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

Look at all those protagonists!

The Legend of Zelda series has echoed its legacy throughout the gaming industry. Because of this, countless games ranging from indie to mainstream have taken inspiration from the Zelda franchise. However, you may find that some of these games are better than the average Zelda game for your gaming needs. For this top ten list, let’s uncover other action-adventure games that are reminiscent of one of the legendary series.

10.) Darksiders

Looking at the size of his sword, you know this game is fun.

The Darksiders is a hack and slash action-adventure game with fantasy elements throughout. Darksiders has been compared to Zelda by multiple articles, forum posts, comments, and so on. Even the game’s artwork is a spitting image of The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword’s official artwork.

Unlike Zelda however, the game takes place in a post-apocalyptic version of Earth, where angels and demons are fighting over world domination. The player will traverse through a city littered with broken highways, cars, and disheveled buildings. You play as War, one of the horsemen of the apocalypse with many enemies. 

In terms of strictly gameplay (and not the badass artwork), Darksiders is typically compared to the following Legend of Zelda titles: Ocarina of Time, Twilight Princess, and Majora’s Mask. Each of these Zelda games is entirely 3D, 3rd person view, and has captivating stories. 

One of the biggest mechanics in Darksiders that screamed “Zelda” to me (except for the super cool sword fighting), was how the game handled dungeons and puzzles. The progression structure in dungeons goes like this: find the compass, find keys, get the dungeon’s special item, with said item access areas you couldn’t before, fight enemies on multiple floors, and inevitably come face to face with the boss. 

Darksiders’ semi-open world atmosphere is also a common Zelda component – not quite open world, but not linear enough, it’s a perfect in-between that I personally love. Like every Zelda game, Darksiders doesn’t show health bars, so you’re never sure when the enemy/boss is near death. 

You get a large array of equipment throughout the game that you’ll need to use in their corresponding dungeons, and like Link, War will need to battle against Behemoth enemies with various weak points. 

Darksider's Trailer

9. Death's Door

Discover a world full of wonderful characters. 

Death’s Door is an action-adventure game that’s 3D and isometric. Due to the genre, mechanics, undertones, and difficulty, it’s been compared to both the Legend of Zelda and Dark Souls alike. 

You play as a crow who reaps the souls of the dead for honest work. Suddenly, your next assigned soul is stolen, and your goal is to track it down. 

The world is in a simplistic timeless style while the characters bond perfectly with their environments. Unlike Zelda, humans are scarce. 

To be compared to Zelda, swords are a must. Althogh you play as a crow, you wield the Reaper’s Sword, which is your default melee weapon in-game. 

If you’re a fan of a Link to the Past, Death’s Door will feel familiar to you. Like most Zelda games, you’ll also be on the hunt for collecting upgrades, conquering dungeons, and doing puzzles. 

Another familiar feature is being a semi-open world, where certain areas of the game will be inaccessible until you’ve collected the required equipment or progressed through various sections of the plot. The game’s formula and progression with its strong sense of exploration capture Zelda to a T.

Death's Door Trailer

8. Immortal's Fenyx Rising

Discovery a vast open world filled to the brim with content.

Immortal’s Fenyx Rising (or IFR) is a light-hearted Zelda inspired game with a mixture of fiction and reality derived from Greek Mythology. You play as Fenyx, an underdog demigod/goddess embarks on an adventure to restore the essence of the Gods and eradicate Typhon, the game’s antagonist.

Unlike Zelda, IFR allows the player to customize Fenyx, most notably their gender. Breath of the Wild has multiple distinctive biomes within its vast open world, just like IFR! However, neither game share the same overworld layouts. 

Speaking of the world, both games will have the players become keen on certain points of interest that require the player to stand tall on large structures to reveal. In Breath of the Wild, Link will climb mountains, in IFR, it’s statues. 

Like Breath of the Wild, IFR encourages players to seek out the world airborne by gliding, except you get to use wings. The physics-based puzzles are extremely like Breath of the Wild’s with their dynamic layouts and multiple solutions. 

And of course, we can’t forget the horses. IFR lets players tame horses as you can in Breath of the Wild, however, it’s more satisfying to ride.

Immortal's Fenyx Rising Trailer

7. Okami HD

A fantastic tribute to Japanese culture. 

Originally released in 2006 and re-released in 2017, Okami is a cel-shaded action-adventure game that’s been compared to Zelda from here to Mars. Even on official Zelda forums, fans have honored Okami, sharing strong reverence for the game. 

The game is set in Feudal Japan, where you embark on a journey as a wolf deity known as Amaterasu who defends Japan from evil.  Amaterasu has a similar design to Wolf Link, Link’s hairy counterpart in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. 

Okami is filled to the brim with treacherous dungeons, a plethora of unique abilities, an annoying companion, and fantastic music (sound familiar?).  However, I will say, I don’t find Okami to be that much like Zelda. As a matter of fact, I’ve seen Okami gameplay for years and never associated the two. 

Their similarities are clearly more than skin-deep in this case, except for brief bursts where you experience some Zelda vibes along the way.

Okami HD Trailer

6. The Swords of Ditto: Mormo's Curse

Become the hero of legend!

The Swords of Ditto: Mormo’s Curse (or Mormo’s Curse for short) is an isometric action RPG that conceives a unique world for the fight against Mormo. The game shows off a colorful array of a medieval fantasy world and endearing characters. 

Unlike Zelda, Mormo’s Curse has the player play as a randomly generated character. Speaking of, lack of any structured protagonist reflects lack of any depth in the plot. 

Some of the games on this list are reflective of Zelda in various ways, including the story. However, Mormo’s Curse is totally reliant on gameplay, especially combat and world exploration. 

If you’re a fan of the top-down Zelda games, Mormo’s curse is right up your alley. You can also play with friends and add one other player to the game for extra fun.

The Sword's of Ditto: Mormo's Curse

5. Fable

Humble beginnings.

Fable is an action RPG that’s entirely 3rd person, 3D, and has a fanbase filled with overlapping Zelda fans. Unlike a lot of RPGs you may be familiar with, Fable has a certain uniqueness that's difficult to come by.

For starters, you begin the game as a young boy in a village doing low-tier missions (sound familiar?). Something horrible happens to the village, and the player-character is put in a position to learn the ways of being a warrior (again, sound familiar?).

There aren’t many Zelda games where you can collect XP, but in Fable, it’s everything. With your accumulated amount of XP, you can upgrade things like magic, strength, and skill. 

Moreover, your reputation is everything as well. If you choose to be moral, people will respect you and your eyes will shine bright (literally). On the opposite side of the spectrum, being evil will have the people fear you, and eventually, horns will grow out of your head. 

Unlike Zelda, Fable gives you a little more freedom in customizing your character. Link is Link, and sometimes you can change his tunic, weapons, and so on. However, Fable allows players to customize haircuts, tattoos, and clothing. 

Fable Trailer

4. Shadow of the Colossus

The bigger the better.

Shadow of the Colossus is an action-adventure game that takes place in a dreary fantasy world with Zelda-like elements that are deeper than others on this list. You play as Wander, a man who explores the vast, empty realm that is actively trying to find power and resurrect a girl named Mono. 

This breathtaking adventure invokes feelings like any Zelda game: Achieving the impossible. With gigantic beasts and a harrowing road ahead, we enter the torment and overcome it all. 

On top of that, we’re put into places with larger-than-life atmospheres with unspoken histories. Shadow of the Colossus is true to its name; the beasts are truly, truly massive. As a matter of fact, no Zelda boss has ever triumphed the size of the beasts in this game. 

While one of Zelda’s main aspects revolves around daunting boss fights, Shadow of the Colossus takes this aspect to the extreme by making it the main point. Moreover, it being the main point of the game revolves around both the gameplay and the plot.

Shadow of the Colossus Trailer

3. Dark Souls

Accumulate souls in this undying masterpiece!

Dark Souls is an action RPG entirely in 3rd person. Like every Zelda title, its core mechanic is exploration and adventure. Players are encouraged to make mistakes and try again in multiple ways or with different items. 

According to overlapping fans, people have noted that Dark Souls is like a hardcore Zelda game. Unlike some other games on this list, Dark Souls is truly a medieval fantasy all-around (swords, shields, potions, castles, all that good stuff!). 

One of the most defining similarities between the two franchises is the creative, diverse, daunting boss fights. In Dark Souls, boss fights are dramatic, and each has its own tone and atmosphere. 

As you collect souls from a large plethora of enemies, you can spend them on various attributes that’ll make gameplay more seamless. These attributes are strength, intelligence, dexterity, faith, and more. 

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was revolutionary, including one of its key features, Z-targeting. Z-targeting allowed players to target enemies in a locked engagement while attacking them. In Dark Souls, target locking is sometimes essential and makes the game much easier.

Dark Souls Trailer

2. Warden: Melody of the Undergrowth

Endless exploration

Warden: Melody of the Undergrowth is an indie action-adventure RPG with some fun 3D platforming. Like all the games on this list, being compared to Zelda doesn’t take away from its outstanding uniqueness. In the game’s steam synopsis, it's noted by the creators themselves that it was inspired by “classics of the N64 era”. 

You play as a young prince trapped in an ancient forest; your main mission is to search for a lost God. However, his journey intertwines with a girl and a child as their destinies come together as one. 

With a vibrant world to explore, you’ll find yourself walking amongst different biomes with different vibes. You can also switch through other playable characters that have their own abilities, personalities, and so on.

One of the most impressive parts of this game is the weapon arsenal, which features over 60 weapons with their unique attacks. There are seemingly endless puzzles that keep the player captivated, and due to being a non-linear game, there's tons of land to explore.

1. Undertale

"You are filled with determination".

Long ago, two races ruled over Earth: Humans and Monsters. War broke out between the two races, and the humans were victorious. Humans sealed monsters underground with a magic spell, while the monsters grew to carry great disdain over the human race. Many years later, a child named Frisk falls down Mt. Ebott and unknowingly discovers the world of monsters. 

Undertale is a 2D RPG made by Toby Fox. It has its own Zelda references, and even though it strays from some of Zelda’s conventional attributes, they certainly have similarities. Undertale happens to be my favorite game on this list!

One of the most unique things about Undertale is the EXP system. EXP in a typical RPG is earned through killing monsters, finishing quests, and so on. 

Undertale is no different, however, earning EXP by killing monsters increases the player’s LOVE or “Level of Violence”. Players can either choose the pacifist route and kill nobody at all, genocide and kill anyone and everything, or go neutral (a mix of both).

Because of these choices, the game's plot, end-timing, and bosses can vary, giving the player multiple endings and even dialogue variations. The best part? Even after completing the game and erasing your file, the game will always remember your past, and will sometimes remind you of your sins or lack thereof. 

Undertale challenges players to view EXP differently and use their skills of charisma and dodging to befriend monsters. This EXP system doesn’t exist in the Legend of Zelda, where your goal is to kill monsters without any second thoughts. 

Zelda's combat system in each game is melee-based, however, Undertale’s combat is reliant on a turn-based system where the player and the enemy take turns choosing defense or attacks. It's always been difficult for me to enjoy turn-based combat, but Undertale is a very unique exception that  makes this type of combat satisfying and fun to use. I can't tell you how many times I grew excited to come across another monster to flex my skills. 

Undertale has been compared to a variety of other 2D classics, including Zelda games like a Link to the Past or Link’s Awakening.  Undertale’s main protagonist can also be named anything the player desires, just like most Zelda games where you can name Link to whatever your heart desires. 

The monsters of the Underground have some of the best dialogue and story I've ever seen in a game (ever). The characters are extremely likeable, charming, and truly unforgettable. 

Undertale’s world is full of exploration matched with incredible music. Whenever I’ve played, I found myself enjoying some of the long traversings because the world and music are so beautiful. Zelda games are similar, with their vast worlds and iconic melodies.

Undertale Trailer

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When she's not writing, Camille is actively fighting darkness with the triforce of courage and destroying people's property.
Gamer Since: 2002
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask
Top 3 Favorite Games:Undertale, Alien: Isolation, DOOM

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