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What Zelda game is the best introduction to the series?


King of Lorule Lounge
Jan 19, 2018
I'm curious what people's go to suggestion is for getting into the series (or if they suggest a different games depending on the person).

Whether it be OoT for the classic 3D experience, BotW for a new take on the series, or Zelda II for Horsehead, I'm interested in what people suggest others start with.


everlasting devotion
Staff member
ZD Legend
Jun 16, 2020
Crossbell State
I'd say Twilight Princess, since it's the most traditional out of the modern 3D Zelda games, while generally remaining faithful to the gameplay Ocarina established, but without being nearly as dated as Ocarina is by modern standards. Other than Wolf Link, there's very little in the way of gimmicks or noticeable differences from the basic Zelda formula that other games like Wind Waker (sailing) and Skyward Sword (motion controls) have.

I'd wait to introduce a new Zelda player to Breath of the Wild until after they've played at least one of the traditional games. That way they can really appreciate the long-needed refreshing of the classic Zelda formula that BotW provided.


Mr. SidleInYourDMs
ZD Legend
May 5, 2012
American Wasteland
wind waker for being one of the easiest games in the series while still retaining that structure, but depending on the person, I might instead suggest twilight princess if the cel-shaded art syle doesn't appeal to them or something

though if they're not the type to want to go back to play older games, then maybe I'd say link's awakening remake [for cheap] and then breath of the wild,
Oct 5, 2020
I tend to recommend the games in the same order I played them, with Ocarina of Time (either original or the remake) first, since it established so many of the modern Zelda conventions (and refined the conventions already in place from the games prior).

Bowsette Plus-Ultra

The Devil's Advocate
ZD Legend
Mar 23, 2013
I'd say Breath of the Wild. I think the issue with stuff like Ocarina of Time and Wind Waker is that it relies on a slow buildup that never really feels like it pays off, while Breath of the Wild kicks your expectations into high gear by giving you a preview of the open world while it dangles the title card in front of your face.
Oct 8, 2020
The Lost Woods
Spritual Reincarnation
Ocarina of Time. It still has the best story in the series (in my opinion), it has a great sequel and legacy in the form of Majora's Mask, and then the Wind Waker and Twilight Princess, it has perfect gameplay, the best dungeon in the series (Forest Temple), beautiful music, great visuals (if you play on 3DS like I did), and it really sets the perfect expectation for the series. Breath of the Wild is great, but by no means should it be your first experience of the series. There's nothing else like it in the series, and it will skew your perspective.
It depends a bit.

Looking for a classic introduction to the series that doesn't toss you in without telling you witch way is up? I suggest ALttP (A Link to the Past). Yes, it's from the 16-bit era, but it still has a dynamic plot. easy to get used to the controls.


Would you rather a 3D game? If so, just like the others suggest I say OoT, TP, or BotW.

OoT (Ocarina of Time) and TP (Twilight Princess) I've noticed doo tend to do the hand holding tutorial at the beginning, more so in TP(I feel that it was mostly to help players get used to the Wii motion controls), but each has a really good story.

BotW (Breath of the Wild went back to the series roots of open exploration. Upon the start of the game, you're given site of this HUUUUUUUUGE world. a bit of a tutorial (Not in a hand holding way in my opinion).

Each game has their own beautiful soundtrack that makes you forget everything else but the game itself.

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