Since the release of its first title thirty-five years ago, The Legend of Zelda established itself as one of the gaming industry’s great design triumphs. Nintendo’s first 3D Zelda title, 1999 Ocarina of time, continued this trend of innovation with years of dynamic open-world design ahead of its time.
One of the unsung beneficiaries of this immersive redesign is Ocarina of Time’s side quests. Plentiful and immersive, these optional missions represent some of the best narrative designs in the game. Zelda franchise, effectively taking advantage of a revolutionary open world to create a memorable assortment of clever quests.
ten Farmer link
One of the most inventive side quests in Ocarina of time is also one of the shortest. In classic fairy tale fashion, Link can buy Magic Beans from a mysterious vendor near the Zora River and plant them in patches of loose soil around Hyrule.
Players who return to these locations once Link travels to the future will be rewarded for their efforts, as the Beanstalks have become large upgradable platforms. For their farm work, players are rewarded with up to six pieces of heart, as well as access to useful shortcuts leading to the Lost Woods and Zora’s Domain.
9 Biggoron’s Sword
One of Ocarina of Time’s The longest side quests and claiming the best in the series, this journey puts players on an arduous path to increasing their damage output. The premise of this exhausting quest is deceptively simple. Biggoron, the legendary blacksmith Goron, needs drops to soothe his irritated eyes and asks Link for help in finding a cure. Obtaining these drops, however, is no small feat.
Players have to trade many unique items, many of which are some of the weirdest items in the world. The Legend of Zelda franchise, with the people of Hyrule finally being awarded the “World’s Best Eye Drops”. The final reward for this side quest is the extremely useful Biggoron’s Sword, which deals more damage and has a longer range than the Legendary Master Sword at the cost of not being able to use a shield.
8 Hunting Golden Skulltulas
In the village of Kakariko, Link encounters a wealthy family who have been cursed by their greed and turned into spider-like creatures. To free them, players must kill 100 Golden Skulltulas hidden around Hyrule and its assorted dungeons. Often placed in remote or hard-to-reach locations, finding these golden arachnids is usually a headache in itself, sometimes requiring time travel to revisit areas once players acquire items like the Longshot or Hover Boots.
7 The many mini-games of Hyrule
Scattered across the realm of Hyrule, players will find an assortment of mini-games that will test their mettle with various items and weapons. Not only do these games provide an enjoyable break from the central campaign of Ocarina of timebut they also allow the player to practice the skills that will keep them in top shape as they progress through the game.
An archery-based game in Hyrule tests players’ marksmanship at a shooting range, while a horseback variant at the Gerudo Fortress increases the difficulty of the more difficult end-game stages One of the most memorable of these games tasks players with throwing Bombchus at distant targets in a ski-ball-style arcade setting. A fan-favorite mini-game gives Link unlimited time to go fishing in a pond adjacent to Lake Hylia – the series’ most relaxing adventure.
6 The Evolutionary Scarecrow
At Lake Hylia, Link encounters a sentient scarecrow named Bonooru. He invites players to play him a unique tune – any set of eight notes from the ocarina that the players choose. When Link returns to Bonooru as an adult and plays this custom tune, the Scarecrow will grant him an unusual mobility advantage.
By playing the “Scarecrow Song” at key locations throughout Hyrule’s many dungeons, Link can summon Bonooru’s brother, Pierre, another Scarecrow who can be targeted and compressed via grappling hook. This allows players to collect extra Rupees, Hearts, Heart Coins, and even the elusive Golden Skulltula Tokens.
5 Acquire Epona the Horse
Although it is an iconic visual element of Ocarina of timeit’s legacy and fan-favorite character, it’s entirely possible to complete the game without encountering Link’s trusty steed, Epona. This optional side quest begins at the Lon Lon Ranch immediately after adult Link leaves the Temple of Time for the first time as long as he learned the song of Epona from Malon as a child. At the ranch, players can summon Epona and challenge stable owner Ingo to two races. Earn both, and Link can ride with speed and ease in one of the best versions of Hyrule in the game. Zelda series.
4 The Gerudo Gauntlet
After freeing the carpenters of the Gerudo Fortress, Link will be deemed worthy enough to endure the Gerudo Training Grounds. Inside, Link must prove his mettle not only in battle, but also by solving a sequence of timed puzzles. Some of these puzzles include a simple game of collecting silver rupees, while others require inventive use of the Longshot, Iron Boots, and Lens of Truth.
For each small test that Link overcomes, he is rewarded with a small key. Once Link has received all seven keys to this mini-dungeon, he can access the final room and claim his prize: the eminently useful Ice Arrows, capable of freezing most enemies in place.
3 The merry mask seller
Just off the main square of Hyrule Castle Town, players will find a unique shop selling masks. Shop owner, the Happy Mask Salesman – a polarizing NPC destined to become one of the main reasons why Majora’s Mask is one of the strangest Zelda games of all time – engages Link in the task of buying and selling masks for profit.
Throughout this brief quest, players will sell masks to the guard at the entrance to Death Mountain, the Skull Kid in the Lost Woods, the graveyard boy in Kakariko, and the runner in Hyrule Field. The prize for selling all four masks is access to four different masks, including the Mask of Truth, which allows Link to gain valuable advice and information from the Gossip Stones scattered around Hyrule.
2 Big Poe Hunter
In addition to adding an industry-defining open world to the Zelda franchise, Ocarina of time features a dynamic time passage mechanism that transitions from day to night and vice versa. At night, the world of Hyrule can become a much more dangerous place, especially Hyrule Field where Skeletal Stalchildren and Botanical Bladed Peahats can wreak havoc in the moonlight.
Once the sun goes down in the Adult Link timeline, players can encounter ten Big Poes – larger, more powerful versions of the ghosts found in Kakariko Village’s graveyard. However, these specters are fast, so players are advised to only take on this side quest after freeing Epona from Ingo at the Lon Lon Ranch. Once defeated, Link can trade the souls of Poes with the Poe Collector for an Empty Bottle – perhaps the most useful item in the The Legend of Zelda franchise.
1 Find the fairy fountains
Essential character of the franchise, the Great Fairy of Ocarina of time is presented as a larger and more powerful version of the more common fairies that restore life around Hyrule. While it’s entirely optional to cross paths with these fantastical fae, players who seek out these colossal allies are rewarded with some of the most powerful upgrades in the game.
These include Din’s Fire area-of-effect weapon, Nayru’s Love protection spell, magic ability upgrades, and even Link’s signature spin attack. Players can also benefit from refilling their empty bottles with fairies at each of these fountains, giving them the chance to resurrect if they fall victim to Hyrule’s many traps.
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