Hyrule Historia: Miyamoto Discusses the Origins of Zelda; Plus, Ties Between Ocarina and Twilight Pr
Posted on January 13 2012 by Breana Melvin
GlitterBerri has gone ahead and posted several new translations of the pages featured in Hyrule Historia.
First and foremost, is Shigeru Miyamoto’s full statement, as featured in the book. In the statement, Miyamoto discusses the origin of The Legend of Zelda, including Zelda, Link, and Impa’s names.
In addition, we have a few new translated bits related to The Minish Cap, Ocarina of Time, and Twilight Princess, which include some obvious links between the latter two.
On Approaching the 25th Anniversary of The Legend of Zelda
Nintendo Co., Ltd. Nintendo Entertainment Analysis and Development
General Producer of The Legend of Zelda Series
I started working on the project of the first Legend of Zelda game along with a very small staff in a corner of the development room of Nintendo, located in Kyoto. It was approximately 2 years after the release of the Famicom, around halfway through the 1980’s. Back then, I was also working on a compilation of the Famicom’s Super Mario Bros. [TN: A port of the original game for the Disk System that included several minus world levels.], but since the release of the Disk System was getting near, we had to work on a launch title too.
The first thing I thought about was a game that made use of the Disk System’s function of rewriting data so that two players could each create their own dungeons and make the other player solve them. We actually created such a game, and when I played it, I felt it was very fun playing in the dungeons themselves. So we put together a game with a series of dungeons underneath mountains distributed around Death Mountain for a single player to solve them. But we also wanted it to feature a world above, so we added forests and lakes, and so Hyrule Field took form gradually.
Now, we didn’t decide the game’s title from the very beginning either. Originally, I wanted it to be “The Legend of X,” but I couldn’t find the appropriate word for the “X.” Then, the planner to whom we assigned the PR project suggested we did a story book of the game.
He had the idea of doing an illustration book that would add to the princess Link rescues an eternal beauty appealing to all men. He then mentioned that there was an American writer whose wife was very famous. He said she was named “Zelda,” and suggested that name for our eternal beauty. I had no interest in such a book project, but I loved the name Zelda, so I asked him if we could only keep the name and he said it was OK. And so, the title of “The Legend of Zelda” was born.
We named the main character “Link” to convey the meaning of someone who connects. The idea was of a character that would cross time and link the energy spread around the world. There’s also a character that would pass that information on to Zelda: an old lady named “Impa.” Her name comes from the verb “to impart.” This old lady, Link and Zelda were “the three guardians of the Triforce.” The Triforce relationship nowadays is between Link, Zelda and Ganon, but that was established in Ocarina of Time; the first Ganon was a villain looking for the Triforce.
Twenty five years have passed since then and we’ve been able to create many Zelda games. At first, Link had a simple design of a bunch of pixels, but now he’s got a heroic fearless look and fluid movements. Ganon has become a more powerful, greatly evil being, and Zelda has turned into a beautiful lady.
Along with the evolution of hardware, production values get more luxurious. But I was afraid that by relying on those luxurious production values, the most important parts of playing would be neglected. What matters in a videogame are the game system, the action, the sensations, the creativity, and the production values. Production values have been evolving with time, and in order for other game elements not to lose any ground against them, I’ve been involved in the development of the series, watching it over like some sort of guard.
Because of that, I feel that Skyward Sword, the most recent game and which was finished for the turning point of the series’ 25th anniversary, is a very well-balanced game. Over this 25 years span, we’ve though up new items, we’ve changed the way of using some of them, or we’ve made Link’s controls more comfortable for solving puzzles, and sometimes we’ve improved all that when adapting them to a specific controller. We’ve repeatedly designed the controllers themselves assuming the movements in Zelda games. But I feel that with Skyward Sword, which is played with the Wii motion plus and the nunchuck, we’ve arrived to an answer.
Actually, 2011 was also the 30th anniversary of Donkey Kong. I started my career as a game developer with that title. I’ve been involved in the creation of many games during those 30 years, but the only ones in which the player can name his character are those from The legend of Zelda series.
I’ve already mentioned that we named Link with the intention of conveying a “connecting” meaning, but Link is the player himself. Ultimately, the series has continued because the player saves the world while struggling to solve puzzles or defeating strong enemies. As a result, I’m very thankful that players around the world and our team could “link.”
Even though Ganon is defeated time after time, he’s a very evil being that comes back vengefully. So, whenever signs of evil start to cover the world, a young boy and a girl will be born. As long as you continue to love this world, the adventures of you and Link will continue. We’ll keep developing new games of this series as new hardware brings new experiences. Please play those games.
Can I just say now, that I would have loved for such an illustrated story-book to have existed. I would have loved it.
The rest of the posted translations are a either collections of previously translated sections, re-translated sections, or completely new translations. Here are the highlights.
Starting with The Minish Cap:
The Princess of Hyrule, who is said to have magical powers. Fearing that these powers will get in his way, Vaati turns her to stone.
Smith and Link
Smith is a renowned blacksmith and Link is his apprentice. He has forged a sharp sword which was to be presented to the winner of the swordsmanship tournament. Link and Zelda are childhood friends who were playing together during the incident at the Picori Festival.
Formerly the apprentice of the Picori sage Ezlo, his evil heart turned him into a human sorcerer when he put on the Mage’s Cap. He entered the swordsmanship tournament mistakenly believing that the Light Force was enshrined within the Bound Chest.
Moving onto Ocarina of Time:
The Premonitory Dream
A man from the desert covered Hyrule in dark clouds, but then a savior ray of light appeared and turned into the figure of a young boy followed by a fairy.
Zelda’s nurse. She’s a survivor from the Sheikah race, who have served the royal family since ancient times.
The Great Deku Tree sent Navi the fairy to guide Link. As Link’s partner, she aids him in his adventure.
Link’s Departure and the Kokiri Race
Each Kokiri has a fairy partner, and they always maintain their childish appearance. It’s said that they’ll die if they leave the forest.
Since Link was a Hylian, he didn’t have a fairy, but the fated day that he set off on his adventure, the Great Deku Tree sent the fairy Navi his way. The green clothes Link wears are characteristic of the Kokiri.
The Ocarina of Time
The key to the Sacred Realm that was protected by the royal family. It is possible to play a song which manipulates time and space. Its pale glow is reminiscent of the timeshift stones of ancient times.
The Master Sword
A sacred blade with the power to repel evil and untouchable by evil people. Only the person worthy of being the Hero of Time can pull it out. Link proved his power, wisdom and courage when he obtained the three spiritual stones.
The Three Spiritual Stones
There’s three spiritual stones: the spiritual stone of the forest (Kokiri Emerald), which is guarded by the spirit of the forest the Great Deku Tree; the spiritual stone of fire (Goron’s Ruby), which is guarded by the Goron; and the spiritual stone of water (Zora’s Sapphire), which is guarded by the Zora.
In order to obtain them, Ganondorf cursed the guardian spirit of the forest, the Great Deku Tree, and the guardian spirit of the water, Jabu-Jabu, and he threatened the Goron race. The shape of each spiritual stone resembles the symbols of the respective race.
Next, Twilight Princess:
The City in the Sky
The city floating in the sky is the remnant of an ancient civilization that once flourished. It once had a close relationship with the royal family of Hyrule, but today the only messenger who remembers the lore left is Impaz.
Its relation to Skyloft of the Sky Era is unknown.
The Twilight Realm
A mirror located in the Arbiter’s Grounds in the desert. It is the only connection between the worlds of light and shadow, and it can only be destroyed by the true leader of the Twili.
The Map and Typography of this Era
Hyrule Castle is located in Lanayru Province in the centre of the land. The other provinces are named Faron, Eldin and Ordona after the dragons of the Era of the Goddess Hylia, and they’re protected by the Light Spirits bearing the same names.
The characters shown to the right can be decoded by transliterating them into English.
UPDATE: We now have some additional information concerning Wind Waker and Twilight Princess that was missed earlier.
Pg. 113 The Demon Thief Ganondorf’s Execution
Dark Clouds Threaten Hyrule
Meanwhile, the Hyrule Kingdom, with Princess Zelda’s knowledge of future events from Link, the Hero of Time, accused Ganondorf of allowing the destruction of Hyrule.
Several years later, Ganondorf, the dreaded demon thief who had acquired evil magic, was to be executed at last.
More information of this time’s sages like their names are unknown. From the emblems depicted on the sage’s clothing they are known to be sages of light, forest, fire, water, shadow, and spirit.
Ganondorf’s malice increased from his wicked heart and hatred.
History of the Twilight Realm
In ancient times, the people were deeply religious and the world had long been at peace. But, eventually there was conflict over the Sacred Realm, Hyrule. Among the people, those appeared who excelled at black magic and with their super powerful evil magic tried to govern the Sacred Realm.
The Gods sent the four Light Spirits, who then sealed away the Fused Shadows. Additionally, they used the Mirror of Twilight to exile them to the Twilight Realm so that they would never be able to interact with the World of Light. The people living in the Twilight, came to be called the Twili.
Pg. 117 The Resistance
Traces of the Era of the Hero of Time
The Goron and Zora tribes are still alive and well in this era, but the only traces of the Kokiri tribe are a few markings left in the Forest Temple.
The Master Sword remains in its pedestal within the ruins of the Temple of Time, which have been overgrown by forest.
Pg. 118 Princess Zelda’s Revival & Ganon’s Suppression
Princess Zelda’s Revival & Ganon’s Suppression
Wielding the sages’ sword used in his own execution, Ganon commences the final battle. However, he is defeated by Link.
Ganondorf, the king of darkness, is defeated, and the crest of the Triforce of Power disappears from the back of his hand. For the time being, the destiny that was intertwined with the Triforce-seeking demonic thief, Ganondorf, has come to a close.
However, the invasion of Twilight that instilled much hatred have brought the existence of Hyrule and the dual-nature of its counterpart world into sharp relief, and the repercussions will be felt in future eras.
Midna Returns to Her True Form & The World of Twilight
Her curse lifted, Midna turns back into the bewitching princess she is. When she returns to the Twilight World, she breaks the mirror of shadow, ensuring that the Twilight World and the World of Light will never again meet. With her parting words, she asks that the fact that there is another world within the shadows of the World of Light not be forgotten…
Link returns the Master Sword to the forest and heads home to Ordon Village. The world is again blessed by the gods and enveloped in light.
The Triforce of Power
The power that dwells within Ganondorf. Finally exhausted, the crest disappears.
Midna’s True Form
Cursed by the power of the shadow, the spell on Midna is lifted through the defeat of Ganondorf.
Link, the Hero of Time’s Descendent
The first time Link sets foot in the Twilight, the crest of the Triforce of Courage on the back of his hand shines and he takes on a beastly form. When he returns to human form, he is garbed in the clothes said to be worn by the hero. The ghost of his ancestor, the Hero of Time, teaches him secrets. Ever since returning to the child era, the Hero of Time had felt regret that he could not be remembered as a hero. Therefore, he addresses Link as his son and passes down the proof of courage and his secrets.
So the Kokiri didn’t evolve, they just died out? Or perhaps they all became skull kids? Overall, it’s rather sad.
As for Wind Waker:
Pg. 123 The Legend of the Great Flood
The Return of the Demon King in the Era without a Hero
Ganondorf, who had once been sealed away, returned from the depths of the earth and covered Hyrule in darkness once again. The people hoped that the legendary hero would show up to save them a second time, but… the hero did not appear.
With no hope of salvation left, King Daphnes Nohansen Hyrule decided to entrust the fate of Hyrule to the Goddesses.
The Divine Judgement and the Sealing of Hyrule
The Goddesses instructed the chosen people to flee to the mountaintops before drowning both Hyrule and Ganondorf in a massive flood and sealing it at the bottom of the ocean.
The King was to be sealed along with Hyrule, and he instructed the princess to split the Triforce of Wisdom into two and flee to the sea with a few of her servants.
The Royal Amulet
The King of Hyrule created this royal amulet from the ancient Gossip Stones of Hyrule and entrusted it to the princess. Later known as the “Pirate’s Charm”, the royal family can talk through this amulet and it was handed down throughout their lineage as an important heirloom.
Princess Zelda, like all Hylian descendants, have characteristically long ears. Knowing this, he kidnapped girls with these traits and brought them to the Forsaken Fortress.
Pg. 125 An Adventure Brought by the Wind
The traditions of Outset Island
On Outset Island, the island on which Link lives, it is customary for young boys to dress up in green as they come of age. The clothers are modeled after those of the legendary Hero of Time, and it is hoped that they too shall become as courageous as the legend. It is customary to decorate the house with a shield of that era.
Pg. 127 The Adventure Brought by the Wind (Continued)
The Countermeasure to Subdue Ganondorf
The king of Hyrule instructed Link to use the power of the sages to restore the
Master Sword’s power to repel evil, and to find the Triforce of Courage that was under the water.
Since the sages Laruto and Fado were murdered by Ganondorf, the Rito Medli
and the Korok Makar, who carried on the blood of the sages, went to their respective temples.
The Prayers of the Sages and the Power to Repel Evil
Ganondorf thought the sages were dead, but their souls woke up two new sages
through special instruments and melodies.
Medli, now the Sage of Earth, and Makar, the new Sage of Wind, offered a prayer
and restored the Master Sword’s power to repel evil.
The Temples Lying Dormant in Hyrule
The temples, just like the Kingdom of Hyrule, lied dormant on the bottom of the
sea. However, they had entrances atop high mountains, so it was also possible to go inside from the sea in the Era of the Mighty Ocean.
The Spirits that Guard the Pearls of the Goddesses
After the land of Hyrule was sealed, there were spirits who guarded the three Pearls of the Goddessess that had a connection with the Tower of Gods. It is thought that these spirits are descendants from the spirits of the Hero of Time Era: the Great Deku Tree, Volvagia and Jabu-Jabu.
Pg. 128 The Adventure Brought by the Wind (Continued)
The Birth of the Hero of Winds
Link picked up eight shards from the bottom of the sea and completed the Triforce
of Courage. A crest appeared on Link’s left hand and he was acknowledged as a true
However, when Link and the King of Red Lions returned to Hyrule Castle, Princess
Zelda was kidnapped by Ganondorf right in front of them.
The Showdown of Fate for a Wish to the Triforce
Princess Zelda, who had the crest of wisdom, was taken to Ganon’s Tower, located
in Hyrule on the bottom of the sea. When Link’s courage crest gathered with the other two, the true form of the Triforce appeared.
Hoping for Hyrule’s restoration and control, Ganondorf extended his hand towards
the Triforce to put an end to his long fatality.
It’s a sacred triangle that grants the wish of whoever touches it. It’s the power of the gods Ganondorf once failed to obtain. He was only left with the Triforce of Power, so he needed to reunite the crests of wisdom and courage.
The New Appearance of the Kokiri and the Zora
In the Era of the Mighty Ocean, some races the appearance of some races suffered a
big change in comparison to the Era of Chaos. The Kokiri turned into the Korok, a race that looks like plants and helps the spirit of the Great Deku Tree to plant tress around the world. The Zora became the so-called Rito, a race that has beaks like birds and grows wings with the scale the spirit Valoo gives them.
Incidentally, the appearance of the Goron race did not change, but they no longer
live in a village and wander around the world.
Pg. 129 Adventure Brought by the Wind (Continued)
The End of Ganondorf
Was it woth it wishing to the Triforce for a future at the expense of letting Hyrule disappear? Ganondorf attacked Link and Zelda, who were entrusted with that future. The last decissive battle on the land of Hyrule kept being extended.
Ganondorf was defeated by Princess Zelda’s light arrows and Link’s attacks with the Blade of Evil’s Bane. He turned into stone and broke into pieces.
As Hyrule was disappearing, The king freed Link and Princess Zelda onto the sea surface. Zelda told the king they could find a new land together, and Link reached out to the him, but the king chose to disappear along with Hyrule.
Like that, a cyclic story of the battle for the Sacred Realm Hyrule and the Triforce came to an end.
What Ganondorf Coveted
Ganondorf described Hyrule’s sinking in the ocean as a “destruction by the gods,” and he dwelt upon its restoration. He was born and raised in a desertic land, where he said that the wind carried death and he left behind these words, “I coveted the wind that blew across Hyrule, I suppose.” The wind he felt in his last moment, was it the desert wind or Hyrule’s…?
The King and the Kingdom of Hyrule
Remembering the kingdom of yore, the king of Hyrule regretted the past. However, after reflecting that clinging to Hyrule’s restoration would make him the same as Ganondorf, he decided to make it disappear. The king apologized to Zelda and Link, and left behind these words, “I have scattered the seeds of the future…”
Well this is incredibly interesting. I’ve been thinking a lot about dragons in Zelda and how they are portrayed as both good and evil. According to this, Volvagia was supposed to be the guardian deity of the mountain, but Ganondorf must have corrupted him if that is really the case. Then again, the Volvagia had caused trouble in the past, so maybe he fathered Valoo ages ago. In the child timeline the only dragon we know of after Volvagia is the one hanging out in the Sky Temple in Twilight Princess (wait did we kill the other Valoo?) In any case, a baby Valoo must have been running around someplace while we were busy killing his dad.
For more translations from Hyrule Historia, make sure to check out the source link.
Speaking of which, if you’d like to help encourage Nintendo to release an official English printing of the book, please ‘Like’ this Facebook page or tweet this meesage (feel free to edit the North America part to reflect your region).