For me Zelda is one of those feel good games that kept my sanity in check during school. If you have a game that is not suggested on here, feel free to comment below so I can try them out as well. I will be updating this article with the most awesome feel-good fantasy adventure games.
These are the gameplay points I feel make Zelda so enjoyable.
- Free-roaming exploration
- Third person combat
- Challenging puzzles and enemies
- An atmosphere that immerses you in fantasy or a new world
- You discover what comes next instead of some scripted play by play cut-scene adventure (although all games have some of this).
- Start out weak and get stronger. (more health, armor, weapons arsenal)
- Fulfilling story
I’ve re-wrote this list above like ten times and I still feel like I’m missing something. Nostalgia maybe?
I’m always on the lookout for new or better experiences in a different world, and I personally really enjoy mechanics similar to zelda. I feel the games below cature some of that Zelda Heart.
Megaman Legends 1 and 2
I might be a bit biased placing Megaman up top as it’s my favorite game out there. The terrible intro aside, the game offers very challenging and creative boss fights and just like Zelda, assuming you can handle these dated graphics and old fashioned controls.
You are immersed in a world that you have to explore, communicate and revisit while using everything you learn from NPCs to become powerful enough to defeat the final boss. This games like Zelda in almost every-way I can think of, including all the defined qualities above.
What made this game fun for me was gathering or stumbling upon supplies to create powerful weapons that Roll will create for you, this becomes enjoyable even after you beat the game. Play this game without cheatbooks for the full experience.
(Differs with less appealing graphics and purely a long ranged battle style) Available for PS1, N64 and PC
Beyond Good and Evil
I really like how Beyond Good and Evil allows a bit of freedom in the game. It really feels like your making your own decisions on where to go and what to do and the game doesn’t stop you from making pit stop pearl hunts or optional upgrades to your hovercraft.
The original game is a bit older, however check out the screenshot below of the upcoming Beyond Good and Evil 2
The NPC’s will talk on their own as you pass them so it’s important to listen as you walk by. Pey’j and Agent Double HH will often say or do something ridiculous or unexpected that should have you laughing at least a few times in this game.
Aside of the similar game-play and graphics, the game offers a visual feel that most consider breathtaking, challenging puzzles to solve, and a story-line that will leave you feeling satisfied, just like Zelda. Available for PS2, Xbox, Gamecube, and PC
Beyond Good and Evil 2 coming soon
Kingdom Hearts – All Games
This game has received a lot of flack over the years as it brought lots of new players to the gaming world and may have got too popular. Then again, most of these games like Zelda have their strong fangroup.
The game has an enjoyable storyline that takes you through the different Disney worlds such as Tarzan, Aladin and many others. Kingdom Hearts does not feel like your typical low budget movie game and offers a very in-depth, sometimes lacking storyline.
The worlds are much smaller than the vast world of Zelda, however with so many of them it feels the same. Start out as a weak boy named Sora and grow powerful as you power up your keyblade and defeat powerful and challenging bosses. Available for PS2, PS3, PS4, DS, 3DS
Kingdom hearts 2.8, the prologue to kingdom hearts 3 has at long last been released (2017). It has a refreshing upgrade to the graphics and offers a similar play-style to the classics.
There are quite a few games, I suggest playing these games in the correct order for the full experience.
This game has only one mode, very hard and it lives up to this difficulty for most people. The nefarious enemy placement is quite clever and the combat requires well timed actions that are satisfying yet ruthless. You could almost consider this a rage game.
The world is huge and Some parts of the map are almost impossible to pass depending on where you are at in the game. Sometimes you have to come back later and fight the hard monsters.
The environment tells the story like a puzzle game and some people might play the full game without knowing anything about the story. I personally found the story very boring and confusing at times.
Most people I know consider Okami to be the most like zelda, I mostly agree. Okami feels the most like The Twilight Princess as you play a wolf the entire game.
The Game pulls you into the world offering an incredible exploratory experience that makes you care about the world and the NPCs.
Gameplay, story, and graphics (well great PS2 graphics), just like Zelda, this game has it all. This game is available for PS2, PS3 and Wii
This is the type of game you would expect to see on this list. The gameplay is similar and there are dungeons to explore full of puzzles and monsters. The main difference is less charismatic humor and a more mature feel.
I feel that we have to start making some sacrifices at this point, while the graphics and gameplay are phenomenal, the story doesn’t offer anything different or exceptional.
The Darksiders 2 world is huge, you will enjoy exploring temples and vast lands, usually by horseback.
The main treasure of Darksiders 2 are the big, bigger, and just what the heck huge boss fights. Enjoy battling 23 unique bosses that push the limits of third person gameplay. Available for PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Wii U and PC.
Final Fantasy XV – A real Time battle Experience
Final Fantasy was one of the last games I would have expected to be on this list, however it’s got almost all the qualifications. The real time battle system is more complex than Zelda, yet it flows perfectly by fighting enemies in one of the biggest free-roaming worlds ever made. (You fight the characters in the world, not a battle stage)
Try out this game with a 30 day free gamefly trial
There are tons of mini games including fishing, racing, cooking and other trade skills that have purpose. You can get to these locations by riding a chocobo or an intricate driving system for a car called the Regalia. (fully customizable and upgradable to fly in side quests)
One of the biggest qualifications this game is missing is the lack of the traditional Zelda style puzzle quests. Sure this game has some rather challenging dungeons, however they are more so handled like a thriller than a problem solver.
Graphics push the limits of the PS4 and are some of the best I’ve seen so far in 2017, check out this gameplay screenshot.
7. Hyper Light Drifter
Said to be in some ways even harder than Zelda, Hyper Light Drifter is a top down 2D game with surprisingly fun mechanics.
Life is sparse, you will only have five healthy bars at any time and with enemies that can damage two bars in one hit planning and strategic attacks are a must.
Puzzles are plenty and instructions are borderline nonexistant. Aside from a few guide on controls you are left to figure out the rest of the game for yourself, you can even choose which section of levels to start out with and in what order you want to tackle the other ones afterwards.
Simple graphics are showcased as every bit as stunning as more complex games plus everything else this game has to offer will keep you busy for hours.
Other Games like Zelda
- Horizon Zero Dawn
- Sphinx and the cursed Mummy
- Prince of persia
- Brutal legend
- tomb raider
- Soul Reaver
- Golden Sun
- Xenoblade Chronicles
- starfox adventures
- Oceanhorn: Monster of the Uncharted Seas
- Dust: An Elysian Tale