Detailing

Ocarina of Time Secrets you’ve probably never heard of


November 21 marks the 20th anniversary of one of video game’s most beloved titles, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Ocarina of Time was the first 3D entry in the Zelda franchise and practically wrote the book on the future of action-adventure games with its breathtaking world, thrilling battles, and intricate dungeons. At this point, his successors have blown him away in terms of size and reach, but that doesn’t mean he’s still not hiding a few secrets fans missed the first dozen times.

Most players know of more prevalent secrets like the Sinking Decoy, Malon’s Bowser Brooch, and Mario Portraits, so we enlisted the help of 10 years Ocarina of Time ZFG speedrun veteran to help us build a list of lesser-known secrets, mechanics, and interactions you can find in Ocarina of Time’s Hyrule.

Secret of lava falls in Dodongo cave

“Every waterfall in a video game must have a secret behind it” could just as easily be one of the ten commandments of video games, but does the same rule apply to lava falls as well? The Legend of Zelda series has always adhered to this sacred rule, even going so far as to include an interesting (but trivial) secret behind a lava cascade in Dodongo Cave.

Every waterfall in a video game must have a secret behind it … but does the same rule apply to lava falls?

Located in the arena where you first face off against the two Lezalfos, this secret is hidden behind a lava fall in the southeast corner of the room. Just jump towards the lava and you’ll pass into a small room on the other side. Sadly, the devs left only one scavenging core, but it’s worth stopping just to say you’ve explored all the water and lava falls the game has to offer.

The fairies of Ganon castle

Ganon Castle, the final obstacle between Link and his clash with Ganondorf, should be the most difficult and oppressive place in all of Ocarina of Time. With that in mind, the devs may have felt a little bad for their brave hero and decided to throw a bone at him in the form of a hidden room full of fairies and useful Business Scrubs. Located on the ground floor of the Trials Hub, this hidden room is located under the bridge that leads to Ganon Castle itself. It’s hidden by a false wall, but you can use the Lens of Truth to find the opening and enter a small room where you can bottle fairies and buy useful items.

Fire Temple Scarecrow

Most players are familiar with the song of the Scarecrow, but few have used it to summon Stray Stone.

Most players are familiar with the song of the Scarecrow, but few have used it to summon the Wandering Stone unless they were hunting the 100 Gold Skulltulas. Most of the time, playing the song allows you to reach a distant platform or find a Golden Skulltula, but the Fire Temple Scarecrow is worth mentioning as it opens up a hidden section of the temple that the Most players have never seen it. Peter can be summoned in the Great Hall of the Rolling Rock Maze on the third floor of the Fire Temple. Play the song near the door and it will appear on a platform above you. Shoot him to reach this platform, then shoot another small platform in the corner of the room. This platform will take you to a hidden part of the temple where you can climb chains and find a golden Skulltula. Continue up and you will find another room containing a timed puzzle similar to the one in the Megaton Hammer room. Reach the small chest within the time limit to get a Gold Ruby!

The dying soldier

The Alley Soldier (also known as the Dying Soldier) is a fairly hidden and time-sensitive NPC in the castle town of Ocarina of Time. The Dying Soldier can only be encountered once per game, in the back alley of Castle Town after obtaining the three Spirit Stones but before taking them to the Temple of Time. You can speak to him once before his death and he will tell you that Ganondorf betrayed the Royal Family and Princess Zelda fled the castle. He asks you to take the Ocarina of Time to the Temple of Time so that you can continue your adventure. Make sure to visit him on your next game so he can rest in peace.

King Zora’s kiss

Another frequently missed interaction is this special gift Link can receive from King Zora after freeing him from his frozen prison in Zora’s future realm. Most players know that King Zora will reward them with a Precious Blue Tunic after melting the Red Ice, which they must use with the Iron Boots to complete the Water Temple. But what if you’ve already purchased a blue tunic from Zora’s Estate Shop before releasing it? Don’t worry, the quick-thinking King will instead offer you his heartfelt thanks and a big kiss! Sadly, Link silently refuses it, but it’s still a scene to check out on your next game.

Drinking ghosts

Before embarking on a dangerous adventure, a good hero always fills his bottles with a variety of healing items like fairies, potions, or milk. But did you know that Poes also seems to have healing abilities? Most players never bothered to bottle normal Poes because the reward for turning them into Poe Collector was so small, but if you bottle one and then try to drink it you will probably find that it has strange effects. A bottled Poe can drain or restore Link’s health, sometimes even restoring multiple hearts at once. Fairly unreliable when it comes to healing items, but one wonders what makes one Poe more beneficial than another.

Critical agitation

“Critical Wiggle” is the unofficial name for a hidden mechanic in Ocarina of Time that affects movement when the player is in poor health. Whenever Link’s health drops to critical levels (i.e. that annoying beeping sound), there’s a small chance the game will replace your controls with random directional inputs, presumably to simulate racing. in case of injury. Although most gamers would never notice such a minor deviance, there are some awesome clips of the mechanic in action (credit and condolences to Twitch streamer dannyb21892).

Ice arrow applications

Ice Arrows don’t have an obvious use, but there is at least one interesting Easter Egg involving the Special Arrow.

Arrows of Fire and Ice are two powerful tools that Link can add to his arsenal, if he can successfully solve the dark puzzles that surround them. While both are technically optional, Fire Arrows are an immediately useful tool when it comes to solving puzzles that require a source of fire. During the battle with Shadow Temple boss Bongo Bongo, you can use the Ice Arrows to freeze one of his hands, forcing his other hand to attempt to break the ice and leaving his eye open for an attack. . It’s a neat tactic that some have stumbled upon accidentally, while others have gone completely wrong.

Powerful Crouching Stab

Another unofficial (perhaps also unintentional) mechanic, “Power Crouch Stab” is the term coined for Link’s exploitable crouching knife attack. In the Nintendo 64 version of Ocarina of Time, Link’s crouching stab did not receive a damage value, and instead uses the value of the last attack Link made. This means that players can, for example, use the jump attack of the Master Sword (attack value 4), then strike an enemy with the Sword’s Crouching Punch which is both faster and stronger than the default Sword hit (Attack Rating 2). This trick can also abuse Link’s other gear, such as the Mojo Staff (slash jump attack rating 4) or Biggoron’s sword (slash jump attack rating 8!). Unfortunately, this mechanic was removed in the 3DS remake of Ocarina of Time, but you can still enjoy it in the GameCube and Virtual Console ports.

Captain Gerudo’s color change

Towards the end of the game, Link must infiltrate the Gerudo Fortress and free some Carpenters so they can repair the broken bridge in the Gerudo Valley. After sneaking past countless guards and freeing the last carpenter, a Captain Gerudo appears in front of Link to compliment his prowess and offer him a chance to be an honorary Gerudo. She is so impressed in fact that she decided to wear clothes the same color as him! Okay, that might not be entirely correct, but it is true that in the early versions of Ocarina of Time there was a bug that caused the Captain of the Guard’s clothing to match the tunic or gauntlet that Link wore at the start of the cutscene. Her outfit will change to match the green, red and blue tunics. Even stranger, if the player uses glitches to get the silver or gold gauntlets earlier, their clothes will change to silver or gold to match those, too!


So how did we do it? Hope you learned a new secret or found a handy trick that you can use on your next adventure to save Hyrule.

If you want to learn even more about the intricacies of Ocarina of Time, check out ZFG’s streams and videos. ZFG has held the 100% world record in the completion category since May 2013 and recently became the first player to achieve a time of less than 4 hours in this category.

You can consult its live broadcast world record attempts on Twitch, or consult highlights from past races on YouTube.


Sam Stewart is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow it on Twitter.



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