[Top 10] Games Like Legend of Zelda (Games Better Than Legend of Zelda In Their Own Way)

Blond, blue eyes, swings a sword...I mean, he's kind of like Link, right?

The Legend of Zelda is one of the most beloved video game series of all time, with decades worth of games, manga, memorabilia, and so much more under its belt. It’s an icon of popular culture, and for good reason. The franchise features unique worldbuilding, immersive storytelling, memorable characters, and challenging puzzle solving, all wrapped up with an action-adventure gameplay styled bow. For those of us who love the Legend of Zelda, the question becomes, what games are out there that can scratch that Zelda itch without being a Zelda game?

For any good game that’s like Legend of Zelda, there’s a good list of things that it should have:

  • Action and adventure, especially with a need for exploration
  • Puzzle solving
  • Expansive and unique worldbuilding
  • Immersive storytelling
  • Memorable characters

What games hit parts of this list? Join us as we go through some Legend of Zelda-style games that might scratch that Zelda itch for you — and improve upon its formula and other aspects in their own unique way!


10. Old School RuneScape (Windows, OS X, iOS, Android)

Old School RuneScape Steam Trailer. Start at 0:00

Made in response to a declining player base and negative reaction to then-recent updates, RuneScape — a popular massively multiplayer online role-playing game, also known as a MMORPG — went back to its mid-2000s roots, thus creating Old School RuneScape in the mid-2010s. As a MMORPG, players can explore the expansive medieval fantasy world of Gielinor, interact with other players and creatures across various environments and climates, complete quests, and much more.

While some may think Old School RuneScape is a far cry from the Legend of Zelda franchise, the biggest difference between the two is how Old School RuneScape is an MMORPG, unlike the average Zelda game’s single-player modes. With the expansive and unique world of Gielinor, its deep lore that players can learn through exploring its vast landscapes, and an action-adventure style gameplay with colorful characters made by players just like you, Old School RuneScape, at its heart, is a familiar medieval fantasy home that Legend of Zelda fans are sure to enjoy.

It’s nice to just sit back, relax, and hang out next to the waterside with some friends in Old School RuneScape.

What exactly does an option like “Examine Goblin” do in the middle of a fight? Like, yep, that’s definitely a goblin!


9. Granblue Fantasy: Relink (Playstation 4, Playstation 5, Windows)

Granblue Fantasy: Relink Launch Trailer. Start at 0:28

Following a diverse group of skyfaring protagonists, players join the crew as they quest to find Estalucia, a mythical Astral realm. Through various trials and tribulations, adventuring across the sky and the land, the group will find that there is more to Estalucia and their friends than meets the eye — and how they’re the only ones who can save the Sky Realm before it’s too late.

Players go throughout the game, venturing through various cities with a colorful cast of characters to subdue the destructive paths of primal beasts, who only answer to the Astrals. As they progress, they will learn more about the world, the realm of Estalucia, and who some of their companions really are.

Granblue Fantasy: Relink, while similar to the Legend of Zelda franchise in its exploration and action-adventure gameplay, allows players the option to play online with other players of the game. This allows for unique experiences as these players work together through different quests, such as defeating bosses or protecting specific objects. A short but impactful game, Granblue Fantasy: Relink scratches that familiar Zelda itch while being completely fresh to long-time Zelda fans in its characters, gameplay, and story.

Maybe the real Estalucia is the friends we made along the way.

“Take that!”


8. Monster Hunter Rise (Nintendo Switch, Windows, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S)

Monster Hunter Rise Launch Trailer. Start at 0:04

Monster Hunter Rise puts players and their character into Kamura Village, a tranquil village with a varied cast of characters for the player to interact with over the course of the game. In the village, the player-character has just been promoted to a Hunter, someone who hunts down monsters in the world, in The Hunter’s Guild. As the game progresses, players complete quests and get stronger in order to prevent a mysterious event known as “The Rampage”, a calamity where a horde of enraged, uncontrollable monsters attacked Kamura Village half a century ago.

Monster Hunter Rise is another action-adventure game with a unique world, fun characters, and an emphasis on exploration that all Zelda fans are looking for. However, unlike the vast majority of the Zelda series, Rise offers players the ability to create new armor and weapons from the loot they obtain on their quests. 

“I’mma firin’ mah lazer!”

Don’t worry, guys! I think he’s going for a high five!


7. Final Fantasy VII Remake (Playstation 4, Playstation 5, Windows)

Final Fantasy VII Remake Final Trailer. Start at 0:00

After the rousing success of the original Final Fantasy VII in the late nineties, fans of the series were ecstatic when Square Enix announced a remake of the game, which finally came in 2020. The game is set in the dystopian city of Midgar, situated on the fictional planet of Gaia. Players control Cloud Strife, a mercenary who is trying to stop the Shinra Electric Power Company from using Gaia’s lifeblood as an energy source. Cloud is not alone; as the game progresses, he joins forces with many other characters to stop Shinra and his nemesis, Sephiroth, from getting what they want and killing the planet.

The Final Fantasy VII Remake is, in many ways, the spiritual cyberpunk sister to the Legend of Zelda franchise. Cloud Strife, while not destined or prophesized to save the planet Gaia, is very much similar to the protagonist Link of the Zelda series, starting his journey by doing something objectively good for the sake of those closest to him. The action-adventure gameplay style, the unique and extensive worldbuilding of both Midgar and Gaia, as well as the various colorful characters (good and bad!) that players can interact with throughout the story also share similarities to those found throughout the Zelda franchise. Truly, the Final Fantasy VII Remake is a fantastic game for Legend of Zelda lovers to play if they haven’t already.

I wouldn’t want to be at the wrong end of that sword!

Seriously!? Sephiroth’s sword is a toothpick compared to yours, Cloud!


6. Enshrouded (Windows, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S)

 Enshrouded Official Early Access Launch Trailer. Start at 0:00

For fans of survival action role-playing games, Enshrouded is right up your alley. Players are placed in the world of Embervale, which is an open world that encourages players to adventure and explore the realm. With up to fifteen other people, players can build themselves bases, craft gear and equipment, and summon non-playable characters to stay at their bases. Players can also explore the world, but beware of “The Shroud”, a lethal thick layer of fog covering parts of Embervale with hostile monsters to boot. If players stay in The Shroud for too long, they will die, so be careful!

The fun part about Enshrouded being on this list is that it’s more than the action-adventure gameplay and exploration of an interesting and unique world. Developers of the game have noted that one of their major inspirations for it was Legend of Zelda: Breath of The Wild. How fun is that?!

I don’t know what’s cooler, that armor or the base they’re building!


5. Atelier Ryza: Ever Darkness & the Secret Hideout (Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Windows)

Atelier Ryza: Ever Darkness and the Secret Hideout Launch Trailer. Start at 0:02

Atelier Ryza: Ever Darkness & the Secret Hideout has players control Ryza Stout, a young woman from Kurken Island with a heart for adventure. After venturing to the mainland with two of her friends, the trio adventure together and gain skills in combat and alchemy. As players progress through the game’s story, they also learn the history of Kurken Island and find that not all is what meets the eye to the world they live in.

Similar to other games on this list, Atelier Ryza: Ever Darkness & the Secret Hideout may seem a little outlandish to call “similar” to the Zelda franchise. However, the game’s eccentric cast, one-of-a-kind worldbuilding, and alchemy crafting gameplay, coinciding with aspects such as the real-time, modified turn-based combat system, give Zelda fans a unique gameplay experience while still feeling familiar to their beloved franchise.

Have you ever seen an environment in a game that you just wish you could live in in real life? Yeah…

Make sure you stretch before you pull off that move!


4. Dragon's Dogma 2 (PlayStation 5, Windows, Xbox Series X/S)

 Dragon's Dogma 2 Main Trailer. Start at 0:02

Dragon's Dogma 2 is an action-adventure RPG that has players control the “Arisen”, a character marked by the dragon they are destined to defeat. However, before they can achieve such a feat, they must explore the warring regions of Vermund and Battahl, fighting monsters and completing quests, all while being entrenched within a geopolitical conflict between the kingdoms.

At its core, Dragon’s Dogma 2 feels like a very hardcore, gruesome version of the beloved Zelda franchise. With players controlling a destined hero, adventuring throughout a unique world with even more unique characters, and going on quests to become strong enough to defeat their prophesied nemesis are all key elements of both Dragon’s Dogma 2 and the Zelda franchise. The main difference between the two comes from Dragon’s Dogma 2’s party system, in which players can have allies known as “Pawns” to join them in their adventures. These Pawns may be NPCs, but in addition to in-game Pawns, players can recruit up to two additional Pawns that have been created by other players.

“How do you control this thing!?”


3. Valheim (Linux, Windows, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S)

Valheim Launch Trailer. Start at 0:00

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be a fallen viking fighting for entrance to Valhalla? Wonder no more! Valheim allows players to take on the role of vikings as they craft weapons and armor, build bases, and fight against the sworn enemies of the Norse god Odin to prove themselves worthy of entering the Norse afterlife.

Unlike the Legend of Zelda franchise, Valheim is primarily a sandbox survival game. However, that does not stop the similarities, as the unique world and monsters alongside the crafting elements stay similar to games within the Zelda franchise like Breath of the Wild. Valheim has yet to be fully released, and only time will tell what other gameplay and storytelling elements the game has in store for us.

Staring contest, GO!

“I have the sneaking suspicion that something is watching me…”


2. Horizon Zero Dawn (PlayStation 4, Windows)

Horizon Zero Dawn Launch Trailer. Start at 0:02

In the game’s interpretation of a post-apocalyptic United States of America, humanity lives in tandem with giant robotic beasts that roam the lands. However, after a phenomenon known as the “Derangement”, these beasts have begun attacking the people, causing many to fear these beasts as they grow stronger. The player-character Aloy, having been outcast from the Nora tribe, is put into a unique position. While her original goal was to earn her right to rejoin the tribe and learn why she was outcast in the first place, she now must solve what caused the Derangement and discover who she is throughout the game’s story.

For Zelda fans with a particular love of Breath of the Wild and Tears of the Kingdom, Horizon Zero Dawn speaks directly to those games’ beloved gameplay mechanics and storytelling capabilities. As Aloy, players explore the vast post-apocalyptic solarpunk world of the United States, using various weapons such as bows and arrows, spears, and explosives that many Zelda players will find familiar. Horizon Zero Dawn is a truly unique experience, and while it’s hard to compare it to the Zelda franchise, there is that familiar need for adventure between both series.

Anyone else wanna know how Aloy keeps her skin looking so good in a post-apocalyptic scenario?!

“Don’t miss, don’t miss, DON’T MISS!”


1. Palworld (Windows, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S)

Palworld Official Trailer. Start at 0:00

With a lot of games, part of the intrigue is the humor that comes along with the situations that the game puts players in. Palworld, alongside its survival action-adventure gameplay with monster-taming, is one of those games that leans into the ridiculousness of its own gameplay mechanics, creating a satirical premise that has garnered praise.

The game has players interact with creatures known as Pals that they can capture and find useful for a variety of purposes, such as combat, scavenging, and various others. The game has many potential enemies, including criminals, law enforcement, and a liberation group that is fighting in-universe for the freedom of Pals. All of this is alongside survival gameplay, having players craft basic tools, build bases, and gather materials while managing their hunger levels.

It’s hard to compare Palworld to the Legend of Zelda franchise, but if you’ve ever wondered what it’d be like to have a machine gun in a game that has the kiddy aesthetic of many Zelda games, Palworld is probably your closest bet. This game hits hard on the action side of the action-adventure spectrum, but within a massive open world full of various unique creatures, many Zelda fans are sure to have fun with Palworld and all it has to offer.

It’s games like these that make me think it’d be easy to befriend wild creatures.

Some games have some crazy screenshots, but Palworld definitely takes the cake for some of the craziest!

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In between my adventures across Hyrule and Skyrim, I have dedicated my creative spirit to writing within and about the worlds I inhabit on screen and in real life.
Gamer Since: 2005
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Resident Evil 4 Remake
Top 3 Favorite Games:The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - Dragonborn, Resident Evil 4 Ultimate HD, The Sims 4

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