Face the music, Breath of the Wild is not a basic game. In fact, it’s everything but a basic game: almost everything you do can bring out hilarious responses from NPCs (non-player characters), and the physical world is truly breathtaking – there’s no other Zelda game with huge mountain ranges you can explore at your own time. Even the main questline isn’t too strict on the dungeon order or whether you head straight to the final boss without preparing first. There is always a way with BOTW. There is also always something you don’t know. Here are 15 things you probably never knew about Breath of the Wild!
15. Disappearing Lynels
Unlike Guardians and BOTW’s main bosses, ancient arrows shot at any type of Lynel will cause them to disappear instantly. Once they disappear, they will not drop anything; this is likely to prevent players from getting good loot without a fair fight. Imagine if you could harvest tons of Lynel weapons at the cost of only one ancient arrow. It’s also to keep the definition of “ancient arrow” for ancient enemies. After all, the in-game description says that ancient arrows were crafted specifically for defeating Guardians.
14. The Thunder Helm Is “Vai” Armor
As many players know, you are not allowed into Gerudo Town unless you are wearing traditional Gerudo “vai” (female) clothing top to bottom, even after you save them from Divine Beast Vah Naboris’s threat. But did you know that the Thunder Helm is classified as “vai” armor? It does make sense, as the Gerudo Chiefs are all female and the helm is passed down their bloodline, and the Gerudo people don’t usually think of it as ever being worn by a man. In fact, the guards you pass by as you enter the town will even comment under their breaths about how good you look with it on.
13. Korok Seeds Are Poop
You probably already guessed it: the little yellow Korok “seeds” that you receive from hidden Koroks across Hyrule are nothing but poop. (Nintendo really disguised this one well.) This was confirmed by BOTW director Hidemaro Fujibayashi, who said that the “hidden kind of thing in the game” is that “the Korok seeds are actually Korok poop.” Explains why the in-game description of the seed explicitly states that it has a “distinct smell”… not to mention Hestu’s Gift’s description going even further to say it smells “pretty bad.” After all, it’s a stack of golden poop.
12. Wind Waker‘s Korok Masks Are Reused
Take a close look at the above picture of the Koroks in 2003’s Wind Waker. Don’t their masks look oddly familiar? They should: they were reused in BOTW, being the faces of both the hidden Koroks and those roaming about Korok Forest. Either this was supposed to be a callback to WW, or BOTW’s designers were just too lazy to invent new ones.
11. Riju’s Wise Sand Seal
Okay, this may sound like some sort of prank, but I’m telling you now that it honestly isn’t. Riju’s sand seal, Patricia, can talk! If you feed her fruits (wildberries yield the best results), she will try telling riddles to you about the secrets of the Gerudo province. Her interpreter Padda will pass on the message. Make sure to look out for the seal puns that Padda deliberately avoids translating; it really is interesting that a sand seal can be so… uhm, communicative.
10. Mipha Was Originally a Lionfish
In BOTW’s early concept art, we see the Zora Champion Mipha looking nothing like what she actually ended up as in the game. She was originally a lionfish who would puff up when attacking and deflate when calm. However, the idea was scrapped likely because a gentler appearance would fit the character better; a fierce lionfish isn’t exactly what you would picture when you think “loving fish girlfriend.”
9. Water in the Desert
The Gerudo Desert is a dangerous place. Like in real life, the dry weather and extreme heat takes a heavy toll on Link’s body, and water is one of the most important things for his survival. While you can’t scoop water from lakes like you can in Skyward Sword – after all, there are no empty bottles for Link to scoop with – a blue Chuchu Jelly will give Link 30 seconds of heat invulnerability when you stand next to it and strike it, as it explodes in a cooling splash of water.
8. Campfires and Rock Salt
Like most things in BOTW, campfires and rock salt are multipurpose items that can be used for much more than just the ordinary. Both can be placed on floor buttons in shrines in place of the provided metal blocks, just in case you need to use the blocks for something else. While larger floor buttons still need the intended metal cubes as a weight, the smaller ones will do just fine with a lit campfire (a bundle of wood lit on fire) or a solid piece of rock salt.
7. Octorok Cleaning Service
Have a rusty weapon in your inventory? Head over to Eldin, find a Fire Octorok (they are the only kind that sucks air into their mouth), and toss it at them when they are in the process of pulling in the air. While the weapon that they spit out may not be the same type you threw in, it’ll be good as new. Free Octorok weapon cleaning right there for you!
6. Blood Moon Cooking
As some of you may have heard, one of BOTW’s main secrets resides in the time you cook. If you cook anything during the blood moon, the effects of your dish will be increased immensely, resulting in a critical cooking success. Experience these cooking bonuses any time between 11:30 p.m. and 12 a.m. in-game time.
5. Link’s Weight, in Hylian Food
Link weighs precisely 7 Hyrulean apples and 2 spicy peppers, no more, no less, as announced by Screen Rant. It’s surprising that the same guy who can carry more than 1,000 pieces of heavy ore in his inventory weighs about 9 relatively lightweight apples. Considering that apples and peppers have about the same weight, and one apple weighs roughly one pound, this means that Link only weighs 9 pounds – about the weight of a 1-month-old infant.
4. Zora Names Come from Music Notes
What do Sidon, Mipha, Dorephan, and even the entire Zora race’s names have in common? Well, it’s the fact they’re all based on music notes: Sidon comes from si and do, Mipha comes from mi and fa, Dorephan comes from do and fa, and Zora comes from so and la. Mipha’s theme song, played while her spirit speaks to Link after the freeing of Divine Beast Vah Ruta, even has the same two notes her name originates from as its central tune.
3. Inspirations Behind the Ancient Sheikah Technology
Believe it or not, Guardians and even the one-of-a-kind Sheikah Slate take inspirations from fascinating things: the Slate was based off of the Wii U gamepad, the console BOTW was originally intended for, and the fearsome laser-shooting Guardians come from ancient pottery from the Jomon Period. The resemblance is almost uncanny: the Jomon pottery definitely gives off a Sheikah tech vibe, and the piece shown above is basically a Guardian flipped upside down!
2. BOTW’s Explorable Map Is the Size of Real-Life Manhattan
While it does seem much larger than a single city in New York, BOTW’s explorable map has about 23 square miles of explorable land (via The Gamer), the size of real-life Manhattan. Its map is bigger than Skyrim, 12 times larger than Twilight Princess‘s 1.5 square miles (it comes in second when ranking all Zeldas by map size), and practically towers over all other Zelda games in its amount of land. Considering that longtime BOTW players that thought they scoured every one of Hyrule’s corners have still found more unexplored land, it’s hard to believe it’s only the size of Manhattan. Gets me thinking, how big did Manhattan look before it was all settled and urbanized?
1. Lynels Have More Health Than Bosses
When you don’t know how much health Lynels have, the 800 HP of the Blight Ganons and the 4000 of Calamity Ganon seems intimidating (originally 8000, but reduced by 4000 by the Champions). And when you do find out, your mind will be completely blown. The most basic type of Lynel, the Red-Maned Lynel (the one you fought during the Vah Ruta quest on Ploymus Mountain), already has 2000 HP. That’s more than double the HP of one Blight. The Blue-Maned Lynel, the second level, has 3000, White-Maned has 4000, Silver-Maned (most challenging in base BOTW game) has 6000, and the Gold-Maned Lynels, only found in the Master Mode DLC, have a whopping 7500. You’ll never complain about the difficulty of a BOTW boss fight ever again.