The 21 Best Zelda-Like Games on Steam
The Legend of Zelda is a legendary series — no pun intended — and therefore, it shouldn’t be surprising that many games were and still are heavily inspired by it.
Even to this date, old and new Zelda games serve as inspiration to new titles since they were most likely groundbreaking and incredibly memorable to people who develop games today.
I remember playing A Link to the Past and being quite amazed by the fact that the entire world changed at some point, and you essentially played in two different maps. This concept was somewhat used in Ocarina of Time as well, but that game was memorable for various reasons.
It’s very obvious to fans of the series that Zelda games have a certain feel that comes from their dungeons, pacing, and overall progression throughout the game. That’s why it’s not that unusual to feel like something is “like Zelda” when you are playing specific titles.
This is a good thing, though. Developers from all over the world have delivered some very familiar-but-different games that are amazingly fun to play. Some developers used completely different themes, and we get to experience a game that is similar to a Zelda title that we love but with unique mechanics and quite different aesthetics.
If you’re looking for a Zelda-like game to play on your computer or if you are just looking for something similar-but-different, don’t worry. Our list has the 21 best Zelda-like games on Steam.
This game is a classic, a timeless work of art, a masterpiece, and a very entertaining video game.
Okami is by far one of my favorite video games ever, and it is also considered one of the best games ever made.
The Zelda influences mostly show up in how the game is paced. There is some level of exploration and puzzle-solving with new abilities, and there are combat encounters and puzzle-like bosses.
However, Okami is very much its own thing. Also, the sumi-e art style, making it look like a moving painting.
You play as Amaterasu, the Japanese goddess of the sun who inhabits the legendary white wolf. Your objective is to defeat the eight-headed demon known as Orochi.
When it comes to edgy main characters, I can think of a few characters who are as cool as War. His monotone but angry voice, marvelously done by Liam O’Brien, is most likely what makes this character stand out, but it is also how cool he looks when being agile and swinging his sword while wearing full armor and looking like a rockstar.
Darksiders is an adventure game with exploration and backtracking elements. Many pathways open once you have different abilities that you acquire when you progress through the game.
The combat was significantly influenced by titles such as Devil May Cry and God of War.
Overall, Darksiders is not very original when it comes to mechanics. However, it still is one of the best games of its time due to how it managed to combine many aspects of different games and use a fascinating theme to give Darksiders its unique flavor.
Besides, the coolest horseman is the main character, so this game is automatically good.
Darksiders II Deathinitive Edition
Although Death is not as cool as his brother, War, his game is also pretty good.
Darksiders II feels a bit more ambitious, and it doesn’t always stick the landing for me, but I still liked it quite a lot.
Generally speaking, the game works in the same way, but you travel through worlds that are larger than the areas of the first game, and you also have several side quests to complete if you choose to do so.
This game leans a lot more into RPG territory. Death gains levels and skill points, enemies drop items, chests have weapons of different rarities, and so on.
Chances are, if you like one of the games, you’ll most likely have fun playing the other. Besides the new elements, you will be getting new abilities, backtracking, and basically doing everything you did during the first game. The scale will be different, though.
Are you tired of heroic protagonists? If you are, it’s time to try out EvilQuest.
This title is heavily inspired by SNES’ action-RPG games, including Crystalis and, obviously, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.
In EvilQuest, you take the role of Galvis, a dark knight who is obsessed with power. Instead of saving the world and protecting the innocent, the main character of this game fights for himself, revenge, destruction, and conquest.
This game does try to make you feel like you’re not the hero. It lets you terrorize residents of the towns you find when exploring the game, and you also have to avoid imperial agents who want to capture Galvis.
The game has fast-paced battles, retro-style graphics, 15 unique dungeons, 14 different spells, 10 boss fights, and much more.
I seriously like how this game looks. This is a game that even defines itself as “a 2D Zelda-like action game where you will explore mysterious and hidden events in a randomly generated maze,” so I had to add it to the list.
This game is rogue-like, so I get that this might be a turn-off if you are not into the genre. However, if you are willing to give it a shot, you might be surprised by how much fun you can have with a game that feels fresh every time you play it.
The battles are always high-stakes, the exploration is thrilling, and the discovery is super exciting.
The more you advance, the more things you unlock. Your character can evolve quite a lot while you explore the procedurally generated maze if you do manage to stay alive for long enough.
Overture is an action-adventure game that claims to be heavily inspired by Diablo, Realm of The Mad God, Zelda, and The Binding of Isaac.
The game has twenty-four character classes, super-challenging bosses, a lot of loot for you to collect, vast randomly generated dungeons, intense action gameplay, and a pretty good chiptune soundtrack.
The game is meant to be played casually. It’s simple, yet it can be pretty addictive. However, it might not be as easy to enjoy for those who are not very fond of rogue-like games.
Either way, if you want a casual game that was inspired by Zelda and as chaotic battles, this game might be worth trying.
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time is a hybrid game that has action-adventure and platforming elements, not so different from what you see in Zelda Games.
This is an old game, and it might be rough for some people, but it was such a revolutionary project back in the day that it still holds up as a fun game.
Prince of Persia presented The Sands of Time to its gameplay, which allowed players to erase time, glimpse into the future, and freeze the present.
The game has excellent music, dialogue, gameplay, and a fun gimmick. The main character is acrobatic and skilled, which makes you feel powerful even when you’re not using the Sands of Time.
There is a lot of love involved in the making of Forager. The game draws inspiration from Minecraft and The Legend of Zelda: a Link to the Past, and it clearly shows.
Forager considers itself a 2D open-world survival game. Like many games of the genre, there is a lot of crafting and collecting to it, but it also has a world map that feels a lot like what you’d see in SNES action-RPG games.
The game’s world is designed to be explored, easy to understand, and have a sense of excitement and familiarity every time that you go out to gather more resources.
When you decide to be an adventurer, that’s when the game feels the most like Zelda cause you get to upgrade your equipment, fight bosses, and solve puzzles to get hidden items.
Anodyne doesn’t necessarily have a theme that makes it feel like a Zelda game, but neither does Darksiders, and many people did that association.
The pacing, the exploration, the occasional backtracking, and the use of new abilities to progress are all characteristics that you can find since The Legend of Zelda: a Link to the Past.
All that considered, you can look at Anodyne and think of it as a Zelda game with a different theme. It still looks and feels like a 16bits action-adventure RPG game, which is pretty much what the SNES’ Zelda was, but it has its own identity.
You travel through the subconscious mind of a person named Young, and you have to face challenges in many different kinds of scenarios, many of which don’t even seem to make sense. It’s a pretty good game, and chances are, if you like the SNES’ Zelda, you’ll like Anodyne.
I feel like I can’t add Anodyne to this list without adding its sequel. Mainly because although Anodyne is an excellent and well-received game, Anodyne 2 is considered an even better game by many people.
The sequel is in 3D, but it still uses 2D art in the dungeons that you have to explore within the minds of NPCs, which is a very cool concept that lets you immediately differentiate what is meant to be real-life and what is a construct of someone’s mind.
Overall, the game improved its previous ideas and does everything that it used to, but better. Anodyne 2 is about someone who goes inside their patients to remove the dust that makes them ill, which brings you to many eerie and weird locations.
When in 3D, the game looks like a Nintendo 64 game, so it seems that the developers are constantly paying homage to old games that they love.
Hyper Light Drifter
The world of Hyper Light Drifter is colorful and beautiful. Its world is ruined, but it has so much to be found. It feels eerie and dangerous, but it also has a strong identity and lost technologies that add to the mystery of the game while giving it personality and justifying some gameplay elements.
This is a game with over 90% of positive reviews on Steam, which doesn’t surprise me at all. The developers were inspired by older Zelda games, but they added their unique spin to the genre and made it work.
Hyper Light Drifter has a unique and recognizable art style, fast-paced battles, and a rich world with profound lore to explore.
You get to upgrade your weapons, learn new skills, find new equipment, and so much more.
This is undoubtedly one of the best indie games ever made, no wonder it is on our best indie games on Switch list.
Some people might consider I’m cheating by adding Dark Souls to the list. I know that some people say that this game has nothing to do with Zelda. Well, I disagree.
A Link to the Past doesn’t have many hard locks when it comes to world exploring, and it also has some amount of backtracking. A Link to the Past has a more open world structure, but it can also block your way.
Dark Souls is a game with an interconnected map that doesn’t always let you go through certain areas unless you do something first.
However, there can be a fair amount of backtracking in this game, especially near the end. It’s fair to say that Dark Souls is closer to Breathe of the Wild than other Zelda games, though.
Secret of Mana
This is a game that was always compared to Zelda due to its exploration and action-combat back in the 16bits era.
Secret of Mana is a remarkable game, and it was remade in 3D. Although the remake is not necessarily the best good-looking out there, it is very reminiscent of the game’s original release. One can appreciate the developers trying to bring such a classic back in a way newer players might take an interest in it.
As a fan of the series, it is really hard for me not to recommend people to play Secret of Mana. The art style, the story, and the combat are all worth mentioning as good elements of the game. In fact, I’d say everything about this game is pretty good.
Also, you don’t have to worry too much about how close it is to the SNES version. This game is nearly the exact same game, so fans of the original will love it.
Ys was always known for being a bit Zelda-like, although I personally would compare it to Legend of Mana — another game known for being a little like the Legend of Zelda.
This beautiful game mixes 3D with the aesthetics of old pixelated RPG games from the 16 bits and 32 bits eras. In fact, this game looks a lot like many other titles that came out for the first PlayStation.
It’s not a bad thing, though, since that console had many beautiful games that brilliantly mixed 2D and 3D art. Also, it shouldn’t be surprising. Ys was originally released back in 2006, but it holds up quite well, which already says a lot about the game.
Ys is super action-packed. You will be doing a lot of fighting and dungeon crawling. So if you want something like Zelda games but more combat-oriented, you should definitely try Ys Origins.
If there is one game that feels a lot like The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, it is Kamiko. It might not look as good.
Kamiko was initially released for the Switch, and although it was not one of the console’s best indie games, it was undoubtedly good. It really isn’t one of the best indie games out there, but it certainly is very appealing to Zelda fans.
The game has a heavier focus on combat, and therefore, there’s more to its battles than what Link gets to do in the old SNES title. There are some impressive combat moves and even a combo counter.
Kamiko is a game styled around Japanese Shintoism, and it has its fair share of puzzles and exploration on top of an entertaining combat system. Unfortunately, this game is a bit short, but it is good nonetheless.
This game feels like something right between The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past and Diablo II. Although it sounds weird, this ends up being a pretty good combination.
The game has a simple plot and a straightforward cycle that uses some rogue-like elements to deliver a unique experience. You play as a character for over one hour in a game that leads up to a boss battle. Once you fight that boss, the game ends no matter if you win or lose.
However, every time you play through the game, you unlock something new, so the next run is different from the previous one. This is about creating your own heritage and your own history within the game world.
On top of all that, this is a game that can be played cooperatively by up to four players.
This game claims to be inspired by titles like Portal, Zelda, and Metroid. It is a first-person shooter that doesn’t underestimate the player’s intelligence and decides not to overflow us with tutorials.
The plot is minimalistic, but it is designed to give you an objective that doesn’t prevent you from wandering around and exploring, which is excellent.
Supraland has a lot of exploration, puzzle-solving, secret upgrades, and the game does require players to gain new abilities in order to progress, much like Metroidvania games.
This game can be quite long. The main story has about 20 hours of gameplay, and if you want to collect everything that is available in the game, you might take at least 10 more hours to do so.
Evoland is such a weird game. It is a game that chooses to show you how electronic RPG games have evolved by integrating this evolution idea into its own gameplay and art.
The game starts with a monochrome game that feels like an NES or an old portable game. It then introduces many different art styles that slowly evolve and get more detailed until it finally becomes a 3D game.
The gameplay also changes since it goes from turn-based combat to action-adventure as if this was a natural evolution of the genre.
Either way, the game can feel a lot like Zelda when you are fighting in the 2D era, so it might interest you.
Mayhem in Single Valley
I seriously love how this game looks and plays. Mayhem in Single Valley is a funny physics action RPG game.
Its unique art style combines the use of 3D environments with pixelated textures and 2D characters, giving this game an astonishing visual identity.
In this game, you play as Jack, a kid who is having a bad day. Jack wakes up and unintentionally starts the zombie apocalypse. Your objective is quite simple, stop the world from ending and get home before dinner.
I love how this game doesn’t take itself seriously. I truly appreciate the exploration that makes it feel like a Zelda game, and the overall sense of humor presented in this title is amazing. It’s fairly easy to recommend this game to fans of action-adventure games.
Sometimes I feel like this is what a Zelda game would look like if it adopted Minecraft elements. Portal Knights is in many ways a Minecraft clone, but it does have new things and fun mechanics that differentiate it more than enough.
When you start your adventure, you pick a class that determines a lot of how you are going to play the game. There are many RPG elements to Portal Knights, and I genuinely appreciate that.
You get to adventure a lot and use your class gameplay in a combat system that feels more refined than Minecraft’s. Also, the world of Portal Knights is much more pleasant to look at. Due to how the world changes and how better it looks, it is much more enjoyable to explore the world of Portal Knight, and, at least to me personally, it feels much more like a true adventure.
On top of all that, the game has a local multiplayer mode that is quite fun.
Rogue Heroes: Ruins of Tasos
This is a cute game that will immediately make you get A Link to the Past vibes when you start playing it. The most significant difference between this game and the SNES’ The Legend of Zelda can be seen in the name Rogue Heroes: Ruins of Tasos is a rogue-lite game.
The game has a day and night cycle, you get to choose your class, and you even get to adventure along with other players.
The story is quite simple: a great evil must be stopped, so a goddess calls some heroes and asks them to save the world. It’s simple, and it feels very retro, which might be why I think it works just fine.
When it comes to graphics and gameplay, nothing here is too complex, and much of that seems to be due to the game intentionally trying to simulate what SNES games were mostly like. Either way, it’s a fun little game that sometimes feels like an old Zelda game.