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Zelda Franchise

Page history last edited by Andrew Schumacher 8 years, 11 months ago
 Zelda's Impact  

Zelda Survey Study  


zelda theme by Zelda on Grooveshark 







Background Information



The Legend of Zelda franchise is an action-adventure series based in a fantasy world known as Hyrule. Hyrule is inhabited by elven humanoids called Hylians. The main character Link, as well as the princess Zelda are Hylians. The protagonist Link is a reincarnated Hylian youth who wears a green tunic and pointed hat. Link is often given the task of rescuing Princess Zelda who has been captured by Ganon, or other antagonists.

The original game was released on the NES (Nintedo Entertianment System) on February 21, 1986 in Japan. The game was created by Shigeru Miyamoto and Takashi Tezuka. It was the first game in the series to feature the Triforce, however it only had two pieces, Wisdom and Power, as well as the main characters Link, Zelda and Ganon.

The games are developed and published under Nintendo, but a few are developed by Capcom's in-house development studios, and there were three titles on the Philips CD-i. Most of the games share gameplay, with puzzle-solving, action, adventure, some RPG elements, and sometimes some other aspects.

While the basic elements have remained the same over the years, the series has gone through refinements. The franchise had top-down gameplay and some games were side scrollers and with the biggest transformation, the franchise came into 3-D polygon world with the release of Ocarina of Time on the Nintendo 64.




Timeline of the Zelda Universe



The Triforce is a sacred relic that reappears throughout the Legend of Zelda series. These golden sacred triangles were left behind by the three Golden Goddesses — Din, the Goddess of Power; Nayru, the Goddess of Wisdom; and Farore, the Goddess of Courage — after the creation of the land of Hyrule. It was formed at the point where they ascended to the heavens, in a different dimension connected to Hyrule called the Sacred Realm, which would later be referred to as the "Golden Land." The Triforce consists of three separate sacred golden triangles: the Triforce of Power (top), the Triforce of Wisdom (left), and the Triforce of Courage (right).

The Triforce has the power to grant the wish of whomever touches it, and molds the Sacred Realm to reflect that person's heart. The Triforce does not discriminate between "good" or "evil". However, if a person without an equal balance of power, wisdom, and courage makes a wish, the Triforce will split into its three separate parts: the piece that best personifies the wish-maker will be the only piece to remain in hand, whilst the other two will take residence in whosoever most personifies them. Reassembly is then required for such a person's wish to be granted, but does not exclude another from making the attempt.





-Princess Zelda (damsel in distress)

 -Link (the character the user controls and hero of the story)

 -Ganon (Antagonist and villain of the main story)

Click (HERE) for a link to a list of all the characters within the Zelda series.





History of The Company



Nintendostarted out as Japanese playing cards business. They focused on selling cards for the local game Hanafuda, although Nintendo did attempt to branch out into many services and products. In 1956, Nintendo's current CEO Hiroshi Yamauchi visited the headquarters of United States Playing Card Company, the lead playing card manufacturer in the United States. Yamauchi saw the small office of the largest card company in America, and promptly determined to expand his business into many other areas in order to further expand his company.


Nintendo struck a deal with Disney so that Nintendo would be able to use Disney's trademarked characters on playing cards. From 1963 and on, Nintendo experimented in expanding into taxi services, love hotels, and a food company. All of these eventually were discontinued as they failed to be profitable. In the early 1980s, Nintendo moved into the arcade game field with the release of Radio Scope and Donkey Kong.






Shigeru Miyamoto



Miyamoto was born in the Japanese town of Sonobe, Kyoto on November 16, 1952.


When the Nintendo company began branching out, Miyamoto helped create the art for the company's first original coin-operated arcade video game, Sheriff.


What he hasn’t created is a company in his own name, or a vast fortune to go along with it. He is a salaryman. Miyamoto’s business card says that he is the senior managing director and the general manager of the entertainment-analysis and development division at Nintendo Company Ltd., the video-game giant. What it does not say is that he is Nintendo’s guiding spirit, its meal ticket, and its playful public face. Miyamoto has said that his main job at Nintendo is ningen kougaku—human engineering. He has been at the company since 1977 and has worked for no other. (He prizes Nintendo’s financial and creative support for his work: “There’s a big difference between the money you receive personally from the company and the money you can use in your job.”) He has never been the company’s (or his own) boss, but it is not unreasonable to imagine that Nintendo might not exist without him. He designed the games and invented the franchises that caused people to buy the consoles. He also helped design the consoles.




Takashi Tezuka



 Takashi Tezuka is a video game designer working for Nintendo. He is the general manager of Nintendo Entertainment Analysis and Development along with Shigeru Miyamoto, and has worked on the Mario and Zelda series since the originals were made on the NES. He is credited for some of the biggest video games, and has directed quite a few as well. Currently he mainly supervises projects, as does Miyamoto.

Nintendo president Satoru Iwata stated that he was glad when Takashi Tezuka took control of Nintendo EAD because it was the first time someone younger than him took control of a department within Nintendo.


Following the NES era Takashi Tezuka went on to lead the direction of the SNES's primary launch title Super Mario World. He can be attributed to the creation of such things as Yoshi and other features that were introduced in the game. After Super Mario World he tackled another daunting task as the director of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, which like Super Mario World is often considered one of the best of its series. Following that game he went on to create the next entry in the Zelda series, The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening, which he also served as director.




Koji Kondo


Koji Kondowas the man that was described as the " Greatest Legend of all Time." Kondo was the first of Nintendo's composition creators. His first works for Nintendo were Vs. Golf and Punch-Out!! During his time working for Nintendo, Kondo wrote instruction manuals on how to produce and program Japanese pop music into the video game medium. He composed the music for the hit releases Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda in the 80s, which helped the system sell 50 million copies in total and establish some of the most known melodies in video game history. (Koji Kondo) The key to Kondo's skill at music production was his knack for creating short segments of music that could be repeated during the same gameplay without causing boredom to the listeners. Kondo cites rock bands Deep Purple and Emerson, Lake & Palmer as major musical influences.




Chronological history & key moments of the Zelda franchise


Nintendo Entertainment System- 

The Legend of Zelda,  1987

 The Legend of Zelda franchise started in 1987 when The Legend of Zelda was released by Nintendo for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). The Legend of Zelda was a revolutionary game, not only with a new save system (unheard of in a console at the time), but also with the gameplay. The gameplay itself was in a free roaming world.

Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, 1988  

In the following year the game Zelda II: The Adventure of Link was released which is the only game to date that was in side-scrolling style 2D, and this game is considered by many Zelda fans to be the black sheep of the franchise.

However, the game did add several features that would become mainstays for the rest of the series, including the magic meter and the hammer. Zelda II also introduced some RPG elements, including experience points.


Super Nintendo Entertainment System- 

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past 1991 in Japan and 1992 in North America and Europe

 Only one Zelda game was released on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (not counting Japanese only titles), The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. This game was a return to the traditional Legend of Zelda gameplay. This game refined the original in many ways. A Dark World was implemented, which Link could travel to and from. In this Dark World, monsters reigned, making Link's quest even more difficult. A new feature was also the Pieces of Heart scattered across Hyrule, which encouraged exploration. Pieces of Heart have been in every Legend of Zelda title since A Link to the Past.


Nintendo 64-

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, 1998 

 The Nintendo 64 was Nintendo's first console with full polygonal capabilities, and Nintendo fans was first treated with the amazing Super Mario 64 as a preview of what was to come for the green clothed hero. In 1998, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was released, and fans were treated to ground-breaking 3D graphics and a massive adventure previously unseen in a 3D environment.


Nintendo GameCube- 

Zelda: Wind Walker, Japan on December 13, 2002, in North America on March 24, 2003, in Europe on May 2, 2003, and in Australia on May 7, 2003.

 Along with the cel-shaded graphics came new changes. Instead of Epona, Link's trusty horse in previous games, Wind Waker features a talking boat which Link uses to sail to the game's many islands. Wind Waker was well-received upon release, with critics and fans alike praising the game as one of the best Zelda games to date.

The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords, Japan on March 18, 2004; in North America on June 7, 2004; in Europe on January 7, 2005; and in Australia on April 7, 2005.

The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures was the next game to be released in the franchise. It was based on the handheld game Four Swords on the Game Boy Advance. This was more of a spin-off game than an actual game in the Legend of Zelda series, with gameplay being level based and primarily multiplayer. To play in multiplayer, the players must connect to the Nintendo GameCube with a Game Boy Advance connect cable. 

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, December

 In 2006, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess was released simultaneously with the Wii launch on November 19th. Twilight Princess returned to the light and dark world mechanic featured in A Link to the Past, and also starred a new companion and a new form for Link. Much of the game was played in Link's wolf form, with the companion (a small imp named Midna) riding on his back.



The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, 

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword was formally announced at E3 2010, during a Nintendo Press Conference held on June 17th, 2010. Although Twilight Princess was released on Wii alongside the Gamecube version, Skyward Sword was the first proper Zelda game made exclusively for the console. Chronologically, it is the first game in the series, detailing the origin of the Master Sword. The game required the MotionPlus accessory to play, similar to how Majora's Mask required the N64 "Expansion Pak," as the core mechanics of the game were based around 1:1 swordplay. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword was released on November 20th 2011






The video below gives some chronological visual examples of graphics in several Zelda titles:

The Legends of Zelda, The Adventures of Link

A Link to the Past, Link's Awakening

Links Awakening DX,Ocarina of Time

Majora's Mask, Oracle of Seasons and Ages

A Link to the Past & Four Swards, The Wind Walker

Four Sward Adventures, The Minish Cap

Twilight Princess, Phantom Hourglass 

Spirit Tracks, Ocarina of Time 3D

Four Swords Anniversary Edition, Skyward Sword








Sales Figures

The Graph below shows Zelda game titles, platform, release date, and total units sold.


Year Platform Title Sales
(in Millions)
1987 NES Legend of Zelda 6.51
1988 NES Zelda II: Adventure of Link 4.38
1992 SNES The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past 4.61
1993 GB The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening 6.05
1998 N64 The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 7.60
1998 CGB The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX ??
2000 N64 The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3.36
2001 CGB The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons 3.96
2001 CGB The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages 3.96
2002 GBA The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past / Four Swords 2.02
2003 GCN The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker 4.6
2004 GCN The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures 0.377
2004 GBA The Legend of Zelda: Minish Cap 1.0
2006 Wii / GCN The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess Wii: 5.82
GCN: 1.32
Total: 7.14
2007 NDS The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass 4.13
2007 Wii Link's Crossbow Training 4.8
2009 NDS The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks


2011 3DS The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D 2.61
2011 NDS The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Anniversary Edition  
2011 Wii The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword 3.52

The Legend of Zelda was one of the very first games available for pre-order. The first Zelda amounted to 200,000 pre-ordered copies. Zelda II: Adventure of Link was the most pre ordered game of it's time at 300,000 copies. This trend followed for many years with new Zelda games beating the old for the world record in pre-order sales.







The Legend of Zelda series has sold over 52 million copies worldwide since the release of the first game, The Legend of Zelda, making it one of the best selling franchises. 

From the millions of copies that have been sold since its introduction in 1986, the Zelda franchise has grossed more than Avatar and Titanic combined. (Symphony of the Goddesses)




The Legend of Zelda becomes portable

The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening(1993) for the Game Boy, gave players the freedom to play the game at any time. It sold well enough to helped boost Game Boy sales 13 percent in 1993—making it one of Nintendo's most profitable years in North America up to that time.The game remained on bestseller lists for more than 90 months after release. The original sold 3.83 million units. Link's Awakening DX (deluxe) is a remastered colorized version with a bonus dungeon. It was released to promote the Game Boy Color in 1998. The DX version sold another 2.22 million units. Compared to the other handheld games of the 90's, Link's Awakening was the seventh top selling.






Zelda's Impact

Zelda Survey Study


Works Cited:


 Chris. "Koji Kondo" Square Enix Music Online. 17 Sept. 2009. Web. 14 Dec. 2012

 D'Angelo, William. "The Legend of Zelda: A Sales History." - VGChartz. VG CHARTZ, 19 June 2012. Web. 18 Dec. 2012.

"Hanafuda." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 14 Dec. 2012. Web. 18 Dec. 2012.

 Ishaan."Z-Targeting In The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time." Siliconera. Game Revolution, 16 June 2011. Web. 05 Dec. 2012.

  "Inside Zelda Part 4: Natural Rhythms of Hyrule." Nintendo Power (Nintendo of Americs, Inc.) 13 Sept. 2005 Web. 14 Dec. 2012 

  Lambie, Ryan. "The Innovations of the Zelda Franchise." Den of Geek. Dennis Publishing, 17 Nov. 2011. Web. 26 Nov. 2012.

Paumgarten, Nick. "Master of Play." The New Yorker. Condé Nast, 20 Dec. 2010. Web. 18 Dec. 2012. 

Royalty, John. "Nintendo, Remember Majora's Mask's Innovations (that's a Command) - Blog by Jon_Royalty - IGN." IGN. IGN.com, 1 Aug. 2011. Web. 16 Dec. 2012.

 "The Legend of Zelda." (video Game Franchise). CBS Interative, 2012. Web. 17 Dec. 2012.

 "The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 12 Sept. 2012. Web. 16 Dec. 2012.

 "The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses" Citicenter. CitiPerforming Arts Center, 18 Oct. 2012. Web. 16 Dec. 2012 

Comments (10)

Joshua Hosek said

at 3:11 am on Nov 26, 2012

Hey I figured out how to put a background image in. This is not permanent, I just wanted to see what you guys think about it. I think it is harder to see the information, but we can make text boxes or we can bold everything and underline the titles.

cleg0001@... said

at 1:35 pm on Nov 26, 2012

diigo group I created for us to pool info

cleg0001@... said

at 2:24 pm on Nov 26, 2012

the zelda theme moved from being centered and doesnt seem to want to stay when i move it back

Joshua Hosek said

at 4:33 pm on Nov 26, 2012

figured it out

Andrew Schumacher said

at 7:39 pm on Nov 27, 2012

I got a zelda universe timeline on a seperate page linked from this one. Can we get all the citations done?

Aliss wen said

at 9:44 pm on Nov 27, 2012

I dont know what I did to the background...it just disappear on me:( Can someone bring it up again?

Andrew Schumacher said

at 11:22 am on Dec 3, 2012

Where are any of the citations?

Joshua Hosek said

at 12:01 pm on Dec 3, 2012

http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/2WWBN8S this is a link for our online survey, send it to all your classmates. get all of their emails from d2l (class list)

cleg0001@... said

at 12:58 pm on Dec 3, 2012

I got all 30 surveys i had on me filled out. If anyone else is having trouble getting theirs filled out let me know and i will take care of it.

Aliss wen said

at 3:19 pm on Dec 10, 2012

hey guys, our survey shows who heard, played, playing and the favorite title...but we can't prove the Hypothesis "The social satuartion of the Zelda franchise peaked during the Nintendo64 era" even if it was the most favorite one....

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