The Hyrulean Odyssey is section of the Link's Awakening Nintendo Player's Guide that covers the back story of all the Zelda games up to the release of that game. It is a continuation of a similar article found in the Link to the Past: Official Nintendo Player's Guide, and is is written as if it is part of the Hyrule Archives
Hyrulean Odyssey (aka The Legend)
Long ago and far away lived a magical people called Hyleans. Their magic lit up the land with wonders, but they were doomed to dwindle over the years. In time, only a few people in the land of Hyrule could be called Hyleans, and their magic was only a shadow of what it once had been. In that weaker age, an object called the Triforce held much of the land's power. When the king of thieves, Gannondorf, stole the Triforce, a new dark world was opened.
Although few true Hyleans lived in Hyrule in later days, their great works remained--soaring towers, cunning mazes, and magical weapons and tools, which were scattered, fought over, and eventually lost from knowledge. The simple Hyruleans, who now peopled the land, had no magic of their own, and so, intimes of need, they waited for heroes of Hylean blood to step forth.
The Legend of Zelda
After the downfall of Ganon, Hyrule experiended a brief Golden Age, then it declined into a rustic place of forests and fields. Many years passed, and then evil creatures began to roam the woods. Soon they grew bold. Princess Zelda, whose ancestor had helped destroy Ganon long ago, tried to take action, but she was captured and taken to Death Mountain. Impa, Zelda's lay in waiting, went in search of a hero to save the kingdom.
Soon thereafter, a young man aided Impa and, learning of the Princess' need, went off in search of her. Link battled through dungeon caves as heroically as his famous ancestor. Finally, he found Ganon restored to his old power, and the two fought a great duel. Link won the day and rescued Zelda.
Zelda II: The Adventure of Link
Magical kingdoms seldom know peace for long, so it was no surprise when Hyrule fell into the shadow once again after Ganon's defeat. At first, Link did nothing about the growing rumors of Moblins along the roads, but when Zelda fell under a sleeping enchantment, he had to act.
Link ventured far afield in his quest to rid the land of danger and darkness. He passed under mountains, visited distant towns and even crossed the sea. Everywhere he went, Link found evil creatures, but he also learned to use magic. And so it was that eventually he came to a hidden castle where he fought his own shadow.
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
Link heard a telephatic plea one night and he ran off to a great adventure. he rescued Zelda and explored Hyrule's many secrets. Before he could challenge Agahnim, he would have to win the Master Sword.
The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening
Link's Awakening tells the tell of the hero of A Link To The Past and how after his first great victory he set out on a mission of training, to hone his skills, sharpen his wits and master techniques of battle from around the world. Link sailed to foreign lands where he disciplined his mind and body. When he felt ready to return to Hyrule, he bought a small sailboat and headed across the Great Hyrulean Sea. The journey ended in a storm that crushed and sank Link's ship. Clinging to a piece of floatam, our hero floated toward a mysterious tropical shore, unconscious and barely alive.
When Link washed upon the beach of Koholint Island, he had no energy to stand or cry for help. Through half-closed eyes, he gazed out on a tropoical forest with a tall volcano rising in the distance, and he thought it was odd that the volcano was topped by a giant, spotted egg. At one point, it seemed to him that Zelda was speaking to him and that he was in a soft bed. At times, he thought he was caught in a bizarre dream.
Indeed, Link awoke in a soft bed, but the young woman who tended him was not Zelda, but Marin. She had found him and brought him home to heal. From Tarin, Marin's father, he learned that evil creatures had appeared shortly after his arrival. Then, when Link returned to hte beach to retrieve his sword, an owl flapped down beside him and told him the strangest story he'd ever heard. According to the wise old bird, Link was the hero who had come to wake the Wind Fish, and he couldn't leave until that task had been done. In the adventures that followed, Link learned that Koholint Island exists in the dreams of the Wind Fish...and he was a part of that dream.
The Adventure Continues...