Which Zelda Game Has The Best Link? – Every Link Ranked From Worst To Best

To be clear, our ranking (completely objective and based on nothing but 100% facts of course) is at odds with the quality of the games themselves and is instead an attempt to analyze every facet of the link and why everyone deserves ‘the best’. This means that in some cases the hero’s appearance takes precedence, while others are based more on their unique abilities. We take everything into account. Some of the links below are technically the The same thing Link, but we separated them by game. Hey, people change! Sometimes for the better, sometimes… not.

If you’re hoping to see a Dark Link appearance in this one, we are could just a little surprise in store. However, if you are hoping for an appearance from every Link of the Shadow-y, Dark-y variety, then prepare for disappointment. The guy is cool, but let’s not distract from the real hero here.

And if you disagree, there’s a poll at the end for you to give your opinion and let us know how wrong we are! There’s no fairer way to say it.

Without further ado, let the ranking begin!

21. CD-i Link

Zelda CD-i
Image: Philips Interactive Media

We don’t have to list it all for you, do we?

Of course, we don’t consider any of the three CD-i games to be canonical, but from that baseline we think the Links can only get better. Only thing that thwarts this one at the bottom is the animated ‘Well, excuse me, princess’ link, but it doesn’t appear in any Zelda games.

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Fast forward…

20. Link’s Awakening Link (Game Boy)

Zelda: Link's Awakening GB
Image: Nintendo Life

Link’s Awakening in its original DX and Switch remastered form is a great game (we know, hot warning), but let’s not pretend that old sleepy Link at the center is one of the best in the franchise.

This is a guy who (spoilers!) sleeps throughout the game. Sure, he may seem cool in a dreambut in reality this hero is nothing more than a tired boy in dire need of some sailing tips.

19. Link’s Awakening Link (switch)

Zelda: Link's Awakening Switch
Image: Nintendo Life

For all of the reasons above, this isn’t the best Link out there in terms of abilities, but this sweet overhaul means it’s bumped up a little.

We’ll admit we love how this little fella looks in his Switch form, but words like “cute,” “adorable,” and “oh my god I just want to squeeze him” just don’t fit into this discussion.

18. Skyward Sword Link

Zelda: Skyward Sword Switch
Image: Nintendo Life

Oh Link from Skyloft. You might chronologically be the earliest incarnation of the hero we’ve seen so far, but let’s not pretend you’re the best.

Sure, you have a magical giant bird at your disposal, but even that isn’t enough to overcome Baggy Pants. And yes, it’s pretty neat to point your sword at the sky as it fills with skyward energy. But the faff’s preceding 15 seconds, as you smack it in all directions to try and point that cursed blade up, erodes your street credibility. you big shit

17. Four Swords (Adventure) Link

Zelda: Four Swords
Image: Nintendo Life

What do you mean you forgot that this game was even part of the main timeline! How could you!

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This is the first appearance of the ‘Toon Link’ line on this list. Being able to split his body into four sentient, color-defined versions of himself is a pretty neat ability, we have to admit, but the limited skills displayed by this version of Link were enough to take him quite far to be placed at the bottom of the list.

The four links shown here have all the limitations of those in Four Swords and Tri Force Heroes (yes, we group them), but with the added bonus that they can actually pull the job and defeat both Vaati and Ganon.

16. Shadows / Dark Connection

Zelda: Dark Link
Image: Nintendo Life

There he is! See? We said we wouldn’t let you down.

Is this version of Link one of the coolest out there? Yes he is. As above with Fierce Deity Mask Link we would argue, although we have excluded masks from that list.

However, since the whole point of this incarnation is that he’s easy to defeat (some more so than others *shakes fist*), we can’t really say he’s “the best Link” right now, can we? ? The coolest maybe, but not the best.

15. Hyrule Warriors link

Zelda: Hyrule Warriors
Image: Nintendo Life

Not a ‘Mainline Zelda’ link, but worth a nod we think.

In terms of design, this link is pretty awesome. He’s got those smooth features, fluffy hair, and even a suave blue scarf. We also have to respect his ability to take on massive hordes of enemies at once, but compared to what we know from Link, the special abilities here just don’t do his looks justice.

14. Adventures of Link… Link

Zelda II
Image: Nintendo Life

This is a very similar link to what we see in the first entry of the series, that’s right. But with its fresh side-scrolling perspective in the towns and dungeons, this iteration of the hero commits the unforgivable crime of constantly reminding us that Link isn’t wearing pants.

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Sure, there are some key frames showing the hero in his tan tights, but we all know what this pixel art is telling us, and we know it must be drafty…

13. Legend of Zelda Link

The Legend of Zelda
Image: Nintendo Life

Before you say it, yes, we understand that Link is clearly not wearing pants here either, but the advantage of the top-down perspective is that we don’t have to think about it every step he takes.

The graphic limitations of this pixel theme also mean that this is a hero with light green eyes or eyebrows depending on how you look at him. Bold hair choices like these are more than enough to move the list up a few spots in our book.

12. Oracle of Seasons Link

Zelda: Oracle of the Seasons
Image: Nintendo Life

Now we are entering the realms of links with serious power. Not only does this link have a cute art design (check out the ribbon on that hair!), but the hero can literally change the seasons at will with a magic wand.

Look, it might not be the best special ability in the franchise, but during the cold winter months, the thought of being able to switch things to BBQ weather instantly sounds pretty appealing to us.

11. A link to the past link

Zelda: Link to the Past
Image: Nintendo Life

For many of us, the design for A Link to the Past Is what Link looks like. He’s got the voluminous hair, the right shade of green on his tunic and hat, the knee-high boots, and the ill-considered tunic length. he is link In the game, he even has the added flare of those bright pink locks just to shake things up a bit.

So why is he in the middle of this list? Because he’s the vanilla choice. A glorious blank canvas for future iterations. He looks just like Link should looks and behaves exactly like Link should act, but it lacks that certain something that defined later versions.

That’s the first half — page two waits for the top 10 links…

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