- For other characters named Link featured in the series, see Link (Disambiguation).
Link is the name shared by the recurring character in The Legend of Zelda series. There are many incarnations of Link, each possessing the spirit of the hero, with some of them being blood-related as well. They are chosen by the Golden Goddesses to protect the land from evil whenever deemed necessary. They often need to complete a series of trials to mature into the chosen hero. In most games of The Legend of Zelda series, their adventures take place within Kingdom of Hyrule, traveling through the land, collecting important items, and defeating a wide variety of enemies while trying to save both Princess Zelda and her kingdom from the clutches of Ganon or other villains.
The first Link was introduced as a young Sword-wielding boy, but the identity, appearance, and role of each incarnation of Link has varied from game to game. Many of them are given titles to identify them, such as the Hero of Time in Ocarina of Time and the Hero of Winds in The Wind Waker.
The Legend of Zelda
In the original The Legend of Zelda, Hyrule is engulfed in chaos after an army led by Ganon invaded it and stole the Triforce of Power. In an attempt to prevent Ganon from acquiring the Triforce of Wisdom, Princess Zelda splits it and hides the eight fragments in secret dungeons throughout the land. Before the princess is kidnapped by Ganon, she commands her nursemaid Impa to find someone courageous enough to save the kingdom. While wandering the land, the old woman is surrounded by Ganon’s henchmen, though a young swordsman named Link appears and rescues her. After hearing Impa’s plea, he resolves to save Zelda and sets out to reassemble the scattered fragments of the Triforce of Wisdom, to become powerful enough to defeat Ganon. Link located the eight underground labyrinths, defeats several guardian monsters, and retrieves the Triforce fragments. With the completed Triforce of Wisdom, Link is able to infiltrate Ganon’s hideout and defeats him with the Silver Arrow. Link picks up the Triforce of Power from Ganon’s ashes and returns both pieces of the Triforce to Princess Zelda, restoring peace to Hyrule.
The Adventure of Link
In The Adventure of Link, set six years after The Legend of Zelda, the now-sixteen-year-old Link notices a strange mark on the back of his left hand, resembling the crest of Hyrule. He seeks out Impa, who responds by taking Link to the North Castle, where a door has been magically sealed for generations. Impa places the back of Link's left hand on the door, and it opens, revealing a sleeping maiden inside. Impa tells Link that the maiden is the original Princess Zelda of Hyrule from long ago, and the origin of the "Legend of Zelda". Long ago, Zelda's brother, the Prince of Hyrule, had tried to force her into telling their recently deceased father's secrets concerning the last of the three golden treasures of his kingdom, the Triforce of Courage. Princess Zelda refused to reveal its location, and the Magician, who had accompanied the prince, tried to strike her down with a spell in anger. Zelda fell under a powerful sleeping spell, but the wizard was unable to control the wildly arcing magic and was killed by it. The prince, filled with remorse and unable to reverse the spell, had his sister placed in the castle tower, in the hope that she would one day be awakened. He decreed that princesses born to the royal family from that point on would be named Zelda, in remembrance of this tragedy. Impa says that the mark on Link's hand means that he is the hero chosen to awaken Zelda. She gives Link a chest containing six crystals and ancient writings that only a great future king of Hyrule can read. Link finds that he can read the document, even though he has never seen the language before; it indicates that the crystals must be set into statues within six palaces scattered all over Hyrule. This will open the way to the Great Palace, which contains the Triforce of Courage. Only the power of the combined Triforces can awaken the enchanted Zelda. Taking the crystals, Link sets out to restore them to their palaces. Meanwhile, although Link had defeated Ganon, the remnants of his army remain scattered across Hyrule. They plan to revive Ganon by killing Link and spilling his blood onto Ganon's ashes.
Ultimately, Link restores the crystals to the six palaces, defeating a strong guardian within each one to do so, and enters the Great Palace. After venturing deep inside, Link battles a flying creature known as the Thunderbird, followed by his own shadow guarding the Triforce. After defeating them both, Link then claims the Triforce of Courage and returns to Zelda. The three triangles unite into the collective Triforce, and Link's wish awakens Zelda.
A Link to the Past
In A Link to the Past, Link lives with his uncle in a house near Hyrule Castle. During this time, the land of Hyrule was plagued by a sudden disaster, until the wizard Agahnim appeared at the court of the King of Hyrule and quelled the upheaval. Named chief adviser to the throne, he soon seized power from the king and kidnapped the six Maidens, descendants of the seven Sages of long ago. The Maidens were taken to the castle tower and never seen again. One night, Link is awakened by a telepathic message from Princess Zelda, who says that she is locked in the castle dungeon. As the message closes, Link finds his uncle ready for battle, telling Link to remain in bed. After his uncle leaves, however, Link ignores his uncle's command and follows him to the dungeons under the castle. When he arrives, he finds his uncle mortally wounded. Link's uncle tells Link to rescue Princess Zelda from her prison, giving him his sword and shield. Link navigates the castle and rescues Zelda from her cell, and the two escape into a secret passage through the sewers that leads to the Sanctuary, where they meet the Loyal Sage. Link is informed that Agahnim intends to open the seal to the Dark World, a realm once sealed off long ago by the seven Sages when Ganon and his army of evil were banished into the Sacred Realm, which became the Dark World. The kidnapped Maidens were sent into the Dark World to open this seal, and Agahnim intended to do the same to Zelda. Link is told by the man that the only thing that can defeat Agahnim is the Master Sword, and the Sage tells him to seek the elder Sahasrahla to learn more.
Link finds the elder near the Eastern Palace
- This article is about the Race. For the language, see Hylian (Language).
The Hylians (pronounced /ˈhaɪ.li.ən/HY-lee-ən) are a race of Humans.[note 1] They are from the countries of Skyloft, Hyrule and the latter's flooded counterpart, the Great Sea. While it is unlikely that the people of Termina, a parallel world to the Kingdom of Hyrule, are also known as Hylians, they are their parallels. Descended from the people who lived among the goddess Hylia long prior to the establishment of Hyrule as a kingdom, they are a magic race with pointed ears. In the past, Hylians were able to wield magic of considerable might, but, over time, that ability has faded. However, because they are of Hylia's bloodline, the royal family, especially its princesses, are still strong in magic. In addition, some sages and shrine maidens have also been able to wield magic, an ability that brought them considerable honor in Hylian society. The most famous Hylians are the many heroes and princesses that share the same name as one another, the latter being of blood relation and naming tradition. Hylians have the same life expectancy as regular humans.
Hylians were the first race to establish organized civilization in ancient Hyrule many years after the events of Skyward Sword upon the world formerly known only as the Surface. In Twilight Princess, the Oocca are said to have aided them. Unlike several other races in the series, Hylians tend to live in highly populated towns or villages such as Hyrule Castle Town, Kakariko Village and Village of the Blue Maiden. Among the Hylians, there are a variety of peoples of different cultures and ethnicities. Some Hylians have evolved into different races, such as the Wind Tribe or the Kokiri.
Hylian Countries and Settlements
- Main article: Skyloft
When the homeland of the Hylians was under a massive assault by demonic hordes, they were separated from the Surface for thousands of years by Hylia in an attempt to protect them. Living above the clouds on a separate outcrop of earth, they named the safe haven Skyloft. In the sky, the new society flourished in peace and the majority of the Skyloft populace remained ignorant of the ravaged world below the clouds until the events of Skyward Sword. It can be assumed that a portion of Skyloft's population flew down and repopulated the Surface after the events in Skyward Sword, leading to the Hylian establishment of the Kingdom of Hyrule seen in future games.
- Main article: Hyrule
The most prominent and major home of the Hylians is the iconic Kingdom of Hyrule, formerly the nameless Surface. It is where the ancestors of the Hylians, the people who lived among the goddess Hylia, resided during the Era of the Goddess Hylia. Living among Her Grace in the unnamed land, they had magical powers that passed down to their descendants. When a massive war broke out across the Surface and the goddess took up battle with the demon king Demise, she sent the human survivors into the sky on the outcrop of earth that became known as Skyloft. It is not until after they rediscover the Surface thousands of years later that the Kingdom of Hyrule is established by Hylia's descendants and becomes the home of the Hylian race once more. Hyrule faces several subsequent invasions, namely at the hands of Ganon, an incarnation of Demise's hatred. The Hylians are able to suppress these attacks through their military; their legendary hero, Link; and, occasionally, divine intervention. However, the events of The Wind Waker spell an end to Hyrule in the Adult Timeline. Sunk beneath the Great Sea, ancient Hyrule is lost forevermore in that branch of the timeline. Following its destruction, Tetra and the Hero of Winds travel to another continent and establish New Hyrule.
Hyrule Castle appears in several incarnations and is the home of the Hylian monarch.
Hyrule Castle Town is the capital of Hyrule and the main settlement of the Hylian people. It is never seen too far a distance from the castle.
Kakariko Village is the former home of the Sheikah tribe, but eventually was opened up to the Hylian race to make residence.
Village of the Blue Maiden is home to numerous Hylians.
Lon Lon Ranch is home to the Hylians known as Malon, Talon and Ingo, who provide much of the kingdom's source of milk and farming.
- Main article: Great Sea
The Hylians inhabiting the Great Sea are spread out onto several islands, but live most prominently on the islands Outset Island and Windfall Island. They appear to be more advanced in the use of technology, including the Pictobox and the use of submarines.
- Main article: Termina
The Hylians from Termina live, like their Ocarina of Time counterparts, in a big, central city. There is only one significant difference between the Hylians from Hyrule and the ones from Termina: magic and technology. While the Hylians from Hyrule are magic-users, the Terminan Hylians focus on technology and seem to care or know little, if any, for the sacred Triforce and the Three Goddesses. Instead, they honor the Four Giants, the gods who shaped Termina and continue to guard it.
Hylians traditionally have pointed ears, and generally have blue or blue-grey eyes and light skin, although the ethnicity as a whole has a wide degree of variation. The lower classes usually wear casual clothing; Hylian males tend to wear belted leather jerkins, and females wear long gowns in many different colors;Hyrulean symbols are often part of the embroidery in their dresses. Tall buns are common in women, while men of the working class usually wear broad-brimmed hats in order to protect their skin from the sun and the rain. Some men also wear knee-length leather boots.
It has been observed that the higher classes including royalty wear complex and luxurious jewelry including precious metals and gemstones such as gold and rubies.
Hylians have a medieval theme to them which fits to the medieval setting of the series, especially in the case of earlier games. Many architectural elements seen in the series greatly resemble architecture from the medieval times. Clothing styles vary but are mainly consistent with the overall medieval theme. Unlike most other races, Hylians are a predominantly urban race. This, however, by no means suggests that Hylians are not seen elsewhere, as many people seen living on farms and other comparable non-urban locations have been Hylian. Hylians are shown to have ranging professions, varying from farmers to merchants and bartenders. In addition, Hylians are known to be highly superstitious, having a rich mythology and many legends. Hylians are a very populous race and can be found all over Kingdom of Hyrule, however the majority will tend to live together in grand settlements, such as Hyrule Castle Town.
One of the few known abilities that the Hylian people possess is the use of their pointed ears to receive special messages from the gods themselves. This also includes the ability to send telepathic messages to other Hylians across time and space. This is an ability that continues to get passed unto their children, their children's children and so on.Sahasrahla and an incarnation of Princess Zelda display this particular ability in A Link to the Past, the former being able to communicate to Link across even the void between dimensions to assist the young hero in his quest.
Concept artwork of Hateno VillageHylians from Breath of the Wild
Concept artwork of Lurelin VillageHylians from Breath of the Wild
Concept artwork of StableHylians from Breath of the Wild
Concept artwork of Traveler and MerchantHylians from Breath of the Wild
- ↑ Encyclopedia (Dark Horse Books) pg. 14 (Series)
- ↑"Pardon the entrance, but you're a Hylian, aren't you?" — Sidon (Breath of the Wild)
- ↑"Oh! You're not Hylian? So you're new here! I'm Trill. Nice to meet you!" — Trill (Cadence of Hyrule)
- ↑The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons and Oracle of Ages — The Official Nintendo Player's Guide (Nintendo Co., Ltd.) pg. 1
- ↑ Encyclopedia (Dark Horse Books) pg. 14
- ↑"We used to swim together when I was but a child Remember? Well, it has been years since then. And now I'm over years old I must say you've aged well for a Hylian. Unbelievablely well! Now that I think about it-shouldn't you be dead?" — Rivan (Breath of the Wild)
- ↑"Yes, according to legend, Hyrule was made by the Hylians, who, as we all know, are the closest race to the godstruth be told, there's also a theory saying that in ancient times there was a race even closer to the gods than the Hylia people, and THEY created it. And they, simultaneously with the birth of the Hylia people, created a new capital, a capital that floated in the heavens." — Shad (Twilight Princess)
- ↑Encyclopedia (Dark Horse Books) pg. 44
- ↑Encyclopedia (Dark Horse Books) pg. 55
- ↑"Look around us! As a child, I always dreamed of a world below. I wanted to see the surface with my own eyes and feel the land's warm breeze on my skin. I I think I want to live here. I always want to feel solid ground beneath my feet, see the clouds above my head, and watch over the Triforce." — Zelda (Skyward Sword)
- ↑"Though this is not the end. My hate never perishes. It is born anew in a cycle with no end! I will rise again. Those like you Those who share the blood of the goddess and the spirit of the hero They are eternally bound to this curse. An incarnation of my hatred shall ever follow your kind, dooming them to wander a blood-soaked sea of darkness for all time!" — Demise (Skyward Sword)
- ↑"Gods of the Triforce! Hear that which I desire! . . . Wash away this ancient land of Hyrule! Let a ray of hope shine on the future of the world!!!" — Daphnes Nohansen Hyrule (The Wind Waker)
- ↑"The curtain thus fell in the cyclical history of the sacred realm of Hyrule and the struggle for the Triforce." (Hyrule Historia (Dark Horse Books) pg. )
- ↑"Hyrule vanished, and the pirates welcomed back Princess Zelda, who had once again become Tetra the pirate. Tetra, Link, and the pirates received a sendoff from the people of the islands, and set sail in search of a new world." (Hyrule Historia (Dark Horse Books) pg. )
- ↑"Continuing their journey, Link, Tetra, and the pirates at last came upon a new continent. . . . Here, Tetra founded New Hyrule." (Hyrule Historia (Dark Horse Books) pg. )
- ↑ The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past — Nintendo Player's Guide (Nintendo Co., Ltd.) pg. 64
- ↑"It was also said that their long, pointed ears enabled them to hear special messages from the gods." (A Link to the Past manual, pg. 4)
- ↑A Link to the Past manual, pg. 4
- ↑A Link to the Past manual, pg. 5
Link (The Legend of Zelda)
Video game character
"Link (character)" redirects here. For other uses, see Link.
Various incarnations of Link, as seen in The Legend of Zelda: Hyrule Historia
|First appearance||The Legend of Zelda ()|
|Last appearance||Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity ()|
|Created by||Shigeru Miyamoto|
|Affiliation||Kingdom of Hyrule|
Link[c] is a fictional character and the protagonist of Nintendo's video game series The Legend of Zelda. He was created by Japanese video game designer Shigeru Miyamoto. Link was introduced as the hero of the original The Legend of Zelda video game and has since appeared in various incarnations over the course of the series. He also features in other Nintendo media, including merchandise, comic books and animated series. He is one of Nintendo's main icons.
Throughout The Legend of Zelda series, Link is depicted as a child, teenager, or young adult of the Hylian race (described as humans with pointy ears) originating from the fictional land of Hyrule. In gameplay, Link repeatedly travels through Hyrule, whilst battling creatures, evil forces, and the series' primary antagonist, Ganon (called Ganondorf in some games), and attempting to save Princess Zelda and Hyrule. To defeat Ganon, Link usually requires the mystical Master Sword, or a similar legendary weapon, that is obtained from a trial or battle. In the course of his journey, he usually acquires other magical items, including musical instruments and weaponry.
Within the lore of the franchise, Link is the soul of a legendary hero that, throughout history, is reincarnated within a seemingly ordinary boy or man when the need arises for a new warrior to defeat the forces of evil.
Link has also featured in several other game franchises, including SoulCalibur II, Mario Kart 8 and the Super Smash Bros. series. Link, along with Mario, is one of the most recognisable characters in the video game industry, with critics considering Link to be a significant game character in popular culture.
Concept and creation
Link's creator, Shigeru Miyamoto, has said that his concepts of The Legend of Zelda and Link were based on his childhood memories as well as books and movies he and video game designer Takashi Tezuka had enjoyed, notably J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. Miyamoto tried to make people identify with Link and have the opportunity to be heroes like the character. Although at the end of some games, Link becomes vastly talented in physical skill and magical prowess, he usually starts off the game as a regular boy.
Link's sprite design was created by designer Takashi Tezuka. Shigeru Miyamoto stated in an interview with Game Kult that Takashi Tezuka used the Disney character Peter Pan as a source of inspiration when creating Link in order to make the character recognisable. Due to the limited capabilities of the technology at the time, Nintendo was only able to use three colours and the development team decided to choose green as Link's signature colour, as the game was mainly set within a forest environment. Link's sword and shield, long hat and ears were all created to make the character easily distinguishable.
On the origin of the name "Link", Miyamoto has said, "Link's name comes from the fact that originally, the fragments of the Triforce were supposed to be electronic chips. The game was to be set in both the past and the future and as the main character would travel between both and be the link between them, they called him Link." However, he has also stated in the Nintendo book titled Hyrule Historia that the character is named Link because he, "connects people together" and that, "he was supposed to spread the scattered energy of the world through the ages."
There have been several iterations of Link within The Legend of Zelda series. Each incarnation of Link bears a similar appearance and role as the hero within the various Zelda games, with nearly every game resetting the storyline. According to The Legend of Zelda Encyclopedia, Link is "not just one individual; he is the hero reborn to many homes, over the course of many lifetimes, chosen by the goddesses with a single purpose: to stand up and fight when evil descends upon Hyrule." Miyamoto has stated, "For every Zelda game we tell a new story, but we actually have an enormous document that explains how the game relates to the others, and bind them together. But to be honest, they are not that important to us. We care more about developing the game system give the player new challenges for every chapter that is born." Although each version of Link is different to the next, an official chronology for the Zelda series was established by Nintendo, which spans thousands of years across the fictional history of Hyrule and includes three separate timelines. In celebration of The Legend of Zelda's 25th anniversary, Nintendo released (in December , in Japan; in early , in North America) an anthology, titled Hyrule Historia, which details the official Zelda fictional timeline.Hyrule Historia explains Link's repeated incarnations in the fictional timeline by stating that the name "Link" is a common name in Hyrule. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, which was released in , aimed to create an origin story, in which the antagonist Demise curses "the spirit of the hero" to be caught in an endless cycle of defeating evil.
Link's appearance has remained consistent over the course of The Legend of Zelda series but his character design has also evolved with each game release. In the original The Legend of Zelda, he appears dressed in green in a simple 2D form viewed from a top-down perspective. This was followed by a taller version of the character seen from a side-scroll perspective in the video game titled The Adventure of Link. With the release of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time in , Link appeared as a 3D character. Link's teenage appearance in Ocarina of Time was designed with the aim of making him more handsome and cooler than all previous forms of the hero. Nintendo illustrator, Yusuke Nakano has stated that the design of Link in Ocarina of Time was based on a well-known American actor at the time of the game's development. For the cartoon design of Link in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, Miyamoto explained, "Link was a young boy and trying to create a very active and very energetic young boy and trying to choose the right style for portraying the young boy in a game like that we tried many different experiments. The ultimate decision we came to was that the cel-shading in The Wind Waker was the best option for expressing that". For the decision to make Link a teenager in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, Miyamoto explained, "Ultimately we decided that in showing a teenage Link really the best style of expressing him would be something that's closer to our graphical style in Ocarina of Time."
Link's signature green outfit has also evolved over the course of The Legend of Zelda series. At a Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, Art Director Satoru Takizawa commented on the subtle changes made to Link's outfit for each game release. He stated that for Twilight Princess he, "made the hat long, so it would flap in the wind and move around", however, for the release of Skyward Sword, he decided to make it more diminutive and give it less motion. The release of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild in broke the conventions of Link's design, notably the absence of his signature green outfit as a prominent feature. Takizawa explained that, "As the graphic fidelity has increased it becomes more difficult to make that hat look cool." However, players can still acquire Link's green hat and tunic within the game. For Breath of the Wild nearly designs were considered for Link to ensure that he remained a neutral character. Eiji Aonuma commented, "We thought that the iconic green tunic and hat had become expected, so we wanted to mix things up and update his look. Interestingly, though, nobody on the team said, 'Let's make him blue!' It just organically ended up that way."
Although Link is depicted as a male character, Producer Eiji Aonuma has stated that he wanted the character to be gender neutral. He said of Link's portrayal in Ocarina of Time, "I wanted the player to think 'Maybe Link is a boy or a girl.' If you saw Link as a guy, he'd have more of a feminine touch. Or vice versa, if you related to Link as a girl, it was with more of a masculine aspect. I really wanted the designer to encompass more of a gender-neutral figure. So I've always thought that for either female or male players, I wanted them to be able to relate to Link." During the development of Twilight Princess, he created a more masculine version of Link, but then later decided to return Link to a more gender neutral character. Regarding Link's character design in Breath of the Wild, Aonuma stated, "as far as gender goes, Link is definitely a male, but I wanted to create a character where anybody would be able to relate to the character."
Since the first instance of voice acting in the series (in Ocarina of Time), Link has been voiced by eight actors: Nobuyuki Hiyama in Ocarina of Time (as adult Link); Fujiko Takimoto in Ocarina of Time (as young Link), Majora's Mask, A Link to the Past and Four Swords for the Game Boy Advance and Minish Cap; Sachi Matsumoto in The Wind Waker; Akira Sasanuma in Twilight Princess; Yūki Kodaira in Spirit Tracks; Takashi Ōhara in Skyward Sword; Mitsuki Saiga in A Link Between Worlds and Link's Awakening (the version only); and Kengo Takanashi in Breath of the Wild. In Tri Force Heroes, Fujiko Takimoto, Sachi Matsumoto, Yūki Kodaira and Mitsuki Saiga all reprise their roles as Link, acting as alternate voices.
As no canonical game in The Legend of Zelda series to date has contained substantial spoken dialogue for Link, the part consists only of short phrases, grunts, battle cries, and other sounds. In The Wind Waker, however, Link has been heard saying the phrase, "Come on!" Voice acting for the character has been deliberately limited, so as not to contradict players' individual interpretations of how Link could sound. Producer Eiji Aonuma has stated that Link's silence is meant to avoid breaking the relationship between the player and the character, which could result from adding dialogue with which the player did not agree. Link's character has been purposefully left open to interpretation to offer a blank slate for players to enter the game world and provide a more personal experience.
Link is a brave, skilled warrior and the hero of The Legend of Zelda series. Over the course of the series, he has appeared in a variety of ages and forms, ranging from child to adult, and in Twilight Princess, also appears in the form of a wolf. He displays the characteristic traits of the Hylian race, being of human form with elfin features, including pointed ears. Since the original The Legend of Zelda video game, he has been repeatedly depicted wearing his characteristic green phrygian cap and tunic. However, he has also appeared wearing other outfits, including a blue lobster shirt in The Wind Waker and his blue Champion's Tunic in Breath of the Wild. Link is described in the original game's instruction manual as a "young lad" and a traveller and in later games, such as Breath of the Wild, as a knight of Hyrule who is sworn to protect the kingdom and Princess Zelda. During gameplay, he carries a sword and a shield, but has also wielded a variety of other weapons, including bows, spears and axes.
Link's signature weapon is the Master Sword, a powerful magic sword that has the ability to repel evil. He is also often depicted holding the Hylian Shield. These two components have become integral aspects of the character's identity. Each game in the series follows a similar story arc, in which Link must take a journey that eventually leads him to recover the Master Sword, which makes him stronger in gameplay and enables him to defeat the series' main antagonist, Ganon.
In Zelda lore, Link is the reincarnated soul of a hero, chosen by the goddess Hylia to protect the kingdom of Hyrule from Ganon and save Princess Zelda whenever the need arises. As the goddess' chosen hero, he is also the bearer of the Triforce of Courage, one of the three components that together combine to form the Triforce, a sacred artefact and symbol of power. In several Zelda games, Link's main objective is to recover the fragments of the Triforce in order to defeat Ganon. Link's character is always depicted as a fearless hero and a "symbol of courage" who is willing to protect Hyrule for the sake of others.
Link's relationships with the other main characters has been a defining aspect of the series. Within the fictional lore, Ganon, Zelda and Link represent three pieces of the Triforce, with Ganon representing Power, Zelda representing Wisdom and Link representing Courage. This trinity transcends the fictional timeline and dictates that the three characters are destined to be forever reincarnated in an endless battle for good and evil. Link's battle with Ganon established a fictional chronology that spans across the entire series and branches into three separate timelines. The three timelines originate at the end of Ocarina of Time when the timeline splits according to whether Link successfully defeats Ganon ("The Hero is Victorious") or fails to stop him (the "Fallen Hero" timeline). The official fictional chronology was revealed in Hyrule Historia, with Skyward Sword presented as the first game in the timeline. Skyward Sword establishes that the three main characters are destined to be connected in an endless cycle after the antagonist Demise curses Link and Zelda.
Link's relationship with Zelda has been a core aspect of the series but has also been the subject of speculation. Throughout the games, the storylines have suggested the possibility of a romantic relationship between the two, but this has remained ambiguous. With each game release, the nature of their relationship has varied and Link has also been presented with other possible love interests. A romantic relationship between Link and Zelda is particularly evident in Skyward Sword and was also emphasised in an official "romance trailer" for the game. Eiji Aonuma commented on this relationship in an interview with Game Informer, saying, "As far as the love story goes, it wasn’t that we wanted to create a romance between Link and Zelda as much as we wanted the player to feel like this is a person who's very important to me, who I need to find. We used that hint of a romance between the two to tug at the heartstrings". In Breath of the Wild, the relationship between Link and Zelda is more complex and follows a story arc that begins with resentment and ends in a close bond with each willing to give their life for the other.
Appearances and evolution
The Legend of Zelda series
Link as he appears in 2D and 3D gameplay in Link's Awakening (left) and Breath of the Wild (right). In 2D, Link is confined to moving left and right, while in 3D, Link is free to move around and explore the game world.
Link has appeared as the protagonist of The Legend of Zelda series for over three decades. In addition to appearing in every video game in The Legend of Zelda series, he has also appeared as a major character in various spin-off games. Although the plot in each Zelda game varies, it centres around Link defeating Ganon with the Master Sword and rescuing Princess Zelda. During gameplay, Link must navigate through various dungeons, defeat monsters and solve puzzles before reaching the end of the game.
Link's first appearance in the 2D variant of the series was The Legend of Zelda. In , which began with pixel rectangle prototype as the character. At Link's debut, he was described as a "young man" who saved Princess Zelda's elderly nursemaid Impa from Ganon's henchmen, Link assumes the role of the hero attempting to rescue Princess Zelda and the kingdom of Hyrule from the evil wizard Ganon, who has stolen the Triforce of Power.
Zelda II: The Adventure of Link () occurs several years after the original game. Link goes on a quest to place a crystal in each of six castles in Hyrule, so that he can later break the magically protected Great Palace, defeat Shadow Link, claim the Triforce of Courage, reunite the three pieces of the Triforce, and awaken the sleeping Zelda.
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past () is a prequel to the original game, and is the first game set in the "Fallen Hero Timeline", an alternate timeline to the "Adult Link Timeline" and "Child Link Timeline". A new Link must intercept the wizard Agahnim before he breaks the seal on the Dark World and unleash Ganon's fury upon Hyrule. Along the way, Link must collect three magical Pendants of Virtue and claim the legendary Master Sword before facing Agahnim. Then, he must venture into the Dark World to rescue the Seven Sages and defeat Agahnim and Ganon.
The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening () occurs some time after A Link to the Past, and features Link traveling the world in order to be prepared if Ganon ever comes to Hyrule again. While returning to Hyrule, Link's ship is caught in a storm and wrecked. He washes up on the shore of a mysterious island called Koholint. Link is taken to the house of a kind man named Tarin and his daughter Marin. A talking owl tells him that the only way he can escape Koholint Island is by awakening the "Wind Fish", a giant creature slumbering in a colossal egg in the center of the island. When the game finishes, Link awakens in the middle of the ocean, along with the dreamer.
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time () is the first 3D game in the Zelda series, and is the final game that occurs within the "Singular Timeline". Link must constantly travel between the present and the future by using the titular Ocarina of Time in order to stop Ganondorf's takeover of Hyrule. As a result, Link comes to be known as the "Hero of Time", and is successful in stopping Ganondorf both in the present (via warning Zelda about his plot) and in the future (via direct combat and subsequently sealing him in the Sacred Realm with the help of the six sages and the Master Sword). Link is also accompanied by the fairy Navi, who gives him hints about enemies and/or his surroundings, which is a first in the series. The ending of Ocarina of Time also notably marks the timeline split of the in-game universe's chronology: the "Adult Link Timeline" occurs after Link has defeated Ganondorf in the future, the "Child Link Timeline" occurs after he is transported back to the past and warns Zelda of his plot to conquer Hyrule, and the "Fallen Hero Timeline" occurs after he is defeated by Ganondorf in the future.
The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask () is a direct sequel to Ocarina of Time, and occurs several months after Link defeats Ganon and is sent back in time to his childhood. As a result, it is the first game set in the "Child Link Timeline", an alternate timeline to the "Adult Link Timeline" and the "Fallen Hero Timeline". While searching for Navi after she left him for unknown reasons at the end of Ocarina of Time, Link runs into Skull Kid, a character briefly featured in Ocarina of Time, and mysteriously ends up traveling to the land of Termina. He must save this land from the evil of Majora's Mask, which has drawn the moon into a decaying orbit, threatening to crash into Termina's primary town, Clock Town, in three days. Link uses the Ocarina of Time to play the Song of Time, which he can use to travel back in time when he plays it, to relive these three days repeatedly so he can prevent the disaster. Along the way, Link finds many magical masks of his own, some of which allow him to transform. Those masks can turn him into a Goron, Deku Scrub, Zora or the "Fierce Deity", a powerful, adult-like form. Miyamoto mentioned that "we wanted Link to get inside of a wonderland, to experience the adventures and think hard about what he should do."
The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons and Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages () occur after A Link to the Past and Link's Awakening. They feature the Triforce sending Link on a mission to the foreign lands of Holodrum and Labrynna in order to stop the disruption of the seasons by the General of Darkness, Onox, and the disruption of time by the Sorceress of Shadows, Veran. After playing both games, it is revealed that the events of both games are part of a sinister plot by Twinrova to light the Flames of Destruction (lit by the actions of Onox), Sorrow (lit by the actions of Veran), and Despair (lit when Zelda is kidnapped) as part of a ritual to resurrect Ganon. In the end, Link must save Zelda and defeat the Twinrova before Ganon is resurrected.
In The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past & Four Swords (), Four Swords occurs at some point after The Minish Cap and before Ocarina of Time. Zelda goes to the Sanctuary of the Four Sword with her friend, Link, to check on the seal containing the evil Wind Mage, Vaati. The seal has weakened, however, and Vaati emerges, kidnaps Zelda, and defeats Link. Later, Link finds three fairies, who instruct him to draw the Four Sword. The magical Four Sword divides him into four identical Links. The first Link wears his traditional green outfit; the second, a red version; the third, blue; and the fourth, purple. The Links must cooperate to overcome obstacles, collect keys, and storm Vaati's Palace so they can rescue Zelda and reseal the Wind Mage.
The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker () occurs hundreds of years after Ocarina of Time, and is the first game set in the "Adult Link Timeline", an alternate timeline to the "Child Link Timeline" and the "Fallen Hero Timeline". In it, the gods have flooded Hyrule to keep the Triforce and populace safe from Ganondorf after he broke the seal placed upon him in Ocarina of Time. All land is underwater except for the highest mountaintops of Hyrule, which resulted in the creation of the Great Sea. At the beginning of the game, Link's younger sister Aryll is captured by the Helmaroc King, a giant masked bird controlled by Ganondorf, the latter of whom is searching for Princess Zelda. Link travels the Great Sea to rescue his sister and defeat the Helmaroc King; his quest intertwining with that of The King of Red Lions, who, after many trials, entitles this Link, who has no connection to any previous incarnation of the hero (due to the Hero of Time having left the timeline for the "Child Link Timeline" at the end of Ocarina of Time), as the "Hero of Winds". Using the Wind Waker, a magical conductor's baton, he borrows the power of the gods to aid him in his quest. The wand's user interface is similar to that of the Ocarina of Time, but uses tempo and pitch to form tunes. Link must reassemble the Triforce of Courage and restore the Master Sword's power to repel evil in order to kill Ganondorf..
The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures () is an indirect sequel to Twilight Princess, and occurs hundreds of years after that game. Zelda and the six other mystical maidens, who are worried about the seal on the Four Sword, go to check on the Sanctuary of the Four Sword, with Link accompanying them. However, a dark, shadowy copy of Link attacks them. Link is forced to draw the Four Sword to fight this Shadow Link, but when he does, he is split into copies of himself much like the Link in Four Swords. By extension, drawing the Four Sword also results in Vaati escaping from the seal placed upon him in Four Swords.
The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap () occurs between Skyward Sword and Four Swords, and features Link as a young boy living with his grandfather, the Master Smith of Hyrule. Link is a childhood friend of Princess Zelda, and on the day of Hyrule's yearly fair to celebrate the coming of the Picori, they go to join in the festivities. A mysterious stranger, Vaati, shows up and wins the sword-fighting competition; each year the distinguished victor of this tournament has the honor of touching the sacred Picori Blade. This sword was a gift to the Hylians from the tiny Picori and was used long ago by a legendary hero to defeat the forces of darkness and seal them away in the Bound Chest. Vaati destroys the blade and curses Zelda, and it is up to Link to repair the sword, defeat Vaati and save the princess.
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess () occurs more than a century after the events of Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask. In the game, Link is a teenage farm boy leading a fairly normal life in the pastoral village of Ordon until two of his friends, Colin and Ilia, are kidnapped by monsters. During his journey to rescue them, Link discovers that the entire kingdom of Hyrule has been covered by a dark twilight, in which most people are reduced to nothing more than spirits. However, Link is transformed into a wolf upon entering the twilight. While in this form, he is aided by Midna, an imp-like creature, and eventually cleanses the land from the twilight. Yet, in his attempt to save his friends, Link discovers an even greater evil only he can stop. During the game, Link travels in the normal world in his human form and when exposed to twilight, reverts to his wolf form. During his journey, he is trained in the art of swordsmanship by a spirit called the "Hero's Shade", who is revealed in the Hyrule Historia to be the Hero of Time from Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask. Due to lamenting that he was never remembered as a Hero, as well as not passing down his skills to the next generation, the Hero's Shade has been unable to pass on to the afterlife following his death. After teaching his descendant the swordsmanship skills he learned during his own life, the Hero's Shade finally eases his regrets and passes on into the afterlife while giving his descendant his blessing. Link's Crossbow Training, a spin-off of the series, also takes place within the setting of Twilight Princess.
The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass () is a direct sequel to The Wind Waker, and is set a few months after Link defeats Ganondorf in that game. Link embarks on a quest to reunite with Tetra after she is lost to the Ghost Ship and turned into stone by the game's main antagonist, Bellum. Phantom Hourglass revives the use of a fairy companion as in Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask, yet also features Link teaming up with Captain Linebeck in order to travel the World of the Ocean King, a world parallel to the Great Sea. Upon finding the spirits of courage, wisdom, and power, Link is eventually lead to the Ghost Ship and rescues Tetra before confronting Bellum at the Temple of the Ocean King.
The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks () is a sequel to Phantom Hourglass, and is set a century after that game. An unknown amount of time after Phantom Hourglass, Link, Tetra, and her pirates find new land and rechristen it New Hyrule. In this game, Link, the descendant and first reincarnation of the Hero of Winds, is able to travel across the main world using a train and is accompanied by the spirit of Princess Zelda, who is the descendant and reincarnation of Tetra. Link and Zelda have to restore the Spirit Tracks to New Hyrule and recover Princess Zelda's body from Chancellor Cole after he uses it to revive Malladus, a Demon King who once ravaged the land that would become New Hyrule.
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword () is the first game to occur in the "Singular Timeline", which is the timeline of Zelda games prior to its split at the end of Ocarina of Time. As such, it explores the beginning of the battle between good and evil within the series, and the establishment of Hyrule and the legends of both Link and Zelda. Link is born and raised in Skyloft, a land floating above the clouds. Link is a childhood friend of Zelda, who in this game is not a princess, but rather a fellow student of his at the Knight Academy. The land beneath the clouds is known simply as the Surface, and Link is forced to go there after Zelda is kidnapped. He must travel between the two lands in this adventure. He wields a sword called the Goddess Sword, a magical sword that holds Fi a servant to the goddess Hylia which allows him to travel across the two worlds. During his journey, Link imbues the Goddess Sword with three sacred flames, which result in it being reforged into the Master Sword.
In The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD ().
The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds () is a sequel to A Link to the Past, and occurs centuries after that game and Link's Awakening. Link is a blacksmith's apprentice who is forced to rescue the Seven Sages, descendants of the original Sages who sealed the Sacred Realm years ago, after Yuga, a sorcerer who has the ability to "merge" into walls and turn people into paintings, brings them to another world, the Kingdom of Lorule, in the form of paintings to revive Ganon. The ability to "merge" into walls is a newly added mechanic for Link. Link's appearance is very similar to that depicted in artwork from 's The Legend of Zelda. During the journey, Link meets Ravio, a rabbit-masked merchant whom Link agrees to stay in his house in exchange for his services. In the game's climax, Ravio is revealed to be Link's Lorule counterpart, and he went to Hyrule to recruit Link to stop Yuga and Princess Hilda from stealing Hyrule's Triforce, as he believed ruining Hyrule to revive Lorule was worse than letting his kingdom crumble.
In The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D ().
The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes () is a direct sequel to A Link Between Worlds, and is set several years after that game. Despite featuring the art style used in The Wind Waker, it nevertheless features the same Link, who answers a call for heroes from King Tuft of the fashion-focused kingdom of Hytopia. His daughter, Princess Styla, has been cursed by the witch Lady Maud to wear an ugly jumpsuit that is impossible to remove. Link allies with two other heroes who appear identical to him, albeit featuring red and blue color schemes, in order to defeat Lady Maud and lift the curse.
In The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD ().
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild () is set thousands of years after Ocarina of Time, and is told to inevitably occur at the end of all three timelines. Link awakens after a century in a life regenerating stasis pod called, "The Shrine of Resurrection", and comes to discover that an evil force called Calamity Ganon has been trapped in Hyrule Castle for as long as he had been in stasis. During the last century, Hyrule has fallen into ruin in the wake of Calamity Ganon, and has been largely reclaimed by the wilderness. Link learns that Calamity Ganon has slowly been gaining strength and that he must defeat it before it escapes the castle and destroys the world. During his adventure, it is revealed that Link was the Hylian Champion and Princess Zelda's appointed knight prior to his fatal wounds and year slumber. He was the hero chosen by the Master Sword itself, to defeat Calamity Ganon but was nearly killed while protecting Zelda, which prompts her to have the Sheikah tribe put him into stasis in order to heal him. It is revealed by Zelda that Link was the son of a knight in the Royal Guard, and that he rarely talks because he feels the need to bear the large burden placed on him in silence.
In The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening Remake ().
In The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD ()
In Untitled The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild sequel ().
Link appears in Link: The Faces of Evil, Zelda: The Wand of Gamelon and Zelda's Adventure, the first Zelda spin-off games ever released, although he is playable only in The Faces of Evil and relegated to a secondary role in The Wand of Gamelon and Zelda's Adventure. At the beginning of The Faces of Evil, Link and the King of Hyrule are visited by a wizard named Gwonam, who tells them that Ganon and his servants have seized the peaceful island of Koridai and captured Zelda. After being informed that only he can defeat Ganon, Link travels to Koridai to find the magical artifact known as the Book of Koridai. In the latter two games, the roles are reversed and Zelda has to rescue Link from Ganon. While the comics were licensed by Nintendo to use official Zelda characters, none of them were produced or supervised by Nintendo. As well as being critically panned, none of these games (which were produced for the Philips CD-i multimedia player) games are recognized by Nintendo as part of the series' official chronology. Unlike the main games, Link actually speaks in this version and is voiced by Jeffrey Rath. His personality mirrors his animated series counterpart in which he yearns for adventure and is constantly trying to get a kiss from Zelda.
Link appears in Hyrule Warriors as a playable character. This incarnation is a Hyrulian soldier-in-training who helps leads the campaign against the forces of evil. Young Link from Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask also appears in the game as a playable character via downloadable content, while Toon Link from The Wind Waker appears as a playable character in Hyrule Warriors Legends, the Nintendo 3DS port of Warriors. Link also appears as a playable character in the Nintendo Switchrhythm gameCadence of Hyrule, a crossover between Crypt of the NecroDancer and The Legend of Zelda series.
In other media
Outside of The Legend of Zelda series and spin-offs, Link appeared in Super Smash Bros. series, as he is one of only twelve characters to have appeared in every entry of the series since its debut in Link's redesign also indirectly affected Young Link, as he was replaced by the unlockable character "Toon Link", a name used for the incarnation of Link from The Wind Waker that also reappeared in Phantom Hourglass. While vastly different aesthetically, Toon Link's abilities are largely similar to Young Link's, as he is a faster, nimbler yet weaker counterpart to Link, with whom he also shares the same Final Smash. Both Link and Toon Link returned in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U, with Toon Link now being readily available instead of having to be unlocked. Both Links retain their items from Brawl and are once again the incarnations from Twilight Princess and The Wind Waker, respectively. However, both of their designs underwent a few aesthetic tweaks, most notably having less realistic details and brighter color schemes, while they also received new alternate costumes that reference a number of Zelda games, such as Skyward Sword, Majora's Mask and A Link to the Past. Link was also revealed as one of the first characters coming back to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate for the Nintendo Switch. Unlike previous versions, this one is based on his Breath of the Wild incarnation. His items are redesigned to match the game, such as the Boomerang returning to the traditional form, the Remote Bomb Rune replacing the Bomb, and the removal of his clawshot which he can finally grab opponents with his hand. His Final Smash has been changed to the Ancient Bow and Arrow, in which he fires an Ancient Arrow at his opponent. Both Toon Link and Young Link also return as playable characters. Both Young and Toon Link still have Triforce Slash as their Final Smash.
Aside from being referenced as an alternate costume in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U, the Skyward Sword incarnation of Link either directly appears in or is referenced in a few games via Zelda-themed downloadable content. He appears as a playable character in Mario Kart 8, along with the "Hyrule Circuit" race track, the "Triforce Cup" and a vehicle set consisting of the "Master Cycle", "Triforce Tires" and "Hylian Kite". In Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, the Breath of the Wild incarnation also appears, along with the Master Cycle Zero, Ancient Tires, and Paraglider from the same game. He also appears in Sonic Lost World as part of "The Legend of Zelda Zone", where he rides his signature Crimson Loftwing. He is also referenced in Monster Hunter 4, with armor resembling his tunic being forgeable and wearable by both male and female hunters. In the GameCube version of Namco's Soulcalibur II, Link is a featured character. Although he appears identical to the adult version of the Link from Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask, this Link is an entirely separate incarnation. As such, little is known about this incarnation, but what is known is that after saving Hyrule from an evil wizard who was controlled by a fragment of Soul Edge, Link traveled to the wizard's world on a secret mission arranged by Princess Zelda to destroy Soul Edge. Miyamoto did not see a problem with Link appearing in what some had thought to be a "violent fighting game", as he had already been established as a fighter in the Super Smash Bros. series. Link is the only character in Soulcalibur II to use ranged weapons and the only guest character to have his own music theme and more than two costumes.
Link was planned to appear together with Samus Aran in Marvel: Ultimate Alliance, but was later removed. Incarnations of Link from The Legend of Zelda, The Wind Waker, Twilight Princess and Tri Force Heroes also appear as "Mystery Mushroom" costumes in Super Mario Maker, which are unlocked by completing the Mario Challenge or by scanning the respective Amiibo figures. Among SNES games, Link, alongside Metroid series protagonist Samus Aran, makes a cameo in Super Mario RPG, where they are seen sleeping in separate beds at an inn. Another reference to Link is in the Japanese release of the NES game Final Fantasy, where a grave in Elfheim is marked "Here lies Link". In Scribblenauts Unlimited, many Zelda series characters are summonable in the Wii U version. This includes Link, in his Wind Waker design. Link also makes cameos in Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest and Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble!, with a reference to his collection of seashells from Link's Awakening also being made. Some of Link's weapons and items have appeared in several games; the Master Sword appears in Virtual Hydlide, Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, and Animal Crossing, while it appears alongside the Hylian Shield and Sacred Bow from Skyward Sword as downloadable content in Monster Hunter 4. The Master Sword and Hylian Shield appear alongside Link's Champion Tunic from Breath of the Wild as Amiibo-unlocked content in the Nintendo Switch version of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.
In The Legend of Zelda animated series, Link, voiced by Jonathan Potts, was featured in a set of cartoons which aired from to as a part of DIC's The Super Mario Bros. Super Show!. Based loosely on the first game, the cartoons presented Link as a rude, lovesick teenager. Constantly pursuing Zelda and accompanied by the fairy princess Spryte, he begged for Zelda to kiss him, and exclaimed "Well excuuuuuse me, Princess!" when tired with her attitude. Thirteen episodes were produced before the cancellation of The Super Mario Bros. Super Show. The complete series was released on October 18,  A slightly altered version of this Link (and Zelda) appeared during the second season of Captain N: The Game Master.
A serial comic was created for Nintendo Power magazine by the acclaimed author Shotaro Ishinomori, and later collected in graphic novel form. This told an alternate version of the events from A Link to the Past. Though Link starts out a hapless, bumbling boy, he displays great courage and proves himself a determined and competent adventurer. He has a fairy companion, Epheremelda, long before this concept was introduced to the video games. This telling portrays Link's parents as Knights of Hyrule, lost to the Dark World. It includes an original character, Roam, a descendant of the Knights of Hyrule who fought in the Imprisoning War. At the end of the story, Zelda has become Queen, and Link is head of the Royal Guard and the Knights of Hyrule. This success is bittersweet, as their duties keep them apart, even though they were once close, sharing an adventure and even coming together in dreams. There have been manga based on The Legend of Zelda, Ocarina of Time, Majora's Mask, Oracle of Ages, Oracle of Seasons, Four Swords Adventures, A Link to the Past and The Minish Cap.
Link is not only brave; he is the embodiment of the virtue of courage and heroism, single-handedly embarking on epic quests, helping those in need no matter how small the task, and showing his kind-hearted soul to everyone he meets. Link does all these things and receives little more of a reward than the occasional thank you.
–The staff of GamesRadar in
Link has been well received by video game critics. In a section titled "top ten forces of good" in their list of top 50 retro game heroes, Retro Gamer noted that Link is "one of the longest running gaming legends."Game Informer chose Link as the number one "Hero of ".CNET declared him the second top comic book character of all time in UGO.com ranked Link in first place on a list of comic book characters who need their own movies, adding, "Get Peter Jackson or Guillermo del Toro to do it, dump a ton of money into it, and we'll all die happy." In , Complex ranked him as the sixth "most badass" comic book character of all time, as well as the fourth best video game mascot of all time. In , Esquire listed Link in "The 50 Best Video Game Characters of All Time". In , Riley McAtee for The Ringer opined, "A mute but courageous hero was the perfect character for a fantasy adventure game in the s. Some 35 years later, video game storytelling has evolved, as has the Legend of Zelda franchise. But Link hasn't. He hasn't needed to. He's been the perfect video game character all along." Chris Morgan for Yardbarker described Link as one of "the most memorable characters from old school Nintendo games".HobbyConsolas also included Link in "The 30 best heroes of the last 30 years."
The character is also popular among the video game fan community. In the and Nintendo Power Awards, readers voted him as the best character. He was also voted by readers as the first and third "Best Hero" in the and Nintendo Power Awards respectively. In one of IGN's Hero Showdowns and in Screw Attack's Death Battle, Link was voted the favorite over Cloud Strife. In , Nintendo Power chose Link as their second favorite hero, commenting that his courage always wins out over evil.
Link has also proven to be a popular guest character in other video games series. In , IGN ranked him as the best bonus character in the Soul Calibur series, while GameDaily ranked him first on a list of top ten Smash Bros. characters. He has also won multiple GameFAQs "Character Battle" contests and is the only character to have won more than once.
Critics and gamers have also commented on Link's sexual attractiveness. In June , Link was chosen as the "Hottest Video Game Character" by Out magazine for his appearance in Twilight Princess, describing him as "Nintendo's sexy farm-boy-turned-wolf". Brian Feldman for New York magazine remarked, "For three decades, gamers have been horny for Link, and finally, Nintendo has acknowledged that Link is a hot, sexy boy who will fight for your honor" and highlighted that this aspect of Link is particularly emphasised by the reactions of several side characters in Breath of the Wild. The relationship between Link and Princess Zelda was also ranked as the number one video game romance by James Hawkins of Joystick Division, who commented, "Never overtly called-out and not yet actualized, this tacit romance has shaped one of gaming's greatest franchises, and has embellished the epicness and added loving nature of each of Link's quests."
Link's character has been the subject of critical commentary with regards to his role as the protagonist of the series. Kyle Wizner for Screen Rant commented on Link's character as a silent protagonist, stating that Breath of the Wild's attempt at a more compelling story was, "successful in some regards", but "the most significant problem with Link as a main character is also the most obvious: He doesn't speak. The silent protagonist is a gaming trope as old as any, but as it becomes less common in the modern era of video games, its issues become more obvious." However, in a interview Eiji Aonuma gave an opinion about giving Link a voice, saying, "while in some ways I do feel that it could be good to have a game where he speaks, part of me also feels that that air of proud independence he has because he doesn't speak is a precious part of the individuality of his character."
Writing for Den of Geek, Ryan Lambie described Link's character as "the videogame equivalent of Tintin" because he is "the archetypal young hero, embodying all the optimism, generosity and spirit of adventure a broad fantasy action game requires. And just as Tintin’s simple design served as a reader's entry point into Hergé's stories, Link acts as the player's eyes and ears in Hyrule, a filter through which audiences can experience the colourful characters, action and perils the world constantly introduces." He further commented that Link is one of the most enduring video game characters because he is "a sympathetic hero" and "the ultimate videogame underdog. He really is an ordinary yet brave little guy who wants to save the world, in spite of insurmountable odds."
Sara Gitkos for iMore questioned Link's role as the series protagonist, despite Zelda being the titular character. She commented that since the start of the series, "Zelda served as the prize at the end of Link's long traveled tunnel" and played the role of the damsel in distress, although in recent games, she has "acted more as a partner to Link rather than an object to save". However, she also noted that it would be difficult to change this because, "Though players take control of Link and he "acts" as the protagonist, the silent hero is really just the vessel for players to control. He doesn't have any character to speak of, but rather is the place holder for us, and we become him."
In, , video game websites GameSpot and Kotaku consulted Eiji Aonuma regarding the possibility of producing a Zelda game led by a female version of Link. Aonuma responded by stating, "We thought about it and decided that if we're going to have a female protagonist, it's simpler to have Princess Zelda as the main character." However, this idea was abandoned because "if we have Princess Zelda as the main character who fights, then what is Link going to do?" Jacob Krastenakes writing for The Verge opined, "Switching the two characters wouldn't even require Link to be completely absent — he could simply be the other character, who is off doing their own thing." Aonuma also referred to the balance of the Triforce as a reason for not creating a female Link, stating, "The Triforce is made up of Princess Zelda, Ganon, and Link. Princess Zelda is obviously female. If we made Link a female we thought that would mess with the balance of the Triforce. That’s why we decided not to do it."
Jonathan Homes writing for Destructoid commented on the ambiguity of Link's character, asking, "Is Link an individual, or is he (or she) a blank slate avatar meant to represent the player?". He continued by stating, "Nintendo has done an admirable job of concocting a way to help fans to imagine Link as both a specific person and an abstract concept at the same time. He’s actually not always named Link. You, the player, choose his name before starting each of his games. He also never speaks, further solidifying him as non-character who's only purpose is to act as doorway for the player into the game world. Yet, by leaning hard on both the reincarnation myth and the use of multiple timelines, Nintendo has managed to shape Link into a series of individual characters in the minds of many."
As the mascot of The Legend of Zelda series, Link has become a widely recognisable character in pop culture. Due to his popularity with gamers, his signature green outfit combined with the Master Sword and Hylian Shield is a popular choice with fans for cosplay. His image has appeared in the form of various merchandise, including figurines, Amiibo, plush toys, and apparel. In , the Guinness World Records Gamer's Edition recognised Link as the second best video game character of all time, behind Mario. In , he was awarded a star on the Walk of Game along with his creator, Shigeru Miyamoto. In , Empire ranked Link as the sixth greatest comic book character, stating "Shigeru Miyamoto's most famous creation aside from a certain moustachioed plumber, Link has grown into one of the world's most celebrated console heroes, and helped establish RPGs as an international gaming standard." In , Time named Link as 11th on their "Most Influential Video Game Characters of All Time", stating, "The protagonist of each The Legend of Zelda series installment, Link embodies the selfless hero on a transformative journey, a storytelling trope we've seen in countless titles from Mass Effect's Commander Shepard to Halo's Master Chief."
- ^ abcas "Toon Link"
- ^as "Fierce Deity Link" while wearing the obtainable Fierce Deity Mask
- ^Japanese: リンク, Hepburn: Rinku
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Link, Hylian, or Ordonian?
WellThat's a hard question to answer. I have a few theories: 1. A Hylian. Like you said, he's the hero of time, and the hero of time wassupposed to appear as a hylian, not an ordonian, so that could be one answer. 2. An Ordonian. Well, he was suposedly born in Ordon, so wouldn't that make him an ordonian? But there is just one problem with that solution. Where are his parents? Or, who were they? They couldn't have been OoT Link and Zelda, because TP must've been, what? Some years later? Of course, Hylians might live longer than humans, so maybe they were. 3. Hylian-Ordonian. This one really depends on what you consider an ordonian. Now, obviously, Hylians are a species, but I'm not so sure about ordonians. Couldn't that just mean that you were born in or lived in ordon VILLAGE? SooooooooooooooThat means that he could just be a Hylian that lived in Ordon, right? I think that answe would make the most sense. Unless, of course, to be considered a Hylian, you had to be born as part of the royal family. So, purelocke, you could be right, except if what I said was true. There are many directions that this could go, and if i continued to list them, it would possibly take over 3 hours.
A hylian link is
Oh and I also had another question, but I don't think it's worth creating another thread for:
In Skyward Sword, do you think Link will still have the Triforce on his left hand even though he is right handed?
double_r wrote:Im not sure, but personally I always thought of him as a Hylian, just an idea check npc's ears if theirs are pointy then he's human but if their ears are normal maybe it a last of his kind sort of thing going on.
It's simple, Link's Ancestors are Hylians, Which where once Skyloftians, the games that he's not a hylian pretty much mean nothing to the storyline.
Same in WW, and they make it a point to make us notice that right in the beginning when the postman told Tetra that the Helmerok King was only stealing girls with pointed ears. There's still Hylians in the game (Link, Aryll, his Grandma, the two girls that were captured and their fathers to name some) but they're just not as common as humans. If you go on the wikia website, they actually list humans and Hylians as two separate races.
pj wrote:If he looks like an elf, he's Hylian. In the games that are further in the storyline, you'll see that Hylians were becoming less common. TP and WW's actually a pretty good example of this. In Ordon, Link was the only Hylian there, but Zelda and I've notice that Auru was a Hylian as wellI think. I dunno, I'm pretty sure I saw pointed ears on him. Most of everyone else though had round ears, indicating that they were humans.
Same in WW, and they make it a point to make us notice that right in the beginning when the postman told Tetra that the Helmerok King was only stealing girls with pointed ears. There's still Hylians in the game (Link, Aryll, his Grandma, the two girls that were captured and their fathers to name some) but they're just not as common as humans. If you go on the wikia website, they actually list humans and Hylians as two separate races.
I've always noticed pointed ears on the postman in TP
The Hylians, also known as the Hylias, are a recurring race in the Legend of Zelda series. The chosen race of the gods, the Hylians are bound to carry out the will of the Golden Goddesses and preside over the other races of Hyrule. This is the main reason the Hylians are generally considered superior to other races in Hyrule. Hylians are an elf-like race who first established an ordered civilization in Hyrule. Physically, Hylians resemble humans, and the only difference appearance-wise between them are the Hylains' long, elf-like ears that supposedly enable them to hear special messages. As the chosen people, they are also given unique psychic and magical abilities. This has been demonstrated in several different ways over time.
In the early part of Hyrule's history, Hylians were the dominant and most populous of the general humanoid races, as shown in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. But over time, however, the bloodline began to thin, and Hylians were replaced by humans as the most widespread humanoid species, becoming increasingly rarer by the time of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker.
The bolded parts are what I think the most important parts. Basically, a Hylian is a special species of human. Nintendo doesn't always (as in rarely) do a good job in portraying this in every game. The only ones they really make a big deal out of it are OoT and WW I believe.
So yeah, Link is Hylian. I checked out some pics in every game and in each one of them he had pointed ears.
double_r wrote:I've always noticed pointed ears on the postman in TP
Means he's a Hylian.
In biology race is usually used in context of human homo-sapian variation (But being fair in reality we are limited in the terms we can use it in as we dont have rockmen etc.).
However, I personally doubt they are the same Genus, IE. Homo-Sapian. In reality I know of at least 12 diffrent genus in the homo pool (11 of which are extinct) human is a very vague term of the entire genus (Lion, Panther, Tiger would all be diffrent genus of the "Big Cats"). Are the Hylians human? Yes, human is a very broad genus. Are they homo-sapians (as in, us?) Very doubtful, no. I would say there apart of another genus of human, Homo-Hylian if you will with many subspecies, i.e skeikah, Gerudo etc.
And apparently the Hylians are not completely extinct, evidently they are just rare.
Also, SS Link may be the first playable, half-blooded Hylian in the series. Everyone's probably noticed this by now, but if you compare Link's ears with other NPCs ears' in Skyloft, you'll notice that he is the only one (so far) with ears that aren't completely triangular-shaped. They're round at the bottom with a drooped tip at around the upper-part.
There's also Ghirahim, who appears to have one Hylian ear and One human ear, but that's another story. For all we know, SS probably won't address these differences in the game.
Is Link the only Hylian?
Is Link the only Hylian?
They are from the countries of Skyloft, Hyrule and the latters flooded counterpart, the Great Sea. While it is unlikely that the people of Termina, a parallel world to the Kingdom of Hyrule, are also known as Hylians, they are their parallels.
|Notable Member(s)||Link, Princess Zelda|
Where is Links house in Link to the Past?
In A Link to the Past, Links House is actually owned by his Uncle. Link is first seen here sleeping, but then Princess Zelda contacts him telepathically and his uncle leaves, telling him to stay put. Links house is square and located just south of the Hyrule Castle.
Is Link a human or elf?
Through The Legend of Zelda series, Link is depicted as a child, teenager, or young adult of the Hylian race (described as a type of elf) originating from the fictional land of Hyrule.
What is the average lifespan of a Hylian?
Hylians seems to live about years, considering most hylians in BOTW dont recall the day the calamity occured, Shiekah seem to just shrink as they age until a unspecified point then turn into corpsemummies, they certainly live for longer than a years by going off Impa, Robbie and Purah.
Why did Link sleep for 7 years?
Raurus explanation for Links slumber is that the Master Sword is supposed to only be pulled out by the one worthy of the title Hero of Time. Link might have been able to pull it out, but Rauru explains that he was too young to actually be the Hero of Time, so his spirit was sealed for seven years, only being
Can Link get a house in breath of the wild?
Link does not have a home in Breath of the Wild, the way he has in previous games. But now that Links a big, responsible adult, he can go and buy his own home. Head to Hateno for your new home. The home you can buy is in Hateno Village, southeast of Firly Pond.
Is the house in Hateno Village Links old house?
Hateno Village is relatively close to Zoras domain so its reasonable this was links house.
What is Links full name Zelda?
Among them was a simple inquiry regarding Links last name. According to Miyamoto, its “Link.” Yes, the hero of times official full name is Link Link.
Where do you find Hylian homeowner in breath of the wild?
Breath of the Wild ’s Hylian Homeowner side quest begins in Hateno Village. Over a bridge behind Myham Agana shrine, you’ll find three construction workers — Bolson, Karson and Hudson — hanging around a dilapidated house. Speaking to them sets the events of two quests in motion.
Where does link set sail in Princess Zelda?
Princess Zelda reuses Marins sprite, the manuals indicate that Link is leaving Hyrule for training, the Linked Ending ends with Link setting sail on his ship seen at the start of Links Awakening. All the same, theres a massive continuity error during a Linked playthrough.
How old is link in The Legend of Zelda?
Canonically, Link should be King of Hyrule by this point while also married to Princess Zelda. Granted, he’s only around 16 at this point, but lore is lore. This of course creates a problem when the other Zelda wakes up at the end of the game and kisses Link.
How is Zelda and links relationship in breath of the wild?
Both Breath of the Wild and Age of Calamitys interpretations of the characters are rooted in Skyward Swords dynamic. Link and Zelda’s relationship in Breath of the Wild is by far the most dynamic relationship they’ve had yet, even including Age of Calamity.
Where does link find Zelda in the Dark World?
Link arrives at the Sanctuary moments after the soldiers have vacated, where he learns from the dying Sage that Zelda has been taken back to Hyrule Castle. Link goes to rescue her but arrives too late; Agahnim sends Zelda to the Dark World which opens the seal.
Where is Hylian homeowner side quest in breath of the wild?
This guide and walkthrough will show you everything you need to know from the locations and solutions for every shrine to Captured Memories, the best meal in the game, The Master Trials DLC and more. Breath of the Wild ’s Hylian Homeowner side quest begins in Hateno Village.
Do you have to leave the Hyland website?
Disclaimer: You are now leaving Hyland’s CommunityLIVE website and you are selecting a link that will take you to a third party website.
How to get a house in Zelda Breath of the wild?
Speaking to them sets the events of two quests in motion. This guide is all about getting Link a house — and the benefits of becoming a homeowner. Speak to Bolson (hes the guy with the pink headband behind the house), and purchase the house for 3, rupees and 30 bundles of wood.
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Is link a hylian?
Click to see full answer.
Thereof, is Link hylian or kokiri?
Link is a human from Hylian. If you've played Ocarina of Time, you probably noticed that he doesn't have a fairy at the beginning of the game, while all of the other children do. You might have noticed that after seven years, Link has grown up while all of the Kokiri children are still young.
Secondly, does Link get reincarnated? It's a family tradition for daughters to be named Zelda in the royal family, however Link is never reincarnated. It's always a different Link. Reincarnation isn't eternal life, as Link wouldn't retain his memories and experiences even if he was reincarnated for every game.
Furthermore, is Link a boy?
Next Link May Not Be a Girl, But He's Androgynous by Design. When early images of Nintendo's The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild circulated a few years ago, fans speculated that it's traditionally male lead might by a woman this time—or at least playable as either gender.
Is link a human or an elf?
TL;DR He is based off the mythical creatures 'Elves' outside of the series, but the creators of the zelda series just named elves 'Hylians' instead to differentiate them. The games may refer to Link as Human because that is his race, but he's a specific human called 'Hylian.