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// article by Jeff

It's fairly well-known that The Legend of Zelda: A Link To The Past for the SNES is considered a classic and a staple in every gamer's library. Bruce Campbell vs. Ganon, well... that's something entirely different. I have had the pleasure (or displeasure, depending on who you ask) of trying out this hack, and I must say, this is certainly a playful and distinctive spin on the Zelda gameplay of olde. The sad part is, the game is also so horribly broken that it is essentially unplayable.

I had no prior knowledge of who Bruce Campbell was, but it turns out he's the principal actor of the Evil Dead movie series. And with him comes some frightening changes to Hyrule. Link has apparently been dead for quite some time; with the revival of Ganon, a new hero must take his place. That's where Ash, the main character of Evil Dead, comes in. After his creepy uncle spouts some insulting nonsense, it's up to Ash to venture out into the unusual storm outside and determine how to handle this difficult situation. Ash sports a dark green tunic and... well, that's the only notable aspect of the character to separate him from Link.

There are several pressing issues that prevented me from enjoying this experience. First and foremost, this game is riddled with bugs that the game (and game's author) claim to all be part of the journey. Most notably, there are way too many holes that either lead to areas where you cannot escape or force you to remain stuck in a wall where you can't even move. I fell down a hole once and ended up in a completely different castle, of which I could not actually leave. Another time, I was glitched between two rooms, both of which seem to contain Ganon (at which time a battle commenced and I quickly perished due to my inability to act). I'm sure the intention of the author was to provide an immense challenge, but when there are so many instances of this, the game comes off more as a glitchfest than anything remotely playable. It is suggested several times in the game to maintain save states as frequently as possible for just such a reason; I still believe a game's difficulty should not be measured in this manner. As well, items that I picked up, such as a key, would soon disappear from my inventory as quickly as I collected it. I was also saddened that the game did not provide me with a sword; a hookshot is well-hidden near the beginning, but even then, that item doesn't kill anything.

Bruce Campbell vs. Ganon is further hampered by childish use of mature language. In the original game, Zelda would telepathically contact you every minute or two to ensure you're on the right path and not dawdling. This game, on the other hand, tells you to f*** off if you don't like the game and follows up by asking if you need to use a sexual aid. The other characters (mostly your uncle and the castle guards; I never made it past any of this) sometimes speak in an equally abrasive and barbaric tone. It's nice to see a formerly family-friendly game transform into something that should require proof of age before playing.

This hack is definitely not inviting to novice players. Heck, I've played A Link To The Past numerous times and I still had a heck of a time with this remodeling. Having perused a few forums, I see that many people actually do enjoy this hack and praise its creator. I, for one, am not one of those people; I advise, instead, to steer clear of this and play the original for the best results.

Outlandish though they may be, screenshots shall tell the tale:


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