zelda and Sheik will restore the player’s health.
  • Ganondorf makes the game more challenging by doubling the amount of damage the player takes from enemies.

Check out the announcement video below:

This isn’t the first time Nintendo has included extra content with the re-release of a Zelda game. Let’s take a look at the Big N’s history of improving ports of classic Zelda games with new content.

The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening DX

To coincide the release of the Gameboy Color, Nintendo remade Link’s first portable adventure, The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening. The DX version was fully colorized and featured a slew of added features. The developers included a brand new dungeon that took full advantage of the added color component, appropriately and kind of lazily named the Color Dungeon. Players would be rewarded with blue and red tunics for completing the color dungeon, which beefed up the player’s offense and defense.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past


In 2002, Nintendo released a portable version of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past for the Game Boy Advance. The game was packaged with a multiplayer take on Zelda called Four Swords, a cooperative adventure that players could tackle with up to three friends. The game encouraged people to play the games simultaneously; completing challenges in A Link to the Past  would unlock extra features in Four Swords and vice-versa. For example, if players complete Four Swords, they can unlock a brand new dungeon — Palace of the Four Sword — in the single player game.

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time


Considered by many to be the best video game of all time, Ocarina of Time has been re-released a few times, but the most substantial expansion has to be the inclusion of Master Quest with the GameCube port of the game. Offered as a pre-order bonus for The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, Master Quest contained modified versions of the original game’s dungeons, complete with more challenging puzzles and enemies. It is far more difficult than the original game and many of its puzzles play on expert gamer expectations.  Ocarina of Time 3Dthe port released for 3DS in 2011, included an all-new Boss Challenge mode, which let players retackle any the game’s memorable beasts.

The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask


Re-released for the 3DS in 2015, Majora’s Mask 3D expanded on the original game in a few big ways.  The bosses are much harder in the 3D version game than in the original, requiring completely overhauled strategies to defeat. Nintendo also included Fishing Ponds, similar to the one found along Lake Hylia in Ocarina of Time. The Bombers’ Notebook also has enhanced functionality in Majora’s Mask 3D, allowing players to keep better track of almost every single one of the game’s countless side quests.

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker

In addition to updated graphics, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD contains a number of experience-enhancing upgrades. The game incorporates the Wii U Miiverse by allowing players to share bottled-messages containing either text or drawings with other players. The game also includes Hero Mode, which makes the game more difficult by doubling the amount of damage enemies to do link and turning hearts into a scarce commodity.


Wind Waker HD also includes the Swift Sail, an item that makes getting around the Great Sea much less of a chore by vastly increasing King of Red Lions’s speed and removing the need to change the direction of the wind using the Wind Waker baton.

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Matthew Hadick