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We'll not be remembered as just fairy tales anymore... we'll be remembered as a Legend that will echo through all time. —Princess Midna
A completely fan made game of Nintendo's The Legend of Zelda series, Hyrule: Total War seemingly came out of nowhere and in a short span of time exploded everywhere on the Internet. The game allows players to take command of many iconic characters and races from the series and assemble them into massive armies. As such, players will use those armies to wage wars across the face of Hyrule.Though technically a mod for Medieval II: Total War, the quality of Hyrule: Total War often caused it to be mistaken for an official game upon first sight. IGN even presented it alongside Skyward Sword on October 21, 2011. Hyrule: Total War is also still considered in progress, with regular updates adding in more characters and playable factions.The official board for the mod can be found here.Not to be confused with Hyrule Warriors.
Kingdom of Hyrule: Generalist. A strong all-round selection of troops but does not excel at anything.
Gerudo: Ranger. The best archers and light cavalry in the game, offset by a near-complete lack of armour.
Gorons: Elitist/Brute. Gorons hit hard, with their infantry almost as strong as other factions' cavalry. Just don't expect them to perform well from afar.
Zora: Elitist/Ranger/Loyal. Very powerful ranged troops and artillery, not as good in melee due to lack of armour. They have the best morale in the game.
Kokiri: Spammer/Guerrilla. Many soldiers who do not tire easily and move fast, but individually are weak and prone to fleeing.
Gohma: Spammer/Brute. Pretty much the definition of Zerg Rush, with the exception of some powerful high-end units.
Ordona Province: Brute/Technical/Economist. The best cavalry in the game, backed with a bonus to farming income; bordering on Game Breakers. They can also pit eagles and goats at enemies.
Lanayru Province: Ranger/Guerrilla. Good at mobility and fighting at range, but not so great up close due to light armor.
Moblins: Brute. All about charging with raw, brute force.
Deku Tribes: Spammer/Guerrilla/Technical/Pariah. Huge numbers, expert at hiding, varied units each specialised in a specific terrain, boasts the worst morale in the game. Every unit has also the ability to spit seeds at enemies.
Stalfos: Spammer/Generalist/Industrial/Loyal. Stalfos troops are recruited from the dead of those armies they defeat, letting them assemble a powerful and balanced but brittle force that neither tires, breaks nor routs.
Lizalfos: Guerrilla/Ranger. Light, fast units, specialising in flanking and ambushing.
Labrynna Regime: Spammer/Balanced/Ranger/Research. Most soldiers have poor melee skills but can field many units of Cannon Fodder (they're actually called that way) to hold enemies off. They're also the most advanced faction, able to field Gunners and Mechs.
Fairies of Tarm: Spammer/Ranger. The BEST Glass Cannons in the game, can quickly kill enemies with dazzling beams of death, but can as easily be swatted aside by normal soldiers.
Sheikah: Elitist/Guerrilla/Espionage. Very small units able to hide anywhere, outmanoeuvre enemies and gain a massive bonus in flanking. Basically melee glass cannons. Also able to subtly influence neighbours one way or another in the campaign.
Kingdom of Ikana: Elitist/Generalist. Experienced, high-quality troops that cannot be replaced easily.
Forces of Twilight: Technical. Powerful troops that excel in scaring enemies off, but tire quickly in Hyrule.
Order of the Wizzrobe: Technical/Ranger/Diplomatic. An order of avian wizards. They are devastating at a distance, but terrible up close. Each wizard attacks with a specific element. Can cause rebellions in vulnerable provinces by converting the local population and inciting revolt.
River Zora: Brutal/Industrial. A faction of raiders, they can train more troops from what they pillage in conquered cities.
Adaptational Badass: All the races and kingdoms that needed Link to save them before? They have their own armies now and can fight now.
Xenafication: Princess Zelda, Saria, the Deku Princess, and pretty much every female character that's ever appeared in Zelda series suddenly kicks ass.
In terms of character, Fi, who in the game she appeared she was just around for exposition, is a powerful unit in this game.
Particular faction examples include the Kokiri, who go from being terrified of weak monsters in-game to fielding huge armies of diminutive warriors, the Deku Scrubs, who go from easily-dispatched enemies to a tremendous force of powerful ranged-attack warriors, and Ordona, who go from a bunch of villagers terrified of a single wolf to a potentially unstoppable cavalry powerhouse.
A Nazi by Any Other Name: Downplayed with the Zora Dominion. Apparently they think anyone who does not abide by their anorexic metallic corset wearing doctrine is a lesser species and must be purified, including the Lanayru Zora.
Armor Is Useless: With the exception of the Darknuts, units wearing heavy armour seem to only gain a small defense bonus; Often invoked, as many units seem in fact to discard armour in favor of mobility or natural toughness.
Boss units, Onox in particular, like to run off and plow into giant masses of enemy troops. Despite their power this often gets them killed really fast.
The AI can't really deploy and use immobile defensive units like Mage Spires very well. As a result, these units tend to get left on the far side of the field where the best use they have is covering routing units and limiting cavalry mobility.
The AI also has difficulty using terrain effectively in custom maps. All those really nice, elevated firing positions are left unmanned by ranged units during sieges.
Assassins Are Always Betrayed: Inverted with the Sheikah, whose first character to appear in Hyrule Historia is a rogue Sheikah, and she's neither the first nor the last.
In fact, the Shadow Temple was converted into a prison for traitorous Sheikah.
Blessed with Suck: Being a Sage is almost like being a willing slave, you pretty much just do the dirty work of the Goddesses and not much else and centuries of that takes its toll. Very apparent with Saria, who was chosen against her will, so it kind of sucks for her.
Bond Villain Stupidity: Instead of killing Zelda personally, Ganon orders his minions to kill Zelda once she's done mourning her Almost Dead Guy father and leaves. Needless to say, Impa shows up and saves her. Becomesjustified when you remember that Ganon had the chance to talk to his dying mother as well; he was returning the favour.
Bring It: Most characters and troops do this at the start of each battle.
Bruiser with a Soft Center: Ganon. Upon realizing he was betrayed and left with no chance to accomplish his wish, he breaks down crying. Then we see the content of his book: childlike drawings of coexistence between Hylians and Moblins.
Costume Porn: Despite the fact that female characters tend to wear decent amounts of clothing, a vast majority of them wear corsets over their outfits. Good luck fighting a war with your lungs being crushed Princess Zelda...
It could be said Princess Zelda Took a Level in Badass for being able to effectively battle hundreds of soldiers while donning a corset.
Cursed with Awesome: The Kingdom of Ikana. While its citiziens have been cursed to relive their three-day civil war for all eternity, now that they have been unleashed upon Hyrule by Majora, they've kept the experience of these millennia of fighting and whenever they'll be killed they will just respawn from a Termina fissure. It is said even the Stalfos envy them.
Cutscene Drop: Inevitable in most missions, the only aversion is probably on the ninth mission, where to win you just have to reach a certain location.
Crapsack World: Considering virtually every race in Hyrule is going to war...
Crippling Overspecialization: While at first it may seem like this trope, they can be circumvented one way or another. Not to say it is EASY to do so.
Gorons are a melee faction who only have one missile unit (bomb throwers) which can be easily beaten by any other kind of missile unit. On the other hand Goron infantry have exceptional charge and speed because they can roll around.
Similarly the Darknuts are an infantry only faction-no archers AND no cavalry. Additionally all but two Darknut units are so heavily armored they cannot run. Yet this same armor leaves Darknuts practically immune to anything smaller than siege weaponry-and even then they can be seen getting back up the first few shots. As for cavalry, the subservient Fokka knights are almost as fast but with much more momentum. They cannot effectively fight because of small numbers and comparatively low stats but they can knock cavalry into the air to delay them until Darknuts come to finish them off.
The Fairies have the opposite problem - they are absolutely horrible at melee combat. Except why does that matter when almost all of their units can shoot lasers. Not to mention Tarm itself, see BFG.
Curb-Stomp Battle: Fighting with most boss units will end badly, unless you have masses of archers to deal with them.
Cyborg: Arguably the statue bodies that the Oocca wear to manipulate objects.
Darker and Edgier: Mass warfare, actual blood, and the potential slaughter of iconic characters from the official games.
Word of God says a darker Zelda game that he could actually take seriously again was one of his motivations for making the mod.
Dark Is Not Evil: Many races normally considered evil in the official Zelda games generally have nobler motives for their actions. It's actually implied that the Hylians are Jerkasses enforcing their will on everyone else.
In fact, the only traditional evil factions with no other motive than slaughter are the Gohma and the Phantom Army. Even the would-be tyrant manipulator Veran just wants Onox back, alongside the domination thing.
Dark Mistress: Veran, who apparently had a relationship with Onox before his untimely death and resurrection as a skeletal dragon.
Death from Above: The Great Fairies' main method of attack, as well as most archer based units in the game. Occasionally Sheikah Assassins will also dive bomb unto enemies.
Death Mountain: Oddly it seems to be inactive during the events of this game.
Death or Glory Attack: The Darknuts' combination of tremendous attacking power, heavy armor, and slow speed makes every charge into one of these. If they hit and win, they devastate the enemy. If they hit and lose and then rout, none of them survive because they'll be run down in moments by much faster enemy infantry.
Finishing Move: Occasionally performed by many units in the game if they manage to stagger their targets. Notable mentions go to Goron Fire Warriors, who smash the heads of their victims with a giant hammer.
Foreshadowing: "And we will not be remembered as just fairy tales anymore..."
Forever War: From its formation in 5000 BG, the Kingdom of Hyrule has known peace for barely two centuries.
Game-Breaking Bug: Being a mod, it's expected that there are some bugs of this nature. Notable mentions include selecting the unfinished Campaign option and then trying to switch to a Custom Battle. No longer a problem now that the campaign is actually in the game now.
One minor bug due to an omission in the data files leaves Hyrule at a tremendous disadvantage: they can only produce cavalry at Lon Lon Ranch, and there only lightly-armored Mounted Recruits. Fortunately, this can be fixed with a bit of copy-paste into the appropriate buildings entry in the data file.
Goddamned Bats: The Deku Scrubs are an In-Universe example. Deku Palace is recorded to have been constantly but unsuccesfully assaulted by Kokiri, Lizalfos and Monkeys. Why? Because the Scrubs kept endlessly harassing all of them.
God of Evil: Majora, who actually actively claims to be the lesser of two evils compared to the Goddesses.
Gray and Grey Morality: Every faction in the game seems to be capable of being assholes and heroes, contrary to their portrayals in the official Zelda games.
Guide Dang It: Some of the more esoteric factions have mechanics that are not readily apparent, along with the conditions for spawning certain units and hero characters. For example, the game doesn't outright tell you how the Wizzrobe's conversion process works. note You have to recruit bishops and put them in foreign territories. Similarly, the exact conditions to allow you to recruit mercenaries are not stated outright, and some are complex. For example recruiting Yook Smashers requires Snowpeak being occupied by a faction, and that you be at war with said faction. Other mercenaries, like Rogue Hylian Soldiers or Forest Thieves, cannot be recruited by certain factions (Hyrule for the former, Kokiri for the latter).
Hijacked by Ganon: Inverted completely in Hyrule Historia. Ganon ends up being a pawn of Dethl without even realizing it, who tricks him into a futile last stand against Princess Zelda that results in the slaughter of all his forces and his own death.
Last Request: Ganon's mother asks him to be better than the Hylians who killed her. King Nohansen asks Zelda to be avenged.
Last Stand: Ganon's mother repels six charging Hylian Knights before being taken down.
Laughing Mad: Majora, whose laugh was supposedly provided by Andy Serkis.
Leitmotif: Each playable faction in the game plays their theme when you start a custom battle.
Light Is Not Good: The reason the Church of Majora attracts so many people despite being cheerfully open about being the local equivalent of Cthulhu cultists - the Goddess factions have not made a good name for themselves.
Necromantic: Veran, who wants to resurrect Onox from the dead. Incidentally he apparently was resurrected without her knowing during the game's events. It is likely that this will not deter her efforts.
Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: All of the horrible events that take place in the game are attributed to Link going back in time to stay a little kid forever and thus messing up history. Nice one Link.
One-Federation Limit: The playable factions whose names specify their government: The Zora Dominion, the Deku Tribes, the Darknut Legion, the Labrynna Regime, the Sheikah Cadre, the Order of the Wizzrobe, the Church of Majora, the Rito Clans and the Empire of Bellum.
Averted with the Cobble Kingdom, the Kingdoms of Ikana and Hyrule and the Provinces of Lanayru and Ordona.
One-Hit Kill: Labrynna Gunners can one shot most enemies from a distance. The Essence of Tarm also has no problem instantly frying entire legions of soldiers with a pink laser beam.
Story Overwrite: Sometimes the ending cutscenes play out as if the enemy general were still alive. On mission 3 King Igos stands in the colonnade of the palace in front of a sea of bodies, but it's rather unlikely for you to have fought there. On mission 4 during Hylia and Demise's showdown neither army is anywhere to be seen, but if they were still there...
Take That: UndyingNephalim has taken numerous jabs at the direction that Nintendo has taken with the official games. The original intro encourages the player to "welcome back the lost grandness that was once The Legend of Zelda." The author seems to claim that his remarks are not intended to show any malicious intent towards Nintendo, rather they are more in line with You Have Got to Be Kidding Me!.
Tank Goodness: Zuna Ziggurats; they serve as mobile platforms for crossbowmen. Also Apparent with Labbryna's aptly named Steamtanks.
Technicolor Death: Any poor soldier hit by the Essence of Tarm's pink laser beam of doom.
The Time of Myths: In primordial Hyrule, the Druthulidi fought with one another for control of the planet, their titanic conflict shaping and ravaging the world.
Title Drop: In the final cutscene of "The Realm" of Twilight campaign, Minda narrates that Hyrule would be plunged into "Total War."
Took a Level in Badass: Without Link around, the usually conquered peoples have not only become less pleasant, but also far more capable of defending themselves against the likes of the Moblin and Gerudo. Particularly Princess Zelda, who finally dons armor, dual wields swords, and actually engages in battle after years of being kidnapped, firing arrows sporadically from a distance, or surrendering to Zant before lifting her sword in Twilight Princess.
The expansion, Great Sea, introduces the Anouki Natives who are an extraordinary far cry from their canon counterparts in Spirit Tracks.
Tron Lines: The Twili, the Fairies of Tarm, and the Kingdom of Ikana.
Trying to Catch Me Fighting Dirty: Zalunbar, who cheats at his own tournament by using archers against Ganon's forces. Unfortunately for him, Ganon sees no problem with cheating right back with his Shiekah allies.
Used to Be a Sweet Kid: Ganon is first shown as a little boy witnessing his mother being killed and his mother being killed by Hylian Knights, then Demise approaches him.
Vain Sorceress: Veran, who undergoes extraordinary pain to keep her body from collapsing into a pile of purple jello.
Victory Pose: Most units in the game do this after they slaughter a particularly large batch of enemy soldiers.
Villains Act, Heroes React: In Hyrule Hostoria, invading factions are usually the "villainous" ones, while Hyrule and other "heroic" factions are usually on the defense. Given how the Kingdom of Hyrule is the keeper of the Triforce, this is justified.
Villain Team-Up: Demise, Dethl and Vaati with their respective faction to conquer Hyrule Castle.
Visionary Villain: Ganon, who dreamed of achieving peaceful coexistence between Hylians and Moblins.
World of Badass: No matter who you are: Kokiri, Hylian, Goron, Zora, Twili, doesn't matter. If you wanna survive in this world, then you need to be a badass.
World Tree: The Deku Trees and Maku Tree, who can now apparently move around and gobble up enemy soldiers.
Would Hurt a Child: On the fourth Hyrule Historia mission, Hylia orders the slaughter of every man, woman and child in the Moblin capital. And you actually have to kill them.
Year Inside, Hour Outside: The Realm of Twilight. After thousands of years stuck in the alien planet, the Twili return to Hyrule only to find that only a century has passed in Hyrule since their imprisonment.