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How Many Zelda Games Are There?

The Legend of Zelda is a long-running Nintendo series that first appeared way back in 1986 on the original NES. Since then, there have been Zelda games released for just about every Nintendo platform, along with a few releases on non-Nintendo systems.


How many Zelda games are there, though? How many titles have asked Link to save the world from certain doom? There are around 19 in all, not counting remasters, remakes and spinoffs, and roughly 25 if you count the Zelda games that Nintendo would rather you forget.

The original Legend of Zelda released, as we said earlier, in 1986 on the NES. Nintendo followed that game up with another NES title: 1988's Zelda 2: The Adventure of Link. We wouldn't get another Zelda game until three years later, when SNES classic The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past released in 1991. And then came the game we're getting a remake of this year: Link's Awakening, which came out for the Game Boy in 1993.


The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time brought us a Zelda adventure for the first time in 3D. That game, which released on the Nintendo 64 in 1998, was widely regarded as the best Zelda game of all time until pretty recently. Its Nintendo 64 sequel, Majora's Mask, wasn't half bad either. That came out in 2000.

Oracle of Ages and Oracle of Seasons brought Link back to the Game Boy in 2001, and are notable because they weren't developed by Nintendo, but by Capcom. Four Swords came bundled with a port of A Link to the Past when it hit the Game Boy Advance in 2002, and was followed closely by The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, which introduced a cel-shaded look to the series that was very controversial at the time. Four Swords Adventures is counted as a part of the Zelda series, having released on the GameCube in 2004. And Capcom got another crack at the franchise with The Minish Cap, which came to the Game Boy Advance in 2005.

Now here's where things get weird for The Legend of Zelda.

Nintendo went off in a whole new direction with its hardware in the latter half of the 2000s. The Wii and the Nintendo DS came out, both offering new and novel ways to control games. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess released on both the GameCube and the Wii in 2006, with the Wii version incorporating motion controls, which forced Nintendo to mirror the game entirely so Link would be right-handed. Both Phantom Hourglass and Spirit Tracks — which came out in 2007 and 2009, respectively — made use of the Nintendo DS's touch controls for movement. And when Skyward Sword arrived on the Wii in 2011, that game utilized motion controls so extensively that some felt it was a chore to play.


Fortunately, The Legend of Zelda eventually returned to form. A Link Between Worlds came along for the Nintendo 3DS in 2013, offering players a spiritual successor to the much-loved SNES title A Link to the PastTri-Force Heroes came to the 3DS in 2015, and while it received mixed reviews, it at least employed a traditional control scheme that players could pick up and understand. And finally, we got what many now consider to be the best Zelda game of all time: 2017's The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which launched day and date with the Nintendo Switch (but was also available on the Wii U).

Were there other Zelda titles? There were, but it's arguable if they count, as Nintendo certainly doesn't want to acknowledge them. Three Zelda games came out on the Philips CD-i back in the 90s without any help from Nintendo whatsoever, and three LCD games were put out in that same era. These games aren't part of the official Zelda timeline, so most simply treat them as though they don't exist.

And now you know how many Zelda games there are. Nintendo is poised to add one sometime in the future with the upcoming Breath of the Wild sequel. But for now, the list stands.