Haha. I've only played half of each of them, but I liked what I played of Ages a little better. Seasons was more combat focused and personally I think that's the weakest aspect of the 2d Zelda formula. Aiming and moving with the same buttons sucks. Also Time Travel is better than Nature Shenanigans.
The basic premise of ages was always inherently more interesting. Melting ice by turning winter to summer can't really compare to jumping between two points in an area's lifetime, pre- and post- various kinds of development.
My memories of the games aren't recent enough to comment any more deeply than that, however.
I played a bit of Oracle of Seasons for the first time recently on my 3DS. It's been surreal.
In 2013, I'm using a 3DS to play an emulated version of a Game Boy Color game that came out in 2001, which reminds me of and directly reuses assets from 1998's Link's Awakening DX, which is itself a remake of 1993's Link's Awakening.
It just feels like a lot of layers when I think about it too much.
I guess the Game Boy's lifespan is just crazy, in that a 2001 game was able to use the sprites from a 1993 game. It's kinda interesting that the lack of competition in the handheld market (the Game Gear wasn't nearly as successful, nor was the...Neo Geo Pocket? Wonderswan?) led to the Game Boy going on FOREVER. And then they finally got around to releasing the GBA just for the fuck of it, because the early 2000s was probably the lowest point of portable competition for Nintendo ever, but given that the Game Boy/Game Boy Color generation lasted twelve years, perhaps Nintendo realized they should probably release something new, even with no real pressure from other companies.
Oh geez. You just reminded me that I used to be a high level moderator years ago and the Oracle of Ages/Seasons forum was one of the forums under my watch. When you put 30+ people with varying levels of power (several mod tiers) political nonsense always seems to pop out. It's always interesting how power struggles ALWAYS come out even when it's just the internet and video games.
Ages was the better game, but I believe for the best experience you wanted to play Seasons first and then Ages.
I think I picked up both of these games at the same time when they first came out and never finished either of them. They have been a bit of a white whale for me since I'm a huge Zelda fan. Recently, after playing through Link's Awakening again on 3DS virtual console I decided to tackle these games again. I was surprised to find how close I was to completing Seasons and how far I was from completing Ages. I played Ages for a while and when I stopped playing I was near the last dungeon.
My vote went to Seasons. While it might not be as fresh in my mind as Ages I'm going to trust my younger self's choice to invest more time into Seasons. Swapping between two versions of a world is something we've seen many times before in a Zelda game. Seasons takes it to four in a welcome, if small, twist on that formula. Playing through Ages recently I was slightly frustrated at how the two time periods didn't look or feel that different and I'd often get confused what time I was in.