Video Game / The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

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"Open your eyes... Wake up, Link..."

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is the 19th installment in The Legend of Zelda series, as well as the 6th fully 3D installment, following The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword.

The game opens with Link waking up from a deep sleep, beckoned by a mysterious voice. The voice tells him that Hyrule needs its hero once more. Link receives a strange item called a Sheikah Slate, which serves as a guide to his quest, and sets out into the world with little more than the clothes on his back... which he has to find in a chest first.

But Hyrule has changed while Link has slumbered. One hundred years ago, a great evil known as the Calamity Ganon appeared and ravaged the land. Unable to be defeated, it was sealed away in Hyrule Castle. The kingdom fell into ruin and nature slowly reclaimed what had been destroyed. While trapped within the castle, the Calamity Ganon has continued to grow in power, and it is up to Link to stop the Calamity Ganon before it breaks free and destroys the world.

First revealed at Nintendo's 2014 E3 event, Breath of the Wild uses a Wide Open Sandbox element for its world, building on the similar open world setup reintroduced to the series in 2013's The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worldsnote . The game uses a cel-shaded art design mixed with realistic proportions just like Skyward Sword, but unlike Skyward Sword's post-impressionist style, Breath of the Wild's style is more of a mix of anime and gouache paintings.

Breath of the Wild is noteworthy for taking a departure from previous conventions of the franchise, incorporating a variety of RPG Elements from other open world games. Link now has to scavenge Hyrule for items, weapons, and equipment, as well as hunt, forage, and prepare food to restore his health. The world is much bigger than any other Zelda game before it, and Link can now climb any tree, building, or cliff with ease, giving players the chance to explore every nook, cranny, and mountaintop. Link can also find and equip a wide variety of weapons and armor, allowing a greater degree of customization than ever before.

Another series first is that the game features extensive voice acting, not only in Japanese and English, but in all the other supported languages as well.note 

The game was released worldwide on March 3, 2017, as a dual release for the Wii U and Nintendo Switch consoles. It's both the last first-party game for the former and one of the launch titles for the latter.

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  • 100% Completion: The challenge of getting 100% completion is quite daunting. The game's Completion Meter requires the player to physically visit every location on the map, complete all 120 Sheikah Shrines and 4 Divine Beasts, and gather all 900 Korok Seeds.
    • If you truly want to complete everything, You'll find that there's an additional 16 armor sets (plus 15 individual armor pieces) to collect and upgrade, 18 memories to rediscover, 76 side quests to tackle, 14 Resurrection Towers to activate, 385 photos to take for the Hyrule Compendium, 84 Miniboss "Medals of Honor" to grab, make every food recipe, and a handful of bridles and saddles for your horse companion. Oh, and if that isn't enough for you, you can buy a number of Zelda amiibo (and the DLC) to unlock some exclusive armor sets/pieces and Epona.
  • Ability Required to Proceed: Despite being a series staple, this is only used sparingly.
    • In order to leave The Great Plateau, Link needs some way to stop the fall from killing him. In the process of getting said paraglider, Link is required to get every other exploration ability — once you're done with the prologue, there's nowhere you aren't capable of going, no shrine you aren't capable of clearing (assuming you can handle their combat difficulty).
    • If you choose to free the Divine Beasts, you will need to obtain certain items in order to lower their defensesnote , but you're not required to use these items while inside the dungeons or against the bosses.
    • If you want the Master Sword, you'll need at least thirteen hearts to survive its test.
  • Acceptable Breaks from Reality: Despite the game being highly realistic in a number of areas, there are several liberties taken to make the world easier to get around.
    • Link's "weight" is always the same regardless of what he has equipped. This means climbing up a wall while semi-naked and climbing up a wall in plate armor while wielding a greatsword bigger than Link is takes the same amount of time and stamina.
    • For that matter, the climbing system is fairly liberal with what you can climb. Link can hang on to vertical walls no problem and can climb most surfaces with no issues. The only instance of being unable to climb a wall is in the shrines and beasts as it would break the puzzles.
    • While weather and temperature matter, Link never needs to eat, sleep, or drink (although you can recover Hearts via all three methods).
    • When it is raining, Link cannot climb due to how wet everything is. However, once the rain subsides, the area is completely dry immediately and Link can resume climbing. While normally in real life, surfaces wet from the rain (or close proximity to waterfalls) would still likely remain wet for a while, this is done so as to not make the player wait even longer for the rain's effects to subside.
    • You don't actually have to wear an entire armor set to gain enough elemental resistance in most cases. Usually, you only really need two to, say, survive the cold atop the Hebra summits, allowing Link to wear warm clothes on his head and torso, but wear nothing but his skivvies below the waist.
    • The stable operators will remind you that a horse is not magical and cannot answer a summons if they're too far away, unlike previous games where Epona will appear instantly when called. However, the stable staff themselves can retrieve a horse instantly, no matter where it currently is.
    • Despite the potential for falls to be fatal if done from too great a height, bodies of water are always safe to land in and no damage is sustained from doing so.
  • Acquired Poison Immunity: In the Vah Ruta quest, Shock Arrows are required to disable the beast. Since the Zoras are an aquatic race, they can't touch the arrows without getting seriously hurt. One Zora keeps touching a Shock Arrow in the hopes of building an immunity to it over time, but it never works.
  • Adam Smith Hates Your Guts: Beedle makes a return, recurring at stables, bazaars, and other rest stops Link passes through. He always stocks arrows and a selection of critters just right for combating the area's natural hazards. He also overcharges for the arrows compared to any other merchant and the critters can be gotten for free in the right places, but that's the price of convenience.
  • Adaptational Badass: Several staple enemies of the series have got an upgrade.
  • Adult Fear:
    • Zelda:
      • She dedicated her entire life to a cause, but in the end she failed to do what she was supposed to.
      • The fact that she blames her own incompetence, even though she did everything that she could.
      • The way her father treats her, as seen in the memories. If you read his diary, you can see that he knew how much he was harming their relationship, but for the sake of Hyrule he did what he had to.
    • If an NPC sees you on the edge of a bridge, he will think you are trying to commit suicide and will try to talk you out of it.
  • After the End:
    • The game takes place in a Hyrule whose civilization has undergone many years of decline after a great disaster, and the natural world has taken over.
    • Even 100 years ago, Hyrule appears to have been this. The Sheikah technology is 10,000 years old, but Hyrule is in Medieval Stasis. It's stated that the fall of the Sheikah led to it becoming Lost Technology, and Hyrule never regained that kind of advancement again. The towers, shrines, and ancient weapons are left over from a bygone era that was left as decaying ruins even at Hyrule's most recent "height".
  • Agony of the Feet: Link can kick open small chests like usual, but make him do it barefoot and he'll wince in pain for a brief second.
  • Alternate Self: Provided one has the amiibo, Wolf Link from Twilight Princess can be summoned to fight alongside the Breath of the Wild incarnation of Link.
  • All Your Powers Combined: Calamity Ganon's physical body has the powers and attributes of each Blight Ganon.
  • Amazon Chaser: There are several Hylian men who come to the Gerudo Desert for the sole purpose of meeting and getting a Gerudo girlfriend.
  • Ambiguously Gay: Bolson, the head of a home construction company based in Hateno Village, is a flamboyant and effeminate man who wears pastel pink pants with a matching headband and a single earring in his right ear. He makes lots of construction puns that sound vaguely like Double Entendres, and thinks Link plopping down 3 grand on a house is very "studly".
  • American Kirby is Hardcore: The North American and Japanese box art differs to the European box art, with a darker tone of color for the former than the latter. The EU box art also has Link looking like he's preparing for adventure, while the NA/JP box art has Link holding his sword and shield getting ready for combat action.
  • An Axe to Grind: Axes are one of the new weapon types in the game. Aside from using them in combat, they can also be used to chop down trees.
  • And the Adventure Continues: After the main story is completed, Link and Zelda agree to keep exploring the new world and continue their research in hopes of restoring the kingdom of Hyrule someday.
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: Your reward for completing all 120 shrines is the Wild armor set. Its stats are very good (but not unrivaled), and the Set Bonus from wearing all 3 pieces powers up your Master Sword's beam attack, but the most attractive thing about it is the cosmetic effect of finally giving Link his classic Iconic Outfit which he had gone without for most of the game.
  • An Interior Designer Is You: You can buy a house in Hateno village and decorate it. Most of the additions are preset, but there are also mounts for weapons, bows, and shields.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • While your horse will only heed a call when near enough, they'll just warp to any stable that you take them out of (on top of there always being a shrine near a stable).
    • You can fast travel out of any battle except for those with the Blight Ganons and Calamity Ganon himself. Notably, this includes other boss battles like Master Kohga.
    • You can buy the photo for an entry in a specific category of the Hyrule Compendium for a small fee, in case you're having trouble registering something. Upon beating the game, this includes the bosses, preventing them from being permanently missable.
    • The Champion's Weapons can be reforged in the event that they are severely damaged or even broken to prevent them from being Too Awesome to Use. One of the characters involved with each gift will tell you what sort of material you need to make a new one. This does require the use of diamonds, but only one per reforge, and there's a Zora who trades them for 10 easily-located Luminous Stones. It also includes a tier 1 version of it which can typically be found lying around the town every blood moon. (If not on the smith's desk in the case of the Rito)
    • Torches and raft sails are not physical objects that your weapons can hit, sparing you from the possibility of your torches and Korok Leaves breaking at crucial times.
    • If you aren't equipped with a bow or melee weapon and you pick one up, you'll automatically equip them for use right away. Very handy for moments when your weapon breaks and you salvage another one quickly or if you had dropped your gear from being electrocuted.
    • The very first tree you can climb once you start the game has the exact height to reach the top with a full stamina wheel. If you happen to fall by accident, you will take two and a half hearts of damage, which is just enough to not kill you.
    • Every single major landmark, from major towns to stables to fairy fountains, will always have a shrine out in the open very near to it to give you a fast travel location so you're not forced into excessive backtracking.
    • The health bars of bosses that have been defeated previously are labeled as such, so players know they don't have to engage them again for the sake of 100% Completion. This even applies to Calamity Ganon.
    • During the Final Battle, your horse will never refuse your commands so you don't have to worry about the horse suddenly not wanting to sprint or steer.
    • The game includes a hidden mechanic that protects players at full hearts or better from getting One-Hit-Killed, leaving them instead on their last quarter-heart. This is in addition to the AutoRevives of Mipha's Grace and carrying a fairy in your pocket. However, it's only effective at full hearts, will not save you from damage that surpasses its threshold, and abrasion or fall damage may well wipe out your last hit point anyway.
  • Arc Symbol: The Silent Princess flower, which is a rare breed that may be dying out. The flower represents both Zelda (in her frustration over the position she's been forced into in life) and the hope of Hyrule to flourish after disaster. The final shot of the Golden Ending is of a cliffside covered in these flowers, symbolic of Hyrule finally undergoing a rebirth after the defeat of Ganon.
  • Archaeological Arms Race: Hyrule's main plan 100 years ago was to dig up Lost Technology built by the Sheikah eons ago to beat Ganon the last time around, and deliberately recreate the legend. However, having an incomplete knowledge of how the magitek worked, plus missing a few key details (such as the Sheikah Towers and the intended use of the Sheikah Slate) meant that Ganon ended up turning their own weapons against them.
  • Arrows on Fire: In addition to Fire Arrows making a return in this game, Link can set a regular arrow on fire to achieve a similar (albeit weaker) effect.
  • Artificial Brilliance:
    • Horses have their own AI that allow them to move and avoid any obstacles without any input. As Aonuma said, "Real horses don't run into trees very often." They also have personalities related to their bond with Link, and have to be tamed before their behavior is useful; a tamed horse will follow roads automatically.
    • The enemy AI in this game is some of the most advanced yet. If they have a wooden weapon, they'll set it on fire to improve its effectiveness; if they're disarmed, they'll try to retrieve their weapons as quickly as possible, or otherwise improvise with whatever they can find, such as sticks, small rocks and even Sheikah Orbs and their fellow monsters. (Giant Mooks such as Hinox will even pick up trees and use them as weapons); if bombs are thrown in their path, they'll avoid the blast's reach or kick it back towards Link, and if armed with ranged weapons, they'll snipe Link from a safe distance; they even hunt animals sometimes to gather food.
    • NPCs have their own daily routines, so they aren't just standing around indefinitely waiting for you to talk to them (except shopkeepers). They also might change their behavior if it's raining.
    • Hinoxes don't protect their eyes with their hands initially, but if you give them an arrow in the eye for their troubles, they'll quickly wise up and start doing so.
    • Moblins without shields will wise up once they're been shot by arrows and know where Link is. They will zigzag their way to Link to avoid further arrow fire instead of making a beeline for him.
  • Artificial Stupidity: Animals and enemies aren't the brightest around fire. Cuccos can repeatedly walk into the same fire, or Bokoblins can burn themselves to death by walking into their campfire. Bokoblin cavalry found on shores may accidentally ride into deep water, drowning themselves but leaving the horse to swim back to safety.
  • Artistic License – Physics:
    • Rafts can be moved by blowing air on their sails with a leaf. In accordance with Newton's 3rd Law, this would be ineffective in real life; the better method would be to blow air off of the raft in the opposite of the direction one wishes to go, which is indeed how wind physics work in all other Zelda games.
    • The scoop in the Sunken Scoop shrine doesn't create any waves when you move it through the water, which makes it possible to come from under the balls to lift them out. In real life, you'd be pushing the balls out of the way when you move the scoop under them. This shrine also incurs some Fridge Logic with how the task is performed (see the Fridge page).
    • Link's able to climb up surfaces that seem too smooth for anyone short of Spider-Man to climb up.note  Bizarrely, the tips screen specifically mentions Shrine walls are too slick to grab onto, which just opens up a whole slew of questions.
    • Lightning can target both Link and enemies during thunderstorms if they're holding metal weapons or shields. While the chances of getting struck by lightning in real life period is anywhere from a 1-in-600,000 to 1-in-960,000 chance, lightning tends to strike the tallest available object and "favors" striking the most conductive material around.
    • Lampshaded by one scientist who is studying the Rito. He concludes that they shouldn't be capable of flight because their wings are too small to lift their bodies. To help with his research, he runs a minigame asking Link to paraglide as far as possible. The paraglider, being roughly the size of an umbrella, is also much too small to do what it does. Which makes it the perfect test, really.
  • Automatic New Game: If there are no save files present, the game will start with a black screen with "Press A" as the only thing displayed.
  • Automaton Horses: Completely averted. Horses have their own AI and their own temperaments. Each horse has a likelihood of disobeying your commands depending on their temperament, and to decrease this likelihood, you have to increase your bond with the horse by soothing it when it does obey your commands and feeding it food like apples. Also, if you release the control stick to let them move on their own, they divert around trees and obstacles.
  • Auto-Revive: Fairies and Mipha's Grace both heal Link when he falls in battle. Mipha's Grace even gives temporary bonus hearts.
  • Awesome, but Impractical:
    • Horses, due to the more realistic way the game handles them. Despite the increased movement speed, you're actually quite limited in where you can go with them, as they will naturally refuse to jump off cliffs or climb mountains. Adding to this, the faster, stronger horses have wilder temperaments, so catching/buying more ideal mounts can result in you getting one that more frequently disobeys your commands. Finally, unlike in previous games, your horse can't teleport from across the world if you try to whistle for it; the only way to instantly summon them is to go to a stable.
    • The physics engine in this game is incredibly robust and allows for a lot of outside the box tactics. Unfortunately, not all of them are practical:
      • With enough octo balloons, it's possible to create functional airships in the game. Unfortunately, they require a lot of precise setup and one wrong move risks Link falling off, not making them very practical for longterm travel. They also pop after a set period of time.
      • Similarly, people have discovered that, with the proper setup and enough octo balloons, it's possible to fly your horse around the map! Unfortunately, nine times out of ten, you'll end up killing them in the process, and there's not many places where flying your horse to would actually be useful.
      • People have managed to create infinite prop surfing machines in this game. Unfortunately, while they offer a lot of vertical airtime, they aren't too useful for travel.
      • Normally, you can't lift the object you're standing on with Magnesis. It's possible to stack two metal objects on top of each other, though, and lift the bottom one to fly forever. However, it's tricky to stay balanced, tends to drift in one direction or another, and the higher you go the more likely something can go wrong.
  • Back Stab: Link can perform a powerful Sneakstrike by attacking unaware enemies from behind. It deals a lot of damage (weapon damage x8), potentially killing the target.
  • Bad Moon Rising: A Blood Moon fills the night periodically, and causes all defeated enemies to respawn at their camps. If you're unlucky, this happens while resting at a campfire and you wake up surrounded by Moblins and Bokoblins. You can also get really unlucky and have the Blood Moon rise during the final boss battle, which fully heals the boss.
  • Bag of Holding:
    • Double Subverted. Being a Zelda game, you expect it to be a given, but gameplay shows Link carrying his quiver, bow, weapon, and shield all packed on his back (strongly resembling official art for the first game). However, if you change equipment — say, a sword for an axe — you will see just the axe on your back. The rest of the equipment still sits tightly stored away in your pouch of holding.
    • Zigzagged with all you can pack away. Items like materials and armor can be stashed away without limit, while there's a 60 item limit on how much cooked food and elixirs you can carry. Melee weapons, bows, and shields have a set limit on how many you can pack away, but there is a collectible item you can trade in to a certain NPC in order to increase those limits: weapons cap out at 19, shields at 20, and bows at 13. The absurdly low cap for bows is due to arrows sharing the same inventory, while the Master Sword and the Bow of Light have their own dedicated inventory slots in the Weapons and Bows & Arrows pages respectively.
  • Balloonacy: Octo Balloons can be dropped on objects, attaching on touch and lifting them into the air; this includes rocks, bombs, and even heavy things like rafts and minecarts.
  • Bat out of Hell: The Keese appear again, except this time, they resemble their Dark World counterparts from A Link to the Past, as they sport only one eye. They can sometimes be found flying in swarms that will divebomb Link if he gets too close.
  • Battle Boomerang: A class of weapons you can find. Unlike previous games, you can use it as a melee weapon, use the throw action to throw, and use the action button to catch it. Two-handed giant boomerangs can also be found, which do more damage and have a wider range.
  • Battleship Raid: The Divine Beasts, a group of gargantuan war machines, serve as the game's plotline dungeons. Link has to solve puzzles in inside each Beast before defeating the boss within.
  • Beautiful Void: The Great Plateau is a downplayed example. Only a few small groups of enemies, a few birds, and a mysterious old man are alive to join you, all the rest is beautiful scenery and the sound of the breeze, with little in the way of music or even sound effects.
  • Bee Afraid: When a beehive is knocked down, a swarm of angry bees will attack the closest thing they see. This can either be any enemy unfortunate enough to be near one, or Link if he's too close.
  • Beef Gate: Some areas are guarded by powerful enemies that make it difficult to explore those areas early in the game. A Downplayed example as these are far from insurmountable, and a sufficiently skilled and/or determined player can still do things in pretty much any order they want.
  • Bequeathed Power: Each of the Champions bestow their magical powers to Link when he liberates their respective Divine Beasts; Mipha's Grace restores Link's life if he runs out of hearts and gives a few extra hearts, Urbosa's Fury is an area-of-effect lightning attack, Revali's Gale allows Link to leap high into the air, and Daruk's Protection renders Link impervious to damage.
  • BFS: The Claymores, one of the weapon types. Their weight allows Link to easily knock shields out of his opponents' hands, leaving them vulnerable to his attacks. The only downside is that, like with all the other two-handed weapons, he's unable to use a shield.
  • Big Fancy Castle: Hyrule Castle. Emphasis on big since it can be seen from almost all corners of Hyrule.
  • Big, Stupid Doodoo-Head: One "traveler" who is obviously a Yiga assassin in disguise will gush about Master Kohga. Link has the option to say he "has a big dumb belly", which naturally doesn't go over well.
  • Bilingual Bonus: The new Sheikah writing is all over the place in this game; some examples spell out "Goalpoint", and "Gyros".
  • Bittersweet Ending: Standard-issue for The Legend of Zelda. Calamity Ganon is sealed away, and Link and Zelda are reunited, but many good people, like the King and the Champions, had to die to make it all happen and the Hyrule kingdom is still fragmented. Also, Ganon's defeat is only temporary and Zelda implies he will return in the future. Not all is lost, however, as Link and Zelda agree to continue their research and bring Hyrule back to its former glory.
  • Blade on a Stick: Link can wield a spear as a type of weapon. It has more range than the other weapons, but since it's a two-handed weapon, Link can't use a shield while wielding it.
  • Blackout Basement: The Typhos Ruins are shrouded in a perpetual darkness and is surrounded by a mud pit. the only way to see a few feet ahead of you is with a lit torch and lighting statue torches. The main room in Vah Rudania is pitch black due to the ceiling being closed and the way forward also requires torches to be lit in order to find your way around. Once you get the map, the ceiling opens up and everything lights up.
  • Bloodless Carnage: Typically for the series, you can hack into your enemies with swords, spears, and even woodcutting axes, all of which logically should cause gore to fly around like confetti. Should, but doesn't.
  • Blow You Away: One of the available weapons is a large Korok Leaf, which, similar to the Deku Leaf from Wind Waker, sends out a gust of wind when swung.
  • Blue Is Heroic: Link's main outfit used in memories and most promotional art is the blue Champion's Tunic. In addition, Zelda's 'adventurer' outfit is predominantly blue, and all the Champions incorporate blue into their clothing. The Guest Star Party Members that help Link board the Divine Beasts also have a hint of blue in their designs, albeit to a smaller extent.
    • Additionally, the Sheikah glyphs on Towers and Shrines and freed Divine Beasts will change from orange to blue upon completion.
  • Boom, Headshot: Enemies suffer much more damage from arrows if they're shot in the head.
  • Boring, but Practical:
    • Hearty and Enduring food. When cooking, if the player uses a Hearty ingredient while cooking, then the end result will be a full healing item that also adds bonus hearts, and Hearty ingredients are not too difficult to find. At lower health, stronger effects will give Link even more hearts, while at higher health, only one or two is needed and a full heal is very welcomed and also simple to create. As for the Enduring food, it is the same but with Stamina, and it is especially effective when the Stamina Wheel is maxed. In a pinch, if Link runs out of Stamina, some food with an Enduring effect will recover his Stamina to full and add some more Stamina to use.
    • There's quite a bit of potential for creative combat. That said, you can always just use your weapon.
    • The runes you receive allow you to do things like cause huge explosions, manipulate huge metal objects, and freeze things in time. However, one of the most versatile runes is Cryosis. All it does is create pillars of ice out of nearby water, but it can be incredibly useful, creating shields against ranged attacks, allowing you to cross bodies of water, and even ascend waterfalls without having to get the Zora armor.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing: Lynels return, and are by far the toughest regular enemies in the game. The strongest Lynels are roughly as powerful as Calamity Ganon; yet due to not technically being classified as bosses, they can still be vaporized by a single Ancient Arrow.
  • Boss Rush: Trying to speed through the game by challenging Ganon right off the bat will have the player fight Windblight Ganon, Waterblight Ganon, Fireblight Ganon, Thunderblight Ganon, and Calamity Ganon one after another with no breaks in between.
  • Bottomless Magazines: Unlike Link, enemies have unlimited arrows, and their weapons never break.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: The Wild armor set, which gives Link his classic Iconic Outfit, upgrades the Master Sword's beam attack, and has generally high (but not unrivaled) stats, is a borderline example. It can only be obtained by completing all 120 Sheikah shrines, so once you have it, there's probably very little left to do.
  • Breakable Weapons: All weapons and shields break after varying degrees of use. Even the Master Sword is not entirely exempt from this game mechanic, but instead of breaking and disappearing from your inventory, it "runs out of energy" and goes on a 10-minute cooldown timer before it can be used again.
  • Bribing Your Way to Victory: Most amiibo, including the stupendously inexpensive Animal Crossing cards, give you extra supplies (food, mushrooms, plants, etc.) once a day. 30th Anniversary Series and Super Smash Bros. Legend of Zelda amiibo all give items relevant to the character, including exclusive weapons and armor (such as their green tunics). Wolf Link from the Twilight Princess HD remake gives you a battle companion in the form of Wolf Link, and SSB Link gives you Epona.
  • Bridge Logic: Trees can be chopped down to create makeshift bridges.
  • Broomstick Quarterstaff: One of the melee weapons is a Wooden Mop. Now, you too can scrub all the floors in Hyrule.
  • Bullet Time:
    • If Link fires arrows in midair, either by leaping off his horse or falling from a significant height, the game moves in slow motion for easier aiming. This uses up a lot of stamina, though, and time returns to normal when you run out.
    • A well-timed dodge from an enemy attack slows down time so that Link can pummel them mercilessly with a "Flurry Rush", in a similar vein to the "Witch Time" mechanic from Bayonetta. "Flurry Rush" with a sword is similar to the "Triforce Slash" Final Smash of Link and Toon Link in Super Smash Bros..

    C-G 
  • Calling Your Attacks: During a quest, a Goron named Gonguron screams "GORON POWER, GOOO!!!" before starting digging like a maniac in a cave to reveal a shrine.
  • Carnivore Confusion: In Gerudo Town, there is a Rito named Frita browsing the various meats for sale. She's disappointed that they don't have any poultry. This is justified, however, as the Rito themselves appear to be modelled after birds of prey such as falcons and eagles, which are carnivores and are known to sometimes eat smaller birds.
  • Cave Behind the Falls: Several, particularly in the Faron region due to the area's higher than normal level of waterfalls. Some even contain shrines.
  • Cel Shading: A much more advanced visual engine than that of The Wind Waker (even the HD remake). The total visual design is said to be inspired by Japanese animation.
  • Censored for Comedy: The Dubious Food is so disgusting-looking that they had to censor it with pixelation.
  • Cheerful Child: Nearly all of the children NPCs you meet are preciously cute and cheerful with some of them wanting to grow up to be like their heroes or parents.
  • Chest Monster: A first for the series. Although, the actual chest isn't the monster. It's the Octorok wearing it on his head, hiding underground, waiting for someone to take the Schmuck Bait. Wearing the Champion's Tunic spoils the surprise, however, displaying the Octo's health points even when hidden. Additionally, these chests don't register as being metallic if you use the Magnesis rune, unlike the actual chests they resemble.
  • Chromatic Arrangement:
    • The Guardian's blessings, Daruk is Red, Mipha Blue, Revali Green, Urbosa Yellow.
    • Also the runes used to scan for interaction with the game world, Magnesis Red, Cryonis Blue, Stasis Yellow.
    • And the arrows, Fire, Ice and Light arrows all reappear in their traditional red, blue, yellow arrangement. Bomb, Ancient, and Shock arrows are also red, blue, and yellow respectively.
  • Clothes Make the Legend: Averted. Link can loot clothing and gear from various places. The promotional art instead features Link in a blue tunic. His iconic green cap and tunic can be obtained when the player completes all the shrines.
  • Colossus Climb: Large enemies, such as Talus and Hinox, can be climbed onto.
  • Companion Cube: A girl named Loone has adopted one of those orbs required to access some Sheikah shrines, calling it Roscoe. She refuses to part with it unless Link brings her pictures of three different types of Guardians.
    Loone: So smooth and ancient...
  • Composite Character: Lizalfos can now be found lurking in rivers, lakes, and the ocean, and can shoot projectiles at Link, making them reminiscent of River Zoras, a role that's also continued by water-dwelling Octoroks as in past 3D Zeldas. They also favor boomerangs like the old Goriyas.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • The three springs Zelda prays in to awaken Hylia's power are identical to the Skyview Spring from Skyward Sword, albeit more ruined by time.
    • During the ceremony that Daruk suggested to commemorate Link's ascension to being Zelda's personal knight:
      Zelda: Whether skyward bound, adrift in time, or steeped in the glowing embers of twilight, the sacred blade is forever bound to the soul of the hero... Over the seas of time and distance, when we knew the golden power of the goddess.
    • In another scene, she also says that legends tell of a voice speaking from within the Master Sword, and asks if Link can hear it.
    • Urbosa mentions how the Calamity Ganon was said to have reincarnated into a Gerudo body in the past, a reference to the villain's human persona, Ganondorf. In that same cutscene, she refers to Nabooru, calling her a legendary hero of the Gerudo.
    • Plaques on the road to Zora's Domain talk about Zora history. One of them talks about the Sage Princess Ruto.
    • In the first game, Link begins outside and enters a cave to speak with an old man, whereas in Breath of the Wild, Link begins in a cave and goes outside to speak with an old man. When the old man asks what Link plans to do with a torch, Link can respond "It's a secret," referencing the first game's "It's a secret to everybody" line.
    • The map is filled with nods to the series, from recurring locations to various landmarks named after past characters.
    • The Ranch Ruins are pretty clearly the ruins of Lon Lon Ranch.
  • Contrived Coincidence: Some of the Sheikah Shrines' trials are simply getting access to the shrines in the first place. While a lot of the trials to access them are sensible enough to have been prepared during their construction (such as collecting scales from the Divine Dragons or solving an ancient riddle), some of the "trials" tied to the freebie shrines are orchestrated by people born long after the respective shrines' architects. They can range from winning the key orb in a sand seal race to preparing a drink for a lost and fatigued Gerudo blocking the access terminal on the otherwise freely-accessible shrine.
  • Convection Schmonvection: Played with. Temperature plays a huge role in the game, with Death Mountain and the Gerudo Desert to the west being quite hot. Death Mountain in particular takes it even further, with wooden gear literally bursting into flames the higher you go up the summit, to say nothing of the damage being dealt to you. On the other hand, you can stand within inches of lava in nothing but your underwear, and if you've drank a Fireproof Elixir, or are wearing a piece of the Flamebreaker armor set, such as the helmet, you'll be none the worse for wear.
  • Cool Airship: Vah Medoh. It's so big that when it was first seen in the distance during E3 2016 gameplay, a lot of people mistook it for a Floating Island.
  • Cool Horse:
    • Link can tame and ride wild horses.
    • There are also skeletal stalhorses, which Link can also ride, though they disappear at dawn.
    • Scanning the Adult Link amiibo for Super Smash Bros. will give you Epona, who has four stars for each stat and a mild personality. However, you can only get her once per game. Taking her to the stable has the stable-keeper freaking out that she's a legend. If you accidentally summoned Epona on the plateau and were forced to leave her behind, there's a chance you can get a second one at a later date via amiibo. Of course, this is all dependent on the RNG.
    • One of the sidequests consists of finding and taming a pure white horse that's said to have belonged to the royal family.
    • You can catch a giant black horse with flaming red hair, based on Ganondorf's horse in Ocarina of Time, said to be the Last of Its Kind.
    • There's also the Lord of the Mountain, a glowing, horse-shaped Eldritch Abomination with four eyes.
  • Cosmetic Award:
    • The player only needs 441 Korok seeds to maximize the size of their inventory. Should they go the extra mile and collect all 900, the player gets the Hestu's Gift token, which resembles a little golden poop and causes Hestu to dance for them at any time.
    • Beating every overworld boss of each type (Talus, Hynox, and Molduga) unlocks a medal for that type.
    • Completing the Hyrule Compendium, and talking to Symin afterwards, gets you a confidential envelope with a picture of a beautiful Sheikah woman in it.
  • Cozy Catastrophe: Despite being set in an After the End hyrule, the citizens don't seem to mind. Plenty of towns are flat out flourishing, towns don't need walls because monsters never go there, people walk freely out in the open at all times of the day, people are continuing to produce goods (Even expanding their businesses), in fact a lot of people don't even seem to care that Hyrule recently went through an apocalypse.
    • Justified in that Zelda was able to stop a true After the End from happening, stopping the apocalypse in its tracks and allowing the people to survive in places that made it through the initial attack. Its only around when Link awakens that things start to get worse again.
  • Critical Hit: Weapons will do double damage when they break, whether by being thrown or running out of durability hitting an enemy. Weapons with the "Critical Hit" perk also score a crit when a combo finisher connects.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: There is widespread evidence that Calamity Ganon inflicted this upon the kingdom a century ago. Every fort, garrison, and training camp Link stumbles across are in ruin or re-purposed by monsters into homes. Several battlefields containing shattered Guardian hulks are littered with rusting swords and shields concentrated in small clusters, giving the sense of a Bolivian Army Ending. If one reviews the world map and plots the location of the military camps, it becomes apparent Hyrule expected Ganon to attack from outside the kingdom and make his way to the palace. They never expected him to emerge from Hyrule Castle itself.
  • Cut-and-Paste Environments: The Sheikah Shrines. Each and every one of the entrances is the exact same stone cave with ornamental Tron Lines. Furthermore, the "shrines" themselves are vast underground Magitek puzzle chambers with a Portal-esque minimalist angular architecture. While the layout is different in each shrine (aside from the numerous "tests of strength" which host the exact same battle against the exact same robot in the exact same arena), their walls, railings, platforms, doors, torches, and everything else look exactly alike.
  • Cutting the Knot:
    • Shrine puzzles can often be handled in more than one way, not necessarily by tackling the intended challenge. For instance, most fire-based puzzles are intended to be handled with clever use of the bow, but fire arrows and/or a torch completely trivialize them, as does liberal use of Chuchu jelly and metal weapons for electrical puzzles. A lot of switches are meant to be held down by objects hidden in the shrine, but ten apples will do just as well, or you can temporarily lock a pressed switch in place with the Stasis rune. Of course, this kind of experimentation is encouraged, as it doesn't matter how you reach the monk at the end; they praise your resourcefulness, no matter how you get there.
    • The Myahm Agana Shrine features a rather challenging ball-rolling maze similar to the Rollgoal minigame of Twilight Princess, but controlled entirely with the motion controls of the Wii U GamePad or the Switch's control options. Naturally, you can turn the whole maze over by flipping your controller upside-down, and letting the ball roll on the flat underside. That, or tilt the maze so that when the ball respawns, it's dropped into the final stretch rather than the start.
    • Setting foot on Eventide Island starts a challenge where Link is stripped of all his equipment (including materials and food) and pits him against all sorts of monsters, including a Hinox, in a quest to recover three orbs and drop them onto pedestals. You can partially subvert the no-gear part simply by dropping your stuff on your raft you used to get there before you touch the shore, and then pick them up again when the challenge commences. However, upon completing the challenge, whatever you found on the island is lost, including your own equipment that you "scavenged" (although you could just drop them again before you put the last orb in the hole).
  • Cyborg: The Blight Ganons are a mixture of Malice, the malevolent matter produced by Calamity Ganon, and bits and pieces of Sheikah technology. Although Malice sustains the monsters, they primarily rely on the energy blades and laser beams provided by the tech to fight. Once Link interrupts Ganon's reincarnation, he too manifests as a mishmash of flesh and Magitek.
  • Cycle of Hurting: If a guardian sends Link ragdolling with a laser blast, they can lock onto him again while he's still reeling, giving him less than half a second to move by the time he gets back up. And they'll have closed the distance, so the blast might as well be hitscan. Good luck surviving much longer.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!:
    • Zelda veterans may forget that you have to manually press the jump button instead of auto-jumping, leading to many deaths by falling. Combat abilities that involve jumping (such as backflipping and the Jump Attack) have also been moved to this button, which can cause problems for veteran Zelda players who are used to doing them with the action button.
    • The attack button also differs from all other Zelda games using the SNES-style button layout, such as the Wii U and 3DS Updated Rereleases, A Link to the Past and A Link Between Worlds. It's Y this time instead of B (to which the sprinting function has been assigned), so until you get used to it, you can expect to dash headlong into enemies when you expect to attack them.
    • Are you used to throwing bombs by pressing A while moving? Enjoy being hoist by your own literal petard over and over again, because your mind tells you that you threw a bomb when you dropped one at your feet. And just to rub salt in the wound, the bomb won't even blow up unless you command it to, which makes you feel extra stupid.
    • Starting a new game after you've gotten accustomed to using the paraglider to slow your fall from high leaps or mitigate knock back during combat. Until you've completed the initial tutorial phase, you can't do any of it.
  • A Day in the Limelight: The Sheikah. Originally introduced in Ocarina of Time as the tribe Zelda's nurse/ladysmaid/bodyguard Impa belonged to and being the traditional guardians of Hyrule's royal line, she remained their only representative across the subsequent games aside from the Sheikah Stones and a few miscellaneous items bearing their eye emblem. In this game, however, they collectively play a much larger role in the plot, being the creators of the diverse Magitek across the ruins of Hyrule (including the Sheikah Slate, the Guardians, and the Shrines), and having their many ancient monks provide Link with abilities for his quest. Furthermore, there is also now an entire Wutai-themed village of Sheikah of various ages.
  • Deal with the Devil: A malevolent deity that loved to make money contracts with people was sealed into a statue by Hylia, now residing near Hateno Village. Needless to say, people don't go near it, leaving it all the more bitter and dejected, biding its time until you show up. Do you think you need more health? Or more energy? Well, they will let you exchange your hearts for stamina, or vice-versa for a small fare.
  • Death of the Hypotenuse: The fact that both Mipha and Zelda are in love with Link would be a lot more dramatic if Mipha hadn't died in the calamity before the story began.
  • Desperation Attack: The mini-Guardians you fight in the Test of Strength shrines start to fire off charged salvos of explosive lasers, similar to the regular Guardian's laser attack, when their health is low.
  • Death Mountain: The Trope Namer shows up once again. Thanks to the open world and long draw distances, it can be seen from any corner of Hyrule.
  • Death by Genre Savviness: The entire kingdom of Hyrule. Ganon a constantly recurring problem? Build a Magitek robot army to easily crush him. Ganon coming back 10,000 years later? Better excavate the mothballed army, get Link and Zelda into position, and then... whoops, Ganon just seized control of the army and razed the kingdom to the ground.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: Die, and you can quickly recover from your last save. The game autosaves every minute or so, making this a pretty minor setback. Given the very harsh learning curve of the early game, and how easy it is to be unexpectedly wiped out even in the later game, this level of mercy is entirely appropriate.
  • Death of a Thousand Cuts: Spear-type weapons make up for long range and high combo potential with low damage output.
  • Decomposite Character: The Rito were originally stated to have evolved from the Zora, but in Breath of the Wild, the two species are shown side by side.
    • More like Decomposite Location, but previously, Spectacle Rock had always been atop Death Mountain. Here, it's in Gerudo Desert.
  • Deconstructed Character Archetype:
  • Deliberately Bad Example: There's an NPC who is a Lethal Chef because she insists on putting monster parts or ancient parts in all her cooking. This serves to demonstrate to any players who haven't yet figured it out that this is always a bad idea. However, using her specific recipes does make failed food that restores more hearts than usual.
  • Dem Bones: There are Stal variants of the Bokoblins, Moblins, and Lizalfos that appear as enemies at night. Traditional Stalfos have thus far yet to appear. There's also a skeleton horse you can ride.
  • Developers' Foresight:
    • You know those rocks that the Bokoblins can throw at you? You can bat them back.
    • The game offers multiple methods of solving puzzles and fighting enemies that the player may not think of doing at first. For example, you can use a board to cross a gap to reach a chest, or you could simply use Magnesis to transport the chest right to you.
    • If you somehow manage to solve the first shrines without retrieving the runes you're supposed to use to complete them, the monks will not allow you to finish until you get them.
    • The game's physics are highly impressive, especially in conjunction with the weather system in place. For example, during a thunderstorm, lightning becomes attracted to metal. Wearing metal weaponry? Sparks will shoot off of them, a precursor to Link being struck by lightning. Since you get a few seconds of prep time before getting struck, a smart player may decide to whip out a metal weapon, use it long enough for lightning to try to strike it, and then toss it towards an enemy, setting the unfortunate sap to be electrocuted.
    • The weather system is highly detailed and affects lots of different little things. It gets colder the higher you go in altitude, and rain makes rocks harder to climb as they become slippery. Rainwater will also pool naturally and evaporate when the sun comes out.
    • Rain will make a Fire Keese's flames to go out and eventually cause it to die.
    • Temperature can affect ingredients. Dumping stuff like apples or mushrooms into frozen rivers and then picking them back up will freeze them, allowing them to be used and eaten. Certain foods also taste better frozen. It even affects monster parts (like getting Red Chuchu Jelly if you kill a standard Chuchu with fire).
    • Chuchu Jelly itself is reactive. Drop any kind in a fire, and it turns red. Drop it in freezing water, it turns white, drop it in a shrine electrical field, it turns yellow. (Lightning just evaporates them.) If you are willing to use up a jelly, you can covert batches of 5 (4) by dropping one color, 4 others, and shooting the color with an arrow. The elemental field converts the remaining 4. (Dropping more than 4 will just vanish). Dropping a Chuchu Jelly in an enemy's path and shooting it with an arrow is a cheaper way to use an elemental attack without using an elemental arrow.
    • During the trek through the Great Plateau, you're supposed to cook something for the Old Man that he'll trade for some warmer clothes (since one of the shrines is on a cold mountaintop). If you make it to the summit of Mount Hylia without getting the Warm Doublet, the Old Man will be amazed that you made it there and will just give it to you. There's even a third option: if you go to the Old Man's house after getting the paraglider and still haven't gotten the Warm Doublet, said clothes will be inside a chest (with the old man leaving a note in his diary with him saying he's impressed you managed it).
    • The four main story quests have different dialog depending on the order they're completed in. In particular, after the first, Link goes from hesitantly agreeing to try and calm the Divine Beasts to confidently asserting that it's possible. There's even dialogue variants based on whether you've got the Master Sword or not, starting with the first encounter with Impa onward.
    • Wielding a weapon with Fire Element or Ice Element can keep you warm in cold areas and vice-versa, cool in hot areas.
    • Some characters react differently depending on how you talk to them. For example, Paya tells you to get dressed if you talk to her naked, and Purah tells you to get off the table if you speak to her while standing on it.
    • The classic Cucco storm that happens if you strike a Cucco multiple times across just about every game in the series can also happen to enemies if you get them to strike the bird.
    • The Cutting the Knot solution to the Myahm Agana shrine was apparently discovered by the devs during development, and they decided Sure, Why Not?, and left it in as another possible solution.
    • Elemental enemies take elemental weakness into account. If you use a fire weapon on an ice type enemy, it dies in one hit (and vice versa).
    • Metallic equipment can be used to make conductive paths for certain electricity-based puzzles. This makes it possible to complete Vah Nabooris without finding the second power orb, among others.
    • When you find a memory, Link will get the Sheikah Slate out and look at its associated photo, but the final memory's photo is on the wall of Impa's house, so when Link finds that memory, he just stands there looking around for a few seconds instead... but if you take a photo of the photo on Impa's wall, Link will get out the Slate and look at the photo of the photo, like he does for the other memories.
    • The Gerudo Secret Club is a place where Greta illegally sells male clothing, and it requires a password to get inside it. So, if you change out your Gerudo clothing in that place, the Gerudo Guards will not be alerted that a man is in their town.
    • There's also less graceful examples the developers put in to make sure the player can't do certain things too soon or out of order. For example, it's totally possible to safely leave the Great Plateau without a paraglider. However, Link will randomly shout out and collapse, teleporting you back. And while you can try to reach the Divine Beasts without doing the necessary story bits, you will be forever stopped by the fact that they never properly load until you see those scenes, since while the beasts are technically part of the main map, the dungeons themselves aren't. You also can't unlock the memories unless you talk to Impa about them first, even if you unlocked the photos that leads to the memories.
    • Find a clever way to get around a gate without actually solving the necessary puzzle to open it? If it is an enclosed room, the door will probably open up behind you so that you are not trapped inside. This can happen in Vah Naboris if you use some very well-timed gliding to get over a gate that normally requires powering two conduits to open (the same one mentioned above that can also be bypassed with metallic equipment). It will then slam closed once you leave the room.
    • Extremely difficult, but if you manage to enter Zora's Domain without meeting Sidon at Inogo Bridge, you'll get a fully voiced cutscene from him when you first enter the throne room, as seen here. Sidon will act polite and encouraging towards Link normally, but he'll be dismissive (at first) and a bit distant towards him if you intrude on him in the throne room since he hasn't met you yet and you're barging into the royal chambers uninvited.
    • If you somehow manage to drop the Master Sword after obtaining it (which pretty much requires a glitch, as it's a Clingy Mc Guffin that you can't drop through normal means), it will return to the Lost Woods where you found it, complete with a unique message telling you as much.
    • It's possible to obtain the full set of Rubber Armor (which provides immunity against electricity and even against lightning as a set bonus at level 2) before setting foot into any of the Divine Beasts, but the lightning around Vah Naboris is too intense to survive without the Thunder Helm, to ensure that the player cannot skip the Yiga Clan hideout.
    • If you throw a rusty weapon at an Octorok on Death Mountain, it'll suck the weapon up and spit it back at you with all the rust cleaned off.
    • If you manage to make too many objects appear in the game world by glitching or hacking that it would cause the game to crash, it will instead attempt to automatically trigger a blood moon, clearing the excess objects in the process.
  • Difficult but Awesome:
    • Battle Boomerang-type weapons are short-ranged when it comes to melee, they need you to prepare the throw like any other melee weapon, and you need to actively catch them, as well as throw them in a direction that makes them catchable. That said, they're melee weapons that also double as ranged weapons.
    • Spears have nowhere as much damage as other two-handed weaponry, a very narrow hitbox, and you can't use a shield with them. That said, they have the longest reach, much faster attack animations than most two-handed weapons, and the most combo potential of any weapon type.
    • The Parry ("Perfect Guard") mechanic requires exact timing, and you get hit if you fail. That said, anything, even a Guardian's laser, can be parried back at an enemy; it can be done with any shield, even starters; and if done right, doesn't damage the shield. Crippled Guardians require one reflect to destroy, intact ones require three.
    • The Infinite Climb glitch requires proper timing, but it makes climbing slopes a breeze when mastered.
  • Disappears into Light: What happens to the monks upon Link completing their trial and obtaining their Spirit Orb, their duty to Hylia fulfilled.
  • Disintegrator Ray: Ancient Arrows have this effect on most enemies besides Guardians, including Lynels. Unfortunately, this also destroys all their item drops.
  • Disguised in Drag: Gerudo Town has a law that prevents males from entering, so Link has to buy women's clothes from an NPC named Vilia and disguise himself as a woman to enter.
  • Disk One Nuke:
    • Since the combat in the game is largely skill-focused, it's entirely possible to make forays into much more dangerous parts of the wilderness and come away with advanced equipment and ingredients.
    • Due to the semi-randomized loot in the treasure chests, it is entirely possible to obtain a late-game piece of equipment early in the game. However, this is balanced by the durability system, which for many will make the aforementioned Disk One Nuke Too Awesome to Use.
    • Using amiibo can result in getting better-than-average weapons early on in the game. This includes Ancient Arrows, which do massive damage to Guardians, and can instantly defeat basically anything else short of a boss at the expense of not getting their drops.
    • The Twilight Bow is a weaker version of the Bow of Light you get to use during the final phase of the final boss, which one has a chance of getting when scanning the Super Smash Bros. Zelda amiibo. Not only does it have 30 Damage, 100 base durability, and high range, it also has an unlimited supply of its own unique arrows. Since you can save before scanning an amiibo and reload if you don't get what you want for another attempt, getting one early is very easy. The only thing stopping it from being a outright Game Breaker is that it isn't Multi-Shot, and even once you get other bows with that, it is still a worthwhile bow due to not consuming arrows.
    • Anyone who beat Twilight Princess HD's Bonus Dungeon gets Wolf Link, who's powerful, intelligent, and very, very fast. He's even more of a nuke for those who beat it with a full health meter. Wolf Link with 20 hearts not long after starting the game? You can just kick back and watch him tear your enemies to shreds. Unfortunately there's no way other way to power him up so he'll only deal Scratch Damage to later enemies, and get one or two shotted by the likes of Guardians or Lynels. Even if he has hearts, he has no armor.
    • The runes you get early on can seriously break the game if you put them to good use, as a surprising amount of enemies are weak to their effects. For example, the bomb rune is capable of knocking enemies into water or off cliffs, allowing you to kill things much tougher than you if you're smart.
    • Even if one is not willing to speed-run the game and defeat Calamity Ganon early, a skilled player can raid the underside of Hyrule Castle early on and get some great end-game items, even if they are only a few hours into the game — including extremely durable items such as the Hylian Shield.
    • The Soldier's series of armor can be bought cheaply at Hateno village (630 rupees in total for the whole set) and is upgraded using fairly common monster parts, yet its defense is among the highest in the game, on par with the Ancient armor set (which costs 6000 rupees and a ton of guardian parts to purchase, and yet more guardian parts to upgrade) and the Wild set (which is available only by completing all 120 shrines and needs dragon parts to upgrade). The only downsides are that it has no positive side effects besides defense.
  • Disproportionate Retribution:
    • A crazy lady will attack you if you step on her flowers three times.
    • Some disguised Yiga Clan members won't try to attack immediately when talked to, instead offering to sell Link some bananas. Refusing will anger them and cause them to assault Link. Even if you buy all 99 of their bananas, which cost 99 rupees each to begin with, they will still attack you.
  • Downer Beginning: The game begins with the latest Link waking up to a Hyrule that is After the End, with Ganon having become an Eldritch Abomination.
  • Downer Ending: Not the game itself, but the game's backstory from a century ago ended with Calamity Ganon taking over every Guardian and Divine Beast, slaying every Champion, devastating Hyrule, and is only stopped by Zelda making him a Sealed Evil in a Duel. On top of that, The Hero Dies, and has to spend a century in stasis recovering.
  • Downloadable Content: There is DLC in the form of an Expansion Pass which comes with two DLC packs:
    • The expansion pass gets you both DLC packs upon release, as well as adding three treasure chests to the Great Plateau containing a Nintendo Switch shirt and some other items. There's no other way to get the packs piece meal currently.
    • The first DLC pack, released in summer 2017, adds the Trial of the Sword, a hard mode, new armor, a new feature for the map that shows Link's last 200 hours of movement and how much time he has spent in each area, and one fast-travel point that can be moved to where Link is standing at any time.
    • The second DLC pack, released during the holidays of 2017, adds a new dungeon, extra story content, and more new challenges.
  • Drop the Hammer: Yet another option for melee weapons. As one can expect from such a weapon, it appears to pack a lot of power, but swings quite slow.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Even after Link saves Gerudo Town from Vah Naboris the guards still won't let Link in because of his gender. This is because while they admit that the whole Gerudo Town is deeply indebted to Link for everything he's done, their laws are iron clad and even their savior isn't exempt from them.
  • Dungeon Bypass: Seemingly encouraged by the design of the Shrines. In stricter games, places you aren't intended to reach would have barriers added anyway, just in case. Here, there are gratuitously missing walls and ceilings that can be used to skip puzzles, if you can figure out some unintended way to reach them. No matter how you get to the end, the monk specifically praises your resourcefulness.
  • Early Game Hell: When you first start out, in a game where damage to someone with street clothes is done realistically, your initial trek through the Great Plateau will be stressful. As you get better equipment, increase your hearts, and start to learn the game's combat, it gets quite a bit more manageable.
  • Earn Your Fun: The game's really open-ended, to the point where you can go straight to the Final Boss immediately upon starting. If you want to experience the game's story, you're going to need to go out of your way to find it.
  • Easy Level Trick: Due to the game's loose restrictions, it's easier than usual for players to find ways to cheese certain puzzles. One of the better examples of this is Eventide Island: How do you avoid being forced to scavenge for meager equipment and food to fight tough enemies after having your gear stripped from you? Drop some good weapons and food on the raft, land ashore to initiate the confiscation, and pick up the equipment afterwards.
    • If you can get to the library in Hyrule Castle, the fake bookshelves can be moved with Magnesis and will stun and kill the high-level Lizalfos in 3 hits. This does not require being dropped from a height, simply moving them into them will do this, and they drop high-end weapons.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Ganon's newest incarnation is nothing short of this, at first seemingly having completely abandoned all traces of the fact that he Was Once a Man. His first battle form ventures more into Humanoid Abomination territory, being a large bug-like Cyborg made out of Guardian parts and other Sheikah Tech, the only trace of the original Ganondorf being the red bearded face. It's revealed that he was trying to reconstruct a physical body before the battle, but it looks like a half-rotting corpse. Ganon's final form has the title of "Hatred and Malice Incarnate", with Zelda stating Ganon has given up on reincarnating, while being the largest final boss in the series.
  • Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors: Fire attacks one-shot Ice based enemies and vice versa. More subtly, electric weapons gain a powerboost around water whether rain or in a body of water, exploding into a dome field, while wood weapons gain a powerboost in fire and hot temperatures when they are literally lit on fire. Similarly bomb arrows instantly diffuse in water, and instantly explode in firey areas. The Master Sword, Ancient, and Guardian weapons also get a boost against Guardian enemies.
  • Eleventh Hour Superpower: The Bow of Light is given to you to fight Dark Beast Ganon.
  • Elite Mooks: The differently colored versions of normal enemies; the blue Bokoblin in the Great Plateau skull hideout is a standout example, wielding a shield and weapon far beyond the area standard. After you get better equipment, blue enemies cease to be this, but are replaced by black and silver variants that continue to be difficult into the endgame.
  • Emergency Weapon:
    • As you are given an infinite supply of bombs and the ability to detonate them at will, only limited by its recharge time, they serve as an effective weapon in a pinch. Just be careful not to hit yourself.
    • Bokoblins that have no weapons will either fight with their fists, or dig up small rocks to throw at you. Moblins, if there are Bokoblins around, will pick them up and throw them at you.
    • Stal creatures without weapons will remove their arm to use it as a club.
  • Endgame+: Reloading the autosave after defeating the final boss will drop Link back outside the boss room, keeping the photos that might have been taken for the Compendium and marking the save file with a star icon. It also adds a counter to all three quest menus, showing how many in the world is left. The world map also gains a percentage completed counter showcasing how much of everything you found in the game.
  • End of an Age:
  • Enemy Scan: The Champion's Tunic allows you to see how much health enemies have.
  • Energy Bow: The Bow of Light, available only for the grand finale, shoots bolts made of light and does not draw from Link's stock of arrows. The amiibo-exclusive Twilight Bow does the same and can be used freely in the main game, but deals less than one-third the damage of the former.
  • Eternal Engine: The Divine Beasts. Link is able to use the Sheikah Slate to manipulate the entire dungeon in order to move platforms and blocks around or trigger mechanisms.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Monsters will not attack horses, nor do they abuse the horses they own. However, they won't hesitate to attack Link while he's on or near a horse, which may result in collateral damage.
  • Evil Chancellor: Referenced and played for laughs. In Hyrule Castle, there are some books that can be found containing recipes from the royal family. One of these is the Monster Cake, which is described as the chancellor's favorite and a 'dangerous' dish that might motivate one to plan evil schemes.
  • Excalibur in the Rust: The Master Sword, as seen in the logo, has seen better days. However, in the game itself, it's fine and dandy in the present day. The damage was caused by Guardians a hundred years ago, not by the passage of time, and it repaired itself magically after Zelda placed it in front of the Great Deku Tree.
  • Exploding Barrels: These can be found throughout the world, usually near Bokoblin camps.
  • Exposed to the Elements: Averted. Link has a body temperature gauge, and if he travels somewhere too hot or too cold without proper clothing, he'll feel it.
  • Eye Scream:
    • Shooting Hinoxes in the eyes with arrows causes them to fall over and wriggle in pain for several seconds. This is essential to killing Stalnoxes for good.
    • The "headshot" point for Guardians is their pulsating blue eye. Hitting it with an Arrow temporarily disorients it, and firing an Ancient Arrow into it is a One-Hit Kill (but doesn't disintegrate the Guardian).
  • Falling Damage: Falling from too great of a height can kill Link, even if he's riding his shield. On a lesser note, if Link is stunned and sent tumbling down an incline, he continually takes damage until he comes to a stop and gets up.
  • Fantastic Racism: Hints of this at times from various townspeople. Muzu calls you a "lowly Hylian" and the gatekeeper at Hateno Village mentions that he believes Hylians are the only trustworthy race in Hyrule.
  • Fantasy Gun Control: Though Hyrule was under a state of Medieval Stasis before it unearthed the Guardians and Divine Beasts, there are dozens of 30-pounder field cannons atop strategic locations around the Akkala Citadel ruins. For whatever reason, Hyrule stopped development of gunpowder technology towards the arquebus and other portable firearms.
  • Fastball Special: Given a Bokoblin being conveniently nearby, a Moblin may pull this tactic on you: grabbing his little buddy and proceeding to pitch him at you.
  • Fetch Quest: The most common type of sidequest involves someone asking for items that can be gathered in the wild, be they of animal, vegetable, or mineral origin (or even monster parts). A similar type involves taking a picture of a rare location, which naturally means dealing with or avoiding whatever monsters patrol the area. These are often less frustrating than they could be because, due to the open-ended nature of the game and ubiquity of collectible items, there's a good chance that Link already has whatever is being requested.
  • Final Death:
    • The horses Link can ride can be killed, and they don't come back unless you power up the Horse God.
    • Dark Beast Ganon also abandons his cycle of reincarnation to muster the power for one last bid to destroy the world, bringing him his own. Subverted in the true ending, where Zelda says he may return.
  • Fire/Ice/Lightning: The main elemental attacks in this game. Each has standard status effects: fire causes damage over time, ice freezes the target in place for a while, lightning can stun but also causes any weapons to be dropped.
  • Four is Death: The Champions are an Elite Four that pilot four Divine Beasts, and died at the hands of four Blight Ganons, that corrupted and stole those divine beasts. The stolen guardians also come in four main varieties, scout, walker, turret and skywatcher. The scouts themselves come in models I-IV.
  • Freeze Ray: Cryonis allows Link to create tall blocks of ice from bodies of water that can be climbed on.
  • Full-Boar Action: Wild boars can be hunted for food. They attack on sight, but will run away if Link injures them. Ganon's final form is probably his largest pig form yet.
  • Fungus Humongous: Hyrule Ridge is defined by forests of giant mushrooms.
  • Gainaxing: The Great Fairies can be observed having this.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: Respawning enemies are explained by the Blood Moon rising and reviving them.
  • Gardening-Variety Weapon: Link can use items such as the Farmer's Pitchfork, the Woodcutter's Axe, and the Farming Hoe as weapons.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: There are a surprising amount of overt sex jokes for an E10+ rated game:
    • Paya, Impa's granddaughter, has a birthmark shaped like a Papaya seed "somewhere on [her] body". When pressed for where it is, she gets very embarrassed and says she'll show Link one day. If Paya is asked about it enough, Impa finally gets fed up and outright tells you where it is: smack dab in the middle of her left butt cheek.
    • The arrow shopkeeper's dialogue in Kakariko Village sounds very sexually charged and carries blatant sexual overtones. She almost sounds like she's propositioning the player.
    • One of the Koroks' trials is called the Trial of Wood, of which they note is the hardest.
    • Hestu's Gift is a large Korok seed given for collecting all 900 Korok Seeds. It looks quite a bit like a poop emoji and the item description says it "smells pretty bad".
    • The various animations for the Great Fairy upgrades are a blown kiss, an indirect kiss, an actual kiss, and the fairy dragging Link underwater. As the level 3 upgrade involves Link getting first base, and the last has him having private time with the fairy, there are implications that Link gets laid with a giant woman.
    • Your reward for showing Symin that you completed the Hyrule Compendium is implied to be porn.
  • Genre Throwback: Designed as one to the very first Zelda game, where you're dumped in the middle of nowhere with nothing but the clothes on your back (or in this case, your undergarments), can travel anywhere you want at any time, and have to take weapons and gear where you can find them since it's dangerous to go alone.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: An In-Universe example with the Zora-made Silver Longsword, which was popular with Hylians because of its cool design.
  • Ghibli Hills: The Overworld in this game is an extensive, richly rendered spread of unspoiled nature dotted with Hylian ruins, full of lush vegetation and herds of wild animals.
  • Ghostly Goals: The deceased Champions, and the king of Hyrule, are unable to rest while Ganon continues to exist, and give Link whatever aid they can. After Ganon is defeated, they are satisfied and ascend into the heavens.
  • Golden Ending: There's a version of the ending that adds a bit more at the end. You get it by beating all the main story quests, completing all the main dungeons, and getting Link's memories back.
  • Good Colors, Evil Colors:
  • Good Morning, Crono: As usual for the series; Eiji Aonuma even lampshaded during E3 2016 gameplay that for as many conventions as the game breaks, they did keep that one. Even then, Link wakes up in a much different way than usual, as he's woken up by a mysterious voice in a no less mysterious place called the Shrine of Resurrection.
  • Gravity Is a Harsh Mistress: Drop from a height and you'll sustain fall damage. Plummet from too great a height and it'll prove fatal. Even worse, if Link is knocked over by an enemy, bomb blast, etc. on a hill, he'll start to roll, and this will gradually damage him until he comes to a stop.
  • Grievous Harm with a Body:
    • If a Stal creature has no weapons, it will use one of its arms as one. Link can also use one himself — that still wriggles, no less. He can also carry a Stal creature's severed head and kick it as a projectile.
    • Occasionally, unarmed Moblins will pick up nearby objects and chuck them at you, including their smaller Bokoblin buddies.
  • Grimy Water: Here and there are swamps of bubbling black ooze in which Link will drown instantly (at the cost of one heart) if he is even partially submerged in it.
  • Guerrilla Boulders: In addition to Link-seeking magma bombs in a few areas of Death Mountain, boulders will often tumble down ravines while Link is trying to climb them; the same happens with giant snowballs in cold areas. In many cases, there are enemies nearby who could conceivably be responsible, but in others there are no living things nearby.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: Wolf Link from Twilight Princess can be summoned as an AI-controlled ally via his amiibo, effectively allowing two incarnations of Link to team up.
  • Guide Dang It: The game is generally pretty good about teaching the player with the environment, but figuring out how to actually cook things (due to using a specific menu function before having anything to do with the fire/pot) can be a trick.

    H-J 
  • Hard Light:
    • The Remote Bomb rune makes either square or round bombs depending on Link's needs that appear to be light constructs.
    • Guardian weapons and shields also employ this, having the sword blades, axe/spear/arrow heads, and shields go into and out of "combat mode".
  • Hell Is That Noise:
    • The Guardian battle theme is a warning that a Guardian has you in its sights. Also, if you hear a Guardian locking on to you with its laser sight, you better pray you can get out of their line of fire in time.
    • The demonic, inhuman shrieks the Blight Ganons and Calamity Ganon make are nightmare-inducing.
  • Hello, [Insert Name Here]: Averted, per the inclusion of voice acting. This time around, Link is always called Link. Played straight with the horses, though, except for Epona.
  • Hellish Horse:
    • Occasionally, Stalkoblins that appear at night will ride Stalhorses as their mounts, which are, appropriately, reanimated skeletal horses. You can actually take them for yourself to ride, but you can't register them at the stable, and they disintegrate like all Stal enemies during morning.
    • Downplayed with the Giant Horse. It is a gigantic horse with a black coat and a fiery red mane, and it comes with maxed-out strength and a wild temperament, but it otherwise acts like any other horse. It's implied to be the same kind of horse that Ganondorf rode in the past, though it lacks the glowing red eyes. In a fit of irony, you can use this very horse against the final boss, Dark Beast Ganon, as well.
  • Heroic Mime: As always, Link doesn't say a word. However, this time it's justified, as the only way he can cope with the amount of pressure and responsibility that he has to deal with is to never speak about it to anyone.
  • Hitodama Light: The spirits of the four champions and the king always appear with this light around them and so does Link, whenever he uses their abilities. In fact, you can see their spectral form when the powers are used as well.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard:
    • 100 years before the game took place, the Hylians found the buried Guardians and Divine Beasts, and started using them to help prepare to reseal Calamity Ganon. However Ganon was able to possess the mechanical beasts, turning them against the Hylians and being the main reason for Hyrule's downfall.
    • There are many ways to defeat a Guardian, but by far the most efficient is to reflect its beam attack back at it. To quantify this, if a beam hits Link without armor it does about 24 damage, or six hearts worth, whereas if it's reflected back to a Guardian's eye it does a whopping 500 damage, enough to one-shot a static Guardian and take away 1/3 of the health of a Stalker.
  • Hollywood Chameleons: This game's version of Lizalfos resemble bipedal chameleons. Naturally, they can change color to blend into their environment, potentially enabling them to ambush unwitting players.
  • Horse Archer: With more emphasis on it than in previous Zelda games — Link can leap off his horse in midair and rain arrows down upon his foes as he leaps. Some Bokoblins also ride horses while armed with either bows or spears.
  • Horse of a Different Color:
    • In addition to horses, you can tame and ride deer and bears. You can't take them to the stable, though.
    • There are also skeletal stalhorses, which despite their disturbing appearance behave exactly like normal horses. However, they can't be stabled as the owner will worry about them eating other horses.
    • In addition, one can catch the "Lord of the Mountain", a shining Ghibli-esque 4-legged creature with 4 eyes and moth antennae. You can't take it to the stable either.
    • Lynels can be mounted, although they can't be tamed. This can just be done to get a few hits in on them.
  • Hostile Weather: Thunderstorms roll across Hyrule occasionally, and it is not a good idea to be outside in one, especially while wearing metal equipment. Even ordinary rain is problematic, since wet surfaces become harder to climb.
  • Humongous Mecha: The four Divine Beasts, giant Guardians that were created to fight the Calamity Ganon that act as the game's primary dungeons.
  • Hyperactive Metabolism: Unlike previous games, Link has to rely on scavenging and cooking food in order to restore his health rather than simply recovering with heart pick-ups.
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: Link can carry a huge number and variety of weapons and items; his currently equipped gear will appear on his back, others disappear until used.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Averted if Link tries to cook faeries in a meal or elixir. Instead they fly out of the pot and enchant it.
  • Iconic Outfit: Viewer Gender Confusion aside, the fandom is really digging Link's new design, if the sheer amount of fanart and cosplays is any indication. There's even a minor debate about whether to eventually change to the traditional green clothes or keeping the new blue ones for the entire game (or at least, being able to choose between the two). Considering just how insanely iconic the green clothes are, that's pretty impressive! Turns out, you can choose between the two...or rather 7 or 8: almost all of the Zelda amiibo figures based on Link have a rare chance of spawning a chest containing pieces of armor based on previous versions of the green Hero's Clothes that appeared in the series. Then there's the Hero of the Wild version you can eventually unlock.
  • Idle Animation
    • While the idle animations in temperate areas are fairly standard, heading into a cold climate while underdressed causes Link to start shivering, to warn you that you should really put on something warmer before you start taking damage. Other animations resulting from improper gear include breathing heavily and swaying when in a hot area, such as Gerudo Desert during the day or during a Fire Wizzrobe-induced firestorm, and grimacing in pain when far enough up Death Mountain, because he's on fire.
    • If Link is left idle for long enough while shirtless, he will flex both of his biceps.
    • When crouching for long enough, Link might suddenly lift his hand to look at it, implying a bug crawled on his hand, and then shake the bug off.
    • At night, Link may start to doze off while standing, followed by shaking himself awake.
  • Immune to Flinching: Starting as early as the blue bokoblins, monsters will have some degree of resistance being stunlocked by Link's attacks, and later monsters will take way more hits before they get knocked over.
  • Impossible Item Drop: Averted for the first time in the series. Cutting the grass won't provide items like hearts anymore, although it can reveal something else to collect, like bugs. Similarly, monsters only drop either weapons that they were visibly carrying, or body parts. Rupees can only be dropped by Yiga Clan assassins, who don't die when beaten but just run away. This is played straight with silver-level enemies, which drop ores despite not being shown to have any particular interest in ores.
  • Improvised Lightning Rod: During thunderstorms, if Link has any metallic weapons or shields equipped, he will attract lightning. This can prove very dangerous, as being struck by lightning can kill Link very quickly. However, since there is a visual cue for when you're about to turn into a Hylian lightning rod, it's also possible to weaponize the way your metallic weapons attract electricity by throwing them at enemies before the lightning strikes.
  • Improvised Weapon: Most of Link's early weapons tend to be this. From a tree branch to a tree axe to a pitchfork to a Stal creature arm... Link can pretty much use anything that isn't nailed down as a weapon.
  • Infinity–1 Sword:
    • The Royal weapons are some of the strongest regular weapons, and even come with stronger, darker counterparts in the Royal Guard series, although those weapons come with lower durability.
    • The Champion equipment have very good stats comparable to Royal weapons and are received after clearing a dungeon. They can also be reforged if they are broken, though this comes at a price.
  • Infinity+1 Sword:
    • The Master Sword. It has decent attack power of 30 normally, but doubles when fighting in dungeons or enemies affected by Ganon's malice, to a very respectable 60. It can fire sword beams when Link is at max health, and it is effectively unbreakable. It still has durability (except in the final dungeon), but it doesn't break, it just runs out of energy and goes on a cooldown. Its versatility lets it either be an effective boss or enemy slayer in dungeons, or as a great grass cutter, or a reusable, sword-shaped pickaxe for mineral deposits. However, after beating the Trial of the Sword, its true power is unlocked so that it is always at 60 attack power.
    • The Hylian Shield. It is the ultimate shield, with a durability so high that it may as well be unbreakable. Should the player break it, however, another one can be bought at the price of a few thousand Rupees, but it will take a very long time to break.
    • The Bow of Light, which boasts a massive 100 Attack power, easily making it the strongest bow. It will hit like a nuke. However, it is only received during the Final Boss fight.
    • The Champion's Tunic, when fully upgraded, gives the highest defense boost at a great 32, although upgrading it that far will be quite a task. The Tunic of the Wild set, received after clearing all 120 Shrines, also has great defense stats when fully upgraded, and has the added effect of boosting the damage of the Master Sword's sword beam.
    • The Ancient equipment. The armour set boasts high defense and a resistance to Guardian attacks. The Ancient weapons are among some of the best with high attack and durability. In particular, the Ancient Bow is notable for its great Attack power, high durability, and the ability to fire arrows in a straight line, allowing Link to properly aim at his targets. The Ancient Arrows are a One-Hit Kill on almost everything. For organic enemies, a single shot anywhere will blow them away, while Guardians need to be shot in the eye for this to work. Finally, equipping the Ancient Armour set when upgraded gives a huge damage boost to any Ancient or Guardian weapons that Link uses, making them some of the strongest weapons in the game.
    • To a lesser extent, the Savage Lynel weapons. They have the highest attack stats of regular weapons, and finding ones with added Attack boost effects can easily push them into Attack stats of 100 and beyond. The Savage Lynel Bow is especially notable for being able to fire three to five arrows, which is sure to pack a punch.
  • Interface Spoiler:
    • Every disguised Yiga Clan member will have the name "Traveler" instead of a proper name like every other NPC in their dialogue box, which immediately outs them before they try to kill Link. However, this isn't an efficient method for avoiding them without being utterly paranoid, as not only will Link already be talking with the assassins when you realize they don't have a name (and some try to call out to Link from a distance), all NPCs have to be spoken to once to have their names revealed (and only afterward will their names be placed above their head out of conversation). Until you've explored all of Hyrule and talked with every named wandering NPC at least once, telling who's a member of the Yiga Clan is usually a game of chance.
    • If you take a picture of Calamity Ganon, you'll notice a missing entry after him in the compendium.
  • Intrepid Merchant: One of the most common vocations in this world is the "traveler", who goes between various settlements selling wares. Because of the ubiquitous monsters, this is a very dangerous job, and travelers are generally armed. Link's appearance is seldom remarked upon because he seems to be just another traveler, and only those who notice his Sheikah Slate realize he's something unusual.
  • In-Universe Game Clock: Like most console games in the series, the world cycles through day and night. Different critters and baddies are present depending on the time of day.
  • Invisible to Normals: Various spiritual beings including Koroks, dragons, and the Lord of the Mountain are invisible to almost everybody. Link, of course, can see them just fine.
  • Invulnerable Civilians: NPCs cannot die, despite often needing to be saved. If attacked by monsters, the worst that will happen is that they're knocked out briefly.
  • Item Crafting: Food and enemy drops can be combined with each other in a cooking pot to form better food and elixirs with varying effects. However, combining the wrong items will result in Dubious Food, which heals minimal hearts with no special effects.
  • It Only Works Once: In the past, the Divine Beasts and Guardians were instrumental in the defeat of Calamity Ganon, so much so that King Rhoam insisted on using them again and following the same plan to the letter when Ganon inevitably returned. Unfortunately, he failed to consider the possibility that Ganon would remember how he was defeated last time and change tactics accordingly... by corrupting the Divine Beasts and Guardians and turning them against Hyrule.
  • Jump Physics: This is the first time since Zelda II: The Adventure of Link that Link can jump freely without an item. Also some of the most realistic jumping in video games — Link can only jump about a foot off the ground and maintains momentum, meaning running lets him jump farther and he can't change direction in mid-air without the Paraglider. However, speed runners found a way to Double Jump by initiating the shield surfing animation and immediately cancelling, effectively making him jump twice.
  • Jungle Japes: Faron Woods, especially once you get down below the cliffs.

    K-M 
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Subverted in terms of plot and gameplay. It is mentioned that Hylians could not become accustomed to the katanas wielded by the Sheikah, who had to learn new smithing techniques. The katanas that Link can use in the game, such as the Eightfold Blade, also have limitations. They are advertised in their descriptions as having the sharpest conventional blades and they are a step up from the initial weapons, but they can be outclassed by future ones.
  • The Key Is Behind the Lock:
    • Early on, one of the first four shrines you visit is completely surrounded by walls, with one heavily guarded wall having cracks in it. The problem? The Remote Bomb rune that would enable you to break it is located within that very shrine. How do you get to it? Faking out one of the buried Guardians to hit the cracked wall instead of you is extremely difficult to do (because their accuracy is absurd, you have to jump just before they fire). Instead, you just climb up and over any of the walls surrounding the shrine. Right about there is where it probably hits most fans of the series, even the most stubborn, that this is not going to be anything like the Zelda games they're used to.
    • The Tah Muhl Shrine has a literal example. Two treasure chests are in a cage with a locked door, and one of them has the key in it. The solution: The chest with the key can be set on fire from outside the cage, which destroys the chest and leaves the key behind. You can then grab the key through the bars with Magnesis.
    • Inside Vah Rudania, one of the terminals Link needs to activate to regain control of the beast is behind a sealed door, which only opens when a torch inside the room is lit by a blue flame. Fortunately, a small hole in the middle of the door is enough to fire a lit arrow into to open it.
  • Kill It with Fire: Fire-elemental weapons kill Ice-elemental enemies in one hit.
  • Kill It with Ice: Likewise, Ice-elemental weapons kill Fire-elemental enemies in one hit.
  • Kleptomaniac Hero: Almost every previous Zelda game lets Link take items from all sorts of places, including NPC houses, but Breath of the Wild takes this several steps further. This time around, there are many different weapons and food items that the player can collect from almost anywhere, and taking everything that can be found is encouraged note . In addition, enemies occasionally hang out in encampments with their own supplies of food and weapons, and it's totally possible for the player to rob them blind.
  • Lady and Knight: True to form, Zelda and Link are the Bright Lady and the White Knight respectively. In the backstory, Link was a Master Swordsman appointed as the princess's personal knight, sworn to protect her at all costs.
  • Lady Land: Gerudo Town. Only women are allowed in, bar Gorons (which one Goron hangs a lampshade on). To get in, Link has to disguise himself as a woman. A few people figure it out, but decide to keep quiet for one reason or another.However, this is not because of any animosity towards men, but rather to encourage young Gerudo to leave the town and search a husband for themselves instead of staying within Gerudo Town for their entire lives.
  • Laser Blade: Ancient and Guardian weapons have blades made of glowing blue energy that are only deployed when the weapon is drawn.
  • Last Stand: The ultimate fate of Hyrule Kingdom's powerful military. An NPC at Akkala Citadel explains after Hyrule Castle fell and the royal family was presumed dead, the military retreated to Akkala Citadel, the largest fortress in the land, and tried to avenge them. Though the Hylian soldiers fought valiantly, as dozens of surrounding destroyed Guardian hulks attest to, they were eventually overwhelmed and slaughtered.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: This game doesn't hide the fact that Zelda is the reincarnation of the Goddess Hylia, which was a big plot point in The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword.
  • Law of Chromatic Superiority: Many enemies appear in color-coded variants according to how strong they are. Unusually, red enemies are the weakest, surpassed by blue, black, and finally silver.
  • Lead the Target: Enemies with ranged attacks tend to be quite skilled at this. Octoroks in particular have a potentially frustrating ability to track Link's movement, while Lynels are so uncannily skilled that their arrows land wherever Link will be, even if he changes direction while they're in midair.
  • Leaking Can of Evil: Calamity Ganon has become this. Although sealed up, the years sealed have only caused Ganon's power to rise, to the point where his energy takes the form of a giant boar that surrounds the castle and animated the Guardians to turn against Hyrule, leading to its destruction.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall:
    • The Sheikah Slate is shaped like a Wii U GamePad / Switch in portable mode. The flavour text even says there's "something familiar about it" even though Link has never seen it before, or at least doesn't remember yet. Ironically, the Wii U version of the game doesn't use many of the second screen features, since according to Eiji Aonuma, using the second screen during gameplay was distracting.
    • After Hestu upgrades one of your inventory sections, he sings the succeeding jingle. The text even appears in time to the music,
    • Oman Au introduces himself as the creator of this trial. As Oman Au is an anagram of Aonuma, and if you take the trial as meaning not just the shrine, but also the entire game, you can see where this is going.
    • The Great Deku Tree notes that the Master Sword will test your inner strength, see through artificial enhancements, and that, if you fail, that you'll need to strengthen the hearts that are a measure of your inner strength. Basically, you need a certain number of hearts, and any temporary hearts gained through food will be ignored.
  • Left Hanging: A player-dependent example — Aonuma warns that players who refuse to take their time and decide to rush straight to the Final Boss will be able to finish the game, but won't learn anything about the world or the nature of this Link's true identity.
  • Lethal Chef:
    • The "Dubious Food" — an absolutely disgusting green and purple meat "dish" — is censored by a mosaic, and the description says that it probably won't hurt you if you eat it.
    • Cooking inedible materials like wood or rocks produces Rock Hard Food, described as being incredibly hard on the jaw and only worthwhile in an extremely tight spot. It only heals a quarter of a heart, the same as an uncooked acorn.
    • There is an NPC who gives really bad cooking advice that results in producing the above "dishes". She can be found next to a smoking cooking pot surrounded by piles of trash in the middle of the wilderness.
  • Lethal Joke Item: Some of the more odd weapons, like the Electric Rod and the Korok Leaf, seem rather sub-optimal. That said, they can be powerful in the right situations (namely, the Electric Rod doing major damage against enemies in water and being capable of disarming enemies, and the Korok Leaf being good at throwing enemies off cliffs and are also useful for powering sailed rafts). Likewise, the Spring Loaded Hammer can only cause Scratch Damage, but it will send enemies flying far away on the final swing and can be quite handy to have on hand if you're on a cliff.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Present with Death Mountain.
  • Level Scaling: As open as the overworld is, enemies will be easier most everywhere to start with, and gradually get replaced with stronger variants the more you accomplish. By the time you've finished the main quest and found a good percentage of the Shrines, it's not uncommon to see at least one Silver enemy at every encampment. This even extends to Lynels as well; if you thought the only Silver Lynel you'd ever see is at the Coliseum Ruins, you'd be dead wrong.
    • The power of the weapons that amiibo gives scales as well depending on progression. Obtaining the paraglider and freeing at least one Divine Beast seems to be the major points.
  • Limit Break: Weapons do more damage when they break, and even more if you throw them.
  • Living Weapon: Fi still resides in the Master Sword, and she is the one who tells Zelda to get Link to the Shrine of Resurrection before he goes for good. She later tells Zelda as the Sword is to be put away that her role is still unfulfilled.
  • Lonely Piano Piece: Rather than the boisterous, orchestral Hyrule Field themes of the previous games, a good amount of Breath of the Wild's overworld music consists of simple piano tunes. It adds to the empty atmosphere of exploring a ruined Hyrule.
  • Losing Your Head: Attacking the body of a Stal creature will just cause the head and body to separate. It can only be defeated if Link destroys the head.
  • Lost in Translation:
    • In Gerudo Town, there's a Running Gag that visitors have trouble speaking the Gerudo language, which has lots of "v"s in it. This is because Japanese has no such sound, and Japanese speakers emulate it with "b"s generally. Of course, English has both sounds, so the joke loses its sense.
    • In the flashback cutscene where Link is knighted, Zelda references the events of Skyward Sword, Ocarina of Time, and Twilight Princess in the English version. In the German translation, she references A Link to the Past and Wind Waker.
    • Before the final battle Zelda states Dark Beast Ganon is the result of Ganon giving up on resurrection. In the original Japanese, she states he has devolved into this form because he refuses to give up on resurrection.
  • Lost Technology:
    • The Guardians, Divine Beasts, Sheikah Slate and all the super-advanced Magitek of the ancient Sheikah are an enigma to modern civilization. By the time of the Great Calamity, they were just barely understood enough to be used, let alone analyzed or imitated. A hundred years later, leading scholars on the subject have some understanding of stationary machines and basic weapons, but still haven't approached the complexity or scale of a Guardian.
    • Amusingly, an armor set gives resistance to electrical damage thanks to being made of an ancient material, that no one left has the knowledge to create: rubber.
  • The Lost Woods: The Trope Namer returns as one section of the Great Hyrule Forest.
  • Lovecraft Lite: In this game, Ganon takes a form that can only be described as an Eldritch Abomination. Presumably, you can still kill it. In the true ending, even after Ganon gives up his attempt at reincarnation... he still doesn't die, just is sealed for now.
  • Luck-Based Mission: The Under a Red Moon shrine quest requires you to perform an action on the shrine pedestal during a Blood Moon. Simple enough, right? Only one problem: Blood Moons occur completely at random and the player has no direct way to trigger one.note  The player's only recourse is to either go on to other things and warp to the nearest fast travel point the moment they finally see one, or to camp out at the pedestal and wait doing nothing until it finally triggers.
  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me:
    • Some enemies come equipped with shields that will block your attacks, which is troublesome in a game with Breakable Weapons. Heavy weapons like axes can knock their shields out of their grip.
    • Some attacks can be parried using a shield. This includes laser fire.
  • Ludd Was Right: Turns out the Hylian King who forbade the Sheikah from using Guardians, Divine Beasts, and Energy Weapons wasn't an over paranoid fool after all.
  • Magic Knight: This incarnation of Link uses magical arrows and the Sheikah Slate, a Magitek device that allows him to use magic for various purposes.
  • Magitek: While The Legend of Zelda is no stranger to the marriage of magic and technology, Breath of the Wild seems to take it to a level never before seen in the series:
    • The Ancient weapons (sword, spear, axe, arrow, and shield) all use Hard Light to form their cutting edges. They unfold and project their blades when held.
    • The Sheikah Slate is reminiscent of a tablet, works a lot like one with GPS and camera functions, can be used to activate portals to shrines, and obtains magical runes by seemingly downloading them like apps inside said shrines.
    • The enemies in the game include Starfish Robots of various sizes capable of using a deadly laser.
    • Both Ancient Tech Labs have equipment that runs on Sheikah technology — Purah's Guidance Stone and Robbie's Ancient Oven, Cherry. Both are activated by carrying a blue flame from an Ancient Furnace and lighting the one at the Lab. It seems to be implied that all Sheikah tech uses this same power source.
  • Male Gaze: One of the memories has Zelda on her hands and knees examining a flower, with her butt pointed right at the viewer. And when the angle changes to reveal Link is behind her, he's staring pretty blatantly right at her ass.
  • Marooned On An Island: The Eventide Island shrine quest. Link is stripped of his entire inventory, to scavenge for weapons and armor on the island in order to survive the many enemies found on the island and collect three large orbs to complete the trial.
  • Matchmaker Quest:
    • Played straight with the Lover's Pond sidequest, and hilariously executed. Lover's Pond is the fabled area mentioned not only in Gerudo Town's Vai and Voe class, but also in the diary in Kakariko's armor shop. You can find it on Tuft Mountain, in the southeast area of the map, near Lurelin Village. The sidequest involves giving flowers.
    • There is a sidequest in Hateno Village, in which Link is able to help the stable hand, Manny, woo the village innkeeper. The trope is hilariously played with, as when you ask the innkeeper, Prima, what sort of gift she would like, she quickly lies and says she'd like 100 crickets. Talk to her again, and Link will find out that she actually has eyes for a different guy in the village, and that she is already aware—and put-off by—Manny's interest in her. The quest also appears to be a bit of a reference to the sidequest in Skyward Sword, in which Link attempts to help a Hopeless Suitor with his crush, even down to the character designs of the NPCs involved being similar.
    • A more straightforward example with the Zora girl Finley and the Hylian guy she had been writing love letters to. Link is able to follow Finley's letter down Zora River to its receiver, and encourage the guy to actually go and meet Finley in person.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: Rupees. Most races simply use them as a medium of exchange, but the Great Fairies require a number of rupees to revive them. However, it's ambiguous whether the rupees actually do something or if it's simply a tithe. Additionally, they are dropped by glowing rabbit-spirits called Blupees when you shoot them, despite the fact that Money Spider is otherwise averted in this game and you normally need to sell things or complete sidequests to get money. One NPC wonders if this is where all rupees originate, but the status of that NPC as a child-like Korok makes it unclear whether or not this should be taken seriously.
  • Meat Moss: In various places such as Hyrule Castle and the Divine Beasts, one can see horrifying organic growth called Malice as a result of Calamity Ganon's corruption. Some of the growth has eyes and fanged orifices.
  • Medieval Stasis: The introductory cinematic says explicitly that this game takes place over 10,000 years after Skyward Sword. Despite the remnants of an ancient Magitec-using civilization, the current world is still using swords and bows.
  • Mecha-Mooks: Zig-zagged. Guardian Scouts in shrines are no harder than the monsters you fight across Hyrule. Guardian Stalkers encountered in the overworld, on the other hand, will kill you quickly if you're not careful around them.
  • Mercy Invincibility: Played with. Being hit hard enough to ragdoll will make Link invulnerable to further attacks. It will not make him immune to gravel rash, slamming into rocks, or tumbling off a cliff.
  • Minecart Madness: A few minecarts show up in various places - particularly in the Eldin region.
  • Missing Mom:
    • An NPC Zora child in Zora's Domain is depressed that his mother hasn't returned from her errand. The child's father is worried that Vah Ruta's constant rainstorm caused the mother to be washed downstream and fears the worst. Averted since you can find her in Lake Hylia alive and well as she catches fish. When you tell her that her husband and son are worried about her, she freaks out over completely forgetting about them and rushes home right away.
    • Koko and Cottla in Kakariko Village talk about their mom being gone in a vague way that gradually makes it apparent that something happened to her. In fact, she was murdered by the Yiga clan because Dorian, her husband, defected from them and refused to continue spying for them.
  • Mook Maker: There are some malice pools that have clashing maws that periodically spit out floating stal heads.
  • Mounted Combat: Link can fight on horseback. There are some enemies who also do this.
  • Moving the Goalposts: At the very beginning, the Old Man offers to let you have his paraglider if you'll get something out of a nearby shrine for him. After you do, he decides that nope, you have to go through all the other shrines on the Plateau before you get it.
  • Multiple Endings: Downplayed. There is one basic ending that occurs regardless of what you've done, and then additionally there is a Stinger after the credits that only plays if you've completed the "Memories" quest.
  • Multishot: Some bows shoot multiple arrows at once, while only costing one arrow from your inventory. They're very effective against Guardians.
  • Mundane Utility: Some of the weapons have secondary uses depending on their element or characteristics. For example, the game's Flaming Sword can be used to warm yourself, melt ice, and so on. Likewise, the effective indestructability of the Master Sword means it can be used for mundane tasks such as cutting down trees or splitting open mineral deposits without spending an inventory slot on a dedicated tool or wasting the durability of your other weapons.
  • Musical Nod:
    • The ambient background music that plays in the ruins of the Temple of Time is a very slowed-down rendition of said temple's theme in Ocarina of Time.
    • When Link sees the Calamity Ganon for the first time and the woman's voice speaks to him about how he must hurry, a rendition of Zelda's Lullaby is playing in the background.
    • The stable theme can be played in counterpoint with "Epona's Song". It becomes much more obvious when Kass the wandering bard is in the area and strikes up a Counterpoint Duet with his accordion.
    • In a flashback scene, Fi's theme from Skyward Sword plays when the Master Sword tells Zelda how to save Link once he's mortally wounded.
    • Death Mountain's ambient piano theme is the same theme from the final dungeon all the way back in the original game.
    • Goron City has a jazzy version of their usual theme that first appeared in Ocarina.
    • Zora's Domain has a much quieter version of the theme that appeared in Ocarina of Time, Majora's Mask, and Twilight Princess.
    • Rito Village uses an extended version of the Dragon Roost Island theme.
    • The Gerudo Valley theme makes a reappearance as the background for Gerudo City. It also shares phrases from a later version of the area.
    • The Master Sword has the same theme as always.
    • Hyrule Castle's exterior music contains portions of the main Zelda theme. Meanwhile, the interior BGM is a medley of the series' usual Hyrule Castle theme, Ganon's Theme, the Ballad of the Windfish from Link's Awakening, the prologue music from A Link to the Past, and a chilling remix of Zelda's Lullaby.
    • Hestu's usual maraca riff is a sped-up Manbo's Mambo.
    • The theme that plays in the Shrines is a remix of the dungeon music from the first game.
  • My Rules Are Not Your Rules: Enemy equipment will never ever break, but will start to wear down the moment you swipe it for yourself and use it. There's an inversion to the trope when it comes to metal weapons and thunderstorms; enemies using metal weapons in thunderstorms can and will be struck by lighting like Link does if he uses metal weapons.
  • Mythology Gag: A whole bunch, as this was going to be the 30th anniversary game before it was delayed. As a result, it gets its own page.

    N-P 
  • Neglectful Precursors: Ten thousand years ago the Sheikah built an army of nigh-unstoppable, semi-autonomous robots and buried them underground, but forgot to install antivirus, an emergency shut off feature, or proper instructions.
  • Nerf: Parrying has been downgraded from Skyward Sword. While you can still reflect projectiles and block attacks without damaging your shield, it does not open up the enemy for a counterattack in this game. Instead, the counterattack function has been given to the Perfect Dodge and Flurry Rush mechanics.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: A pretty subtle example with the Nintendo Switch Presentation trailer. While there's no content that's actually missing from the final game, the cutscenes are subtly edited together so that it becomes impossible to distinguish which are from the present day and which ones are flashbacks from 100 years ago that Link remembers during his Quest for Identity.
  • Nightmare Fetishist: Kilton, an off-beat merchant who only shows up at night and is a huge monster fanboy who squees over various beasts. He will buy monster bodyparts from Link in exchange for "mon", and allow Link to purchase various monster-themed gear, including Dark Link's outfit.
  • Nintendo Hard: The game can be brutal, especially early on, emphasizing that the player develop their skills and steadily get stronger exploring the ruins. Even in the first area, the player can run into enemies that can One-Hit Kill them, and the enemies only get more brutal as the game goes on. This will be taken Up to Eleven when the downloadable hard mode gets released.
  • No "Arc" in "Archery": Averted; arrows drop fast in this game, making gravity compensation a huge part of the sniping process. Some bows can make arrows fly straight for longer distances than others, with the Phrenic and Golden Bows turning most engagements into a case of this. The Ancient Bow, however, plays it completely straight, as do the Bow of Light and Twilight Bow.
  • No Body Left Behind:
    • Apart from enemies as per usual for the series, animals killed by Link will have their bodies disappear in a puff of smoke, leaving behind pieces of meat for him to consume right away or cook later. This is subverted for the enemies in one memory cutscene, as Link and Zelda survey the corpses of a number of different enemy monsters.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Both in response to petitions and in tribute to them, both Satoru Iwata and Robin Williams' likeness can be found in the game in the form of Botrick and Dayto, respectively. Botrick has Iwata's glasses and center-parted hairstyle, and Dayto has Williams' facial features.
  • No-Gear Level: The monk on Eventide Island's shrine wants to test Link's ability to survive in the wilderness, and so confiscates his equipment and inventory until he can solve the island's puzzles and will also give his items back should the player decide to give up. Link can still cast runes with his Sheikah Slate, but he has to forage food and find weapons in order to survive against the island's foes, which include several Moblins and a Hinox.
  • Non-Lethal K.O.: NPCs can be attacked by monsters, and if they take enough damage, they'll fall unconscious but will wake up minutes later. The only downside to not saving an NPC in time is you losing out on a reward.
  • Non Standard Game Over:
    • Trying to pull the Master Sword out of its pedestal if Link doesn't have at least 13 normal hearts will kill him on any attempt after the first.
    • Getting caught during the stealth segment of the Yiga Clan Hideout isn't an instant failure, but being struck by a Yiga Blademaster after you are discovered will instantly kill Link, no matter whether or not he has any faeries. Blademasters outside of this segment won't kill in one shot, but they'll still hit hard.
  • Noob Cave: Downplayed. The Great Plateau is a secluded Wide Open Sandbox where players can get used to the huge open-world structure the rest of the game has to offer. Lampshaded with the Japanese name, Hajimari no Daichi (The Beginning Plateau).
  • Not Quite Flight:
    • Link can use the paraglider to safely glide from a high place to the ground.
    • Because of just how robust the physic engine of this game is, it's entirely possible for the player themselves to pull this trope off.
  • No Fair Cheating: In the shrine quest involving the test of your endurance to heat and flame, trying to cheat with heat/fire resistant clothing or potions will have the Gorons call you out for cheating and will disqualify you. Nothing is stopping you from simply healing yourself to endure the test however.
  • No Sell: Lynels are immune to being frozen, electrocuted (save for Urbosa's Fury, which just stuns it instead of disarming it), set on fire, and stunned from explosions.
  • Nostalgia Level: Lon Lon Ranch from Ocarina of Time can be found in place, but is completely destroyed. Several locations from Skyward Sword can also be found, all in ruins.
  • Not Completely Useless: The humble torch is pretty useless as a weapon, but unlike other wooden weapons, it doesn't lose durability from being lit, making it great for fire puzzles or simply carrying flames to keep yourself warm.
  • Nothing but Skin and Bones: The monks in the shrines are completely emaciated and have visible bones under their skin. Their appearance is based on historical Buddhist monks who would sometimes mummify themselves by a method of carefully fasting to death. Since the shrine monks have similarly been sealed away, apparently for over a hundred years, with no food, it's probable that they are technically undead by the time Link meets them.
  • Notice This: Items which can be picked up twinkle intermittently, and emit an Audible Gleam if Link is very close to them.
  • Obvious Rule Patch: To avoid recreating troll physics in-game, Magnesis will immediately cut itself off if the item you're manipulating comes in contact with Link. But if you sandwich a second item in between, you're fine.
  • Old Save Bonus: After completing the Cave of Shadows in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD, the Wolf Link amiibo can be used to spawn in a Wolf Link Assist Character here. In addition, the recorded number of Hearts that you cleared the Cave of Shadows with will transfer over as Breath of the Wild Wolf Link's own maximum Hearts.
  • One-Hit Kill: Ancient Arrows instantly vaporize any non-boss, non-Guardian enemy, but takes their drops with it. Shooting a Guardian in the eye with an Ancient Arrow instantly reduces its health to 0.
  • One Size Fits All: All the weapons enemies use are scaled to their size. Even if a weapon is small or huge, they'll magically change to a size suitable for Link once dropped.
  • One Time Dungeon: The interiors of the Divine Beasts cannot be revisited once you fully clear them, unlike shrines. You are given one last opportunity to explore them after defeating the boss of each one, though.
  • Only Mostly Dead: Whether Link was this or just in a recovering coma is arguable. But the Horse God can resurrect horses that died, even Epona or the Royal Stallion.
  • Only the Chosen May Wield: The Master Sword can only be pulled out of its stone scabbard by the chosen hero of Hyrule. Even then, in order for the player to extract the sword, you will need a lengthy health gauge, since your hearts gradually drain as you pull on the sword.
  • Ontological Mystery: Link wakes up in a strange cave with no knowledge of how he got there or why he's being guided to specific locations. He has the option to hunt around and find out what's afoot.
  • Opening the Sandbox: Done in two stages. After a brief tutorial in the Shrine of Resurrection, the player is immediately thrown into Great Plateau, a sandbox that's big and wide-open but still much smaller than the rest of the game. After Link decides where to jump from the Plateau into Hyrule, the rest of the map is opened up with no restrictions.
  • Optional Stealth:
    • Breath of the Wild adds a stealth mechanic where you can sneak up on enemies to do more damage, or even to rob their camps blind with them none the wiser. The game lets you know if you're too loud with a waveform indicator showing all the sounds Link is making.
    • The game intends for you to be stealthy when infiltrating the Yiga clan's hideout. You won't get a Game Over if you're caught, but the patrolling sentries are so powerful that fighting them is practically a death sentence unless you have really good equipment. The official player's guide mentions that with luck, skill, or cheesing your way into areas with better equipment, fighting them is technically an option, but stealth is the better way to go.
  • Orange/Blue Contrast: Orange and blue are used extensively throughout the game to indicate incomplete (orange) and complete (blue) objectives. It also appears in Ancient technology and shrines.
  • Painful Rhyme: Invoked. One of Bolson's jingles tries to rhyme "saw" with "job", or more accurately, "jaw... b".
  • Palmtree Panic: The southeastern coast, particularly Lurelin Village.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: The monster masks you can buy from Fang and Bone, which are sloppily sewn together, leave Link's real face exposed in most cases, and obviously don't do much to alter the rest of his body (beyond changing his idle stance). Fortunately, Bokoblins, Moblins, and Lizalfos are all too stupid to catch on unless you blatantly attack one in front of the others. Not so much for Lynels, who will pick up on it the moment you do something as innocuous as pulling out the camera.
  • Permanently Missable Content: You're not allowed back into the Divine Beasts after clearing them, so make sure to open every chest before doing so. Having said this, chests in the Divine Beasts never contain anything you can't acquire elsewhere, with easy-to-reach chests usually containing supplies to save the player a trip out of the dungeon to restock on something necessary (such as Arrows), and hard-to-reach chests usually containing powerful gear, rupees, or desirable materials (such as Sapphires or Guardian parts).
  • Pig Man: The recurring Bokoblin enemies have this design in this game.
  • Pixellation: Played for Laughs. If you try to cook using incompatible ingredients, the resulting "Dubious Food" is apparently so disgusting it has to be pixelled out.
  • Play Everyday:
    • You can summon the Wolf Link helper from the amiibo once per day. If he dies, you'll have to wait until the next day to re-summon him.
    • Other amiibo can give once-a-day equipment/material drops.
  • Playing Tennis with the Boss: You can do so with regular Bokoblins here; if you time it right, you can bat away their rock projectiles.
    • When Fireblight Ganon enters its second phase, it will protect itself with an invincible barrier and begin charging a very dense fireball. One way to break the barrier is for the player to parry the fireball back with their shield. This method is also really useful in doing a ton of damage against Guardians with their laser beam.
    • As per tradition, Calamity Ganon itself treats you to this. It puts up an impenetrable shield in the second phase that none of your weapons can pierce (not even the Ancient Arrows). The only two ways to get past it are to either perfectly dodge its melee attacks to enter Flurry Rush, or reflect its projectiles with the shield parry. Or fire off Urbosa's Fury.
  • Point of No Return: Used very sparingly, as part of the game's freeform nature. Dungeons can be left at any point if you need supplies or a change of pace. Even certain setpieces you'd expect to have to commit to can be abandoned — in particular, before assaulting Vah Naboris, your partner makes a point of telling Link to bail if he gets hurt, and she'll meet him at the staging area when he's ready for another try. However, you can't return to a dungeon after finishing it, and after entering the Sanctum of Hyrule Castle you can neither leave nor save.
  • Post Final Boss: Calamity Ganon is more or less the actual final boss, the Dark Beast Ganon fight that follows is the denouement, since you're given an Eleventh Hour Superpower that kills the boss in eight hits and he only has one attack, a Wave Motion Gun Breath Weapon that can One-Hit Kill you, but isn't particularly difficult to avoid.
  • Powers as Programs: A nearly literal example; the Sheikah Slate acts like a tablet computer with magic powers, as it can download programs called Runes from Trial Dungeons.
  • The Power of Love: Mipha tells Zelda that when she uses her healing magic, she thinks of — well, Calamity Ganon attacks before she can say who it is, but it's heavily implied to be Link, who she's in love with. In a later memory, it's Zelda's love for Link and desperation to save him when he's in mortal danger that unlocks her powers.
  • Power Up Mount: Instead of a single horse, you can sneak up on wild horses in the overworld and ride them. Each horse has its own stats, and up to five of them can be saved at stables that allow you to summon your horses. In particular there are three 'legendary' horses corresponding to the three Triforce holders:
  • Pulling Themselves Together: Severed limbs of Stal creatures will try to crawl back to their owners, and similarly they'll stumble around looking for lost heads. They'll even replace lost appendages with those belonging to their fallen comrades. The Stal arm continues wriggling indefinitely after its owner is dispatched, even while Link is wielding them.
  • Pungeon Master:
    • Sayge, the owner of the Kochi Dye Shop in Hateno Village, provides a lot of literal color commentary.
    • Poncdo, the Snow Bowling guy, peppers his dialogue with snow and ice puns. He's quite the snowoff in that regard.
    • Patricia, Riju's pet sand seal is apparently one, however the guard who translates her words of wisdom spares you the "painful seal puns". It's not hard to figure out what the pun was going to be.
    • Link himself becomes one when he meets a merchant who rents sand seals. His dialogue options are "Are you sealious?" "How do I set seal?" and "Let's seal the deal!" The merchant has a pained response to any of these.
  • Punny Name: A girl who thinks Guardians are cool and cute and has fallen in love with an Ancient Sphere and named it Ronaldo is fittingly named 'Loone'.
  • Precision-Guided Boomerang: Averted. Unlike previous games where boomerangs magically travel to their selected targets then back to you, they are instead treated as melee weapons like swords, spears, and axes and are throwable as such. Each boomerang has a fixed path that it will travel in after it is thrown, and if it hits an enemy, it will travel back to you. If it hits a wall, it will immediately fall to the ground and will have to be retrieved manually. Finally, you have to press the A button to catch it, and if you mistime it, it damages you.
  • Product Placement: One of the chests that appears if you bought the Season Pass contains a Nintendo Switch T-Shirt.
  • Punched Across the Room:
    • Some monster attacks can send Link sailing an impressive distance. One free trip to the moon, just piss off the nearest Molduga.
    • The Spring-Loaded Hammer that Kilton sells can do this to monsters.

    R-S 
  • Ragdoll Physics: Both Link and enemies have ragdoll physics which kick into effect after a particularly hard hit or upon death.
  • Rare Random Drop: Zelda-related Amiibos have specific items and outfits related to their games. Most are slightly less powerful than end-game equipment, though the Twilight Bow with near-infinite range will always have uses. Whether you get these drops is randomly determined, but the weapons are more likely the farther you are into the game.
  • Readings Are Off the Scale: The thermometer on the HUD is calibrated for normal atmospheric temperatures. In extremely hot regions, like Death Mountain, it is consistently maxed out, and if Link isn't wearing adequate protective clothing, will even catch fire. Likewise, if Link gets frozen solid, the thermometer gets completely encased in ice.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: The tribe chiefs are very willing to give the amnesiac Link a chance and work against their peoples' prejudices to help save the world. Particularly the Gerudo chief, who susses out Link's crossdressing disguise almost immediately, but stops her bodyguard kicking their only hope against the Divine Beast out of the city; but by the same token, she agrees to assign him a trial to make sure Link's claims are legit.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: For a place set After the End, Hyrule sure is green and choc-full of wildlife, isn't it? Actually, if the ghost town of Pripyat is to be believed, this is actually a little more like what a world After the End would be like - especially with nothing like sewage or radiation to poison the environment.
  • Red Herring:
    • A seemingly dead end room in the Yiga Clan hideout contains a bow, pots that can be smashed to receive arrows, and barrels that have what look like targets painted on them. Shooting the targets does nothing, and the actual puzzle solution is entirely different.
    • In the Kakariko Village side quest involving the stolen heirloom guarded by Paya and Impa, you're tasked with finding the thief. You can encounter an old lady acting suspicious when questioned about the crime. She even admits to having a link to the item in question. Follow her, and you'll find out that she was swiping Swift Carrots to satisfy her urges to snack on them. The real thief is located elsewhere.
  • Reforged Blade:
    • The Master Sword repaired itself over time after being placed back in its pedestal. The sword also reforges itself with energy if you beat it to the point of breaking.
    • If one of the Champion weapons is broken, it can be remade by a specialized blacksmith.
    • Let a rusty normal weapon or rusty shield get sucked up by a Rock Octorok, and they'll spit it back at you good as new.
  • Respawning Enemies: Mooks will stay dead for a few in-game days, and respawn when the Blood Moon rises.
  • Ret Canon: The Flurry Rush attack is basically the Triforce Slash from Super Smash Bros..
  • Revisiting the Roots: One of the central objectives of the game's development as stated by Aonuma and Miyamoto is to eschew the tighter, story-driven, and sequential nature that the series slowly embraced and instead revisit the idea of unguided, free exploration that the original game was designed around. Aonuma has stated that he has desired to do this for a long time, but couldn't achieve a satisfactory result with Nintendo's hardware until the Wii U.
  • Ribcage Ridge: The Leviathan skeletons scattered throughout the world act as a down-scaled version of this. Also, there are giant rib bones on Death Mountain and around the area where a shrine is revealed by using the orbs taken from three Hinox.
  • Rock of Limitless Water: The top of Gerudo Town's palace has a large boulder suspended over it, which dispenses water constantly into a series of canals. The water disappears when it reaches the wells at the ends of these canals instead of flooding them.
  • Rock Monster: The Stone Talus is a creature made up of various round boulders.
  • Romance Sidequest: Very lightly played with. The game sets up two main plot-relevant possible love-interests, Princess Mipha of the Zora, and Princess Zelda of the Hylians. Both have feelings for Link, and it's implied both girls use him as an emotional anchor to help summon their powers. His feelings remain ambiguous, but in some very rare instances, players are given some dialogue options that could lean Link's feelings in the direction of either girl—options such as telling King Dorephan that he and Mipha are now "united" after accepting her zora armor, or admitting to Teba that saving Princess Zelda is Link's motivation for his mission. However, there also nothing stopping Link from implying he is in love with neither or both, and the dialogue options don't change any cutscenes or dialogue with either girl.
  • RPG Elements: The game introduces a lot more elements from traditional role-playing games like equipping more powerful weapons and armor, scavenging for food and supplies, enemy health bars, and cooking new items. The game even has a sort of "experience" system where after obtaining Spirit Orbs from Shrines, you can cash in four of them for an extra Heart or a Stamina upgrade. The game also has a greater emphasis on damage numbers than previous games, as enemies can have HP as high as 6000.
  • Samurai Ponytail: Link can change his hairstyles, including a top knot and this, among others.
  • Scaling the Summit: Unlike previous games, Link can climb more surfaces than usual, like mountains, buildings, and trees. This is limited by the stamina gauge, meaning players need to plan a route before climbing, or else Link will lose his grip. He also can't climb smooth surfaces, like the walls in the shrines.
  • Scenery Porn: As seen by the screenshot used for the page image. To see it animated, here's the 2014 E3 trailer. Suffice to say, Hyrule has never looked better. The E3 2016 reveal trailer takes it a step further and shows various vistas and locales along with the different interactions the player could do to it (such as chopping a tree to get across a chasm, rolling boulders on enemies, and spreading wildfires).
  • Schizo Tech: Link's arsenal includes various weapons obtained from monsters, food to replenish health, clothing, and... a tablet computer. And among the monsters in this iteration of Hyrule, there are Starfish Robots with powerful laser weapons roaming the world.This technology is the remnants of a highly advanced Sheikah civilization, which thrived until they were banished from Hyrule.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: An old man Link meets early in the game reveals that 100 years prior, Ganon — now called the "Calamity Ganon" — attempted to conquer Hyrule, but was sealed away inside Hyrule Castle. However, it has only grown more powerful over the years and has begun spreading its evil influence across the ruined remnants of Hyrule.
  • Sealed Evil in a Duel: Zelda is the only thing keeping Ganon somewhat trapped in Hyrule Castle, constantly fighting him over the last 100 years to keep him from destroying the world.
  • Selective Magnetism: Magnesis allows Link to move metallic objects.
  • Self-Imposed Challenge:
    • There's a lot of potential for players to challenge themselves however they wish, like going through the game without any armour.
    • You can also choose to disable the Champions' Gifts.
    • It's entirely possible to challenge Ganon immediately after leaving the Great Plateau.
    • Complete the Hyrule Compendium without purchasing a photo from Symin.
  • Sequel Difficulty Spike: This game offers a much steeper difficulty curve than its immediate predecessors. The game isn't afraid to throw enemies that can one-shot you even in the first area, and the puzzles require more a lot more spatial and logical awareness.
  • Set Bonus: Certain Armors gives a set bonus effect when you wear all parts. Most need you to upgrade them twice by the Great Fairies beforehand. Similarly, combining multiple food types with the same buff (such as the "mighty" prefix) will yield a stronger result than using multiple items of the same type.
  • Shield Bash: Lynel shields, because they have spikes attached, can be used to attack.
  • Shield Surf: Link can use his shield to slide down mountainsides. It's been noted, however, that doing so wears down a shield's durability, so it shouldn't be done too much.
    • Link also surfs on his shield when riding a sand seal across the Gerudo Desert and during the fight against Vah Naboris.
  • Shifting Sand Land: Gerudo Desert, as usual for the series.
  • Ship Tease: Between Link and Zelda. Their relationship is fleshed out in this game; the backstory reveals that they didn't start off on the best of terms but eventually grew close. Paya, Impa's granddaughter, privately wonders if Link is in love with Zelda, and considers the pairing an excellent match despite having a crush on him herself. A sidequest reveals that Zelda is actually in love with Link. Kass tells the story tells of how a poet was in love with her, but she couldn't accept their feelings as she was in love with Link. Her love for Link is also what activates her powers (the Triforce); the developers made jokes and hinted at this several times.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Eiji Aonuma has stated that the game's art style takes inspiration from Japanese animation, though unlike The Wind Waker (which took cues from the old-school era) this game portrays its world in a gouache-inspired style that is more reminiscent of Studio Ghibli's filmography. This is most obvious in Kakariko village, which looks straight out of a Hayao Miyazaki film, and Impa bears a striking resemblance to Yubaba from Spirited Away.
    • In the E3 2016 build, line of Sheikah text that appears when new rune abilities are downloaded into the Sheikah Slate translates to "NOW LOADING, DO NOT TURN OFF, ALL YOUR BASE ARE", with the "BELONG TO US" being cut off.note 
    • The North American/Japanese box art alludes to Caspar David Friedrich's "Wanderer Above the Sea of Fog".
    • One of the shields available to Link is a Sheikah artifact known as the Shield of the Mind's Eye.
    • If you step into the "lane", This is Snow-Bowling! There are rules!".
    • One of the Shrine Quests takes place around a "Mount Taran".
  • Sidequest: The game has a lot of them, with varying types of rewards such as food, armor, rupees, weapons, or even access to a shrine. Technically, one could count the entire game as a sidequest, since nothing is stopping you from rushing to the Final Boss as soon as you leave the Great Plateau. Even getting the Master Sword is completely optional, though it is required in order to see the full ending.
  • Significant Anagram: One of the shrines is called Oman Au, which is an anagram of Aonuma (the game's producer).
  • Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer: Princess Zelda never appeared in footage until the Game Awards footage, though it wouldn't be revealed to be her until the January 2017 Switch presentation. Though her voice was heard in the E3 trailer.
  • Situational Sword: The Master Sword has an above average power of 30 at all times, and whenever it "breaks" it regenerates in just ten minutes. However, when put up against foes under the direct control of the Calamity, or Calamity Ganon itself, its strength DOUBLES, which can make taking out the Blight Ganons pretty much trivial.
  • The Southpaw: Averted, surprisingly. Despite this game having no motion controls, Link is right-handed. Aonuma explains this decision was made because of how the controller is held, with the attack button being on the right side. With the game being available on the Switch, which allows its controller to be held Remote-and-Nunchuk style, it makes slightly more sense.
  • Sprint Meter: The stamina gauge from The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword returns. It can even be upgraded.
  • Starfish Robots: Guardians, walking artillery that resemble a strange mix between an Octorok and a Beamos, roam the world, posing a great threat to Link. Some can even be found in the starting area, though thankfully most of them are dead or at least legless.
  • Stealth Pun: While Breath of the Wild may refer to either the wind or the game's emphasis on the wilderness, Breath also sounds like the word "breadth", in reference to Hyrule's massive size.
    • The Lord of the Mountain is heavily indicated by flavour text to be the reincarnation of Satoru Iwata. Supporting this is the fact that the Lord has four eyes. Iwata wore glasses, thus making him a "four-eyes".
  • Sticks to the Back: Bows and shields have no apparent holsters and just attach to Link's back. Melee weapons generally avert this with a scabbard or a set of straps, but the Lynel Crusher line plays it straight.
  • Storming the Castle: The final dungeon is Hyrule Castle, where Calamity Ganon is, and Link must go in alone against the many enemies that inhabit the castle.
  • Story Breadcrumbs: Along with the main plot, the game's backstory is pieced together in various ways. Namely, along with Link's various memories, there are also NPCs that knew him from 100 years ago (such as his other Zora-born Childhood Friend, Kodah).
  • Stuff Blowing Up: Explosions are much bigger than they are from previous games.
  • Suddenly Voiced: This is the first main-series gamenote  to include comprehensible voice-overs (not counting Link's "Come on!" or Beedle's "Thank You!" in Wind Waker, which are more like sound effects). While Link remains a Silent Protagonist, and characters still speak in the traditional text boxes, major cutscenes include full voice acting for the main cast, including Zelda herself.
  • Sufficiently Advanced Bamboo Technology: The Sheikah Slate and the shrines where you use the Slate all have the appearance of plain stone with Tron Lines. The Slate essentially behaves like a modern tablet computer — you can 'download' maps to it at shrines and use it to execute certain abilities.
  • The Swarm:
    • Keese sometimes come in big groups. They will, however, fly away if Link kills a few of them.
    • Small swarms of bees attack anything nearby if their hive is destroyed. They're fairly slow and weak, though, and weapons can be used to discombobulate them.

    T-Z 
  • Take That, Audience!: The ultimate reward for all your hard efforts for collecting all 900 Korok seeds seems to be Nintendo's way at poking fun at those who expect some sort of Infinity+1 Sword or other Bragging Rights Reward for obtaining 100% Completion in games. It's a large golden korok seed that looks like a golden coiled pile of poop, fresh from Hestu as a sign of his friendship. The description even says that it "smells pretty bad."
  • Take Your Time: Even though the game makes known several times that Calamity Ganon is soon going to regain his full power and destroy what is left of Hyrule, the player is free to spend dozens of hours exploring Hyrule and doing sidequests. The Old Man even encourages this.
  • Temple of Doom: The Forgotten Temple at the bottom of Tanagar Canyon is filled with Decayed Guardians that will come to life as soon as Link draws near.
    • Certain shrines can contain dangerous traps such as bottomless pits, or have Guardian Scouts patrolling within.
  • Theme Naming:
    • The Divine Beasts' names are corruptions of the names of sages from Ocarina of Time and Wind Waker: Darunia, Ruto, Nabooru, and Medli. They're even piloted by someone of the same race as the sage. Vah Ruta and Vah Naboris are explicitly mentioned as being named after Ruto and Nabooru, so the same is likely true of the other two as well.
    • Enforced by the Bolson Construction Company, whose company policy says that they only hire people whose names end in "son".
    • Several Sheikah are also named after fruit.
  • Theme Tune Cameo: When Kass gets to play the full version of his song in the conclusion of his personal quest, it contains a portion of the main Zelda theme. He also plays Epona's Song when met at stables. If you take the individual parts of the songs he plays for you when explaining shrine quests and put them together, it turns into the game's main theme/the first trailer theme.
  • Throw Down the Bomblet: Remote Bomb allows Link to create a spherical or cubical bomb that can be detonated remotely. There's an infinite supply of them, but there's a cooldown for each use.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: Most of your weapons can be thrown at enemies to do critical hits. However, hitting an enemy this way will immediately break the weapon, meaning it's best to do this with weapons that are about to break anyway. Boomerangs (which function like short swords) won't break if used this way, but have to be manually caught on the return trip.
  • Time Stands Still: Stasis causes an object to be frozen in time temporarily. Objects affected by Stasis store kinetic energy, meaning multiple weak blows dealt to an object in Stasis will be combined into a single, powerful blow, allowing heavy objects to be moved. Getting Stasis+ from Purah relatively early in the main story chain lets you do this to monsters as well, albeit for a much, much shorter duration.
  • Too Awesome to Use:
    • Better weapons and equipment can fall into this for some, especially rare ones found in chests. Ancient Arrows can be this too. These arrows can One-Hit Kill most non-boss enemies, up to and including Guardians. However, they are extremely rare to find, and to make them, the player needs to gather ancient materials which only drop from the aforementioned Guardians.
    • Fortunately, not the case with Champion's Weapons, which can be reforged. All they need is one diamond, a certain lesser weapon of the same kind, and five of some common material like flint or wood.
  • Trick Arrow: Ice, Fire, Bomb, and Shock arrows are available as ammo, as well as Ancient Arrows, which do massive damage to Guardians and act as a Disintegrator Ray to all organic non-boss enemies.
  • Truce Zone: Monsters do not aggro near towns or stables; as people who have herded Guardians to stables have learned.
  • Unexpected Character:
    • Two of the species featured in the game are the Korok and the Rito, who haven't been seen since their debut in Wind Waker. Extra surprising considering that the Zora (whom Wind Waker implied the Rito to have evolved from) are also in the game.
    • Though not physically, Fi has an unexpected role in the story, being the one to tell Zelda that Link can be saved with the Shrine of Resurrection.
  • Unexpectedly Realistic Gameplay: This game is basically The Legend of Zelda but with real-life rules, removing a lot of video game tropes that are taken for granted throughout the series.
    • Link will not be able to find the supplies he needs just by cutting grass and breaking pots. Instead, he can only scavenge them from places where one would expect to find them, like taking arrows from bow-wielding Bokoblins and restoring health by eating the meat gathered by hunting animals. His primary method of obtaining rupees is by selling items or gambling. He also doesn't hold items dramatically in the air whenever he collects them.
    • Unlike most other Zelda games, you are free to ignore where the story tells you to go and even skip to the final boss, missing out on a lot of secrets and Link's origin. In real life, you are not restricted to follow a plot, but you won't be able to find answers to your questions unless you search them out.
    • If you're caught in a thunderstorm, your metallic equipment can actually act as a lightning rod and draw lightning towards you. If you're expecting it to act as the lightning version of the Skyward Strike from the battle against Demise in Skyward Sword, you'd be sadly mistaken, as it actually does damage you. note 
    • Going into freezing cold environments without wearing heavy insulated clothing will be bad for your health. Likewise, wearing clothing that's too thick (or nothing at all) and letting the sun beam down on Link in a desert biome will cause him to overheat, and having metal equipment on his person during a thunderstorm will cause him to spark with electricity before the lightning strikes him.
    • If you get into a tough fight while on horseback, your horse can be killed -- and won't come back — if you're not careful. Although the presence of the Horse God kinda makes that a moot point.
    • If Link falls from a very high area, rolling on the ground won't save him this time, he'll die when he lands down. On a similar note, if he gets thrown back and sent rolling down an incline, Link will take damage as he rolls.
    • In previous games, Link was durable enough to shrug off laser blasts as little more as a quarter heart of damage. Here, lasers are potentially lethal (especially charged barrages). Being set on fire, frozen solid, or electrocuted are also as harmful as you'd expect.
    • In previous games, there was No "Arc" in "Archery". Here, though, you'll need to account for drop when aiming your shots.
    • Rainy weather will make Bomb Arrows completely useless due to the fuse being wet, while making electrical damage all the more dangerous. Conversely, trying to use a Bomb Arrow in a very hot area, like, say, around Death Mountain, will just blow up in your face before you can even fire it.
    • Temperatures in the desert can vary widely over the course of the day. Of course, it'll be unbearably hot during the day without the right clothing or heat-resisting buffs. At night, however, the temperature will swing to the opposite extreme and become unbearably cold, since the deserts are very arid and, without humidity, all the heat in the desert escapes into the atmosphere.
    • If Link or any enemy gets electrocuted, they'll drop their weapon and shield.
    • In a cold area, equipping a Flame weapon will help warm Link up. The opposite is true as well, as equipping an Ice weapon in a hot area will help cool Link down. Similarly, holding a flaming weapon near a block of ice will gradually melt it.
    • Rupees no longer drop from grass or monsters, just as how one wouldn't expect to find money just laying out in the field in real life. While they're still found under rocks, in pots, and in boxes, they only drop from one enemy type: the Yiga Clan, given that they are Sheikah and even disguise themselves as travelers (and even try to sell the player bananas).
    • Weapon types matter when you're using them to gather resources. Trying to use a bladed weapon to break open an ore vein will both take excessively long and do a lot of damage to its durability, same thing for trees and blunt weapons. By contrast, using something that would logically be better at breaking ore (like a sledge hammer or a two-handed axe) will do almost no durability and break it in one hit, while swinging at a tree with a heavy axe or a two-handed sword will be much better than swinging at it with a sword meant only for combat.
    • Wooden objects that were indestructible in previous Zelda games will break and shatter under enough force. Shoot a bomb arrow at a tree, and the tree will fall. Even wooden chests containing key items aren't immune; if they take enough damage, they'll be reduced to splinters, and the item inside will drop onto the floor.
    • The time it takes for stores to restock take varying amounts of time, one of the most subtle ones is that stores that sell monster parts will only restock after a Blood Moon, because either they go kill the monsters themselves or are supplied by adventurers, they need to wait for respawns just like the player does.
  • Variable Mix:
    • Music is usually low-key and ambient, varying depending on the area Link is in. When approaching towns, the town's BGM will grow in volume until it's actually entered, wherein it'll play at full volume. Entering interiors will muffle the music.
    • The background music for the Divine Beasts starts off simple and ambient, but develops as Link activates more terminals.
    • Tarrey Town's music gains elements of the music from Rito Village, Goron City, Zora's Domain, and Gerudo Town, respectively, as Link invites denizens of those regions. This also extends to the wedding at the end.
    • Hyrule Castle itself has a dramatic, loud theme for the exterior, that perfectly fades into a more sinister theme for the interior. In addition, both of these variants gain an extra drumbeat during combat.
    • Any time Kass is at a stable, his own accordion music (which is Lon Lon Ranch) mixes with the stable's own background music.
  • Vendor Trash: Pretty much anything besides weapons and a few special pieces of armor can be sold. One of the quickest ways to get Rupees is to sell monster parts, gems, and other junk acquired while exploring the wild. These items all have uses in crafting, so there's an incentive for players to find other sources of Rupees, like sidequests, at least until they have way more items than they need.
  • The Very Definitely Final Dungeon: The player is explicitly told from the start of the game that Hyrule Castle is housing Calamity Ganon. Interestingly played with in that not only can it be visited at any time to fight the final boss, stopping by sometime before actually confronting Ganon is encouraged — a few sidequests and one of Link's memories require the player to visit the castle early.
  • Vestigial Empire:
    • Averted with Hyrule Kingdom. While much of the nation's infrastructure remains intact and three large communities are thriving, nothing remains of its central government or massive military (aside from the corrupted Guardians). Though many citizens fondly remember or wish returning to the lost golden age, there isn't the leadership or safety to pursue it. For all practical purposes the kingdom is dead... at least until Link defeats Ganon and saves Zelda.
    • The Gerudo. There was a time when their civilization spanned across the desert and highland. In size and grandeur it might have rivaled Hyrule Kingdom itself, having the luxury to craft gold weapons and armor covered in gemstones. To the direct north of Gerudo Town are ruins of an ancient city larger than the modern one. To the far east are monolithic statues dedicated to the Seven Heroines. To the far west are additional ruins of a massive lost community (perhaps even two). To the far north, past Gerudo Summit, is the missing statue of the Eighth Heroine. It's never clarified what caused the fall of this mighty nation, or why the Gerudo have fallen so far from their former glory.
  • Video Game Caring Potential:
    • Horses have to be tamed and cared for in order to be of much use, and can die, making it a lot easier to care about them. Until they're used to being ridden, they can be calmed by patting them. If they get hurt, they can be fed to heal them. Or just if you want to.
    • You can hang out with dogs, and feed them fruit and meat, and they'll become friendly and follow Link around. Feed them enough, and they'll usually lead you to buried treasure.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential:
    • You can force Link to suffer in cold areas by removing his warm clothes, leaving him shivering.
    • Unlike other games in the series, horses can actually die from being hit by attacks. While this mainly means that the monsters you encounter have another target, this doesn't stop you from murdering your own horse if you feel it's outlived its purpose...or if you find a horse with a nicer-looking design or even better stats. And it's ultimately unnecessary, since you can have up to 5 at a time in the stables, and can let go the ones you don't want.
    • While NPCs can't be harmed, you can still swing your weapons at them to make them scared or annoyed. They'll have a different reaction to your bombs, where they'll look at it in terror, track where it goes if you toss it, and then freak out proper when you detonate the bomb. They also have a different reaction to your attempts at setting them on fire with the Fire or Meteor Rod.
    • Fighting monsters has so many ways you can utilize: blowing them up with explosives, shooting elemental arrows at them, setting them on fire with a torch, blowing them off a cliff with a Korok Leaf... the possibilities are endless! But what takes the cake is what you can do to skeletons: You can beat one with its own arm, then steal its skull and run away with it while the rest of the skeleton desperately tries to take it back, and finally kick the skull off a cliff, after which the skeleton throws a fit in frustration before collapsing into a pile of bones.
    • An old lady in Kakariko Village yells at you for stepping in her garden where she's growing her plum trees. She'll also yell at you if you blow up a tree with a bomb. Blow up all the trees and she gets depressed that her trees are all gone.
    • Like most games in the series, attacking Cuccos earns you the wrath of the Cucco Revenge Squad. However, due to the open world nature of this game, it is possible to kill them without consequences by carrying one all the way up to the Eldin region and then throwing it into lava.
    • An NPC will give you 500 rupees if you agree to meeting a Great Fairy and making an offering in his place. Nothing is stopping you from ignoring the request and just keeping the money for yourself.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment:
    • Even though you can hunt wild animals for food in this game, domesticated animals are off limits, and true to Zelda tradition, this especially includes Cuccos (so you'll be substituting other birds for poultry). Even though you can get an egg from doing so, attacking them directly still earns you the wrath of the Cucco Revenge Squad. On the plus side, if you trick an enemy into attacking a Cucco, the Cucco Revenge Squad will target them.
    • Attacking the Goron leader with a weapon will have him uppercut Link and knock him flat on his ass.
  • Villain-Beating Artifact: Surprisingly Averted with the Master Sword, which is actually not needed to defeat Ganon. Played straight, however, with the Light Arrows, which are the only thing that can harm Dark Beast Ganon.
  • Villains Out Shopping: Common monsters can sometimes be found hunting in the wild. Similarly, when they're at ease in their camps, they'll dance around and chat with each other.
  • Violation of Common Sense: If you're planning on Perfect Parrying a Guardian's laser, it can be more beneficial to stand at point blank range; the laser isn't hitscan, so the closer you're standing to the Guardian, the easier it is to time the parry due to the laser having almost no travel time from the very brief startup animation. This only works on Decayed and Turret Guardians, as well as Stalkers that you've disabled by slicing a leg off.
  • Virtual Paper Doll: Link's appearance changes depending on what he's wearing. If he's not wearing anything on top, he'll be shirtless, and if he he's not wearing any pants, he'll wear shorts instead.
  • Voice Grunting: Even though there's voice acting in the game, it's mixed up with grunts in the cutscenes not using voice acting.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: It's possible to play with a shirtless Link. But pulling this for the entire game is not a good idea, especially in the cold or exceptionally hot areas.
  • The Wall Around the World: Hyrule is a rectangular landmass with its northern and western borders defined by wide, bottomless gorges. The eastern and southern borders meet the sea and part of Gerudo desert. All of these obstacles can be surmounted by a very determined player, but they will eventually hit an invisible wall and be unable to proceed.
  • Wall Crawl: Link can scale entirely vertical surfaces, at the cost of his stamina meter.
  • Warp Whistle: The Sheikah Slate allows Link to instantly warp to activated shrines, towers, and a few other select locations.
  • Wham Shot: In the final photo memory scene, after Link has been fatally wounded, Zelda slumps over his unconscious body, only for Fi's trademark chime to play. The camera then focuses in on the Master Sword in Link's hand, which is shining with a familiar glow.
  • Wide Open Sandbox: An explicit goal for this particular game is to give players the kind of freedom that hasn't been present in the series since the original game. To further emphasize this, Aonuma even stated that it's possible to reach the Calamity Ganon as soon as the opening segment is over, before doing a single thing (though he obviously advises against this, as you're way underequipped at that point and you'd miss the whole story). Hyrule is stated be 140 square miles/362 kilometers in size. In comparison, the overworld in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (a game famous for its huge size) is merely 16 square miles/42 kilometers. It's still slightly smaller than Xenoblade Chronicles X, which is 154 square miles/398 kilometers in size. Many of Xenoblade's developers worked on this game, so a wide open world is assured. This article shows the world map's size in comparison to Skyrim, and shows that the entirety of Twilight Princess almost fits inside the starting area.
  • Wreaking Havok:
    • The physics are far more extensive than any previous game in the series. Shigeru Miyamoto has said that the main reason for the delays was due to development on the physics engine.
    • You can push boulders down cliffs and hills, and see them tumble around.
    • The Magnesis power exists pretty much exclusively for this purpose. Using it, you can even pick up dropped weapons and just beat enemies with them.
    • The game uses Ragdoll Physics for both Link and enemies, and if either goes limp on a slope, they can roll quite far.
    • Stasis can be used to build up kinetic energy in an object until it shoots off once the rune's power runs out.
    • Many puzzles found in the game's shrines are based on real-time physics, unlike in past Zelda games, where the physics puzzles used set states instead.
    • One can create a makeshift catapult using a treasure chest, a plank, and a boulder.
  • Wutai: This time around, Kakariko village is closely based on a traditional Japanese village, and Sheik's ninja thematic from Ocarina of Time now applies to the tribe's warriors (as well as the Yiga Clan) as a whole.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: The King's diary mentions prophets and a prophecy about Calamity Ganon's reawakening. His efforts with reviving the Guardians, repairing the Divine Beasts, funding a massive military build up of Hyrule (look at all those ruined forts and garrisons), assembling the Champions, and getting Zelda to unlock her powers as soon as possible were to prevent the kingdom's fall. It fell nonetheless. All of this was foreseen 10,000 years ago. The towers and shrines didn't activate during the fall of King Rhoam Bosphoramus Hyrule. It wasn't the right time. That wouldn't occur until after the fall of Hyrule and another 100 years later.
  • You Don't Look Like You:
    • Link still resembles himself in the face, but all the merchandise and advertising shows him in the blue Champion's Tunic rather than his usual green, and without a hat. Most of the game will be spent in this and other miscellaneous outfits that bear even less resemblance to Link's typical appearance. note 
    • The bird-like Rito tribe have undergone a heavy redesign since their last appearance. The "human with a beak" design has been ditched in favor of a more birdlike appearance, complete with full-body feathers and ever-present wings.
    • The Sheikah still have white hair but have a much wider variety of eye colors, when previously only red was seen.
    • The Zora now come in multiple colors rather than just the standard/minor variations of blue, and are based on marine life, mainly sharks.
  • You Wake Up in a Room: The game begins with Link awakening inside a mysterious place called the Shrine of Resurrection, with only the strange machine he lay in and the mysterious Sheikah Slate. The way out is locked; however, Link can just use the tablet to unlock the door.

You have done well to reach the end of this page. In the name of the Goddess Hylia, I bestow upon you this Spirit Orb.
May the goddess smile upon you.

Alternative Title(s): The Legend Of Zelda Wii U

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaBreathOfTheWild