Nintendo has announced that two new retro Zelda games — The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages and The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons — are now available for Nintendo Switch Online subscribers on the standard $3.99-per-month package.
I’ve been patiently waiting for this moment since Nintendo announced it was introducing Game Boy, Game Boy Color, and Game Boy Advance games to the service back in February. Released back in 2001, Oracle of Ages/Seasons are two of the most underrated titles within the retro Legend of Zelda franchise, often overshadowed by Majora’s Mask and Ocarina of Time. Each version has its own unique gameplay mechanics that changed the world around them: Oracle of Ages being more puzzle-based and allowing Link to travel through time thanks to his trusty “Harp of Ages,” while Oracle of Seasons focused more on combat and uses the “Rod of Seasons” to…well, change the seasons.
Releasing two versions of the game wasn’t unique — Pokémon was already in its Gold and Silver era by this point — but I only ever owned Oracle of Ages. Buying both was out of the question for my tooth-fairy budget at that time. Now I can finally go back and replay both of them side-by-side and enjoy the full experience without needing to use emulators or hunt down copies of the original game. These titles also happen to be the first Zelda games directed by Hidemaro Fujibayashi, who has since gone on to direct six additional titles in the franchise — including Breath of The Wild and Tears of the Kingdom. The man really does know what he’s doing.