If you’re a fan of top-down Zelda games, Lenna’s Inception by Bytten Studios is a game worth checking out! Not only does it pay homage to The Legend of Zelda, but it includes a few twists such as a randomly generated world and randomly generated dungeons.
The story of Lenna’s Inception starts with you playing as a teacher named Lenna whose school suddenly glitches out of existence. Lenna’s first instinct is to bestow a quest upon the chosen hero to save her school, but when the chosen hero dies she is forced to take up the mantel of the chosen hero.
Over the course of the game, the story will delve into many meta places, acknowledging itself as a game multiple times in the story. But I won’t get into spoiler territory in this article short of saying there are multiple endings which makes the short playtime of the game somewhat of a blessing. On top of that there a quite a few modes in which you might be forced to make do without one or more items, with limited health, or within a time limit.
In typical Zelda style, you’ll go through a dungeon which gives an item that helps you defeat the boss as well as gain access to the next dungeon. Given that all you receive from the bosses is a health upgrade and a little bit of story lore, it’s entirely possible to skip the bosses altogether although it will affect your ending. There’s also a lot of humor that directly references not only Zelda, but other pop-culture icons.
The main issue with Lenna’s Inception is that there is a drawback to its random generation in that the world and dungeons often lack any sense of inspiration or creativity. You might get some minor puzzles, but nothing along the lines of say the Eagle’s Tower of The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening where the entire dungeon was one big puzzle. If you play for a long while, the dungeons eventually become very repetitive and uninspired. Still, I recommend the game to anyone who is a fan of Zelda and especially loves to challenge themselves with speedruns or 3-heart runs. The game is available for only $10 and you can check out the website by clicking the link below!