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The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening

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Title Screen

The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening (DX)

Also known as: Zelda no Densetsu: Yume o Miru Shima (JP)
Developer: Nintendo
Publisher: Nintendo
Platforms: Game Boy, Super Game Boy, Game Boy Color
Released in JP: June 6, 1993 (GB), December 12, 1998 (GBC)
Released in US: August 1993 (GB), December 1, 1998 (GBC)
Released in EU: November 18, 1993 (GB), January 1, 1999 (GBC)


AreasIcon.png This game has unused areas.
CodeIcon.png This game has unused code.
EnemyIcon.png This game has unused enemies.
GraphicsIcon.png This game has unused graphics.
MusicIcon.png This game has unused music.
TextIcon.png This game has unused text.
DebugIcon.png This game has debugging material.
RegionIcon.png This game has regional differences.
Carts.png This game has revisional differences.


NotesIcon.png This game has a notes page
PrereleaseIcon.png This game has a prerelease article

The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening is the fourth game in the Legend of Zelda series, and the first to take place outside Hyrule, with Zelda nowhere in sight. It was later re-released on Game Boy Color as The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX with full-color graphics, a new optional dungeon, and a few other things kinda shoehorned in.

Subpages

LOZLALevel4Early.png
Room Design Changes
Early design elements left in, covered up.
TextIcon.png
Unused Foreign Dialogue in DX US v1.2
Link ist ein Mann mit vielen Sprachen.
LOZLAHippoStandCens.png
Version Differences
Hippos have boobs?

Debug Utilities

The original Game Boy games had two debug options. If bytes 00:0003 or 00:0004 were set to non-zero values, debugging options would be enabled. The DX versions also enable debugging options when 00:0005 is set to a non-zero value.

Setting 00:0003 to a non-zero value will have the following effect:

  • Mono/DX When the game is booting, a precomposed savegame will be written to slot 1 and overwrite any previous saved game. See the Notes page for details.
  • Mono/DX Free-Movement Mode.
  • Mono/DX Pausing the engine.
  • Mono/DX Warping to any map.
  • Mono/DX Enable text debugger.
  • Mono/DX Enable directly starting the Wind Fish Awakening.
No subscreen redraw Weapons Rupees, hearts Reset Picture Gallery
Mono Japanese
Mono Canadian, French, German, US
DX Japanese v1.0
DX Japanese v1.1, v1.2
DX French v1.0, v1.1, US v1.0
DX US v1.1, v1.2
DX German v1.0, v1.1

00:0004 seems to disable redrawing of the subscreen and other screen elements, and additionally enables skipping to the end scene. Set 00:0004 to a non-zero value will have the following effect:

  • Mono/DX Partially black-out the subscreen.
  • Mono Disable redrawing of the weapons. You will not be able to see your selected weapons anymore nor any others on the sub-screen. DX Japanese only.
  • Mono Disable redrawing of rupees and hearts. They will only be redrawn once you collect a rupee or get hit by an enemy respectively. DX Japanese only.
  • Mono/DX Disable drawing arrows to exits for dungeons.
  • Mono/DX Enable scene skipping functions in the ending sequence.

In the DX versions, an additional flag, 00:0005 was introduced. Setting 00:0005 to a non-zero value will have the following effect:

  • DX Pressing Select on the sub-screen will toggle Free-Movement Mode on and off.
  • DX Pressing Select on the sub-screen will reset the photo gallery to only contain the first photograph.
  • DX Pressing Start on the world map will activate the final scene waking the Wind Fish and playing the credits.
  • DX Viewing the photo gallery will automatically set all pictures to captured.

Precomposed Savegame

Yep, a-okay.

The precomposed savegame starts you out with all weapons and items, 10 hearts, and 509 rupees in the town square of Mabe Village. You also have every item in every dungeon. For some reason, the dungeon inside the Egg has these flags set as well, though they are reset by a routine specifically for this dungeon.

The heart and rupee counts match those seen in some early screenshots, which implies that the savegame was probably created specifically for this purpose.

Mono Pausing the Engine and Mono/DX Free-Movement Mode

The other God Mode.

Mono/DX Set C17B to any non-zero value (GameShark code 01017BC1).

Mono/DX This is done by pressing any direction key and then holding Select. This will pause the engine (possibly intended for clearer screenshots). Pressing just Select again will now switch between regular playing mode and Free-Movement-Mode.

DX Pressing Select while on the sub-screen will toggle Free-Movement Mode on and off. The two methods above cannot be mixed, i.e. activating Free-Movement on the sub-screen, then outside of the sub-screen will actually result in pausing the engine, but deactivating free-movement mode again.

Known effects:

  • Can walk over anything, including walls, pits, quick sand, and water.
  • Ignores doors, but not staircases. Free-Movement Mode will exit when using staircases!
  • Increased movement speed.
  • Owl dialog won't pop.
  • Can still open chests, but can't interact with keyholes.
  • No shadow while jumping.
  • Will not trigger random dialog for jars etc.
  • The Map screen will allow you to move the cursor anywhere, even areas you haven't yet visited.

Warping

Open the regular in-game map. Press B + Select to warp to the center of the currently selected map. Remember to activate Free-Movement Mode if you're stuck in a wall. You will also notice that pressing B alone will not exit the map screen anymore.

Text Debugger

Debugging some text.

The Marin object will replace itself with a text debugger object 0x6B when the player's name begins with exactly one space. You can enter the text debugger on any map Marin is on. However, since you usually cannot change your name during playing, this will effectively mean you will have it activated as soon as you start the game.

The text debugger will draw digits to the middle of the screen and possibly replace some other tiles on the screen. Left and Right increase/decrease the ones (note that this will wrap and not increase the tens), while Up and Down increase/decrease the tens. Once you're done assigning this dialogue number, press A to display text 00XX (and possibly set flags for dialogues, see below), press B twice to display text 01XX, and Select to display text 02XX. XX is of course the digit you just entered on the screen.

Flags

The francophone French and Canadian versions will actually set FFA5 to different values, depending on the text id. 005E and 00E7 will set FFA5 to 0x12, while 00AB will set it to 0x11.

Wind Fish Awakening

Mono/DX Marin will start the awakening scene when the player's name begins with exactly two spaces. You can go to the scene on any map Marin is on. However, since you usually cannot change your name during playing, this will effectively mean you will have it activated as soon as you start the game.

  • DX Pressing Start on the world map screen will activate this scene.
  • Mono/DX If 00:0004 is set to a non-zero value, you will have full control over this scene, see below.

Ending Scene Skipping

Scenes in the ending can be skipped forwards and the whole sequence can be reset. Left and Right skip one scene forward, while Up and Down reset the ending scene to the beginning.

DX Photo Gallery

While viewing the photo gallery, all pictures will be marked as taken. In certain language versions this can be remedied by pressing Select on the sub-screen to mark all photos but the first as not taken. Therefore, a savegame can be created that does not contain all pictures as taken even when 00:0005 is set and the gallery has been visited once. This makes it all the more likely that the three flags were originally dip-switches on the PCB of the test cartridge.

Disabled Redraw

Elementary, my dear Cactus.
This needs some investigation.
Discuss ideas and findings on the talk page.
Specifically: Was/is this significant?
Saving GBC battery life in tiny ways.

This demonstrates how redrawing on the subscreen is disabled by 00:0004 in the game. The amount of stuff that's not redrawn is worse in the original games, compared to DX.

Unused Text

Shovel Chest

You've got a Shovel! Now you can feel the joy of digging!
  • Mono: 059C12
  • DX: 053C5B

This message appears when you get the Shovel out of a chest. As you normally purchase it from the shop, it is never used in-game.

There's a room that's coded to give you the Shovel in a chest, but the actual chest is gone. There also exists chest data for the Bow, but there is no associated dialogue. See "Removed Chests" for details.

Unused Area Names

Waterfall at the Shrine
South of the Shrine
Entrance to the Animal Village
  • Mono: 02697F
  • DX: 05BA83

None of these areas exist on the map. The most likely spot for the first one (at the northeast end of the Face Shrine area) is labeled "Rapids Ride"; the Southern Face Shrine is just labeled as "Face Shrine", and the Animal Village sign just says "→ Welcome to the Animal Village!".

Welcome to Mountain Bridge.PNG
Mountain Bridge
  • Mono: 05374F
  • DX: 0534AA

This text appears right after the various dungeon auto-popups (like "Level 8-- Turtle Rock"). Interestingly, if you hack a warp to use an invalid submap, you'll be warped to the mountain cave by Eagle's Tower and this text will appear.

Warp Hole
  • Mono: 0597B0
  • DX: 0537E9

Although four Warp Holes do exist in the game, they're not specifically labeled with this text anywhere.

Unused Shop Items

Give me that acorn, you jerk!

The Ocarina, a Guardian Acorn, and the Secret Medicine can be sold to you by the shopkeeper by use of a Gameshark or other cheating device. Buying the Ocarina and the Secret Medicine gives you those respective items, but buying the Guardian Acorn has no effect. None of these items have shopkeeper text or prices coded for them, so you can buy them for free.

GameShark codes for those items:

  • Ocarina: 010705C5
  • Guardian Acorn: 010806C5
  • Secret Medicine: 010907C5

Passwords

Interestingly, the passwords used in the name entry screen and their results differ between versions of the game.

Password Password BGM JP US CA/FR DE Notes
ぜるだ (ZERUDA, lit. Zelda) Title Screen Remix
ZELDA Title Screen Remix
とたけけ (TOTAKEKE) Totaka's Song
MOYSE Moyse's Song Named after the German translator; plays Totaka's Song in the DX version
LOLO "LOLO" Song Plays the Title Screen Remix in the DX version

Hidden/Unused Songs

Link's Awakening has a handful of unused songs, mostly of the "short jingle" variety. Use the following Game Genie codes to play any song at the file select screen (replace ?? with the song ID):

  • Mono ??8-07B-A2E (US REV A and B), ??8-01B-A2E (US REV B), ??8-0BB-A2E (Canada, French), ??8-14B-A2E (German), ??8-1BB-A2E (Japan REV A) ??8-23B-A2E (Japan Rev B).
  • DX ??8-BEB-A2E (US, Europe), ??8-C1B-A2E (US, Europe REV A), ??8-C2B-A2E (French REV A and B), ??8-BFB-A2E (German), ??8-D0B-A2E (Japan), ??8-D3B-A2E (Japan Rev A) ??8-D3B-A2E (Japan Rev A and B).

Hidden Songs

Title Screen Remix

This song is played in all versions, by entering "ぜるだ" as your name in the Japanese versions, "LOLO" in the French DX version and "ZELDA" in all the other versions.

Totaka's Song

A short signature tune of composer Kazumi Totaka, hidden in nearly every game he has worked as composer for. This song can be heard by entering "とたけけ" (Totakeke, Totaka's nickname) as your name in the Japanese original and DX versions or by entering "MOYSE" (the name of the German translator) in the German DX version. This particular track is not accessible in any North American release (though a rendition of Totaka's Song can be heard by waiting in Richard's Villa for 2 minutes and 30 seconds). See the above "Passwords" section for more info.

Moyse's Song

This song is played only in the original German version, by entering "MOYSE" as your name.

"LOLO" Song

This song is played only in the original French and Canadian versions, by entering "LOLO" as your name.

Unused Songs

Totaka's Ocarina

ID 38

Another variant of Totaka's signature song, seemingly for Ocarina use.

Alternate Item Jingle

ID 3B

A "get minor item" jingle.

Unused Jingle

ID 4F

A short jingle. Possibly intended for receiving an item, although it could have been used for just about anything.


(Source: nensondubois for access method.)

Unused Graphics

Unused Sprites

Old Man

Old and mysterious.

This man looks like any old cloaked man from previous Zelda games. It's not known what he was originally meant to be, but his sprites are very similar to those of the Shrouded Stalfos. He later appeared in Oracle of Ages and Oracle of Seasons.

Skull Bat

Most bats have skulls in addition to their body, but, y'know...

An unused flying enemy. Possibly an early version of Vire's split form or Big Keese.

Dog Food

It's full of juicy beef!

This seems to be an early version of the Dog Food item sprite.

Goriya's Back

He's ignoring you.

The Goriya itself is not unused, but this particular sprite of it is. Normally, the Goriya turns to face you as you walk around the room, and this sprite is used when you walk around behind him. However, due to the way the room is set up, it's not actually possible to get behind him without cheating, as he's standing right up against a wall.

But I thought we were friends!

Also of interest is that if the Goriya's room is entered via glitches before the magnifying glass is obtained, from any area that does not use the standard cave tileset, a strange creature will be present there, treated as an enemy. It looks like the Goriya, but it doesn't seem to do anything except move around slowly. Its movements are the same as Mask-Mimics and you can kill him by hitting it in its back. It's possible Goriyas were at one point intended to be enemies, as they were in earlier Zelda games.

Turning Piranha

It's learned to turn!

A sprite of the Piranha swimming either up or down. Unfortunately, there aren't any associated jumping sprites in the ROM.

Text Foot

Insert all-too-obvious "Foot" joke.

A foot was included amongst the other text pictures (faces, trade items, etc.). It was never used in-game, but it was probably meant to either imply walking or distance on foot. Perhaps it used to be on some of the signs around Richard's Villa until they converted feet to minutes?

Text Magnifying Glass

I can see you!

While the rest of the trade sequence items have miniature pictures for textbox use, the Magnifying Lens never had its icon shown.

Lion Head Statue

Hear me roar!

This lion statue head is among the sprites of Kanalet Castle and the Southern Shrine. Perhaps it was meant to be a decoration, implying valiance?

Turning Frog

Ribbit.

Another sprite that looks like it should be in-game, but isn't. The frogs alongside Mamu never turn their heads this direction.

(Source: Artemis251)

Question Mark Block

It's the C button. It's hidden in the back of your Game Boy.

Appears near the rest of the Trendy Game objects. It may have been used instead of the Yoshi Doll.

Open Chest

Now open!

An open chest graphic for the Subscreen map, probably dumped in favor of just showing the room without a chest.

Kirby Map Marker

More Kirby?

This odd-looking Kirby icon appears with the map graphics in the Japanese version, but is never actually used. In later releases, this is replaced in the data with the owl map marker, although owls are still displayed on the map the same way in the Japanese version as they are in later releases.

Alternate Bikini Top

What a catch!

An alternate version of the mermaid's bikini top from the Japanese version. This is stored with the boat and fisherman, meaning it was supposed to be used when he first pulled it up out of the water, but the normal icon for it is used instead at that point.

Interestingly, this graphic still exists in the English and DX versions.

Unused Photo Graphics

Seagulls

Linkphoto1.png

Probably meant to adorn the sky in the photograph on the beach with Marin.

Rooster

Linkphoto2.png

Looks like something for the Rooster scene, but this doesn't look much like Link, and doesn't fit in with any of the pieces.

Link

Linkphoto4.png

This might have been what Link looked like while getting frustrated with Tarin in the Rooster Statue photograph. It's likely to have been mirrored, as this half is the only one found.

Linkphoto3.png

A prototype for Link during some photograph events, perhaps? He does look kinda odd; it's probably for the best that they scrapped this one.

Group Shot

Linkphoto5.png

The only differences between this and the event in-game is Link's expression (in the final cut, his eyes are looking at Tarin) and that Tarin seems to have shrunk a few pixels.

Sparkle

Linkphoto6.png

This was found around the bomb photograph pieces. It was probably meant to be around either the shopkeeper's or Link's eyes, akin to the shines seen in anime when someone's keeping a sharp lookout on something.

(Source: Artemis251)

Unused Rooms

Underwater Room

Evidently, he no longer found the Trendy Game exciting enough.

This room empties out into the Kanalet Castle moat along a narrow passage north that seems to hold nothing special. It's logical to assume this room was meant to be found by diving, but either they had troubles programming it in or replaced the treasure with a Heart Piece. The chest contains 200 rupees.

The enemies here are knights of the same variety as the ones found in Kanalet Castle, but their sprites are usually a scrambled mess. Bringing up the map or subscreen usually (although not always) causes the sprites to correct themselves, but doing so in this room reveals the enemies to be...Trendy Game operators? Since they behave as Kanalet knights in every aspect, it's likely that their sprites were once written in the same spot, and later moved, with the Trendy Game operator sprites taking their place.

Kanalet Castle

Lozla castle room.png

This short passageway may have been the original means to get into the castle. The north exit leads to the stairway under the bush (right on top of it, which is never used for hidden staircases – the exit is usually placed next to it), and the southern exit leads to the castle room with the gate-lowering switch, inside of a wall.

Interestingly, entering these rooms will usually make the room flash between "fully lit" and "dark" states. In the DX version, the palette upon entry is woefully broken, suggesting that the room was overlooked.

Eagle's Tower

Eagle's Tower, 3F. Inaccessible rooms and all.

Before destroying the support pillars and causing the fourth floor to collapse onto the third, the four rooms in the center of Eagle's Tower's third floor are entirely different, consisting primarily of an extremely large pit. Of these rooms, the upper two are inaccessible and never normally seen in-game. It appears the one on the left was meant to be used, but due to the way the crystal switches work the blocks controlled by them will always deny you entry. And even if they did, the pit is too open and can easily lead to getting trapped on the second floor. Interestingly, while the room is inaccessible, it was still updated after the first version.

To the right of that room is one that was definitely never intended to be used at all, consisting only of a "down" staircase leading up to the fourth floor, presumably for testing purposes. It's also the only way to get up there. (Leaving the 4F area in any direction will take you to blank "default" rooms.)

These rooms are also present in the DX version.

(Source: Artemis251)

Removed Chests

The following rooms have chest data, but no actual chests.

At this point, do you really need them?
Overworld

Chest Contents: 50 Rupees.

The chest washed away. :(
Overworld

Chest Contents: 100 Rupees.

There are plenty of rupee chests here anyway.
Level 6: Face Shrine

Chest Contents: 50 Rupees.

Screw you, shop owner!
Cave

Chest Contents: Bow.

Skulls skulls everywhere skulls
Cave

Chest Contents: 20 Rupees.

Rupee chest moved to next room. -Management
Cave

Chest Contents: 50 Rupees.

Maybe it's behind that not-at-all-conspicuous dry tile
Cave

Chest Contents: 20 Rupees.

You can't feel the joy of digging. Not without paying.
Cave

Chest Contents: Shovel.


(Source: Xkeeper)

Unused Dungeon Minimap Layouts

The variable at DBB0 determines which minimap layout is used:

Value 00 is a one floor minimap, which is used for most dungeons.
Value 11 splits the minimap into two vertically split floors, 1F and B1F. This minimap is used in non-English versions of the game for Key Cavern.
Value 30 is a four floor split minimap that's used only in Eagle's Tower.

The following values are not used in any version:

10 20 21
LA Minimap Layout 10.PNG LA Minimap Layout 20.PNG LA Minimap Layout 21.PNG
31 32 33
LA Minimap Layout 31.PNG LA Minimap Layout 32.PNG LA Minimap Layout 33.PNG

These layouts are in both the original and DX releases; the only difference is that the floor labels in the DX rerelease are covered up by the minimap's background since the PUSH SELECT notice takes up too much space, as explained on the version differences page.