Hello unwinding readers! I’m back this week with the sixth installment of Unwinding Areas in the Legend of Zelda. Thanks to your suggestions in previous editions, we will be taking a look at: Hyrule Castle, Gerudo Valley and Gerudo Fortress, Anouki Village, and the Rabbitland Resuce. Yes, even the Rabbitland Rescue. Although we could potentially keep this series going on for months, it might be time for a new topic to explore in the next month or so. With that said, be sure let me know your thoughts in the comments as well as your favorite places to unwind. Let’s take a look some unwinding areas!
Hyrule Castle (The Wind Waker)
Even though this area is a one-time deal (such a shame, I know), I think many of us would agree, that with each new game file, the Hyrule Castle visit should always be made worthwhile. After all, it’s the only time in the game where you’re allowed to be up-close and personal with frozen enemies. Whether you’re scoping out frozen fiends, snapping selfies with them, or walking around like you own the place, the absolute silence and ominous atmosphere as time (almost literally) stands still, in addition to you being from another world, all help to make this visit exclusive to our attention. And that’s only the half of it! Once you have lifted the legendary Master Sword from its pedestal, the castle becomes pretty lively, literally. Suddenly everything regains its color and resumes as though nothing happened. And this is presumably, where the real fun begins. One of the first things you might have noticed, were the stunning stained glass portraits of the seven sages. Afterwards you might have found yourself spending however long you wanted farming treasure from enemies, or just the joy of testing out your shiny new Master Sword on Moblins and Darknuts. Even with all these enemies pacing about, the music here suits their presence of evil (or hierarchy?) like no other theme would. With that all said, from the moment you enter the castle in a frozen silence, it’s already unwinding. And if you enjoyed the castle in general or looked forward to defeating a handful of Darknuts and Moblins as much as I did, that makes a fair point in calling it unwinding as well.
Gerudo Valley & Gerudo’s Fortress (Ocarina of Time)
Before entering the Gerudo Fortress, the inevitable Gerudo Valley is where many of us have found ourselves enjoying the famous “Gerudo Valley” theme alongside a bridge near rushing waters. Gerudo Valley (bridge area) is notable one of the most memorable areas in Ocarina of Time for just a few reasons that I can think of. First and foremost, having Link gracefully dive off either the bridge or cliff into the rapid currents of the river, all while indulging in the Gerudo theme song. Second would have to be floating with a cucco alongside the cliffs to reach a Gerudo woman and random cow. And third, the most famous scene where Epona and Link glide over the broken bridge (or you might have used the Long Shot), during the forte of the Gerudo theme.
Then you’ve reached the Gerudo Fortress, only to be thrown into a cell for who knows how long. Though, once that’s all cleared up, and despite the fact that you more than likely “knocked-out” some fellow Gerudo guards, you’re more than welcome to enjoy the place. There may not be much to unwind with, though you might have found yourself galloping the area with Epona to the Horseback Archery Range for a fun game to test your skills. That’s really all I can recall for really enjoying and unwinding in this area. Be sure to let me know how you enjoyed the Fortress in comments!
Anouki Village (Phantom Hourglass/Spirit Tracks)
Anouki Village has to be one the greatest areas in all of Phantom Hourglass as well as Spirit Tracks. The music is simple and cheery (a bit reminiscent to Christmas), and atmosphere is presented in a way that welcomes visitors to this chilly little region. Unlike most areas discussed in the Unwinding Areas series, Anouki Village offers one thing that none of the others have. And that is the crunchy sound of snow when running about. Just kidding, it’s actually dispute. Along with this dispute of theirs, they each seem to have a similar attitude in common, as well as distinct dialect. Until the Yook is out of the bag, these little guys will plead their innocence to the point of blaming a fellow villager. Other times, they’ll say silly things, always fun to hear what they have to say given their humorous attitudes.
“My biggest gripe is guys wearin’ yellow. I mean… blech! As far as I’m concerned, outside of bananas, nothing looks good in yellow!”
Despite having the necessary detective work to find out who the Yook really is, doing so was enjoyable nonetheless, especially in their environment. By the way, if anyone wanted to read about “Why the Anouki Should Make a Reappearance”, you should defiantly check out Cameron’s elaborate editorial on the subject, here.
The Rabbitland Resue (Spirit Tracks)
And briefly, I remember someone suggested the Rabbitland Rescue, though I’m not sure if they were joking or really enjoyed the place. And I mean no offense whatsoever, just wasn’t expecting it to be suggested is all. I could never successfully “rescue” very many rabbits, so I never spent much time here. Regardless, let’s see what makes this area so unwinding. Alright, so it’s an entire estate dedicated to rescued rabbits! And more importantly, there’s just one person trying to make these rescues worthwhile, for the sake of these lonely scattered rabbits across Hyrule. As you gradually reunite the different types of rabbits, you are more than welcome to visit them anytime and also earn a few goodies from the Rescue Man. You could even spend some time playing with a patch of sand or admire the jumpy rabbits in their new home. The Rabbitland is overall a cute and unwinding place to hang around in that it expresses no pressure, other than to recruit other rabbits. Perhaps you have a better perspective of the place, let me know in the comments what you thought.
That’s all for this week. As the unwinding series comes an end, most likely by Part 10, some of you have left some fantastic ideas as to what I should write about in a brand new series. Most of which I have already planned out, and you can expect to see them within the next month or depending how fast we get through the current series. If you have any topics or series that you would like to have me write, let me know in the comments below! I’ll still gladly take them into consideration.
Sorry for such a boring ending, but there’s one more thing. Someone last week suggested that I include your comments of what you did for fun in your unwinding areas (I might put them all in Part 10 to close up the series), let me know if you would interested in that in the comments as well!