The folks over at Wii Potato have put together a list of their Top 5 Zelda Side Quests throughout the series. I’m a bit shocked at some of the inclusions in their list.
5. Hunt insects for Princess Agitha (Twilight Princess, 2006)
4. Fill the merchant store at Windfall Island (Wind Waker, 2003)
3. Expel the curse from the House of Skulltula (Ocarina of Time, 1998)
2. Acquire the indestructible blade of Biggoron (Ocarina of Time, 1998)
1. Reunite Anju and Kafei, Clock Town’s lost lovers (Majora’s Mask, 2000)
I think most fans would agree that the Anju and Kafei quest was well worth being on this list, as well as the quest to acquire the Biggoron Sword in Ocarina of Time. After that though, I’m not quite sure about the rest of them. In particular, I don’t think I know many fans at all who thought finding the golden bugs was actually a fun side quest. Personally, I felt side quests such as the Skulltula Houses in Majora’s mask were a heck of a lot more fun. Even the Gerudo Training Ground mini-dungeon was much more enjoyable and perhaps should have been on the list. In more recent Zelda title, the Take-Em-All-On side quest in Spirit Tracks or the journey through the Cave of Ordeals in Twilight Princess were both great.
I really didn’t see what was enjoyable at all about collecting the Golden Bugs. Almost all of them didn’t exactly take much effort in gathering them. It was simply finding or knowing where they were, and actually collecting them. In terms of pure collectibles, I think the various mask quests in Majora’s Mask were a heck of a lot more fun, or even the collection of the various Gems in Phantom Hourglass. Even just the trading sequences from Link’s Awakening, Oracle of Seasons, or Oracle of Ages, were more fun than collecting bugs. Perhaps this list was just thrown together with only having consideration for the four 3d console Zelda titles. Even then, the golden bugs quest seems misplaced. There were a lot of good things in Twilight Princess… and the golden bugs were certainly not one of them.
So what are your favorite side quests? Do you prefer optional mini-dungeons or battle sequences, or perhaps just collecting gems, skulltulas, rabbits, treasure charts, etc…? Do you think a worthy reward is a necessity for side quests, or is it just about the actual fun of going through the side quest? Let us know in the comments below.