Is the New Legend of Zelda Game for Kids? Parent’s Guide to Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom
With the new Legend of Zelda game, The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, set to release on May 12, 2023, we thought we’d take a look at this new, highly anticipated game in the Zelda series.
While I no longer consider myself a gamer, nor could I tell you the last time I picked up a game remote, I remember playing the original Legend of Zelda games on Nintendo back in the 80s/90s/early-2000s! The Legend of Zelda series is one of the most popular video game properties, and it’s a hit with people of all ages!
Kids of all ages are more into playing video games than ever. I have two kids who love gaming. They play everything from Mario Kart on Nintendo Switch and Roblox to Fortnite on PC and MLB The Show 2023 on PlayStation.
You probably have at least one gamer if you have kids or teens at home, and you want to make sure they’re playing age-appropriate video games. In anticipation of the release of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom.
What is Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom about?
Nintendo has already released some information about the plot of the newest Zelda installment, The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom. We know that Tears of the Kingdom is a sequel to their previous Zelda release, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Breath of the Wild ends with Link and Zelda stating they will restore Hyrule’s majesty.
Hyrule is the mythical land where the Zelda games take place. However, Nintendo has been relatively secretive about the game's plot points. Nevertheless, from clips and trailers released, players can see that Link will have some new powers he uses to fight the evil forces in his kingdom.
We imagine there will be lots of sword fights, magical beasts, and likely important battles with The Demons of Hyrule, frequent antagonists of Link that range from enormous dragons to undead spirits to devious humanoid creatures.
While it's been challenging to glean what exactly will happen during this game, some of the darker aspects may be too intense for little kids.
Not much has been released in terms of what the actual story contains, but there is footage of some dark dungeons and beasts, many familiar characters, and some new ones as well! In addition, the game will return to an open-world concept, allowing players to explore Hyrule’s map as they please.
If you’re not up on modern gameplay, most video and PC adventure games have storylines the player follows as they complete side quests and other tasks to reach the ultimate goal of winning the game.
Image credit: Flickr: Ricardo Saramago
What is Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom rated?
Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is rated E10+. So what does that mean to a non-gamer?
The rating E10+ is a rating system used by the ESRB (Entertainment Software Rating Board) to rate the content of video games.
An E10+ rating is listed as “Content is generally suitable for ages 10 and up. May contain more cartoon, fantasy or mild violence, mild language and/or minimal suggestive themes.”
Therefore, in essence, Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is considered appropriate for a 10-year-old and up. However, an age rating is merely a suggestion, and it is up to parents to determine whether a game is suitable for their child.
ESRB Ratings are as follows:
EC = Early Childhood
E = Everyone
E10+ = Everyone 10+
T = Teen
M = Mature 17+
A = Adults only 18+
RP = Rating Pending
RP+ = Rating Pending Likely Mature 17+
What age is Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom appropriate for?
While Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is listed as appropriate for kids ten and older, parents of mature younger kids may be OK with their child playing the game due to the fantasy nature. Unlike first-person shooter games or games focused on violence, Zelda is a fantasy kingdom like the settings of “Lord of the Rings” or” Harry Potter.”
Specifically, this new Zelda game is rated E10+ for fantasy violence and mildly suggestive behavior. Unfortunately, what that violence looks like, or what that behavior is, is unknown until the game is released.
Does Legend of Zelda have parental controls?
Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom does not have individual parental controls. However, the Nintendo Switch does have parental controls, which can be controlled and adjusted from an app on your phone.
These controls include setting the amount of time your child can play daily, selecting content restrictions, and creating barometric controls so your child cannot use your phone to change the settings.
Where can I buy Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom?
Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is already available for pre-sale on Amazon and trending as the #1 game in video games and the #1 game for Nintendo Switch.
Gamers can also pre-order the game at GameStop, Target, Walmart, and eBay. The game is retailing for $69.99 at its release.
If you’re a huge Zelda fan, you may want to consider purchasing the Nintendo Switch OLED Model: The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom Edition. This special upgrade is the best Nintendo Switch console to play this new game. It contains a 7-inch OLED screen, improved audio, and a unique design.
What other games are like Legend of Zelda for kids?
If your child likes adventure games and fun characters, there are some great games for them to explore.
Pink, adorable Kirby is a fun action game for kids, tweens, and teens. Kirby is one of the top Nintendo Switch games. Most Kirby Games have an ESRB Rating of E or E10+ for cartoon violence.
Animal Crossing is different from Zelda in regard to adventure. But it is a fun, creative game that allows users to create their own fantasy island. Despite its cartoony look, many teens and adults love this game. It is a family game that everyone can enjoy. ESRB Rating: E
Hob is a 2017 PC game available on Steam. Hob is a wordless narrative that requires the player to engage in problem-solving, completing puzzles to repair the planet. It’s a good game for tweens and teens who enjoy open-world, adventure-themed games. ESRB Rating: T
This PC game is for tweens and teens who love adventures like Zelda. The site states you must be 13 years of age to sign up for an account, but no ESRB rating could be located. It is a free multiplayer game that promotes teamwork and problem-solving.
If you’re a true Nintendo fan, you can’t go wrong with any Mario Bros. Games. There are so many adventures Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, and all their buddies go on; there’s something for everyone. And a good Mario Kart battle is guaranteed family fun!
The History of The Legend of Zelda Games
Like most fantasy worlds, the release of games surrounding the fantasy world of Hyrule doesn’t go in chronological order. So, to play all the Zelda games in time order, you'd have to jump through release dates and iterations.
Check out this fun article on IGN that takes you chronologically through the Legend of Zelda.
If you’re interested in the oldest Zelda game to the newest one, here is the list in the order in which Nintendo released them.
- The Legend of Zelda: Released February 21, 1986. The first Zelda game released, it actually takes place quite late in the chrono-timeline.
- Zelda II: Adventure of Link: Released January 14, 1987
- A Link to the Past: Released November 21, 1991. Many Zelda fans claim this is the best game in the series.
- Link’s Awakening: Released June 6, 1993. This game marked the transition from the SNES (Super Nintendo Gaming System) to the Gameboy. The game was also revamped for the Nintendo Switch.
- Ocarina of Time: Released November 21, 1998. Another contender for the title “Best Game Ever.” Ocarina of Time was the first Zelda game offered in 3D. It is also the game that caused the split in the Zelda timeline. In one timeline, he remains an adult; in another, he returns to childhood; and in a third, where he is unsuccessful at being the demon king Calamity Ganon.
- Majora’s Mask: Released April 27. 2000. This game follows the childhood timeline of the series and is considered the darkest of all the games.
- Oracle of the Seasons/Ages: Released February 27, 2001. This game returns to a 2D style and requires the player to beat both titles to find the true ending.
- Four Swords: Released December 2, 2002. A 2D title for Gameboy Advanced. It falls toward the beginning of the chronological timeline.
- The Wind Waker: Released December 13, 2002. This was the first game released following the adult timeline of Link after Ocarina.
- Four Swords Adventures: Released March 18, 2004. A sequel to the 2002 Four Swords.
- The Minish Cap: Released November 4, 2004. A Gameboy Adabced title that tells the tale of how Link got his signature green hat.
- Twilight Princess: Released November 19, 2006. This game was a launch title for the Wii and can be described as “Link growing up.” The characters rake on a darker, fantasy look.
- Phantom Hourglass: Released June 23, 2007. This game returns to the cartoon look and takes place right after the Wind Waker.
- Spirit Tracks: Released December 7, 2009. This game completes the trilogy of games that began with The Wind Waker.
- Skyward Sword: Released November 19, 2011. In Skyward Sword, users could play this game on the Wii using the remote, just like Link’s sword.
- A Link Between Worlds: Released November 22, 2013. Part of the Fallen Timeline series.
- Triforce Heroes: Released October 22, 2015. Offered cooperative play among three heroes that resembles Four Swords.
- Breath of the Wild: Released March 3, 2017. The prequel to the awaited Tears of the Kingdom. It uses an open-world map and results in the culmination of all three timelines.
There’s no doubt about it; the release of the newest Zelda game has gaming and Nintendo fans excited. The rating of E10+ means it may not be appropriate for the youngest gamers, but again, parents will have to look at the game once it’s released to make that final decision.
And while we don’t know much about this new and exciting game, we do know it will be full of fantasy, adventure, and epic battles.
Header image credit: Nintendo.
- ESRB. ( 2023, May 1). Ratings Guide. Retrieved May 4, 2023, from https://www.esrb.org/ratings-guide/#rating_cat
- Nintendo Life. (2023, May 1). Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom. Retrieved May 4, 2023, from https://www.nintendolife.com/games/nintendo-switch/legend_of_zelda_tears_of_the_kingdom#:~:text=We're now less than,that's where this handy.
- Polygon. (2021, September 24). Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom release date, trailers, gameplay, story, BOTW 2. Retrieved October 8, 2021, from https://www.polygon.com/23594712/zelda-tears-kingdom-release-date-trailers-gameplay-story-botw-2.
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