News Article

The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Anniversary Edition Available For Free Right Now in North America

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

"4 Swords, 4 Free, 4 Days Only"

Hands up if you remember when Nintendo released The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Anniversary Edition for free to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the franchise? That was back in 2011, when the Game Boy Advance title was spruced up with local wireless multiplayer and released as DSiWare (on the DSi Shop and 3DS eShop) for a limited period. It was an excellent free treat, especially as it was easy to arrange some multiplayer with fellow DSi and 3DS owners.

Nintendo of America, continuing its recent policy of providing regular discounts and promotions on the eShop platforms, has re-released the free download with the tagline "4 Swords, 4 Free, 4 Days Only" — it's available now and will disappear at 11:59pm Pacific time on 2nd February. If you didn't get it the first time around (it was removed on 20th February 2012) then this is a golden opportunity; it's a freebie with a tiny file size, as it was DSiWare.

We enjoyed this a lot in our Four Swords Anniversary Edition review, so we suggest pouncing on this right away. Unfortunately this offer is only in North America, and the game is still absent on the European 3DS eShop; in addition it's only on the 3DS store this time, so those still rocking a DSi can't download it over the next four days.

Let us know if you missed this first time around and plan to download it for some multiplayer — or single-player, if necessary — shenanigans.

Thanks to Maelstrom for the tip.

From the web

Game Screenshots

User Comments (121)



SkywardCrowbar said:

This is free for 4 days as in, you get it free for 4 days then you have to pay or in that it's available for free for 4 days and you get to keep it forever?



Morpheel said:

A nice (and rather radom) surprise.

Kinda clever to have it available the same day as ALttP. Both games came bundled on the GBA.



Rezalack said:

I'll be getting this regardless, but is it possible to play single player?



Xaldin said:

@SkywardCrowbar You got to keep it forever the first time it was free so I would assume it's the same this time around.

I already picked it up the first time it was free, but this is a great opportunity for the people who didn't earlier.



ACK said:

SO thankful I can finally DL this the kids' 2DS. The only way I want to play it is with them and they are harsh on the hinges...



Ruthven said:

Sometimes been a Kiwi gamer sucks... Specials for Japan, specials for North America and even specials for Europe don’t always make there way down here
(Luckily I have already got this)



ThomasBW84 said:

@Spuratis Yep, in single player the levels are slightly different (if I remember correctly) and you manually switch between two Links.



Rezalack said:

Alright, thanks guys. I had always wanted to play this Zelda but never got a chance.. so this should be great. Unfortunately, I probably won't have anyone to play with since the only friend I know with a 3DS works terrible hours.



Jazzer94 said:

Hope NOE does this as well as my older brother didn't have a 3DS when this was originally free and we haven't played this together since are link cable broke years ago.



Shworange said:

Nice! My wife and one of my sons got a 3ds since it was last available. Now we can actually play 4 player.



Yoshi said:

This game is free, and after this is over, they won't offer it again, or won't offer it for a very long time. (Thought this game was lost forever, since it hasn't been offered since February 2012).

Once again, after this is over, there is NO WAY to get this game. Nintendo will not charge for this game, it will disappear from the eShop for a very long time, at least.



XFsWorld said:

Downloaded this about 2 years ago, it's nice that they put it back on eShop again.



SphericalCrusher said:

I too, was a day one downloader of this. I am very excited they added it to eShop again though, as my son can download it on his 3DS and my wife can get it again (It was on her old 3DS that was stolen). So now we can do 3-4 player coop. w00t!!!



TruenoGT said:

Is it still true DSiWare in that is counts against your limited DSiWare "block" count? It would be nice if it's refactored for using the 3DS storage so it's one less DSiWare game to juggle on external memory.



Nintendude789 said:

Nice! Another opportunity for those who missed the original launch! The game is epic for both single and multiplayer modes, especially multiplayer!



GeminiSaint said:

Got it the first time.
It was a lot of fun. Pretty challenging too. It took me quite a bit of effort (and a lot of cursing and swearing) to complete it!



DerpSandwich said:

Fantastic! I always regretted not getting a 3DS in time for it the first time around! (Though I really don't know why they haven't just put it in the darn eShop...)



bouncer0304 said:

I really hope that EU one will do the same. After i lost all my downloads due to complications, this is the one i really miss.



TheFatLucario said:

w00t! I missed out on this the first time around because i didn't have a DSi or 3DS at the time. Its nice this is up on the 3DS eShop again for a limited time!



JoeyZXD said:

When I saw Four Swords on the eShop earlier I told all my friends with a 3DS to download lol. Can't go wrong with free



ACK said:

@Lance168 Yeah, I was thinking how much of a shame it is to only offer this for four days. Pretty ridiculous.



Kaze_Memaryu said:

raises hand
But it was bad in my opinion. A bland, unoriginal score hunt. Both the boring stages and the easy bosses make me wonder what this game is actually trying to accomplish. There's basically no atmosphere, bad plot presentation, lame puzzles - or to make it short, everything good about Zelda games that is in this game is a worst example in itself.

It's free, so most people won't complain, but I don't see how I can praise this game for anything...



baba_944 said:

Quick game-related question: I'm at the test level to see what I've learn, how do you get over the pit?



MegaAdam said:

I assume we have to register a NNID to our 3DS to download this game, right? That may be a dealbreaker.

It's also a shame I can't get it on the DSi XL I picked up last year.



3DSfan134 said:

I'm going to download it now! Now I can play with my cousin. Thanks for the tip, Maelstrom!



HandheldGuru97 said:

I downloaded this way back when it first came out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Good for those who don't have it yet as it is probably the greatest freebie in the history of freebies. Don't miss it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Ralizah said:

Got it the first time, but this is a good opportunity for my nephew to play it.



oldscool said:

Would it really kill Nintendo to put this up on the DSi Shop as well? You'd think they'd want to get it on as many DSi, 2DS and 3DS systems as possible so it can be enjoyed by as many players as possible. Apparently, no soup for you, DSi owners!!!



CrimsonMoonMist said:

Awww, I was so excited to finally get to play the one Zelda game I never could,
then I saw it wasn't out in Europe...



Yoshi said:

Could this possibly mean that Nintendo.....might actually release GBA ambassador games to the eShop? Usually when Nintendo says limited edition, they truly mean it. But this speaks volumes to me. A limited edition title being rereleased, along with a not so stellar financial state, and an anemic release of VC titles on the 3DS currently. Are they working on the GBA virtual console?

Well, I could dream. But the stars do seem to be aligned....



unrandomsam said:

@Unca_Lz Obviously they are both free but I suspect Mario Deluxe will be able to be bought by the US so it is not the same. (I am not bothered about Original edition of Donkey Kong but as far as I know that cannot be bought either).



ikki5 said:

And you need a damn Nintendo Network ID to download it... Man, Nintendo is worse than Microsoft with this. I DO NOT WANT TO HAVE MULTIPLE NNID's.


You have Mario Deluxe coming so you cannot complain. A lot of people in NA would already have this title anyway as it was released a while ago where Mario deluxe wasn't for anyone. You guys get a new title, we get a recycled old one for a four day window to download. Plus, if I remember correctly, you guys had the chance to get this as well back when it was first released for free.



emiingham said:

I didn't have my US 3DS the first time this was released so I'm glad they've brought it back



retro_player_22 said:

Glad they are doing this again, now I can play Four Swords with my other friends who had just now gotten a 2DS/3DS/XL. I will tell them about this asap as they are all Zelda fans.



JaxonH said:

So, I own Four Swords Adventures on Gamecube, and I own this copy on my 3DS from last time they offered it free. Are they identical games? I've played about an hour of Four Swords on the Cube, but never fired up this version... I know the two were originally compatible with the link cable, but are they different at all?



ArcanineArco said:

I can complain. I completely disagree. It is not the same. I would much rather have a GBA Zelda than GB Mario Bros deluxe. Mario Bros deluxe is just a remake of the original Super Mario Bros (which is already on eshop) but with some newish stuff and features. Four Swords is a GBA game. Which are not on the virtual console, except for the ambassador ones that people got. Four Swords the first time around wasn't that long into the 3DS life cycle apparently, so the install base was no where near the same. Plenty of people will be downloading this on their 3DS for the first time. North America will probably get Mario Bros Deluxe on the eshop for purchase anyways, while we won't get this. So this is not fair at all. Just my opinion



Yodelman64 said:

I wish i offered online play though, it would make the game a whole lot better, i don't have that many friends that have a 3ds



ArcanineArco said:

@ikki5 ah fair enough. Enjoy your Four Swords .
** Goes and cries in the corner holding a screenshot of Four Swords on 3DS **



retro_player_22 said:


Yes, they are different games, this version of Four Swords is an updated version of the GBA game which was bundle with the GBA version of the Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. Originally it was to be a multiplayer mode to A Link to the Past just like how Mario Bros. is a multiplayer to the Super Mario Advance games. The original GBA version can't be play solo so unless you had two or more friends with link cables and the game, you won't ever get to play it but this Anniversary Edition fix that so now you can play solo or with multiplayer, Nintendo even add some new puzzle dungeons to this new version as well but overall it's still the same as the GBA game. The GameCube Four Swords Adventure was actually a sequel to this game though, not a port and Minish Cap being the prequel to both games.



SMW said:

Wohoo! I've been wanting to BUY this ever since getting a 3DS but its never been available until now.



Aluwolf said:

@Panamae You guys got Super Mario Land for free a few months ago, why complain about europe not getting this one? I'm sick of europeans complain they don't get anything from nintendo, when they got a 40 dollar game for free if a 3DS was purchased recently. The greed levels are too much.



Mario-Kirby said:

I didn't have the 3DS when this first was free, and I have become a huge Zelda fan recently, so of course it is downloading now.



Stu13 said:

I'm dying over how your buddy just kind of takes a load off when you tell him to stay put. This game is incredibly charming. You'd be crazy not to get this before it goes back into the vault.



Obito_Sigma said:

Yes! I got this untouched on my original 3DS but lost it a few months before the 3DS XL was released. Once I got the 3DS XL, I had so many downloads that, by the time that I found it late last year, I didn't know how a System Transfer would work, so I left it alone and gave the 3DS to a friend who needed to play Pokemon. I'm so glad that it's available again! Thank you Nintendo! This is a great apology for Pokebank or SMB3... well, almost. You still have to release the GBA games to make it a good enough apology.



Kolzig said:

Here's hoping this comes to Europe also.
This regional things really suck. This is one thing Nintendo needs to fix in the future and fast.



ted-k said:

@adamical I'm also still hesitant to create the ID after hearing of people losing all their downloaded games, and it also seems so needlessly restrictive. Locking you into one country forever? what's up with that? still, I'm tempted to do it just to play this game. I'm a sucker for zelda and never got a chance to get this before now.



XCWarrior said:

Based on the comments, I'm one of the few people who isn't a huge fan of this, and glad it was free. And I'm a huge Zelda fan... this just doesn't do it for me.



shredmeister said:

Didn't think this was going to be available again. Very nice! Got it the first time around, but I've been wanting to play this game with my nephew who also owns a 3DSXL.

I recently purchased two LOTP/Four Swords carts and a link cable for my 2 GBA SP's, because I thought that was the going to be the only way we were going to play it together. The carts were easy to find, but that link cable wasn't (got an official Nintendo cable, too).

Had this DSiWare game been available to download, I would have never gone through the trouble of finding and purchasing those 11+ year old items.

Loved the GameCube's Four Swords Adventures, btw. A remake of that one doesn't sound like a bad idea to me...hopefully someone will think of it...I'll be like, "Yeah, Good Idea! Glad you thought of it"... O_o



Panamae said:

Because a game isn't "free" if I have to buy a £150 console first.
I have a right to complain, as do you. I want both sides of the pond to get the same free software but it seems Nintendo disagrees with that statement.



rixard said:

I agree, the offers and freebies should be the same, shouldn't matter if you're in The US, Australia or Sweden.



chiefeagle02 said:

I got this the first time around for my both DSi XL and my [then] 3DS and I LOVED it, despite being limited to the single-player mode. My girlfriend got a 3DS XL for Christmas and downloaded this yesterday, so I'm looking forward to giving the multiplayer a go.



XavandSo said:

So do I.... So do I....
I come back to it when I get bored every now and then, so it'll be good for others to download a quick time filler.



Hyawatta said:

I upgraded from the original 3DS to an XL. I want to download this onto my old 3DS. I have my NNID set up on my 3DS XL. Do I need to create a second NNID on my old 3DS in order to download 4 Swords onto it?



Nestalgic said:

Oh joy. Thanks NoA. Instead of giving us a new free game like Europe and Japan got (SMB Deluxe), you rehash a game you already gave us. Why not just hand us Urban Champions again while you're at it?



Shambo said:

Still have it, downloaded it back then to all my compatible systems. While I think NOE should offer this again too, I'm not complaining. I've gotten quite a few free games for my 3ds (this one back when it first came out, 10 superb games with ambassador program, Kid Icarus 3d, Excite Bike 3d, DKCR, SM3DL (gave the code away, already had the physical game), soon Mario Bros Deluxe) and some great sales for 3ds and Wii U eShop. You just need to be there day one, with Nintendo. Then you get great stuff.



unrandomsam said:

@Shambo The ambassador program was good although the screens are too small on the first 3DS. (If they had released the 3DS XL at that point then I probably would have bought it then). The rest is worth not very much. Even the free game promotion ended up costing more than just waiting for some of the titles.



Noe said:

Is it possible to play with a friend who has a 3DS with my DSI? I already downloaded this a while ago, and I'm not sure I would like to buy a new console just for this purpose.



millarrp said:

I already had it but my girlfriend didn't. She never really got into zelda series but for that price she is willing to try it.



Sherman said:

I refused to get a NNID until now. I think it's idiotic to restrict a console to only one account and even worst to not giving you the option to log out of it unless you delete the occount and then to lose everything... even your Wii U stuff if linked. You need to get that s*** fixed as soon as possible, Nintendo. But damn, I'll get that NNID just for this one. Smart move there, Nintendo. I know this is why you did it.



artofmana said:

@DerpSandwich I totally agree. I was so disappointed I missed this the first time but wasn't in the financial position to get a 3DS. I really appreciate Nintendo offering this now. I feel this company treats those who play Nintendo products extremely well. I wish more would quickly buy into their latest hardware.



ted-k said:

@Sherman I held out until now too, but this was the moment for me also. I finally caved and set up my NNID! yeah, I can't stand all the restrictions either, but hopefully Nintendo addresses these issues soon.



LoveSugoi said:

Good to finally get a recent eshop release I want to download. And don't even have to pay for it so I still have money for whenever century we finally get SMB3. Never played a Zelda game before so hope I like it.



Shambo said:

@unrandomsam I wouldn't say that. Buying my Wii, for example, day one, cost more than waiting until now and buy it with some of the games I own used. But it was still worth it, to me. And some of the hidden gems of games I own cost more today than they did when I bought them back then. Same goed for 3DS. Many games haven't lowered in price, if not the exact opposite, and I enjoyed the system since the first day. By now I have several 3ds'es, for collection's sake, and if I wanted to get some of them now, I'd pay more than double what I payed back then. Also, having those GBA gems all on one system, together with many other games, portable above all else, is just amazing. If I got the choice today to buy it now for the new price, or for the price back then with all the 'free' games included, I wouldn't change a thing.
Sometimes I even prefer the smaller screen over the larger one, like I often prefer the GB Micro over the Advance SP.



roseverdict said:

Hey, Nintendo, if you're reading this, HELP ME! My brother wanted to get this for his DSi after I got it for 3DS and told him, but, well, what's the point of DSiWare if it isn't on the DSi Shop? Yeah, but so far I'm enjoying it. I gotta if I make an account just to say it!



Sherman said:


I know! But this and the Bravely Default demo were too good to let them go. I was so hyped with Miiverse, but when as soon as I heard about all those damn restrictions... God! I got so mad. It's just stupid. Plain Stupid.

Oh, and I wish they remove the use limitations on demos too. I thought this wasn't going to apply to Bravely Default since it has different content and if I wanna play the game over and over I should be able to do the same with the demo as well.

I better stop here or I'll be ranting forever.



unrandomsam said:

@Shambo Think the dynamics might well change. (I am not bothered about having more than one system if I am not using it then I might as well give it away to somebody who can which is exactly what I will do when a new XL system comes out after transferring my stuff). Waiting is going to be less of a problem for me because I just want to play the game and with the eshop I will pay that price not the astronomical used prices. (That is if it isn't available new). I am not a hoarder and I don't want to be either. (If something isn't being used then it is being wasted as far as I am concerned). I don't sell games on either though so I am not sure which is worse the used games shops or not being able to give stuff to my nephews any more. (Most of the time they get more out of games than me which I think is better for me as I feel less ripped off).

Leave A Comment

Hold on there, you need to login to post a comment...