With a direct sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of The Wild on the horizon, we here at TheGamer have been sitting anxiously for some information regarding the release date. Sure, we have Cadence of Hyrule: Crypt of the NecroDancer featuring The Legend of Zelda and eventually, Link's Awakening Remake, to satisfy our craving, but once we beat that, we still want more Zelda in our lives.
Thankfully, Nintendo's longstanding franchise is so influential that you can feel its impact in a variety of games — many of which are located on the Nintendo Switch. So, until we get that brand new Legend of Zelda title, we've compiled a list of games that can hold you over.
10 Okami HD
When it comes to Zelda-like games, you'll be hard-pressed to find a title that utilizes the formula better than Okami. Originally released in 2006 on the PlayStation 2, and eventually Wii, Capcom took players on an adventure as Amaterasu, the goddess of the sun and universe as she brings light back to the land.
While the Zelda formula is strong in this title, it differentiates itself by implementing more eastern styled influence and a beautiful "hand painted" aesthetic. That art direction actually compliments the game, as special moves are painted on the screen. This game is fantastic, and a must play for any Legend of Zelda enthusiast.
9 Ittle Dew 2
Ittle and her friend Tipsie have been stranded on an island, and they'll have to use their puzzle solving skills to make their way back home. Sounds familiar, right? Well, we don't think this is really that similar to The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening, but the island aesthetic really does hammer in that idea. With that in mind, Ittle Dew 2 does hammer the Zelda formula to a tee.
Players traverse an open world, finding dungeons along the way. The dungeons are built on solving puzzles and eventually working your way to a final boss, and each one is as satisfying as the last. Sitting with a Metacritic score of 77, it's a solid game, and its game-style lends itself nicely to the Switch's hybrid home and on-the-go style gaming, so it should be on your radar.
8 Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King
One look at Blossom Tales, and it's clear to see its inspiration. Taking a more top-down view, it's clear Castle Pixel, LLC. wanted to re-create the feeling of The Legend of Zelda: A Link To The Past, and while that's a lofty goal, they do a solid job. With an 80 percent rating on Metacritic, it's clear fans love jumping into the Kingdom of Blossom, clearing through the game's five dungeons.
With only 15 hours of gameplay, it doesn't quite live up to the scale of a full-fledged Legend of Zelda title, especially Breath of The Wild, but that shouldn't be a knock on the game. Its charming eight-bit art direction, action-packed combat style, and emphasis on puzzle solving will make this one of the better Zelda-Like titles out there.
7 Dragon Quest Builders
Of all the games on this list, Dragon Quest Builders feels the least inspired by The Legend of Zelda. In fact, it's clearly a Minecraft-like title. With that in mind - it's vast, open world, and simple combat style make it feel like a pre-Breath of The Wild 3D Zelda game. Even if you can't see the Zelda inspirations, the game is worth a shot for anyone who loves open-world games.
Unlike Minecraft, Dragon Quest Builders gives players a story to sink their teeth in, one that's especially engaging to long-time Dragon Quest players, as it takes place in an alternate reality where the hero of the original title decides to join Dragonlord. Now, players must rebuild the land as "the builder". This game is charming as heck, just play it!
Releasing way back in 2011, it's clear that The Legend of Zelda has since taken notes from Bethesda's Skyrim. With a massive open, interconnected world, players will feel like no two playthroughs are exactly the same. There are so many secrets to uncover and so many side quests to go on that, oftentimes, it feels like Breath of The Wild is barely keeping up with the almost decade-old game.
By now, Skyrim has been re-released on every available console, even Amazon Alexa, so we're certain everyone reading this list has already dabbled in the game, but if you're looking for something to hold you over, Skyrim could be the game to play.
5 Xenoblade Chronicles 2
Under normal circumstances, we'd put Xenoblade Chronicles 2 higher up on the list, but its gameplay may turn many players off. Using a mix of real-time and turn-based combat, many players don't feel as in control as they want. But what fans of the franchise love the most about the series is the massive open world, which takes place on the deteriorating bodies of Titans, just waiting to be explored.
In many ways, this game feels like what a true turn-based Legend of Zelda game would play like, and we love it. The over-the-top fantastical elements make the world feel unique and alive, and the emphasis on the story really makes everything feel complete.
4 Collection Of Mana
For a long time, players in the west have waited for the Collection of Mana to make its way to their shores, and finally, it's here. This compendium includes Secret of Mana, Final Fantasy Adventure, and Seiken Densetsu 3. While there's no way we can really get into the nitty-gritty of each game, it's safe to say that these top-down action RPGs share a lot of similarities with The Legend of Zelda franchise.
From combat to dungeon-crawling, these titles do feel like alternatives to A Link To The Past, and they do a fantastic job of encapsulating a long-lost era in gaming.
3 Darksiders: Warmastered Edition
When Darksiders originally hit the scene in 2010, it really felt like a more mature version of The Legend of Zelda franchise. With an emphasis on dungeon crawling and puzzle solving, it was clear the inspiration was there, but this game managed to feel completely different from Nintendo's beloved franchise.
In this particular title, players take control of War, of the four horsemen of the apocalypse fame, who has been accused of breaking the "sacred law" between heaven and hell. It's up to him to prove his innocence, and he does so in the most over-the-top violent way imaginable. For years, no one ever expected the franchise to continue past the second game, but now with THQ Nordic at the helm, we have fantastic remasters of both games and a full-fledged sequel!
2 Hyper Light Drifter
Hyper Light Drifter is amazing, and we feel sorry for you if you've passed up on this absolute gem of a title. In this game, players step into the shoes of the Drifter, as he traverses a dangerous terrain using technology long-lost to the civilization that inhabits the land. In terms of gameplay, gamers will feel the nods to not only The Legend of Zelda franchise but also Diablo, as the developers wanted to replicate the feeling titles that felt massive and almost perfect, despite their limitations.
Borrowing from the original Legend of Zelda, players aren't given much to go off of in terms of what's going on in the world, instead, we learn about the world as we play through the game, interacting with characters, and watching the environment.
1 Dark Souls Remastered
When Breath of The Wild finally hit the scene, it was clear that the developers over at Nintendo were playing their fair share of Dark Souls. The combat of the latest mainline adventure in Hyrule saw a complete revamp, with more of a focus on dodging, parrying, strategy, and difficulty.
All of those are trademarks of From Softwares mega-hit of a franchise, and longtime Zelda fans have to "git gud" quickly, or else they are in for a bad time.