Ganondorf is the main antagonist in the Zelda series, having spent eras trying to take over the land of Hyrule. Unfortunately for the Gerudo King, his task is never ending, as he is destined to eternally reincarnate to pursue world domination (something he hasn’t had much success in). This guy has been cursed with such a terrible fate, that I almost feel sorry for him — almost.
Ganondorf has committed terrible crimes indeed. He has waged war on Hyrule, kidnapped innocents, and threatened and manipulated everybody around him. His beasts and monster roam the land, spilling terror as they go. Areas have frozen at his command, and kingdoms have been flooded to defy his twisted wishes. Ganondorf really is the big bad, but it’s possible that he’s also just a guy burdened by the hatred of one Demon King Demise. He didn’t ask for any of this. In fact, we come to learn that Ganondorf wanted only the safety and comfort that could be found in Hyrule, as his speech in The Wind Waker states:
My country lay within a vast desert. When the sun rose into the sky, a burning wind punished my lands, searing the world. And when the moon climbed into the dark of night, a frigid gale pierced our homes. No matter when it came, the wind carried the same thing… Death. But the winds that blew across the green fields of Hyrule brought something other than suffering and ruin. I coveted that wind, I suppose.
Imagine Ganondorf wasn’t forced into this never-ending cycle of hate. Would he have acted against Hyrule, selfishly waging war upon Hyrule, leaving destruction and horror in his path? Or would he have negotiated with honesty in heart to ensure that he and his people could enjoy the fruits of the land? Personally, I think the evil streak within Ganondorf is only exacerbated by Demise’s curse. The curse just gives him the drive to act upon his iniquitous desires. For this reason, I withhold my pity.
What do you think? Should we pity Ganondorf? Let us know in the comments below!
Judy Ann Calder is a Copy Editor and member of the Management team at Zelda Dungeon. She joined the ranks back in 2018, bringing some good old British charm to the table.
Contact Judy at: firstname.lastname@example.org