The Legend of Zelda
The Bow is a ranged weapon with great power found throughout The Legend of Zelda series. It is a recurring weapon, appearing in most Zelda games, the exceptions being The Adventure of Link, Oracle of Seasons, and Oracle of Ages. It can often be upgraded with new types of Arrows and larger Quivers. The perks of having a Bow is that Link can attack enemies from range, not having to engage in melee combat with them or activate switches which cannot be reached by the sword. However, the Bow is ammunition-based, so Link must keep supplying it with arrows.
The Legend of Zelda
The Bow is found very early in The Legend of Zelda. In fact, it is found in the first dungeon of the game, Level 1: The Eagle. The Bow allows Link to fire off arrows at enemies. Before Link gains the ability to use it, he must first purchase the arrows from one of the Item Shops for 80 Rupees. Also, as opposed to possessing a limited number of arrows, firing an arrow drains Link's Wallet by one rupee. The Bow is required to complete the game, because it is the only weapon capable of defeating Gohma, as well as Ganon. In the final dungeon of the game, Level 9: Death Mountain, Link receives the Silver Arrows, which do more damage and are required to defeat Ganon.
A Link to the Past
"Link later became known as the most skilled archer in all of Hyrule, and historians believe that he found and first used the Bow and Arrow in the Eastern Palace. They were the most effective weapons to use against the fierce Armos Knights and several other enemies."
"Bow & Arrows
When Link acquires the Bow from the Big Chest in the Eastern Palace, he will need to begin building his supply of Arrows. Arrows can most easily be obtained by defeating enemies who use Arrows as their primary weapon. It's possible for him to carry many more than 30 Arrows, but he must visit the Fountain of Happiness. "
Link obtains the Bow as the treasure of the Eastern Palace, also the first dungeon of the game. Link starts out with the ability to hold 30 arrows, but this amount can be increased by five if he donates 100 rupees to the Great Fairy in Lake Hylia. This is repeatable until Link reaches the maximum amount of 70. In a similar fashion to the original The Legend of Zelda, Link obtains the Silver Arrows from the Cursed Fairy inside the Pyramid of Power, which do incredible amounts of damage and are needed to defeat Ganon.
The Bow functions like it does in other 2D Zelda titles, but in Link's Awakening, Link can create a Bomb Arrow by dropping a bomb and firing an arrow at the same time. The Bow can be purchased from the Mabe Village's Shop for a whopping 980 rupees. It is possible to steal it by simply grabbing it and heading out the head. However, stealing from this shop will cause two annoying consequences. Firstly, for the rest of the game, Link will be called THIEF by everyone instead of the name chosen on the Select File Screen. Secondly, every time Link enters the shop after he has stolen an item, the shopkeeper will yell at Link and kill him.
Ocarina of Time
- Main article: Fairy Bow
The Fairy Bow is found in the Forest Temple in Ocarina of Time. Link receives Fire Arrows by shooting at the sun above Lake Hylia and Ice Arrows by completing the Gerudo Training Ground. Also, Link receives the Light Arrows from Princess Zelda once he has awakened all the Seven Sages. Using the Bow puts the user in a first-person perspective, and the arrows arc upwards somewhat. Link's original quiver can hold 30 arrows and can be upgraded to 40 and 50 at the Kakariko Village Shooting Gallery and the Horseback Archery mini-game, respectively.
- Main article: Hero's Bow
The Hero's Bow is obtained in the Woodfall Temple in Majora's Mask. It functions in exactly the same way as Ocarina of Time's Fairy Bow, with the only difference being in its appearance. Link also gets new types of arrows in every dungeon. Link acquires the Fire Arrows in the Snowhead Temple, Ice Arrows in the Great Bay Temple, and Light Arrows in the Stone Tower Temple. There are two Shooting Galleries, one in East Clock Town and another in the Southern Swamp. Beating either upgrades Link's quiver once.
The Wind Waker
- Main article: Hero's Bow
The Hero's Bow is obtained in the Tower of the Gods. It functions the same way as it does in previous 3D Zelda titles, except that the arrows travel entirely straight, instead of arcing upwards. Quiver upgrades are obtained from various Great Fairies, allowing Link to eventually hold 99 arrows. Link receives the Fire Arrows and Ice Arrows from the Queen of Fairies, and the Light Arrows in the catacombs.
The Bow can be randomly found on the Item Podiums that exist in the game. Link can charge it to make it shoot faster.
Four Swords Adventures
The Bow can be randomly found on the Item Podiums that exist in the game. Charged shots can pierce multiple targets, and break objects as well as pin large objects (like force crystals) to the wall. If Link meets the Great Fairy, she upgrades it to the Level 2 Bow, which can have 3 arrows on the screen at once.
The Minish Cap
The Bow is found in Castor Wilds. Its firing rate can be increased by catching the Joy Butterfly found in the Wind Ruins, which appears after Link successfully performs a Kinstone Fusion with Din. The Bow can eventually fire Light Arrows if Link performs an optional side quest, which is rather lengthy.
- Main article: Hero's Bow
In Twilight Princess, the Bow is called the Hero's Bow and is obtained in the Goron Mines. Depending on what system the game is being played on, the controls regarding the Bow vary. In the GameCube version, the aiming system is the same as in previous 3D Zelda titles. On the Wii, Link must aim the Wii Remote at the point where they want to shoot. The camera can be rotated using the joystick, allowing for simultaneous movement and aiming. The quiver upgrades can be obtained by completing the STAR Game in Castle Town with the Clawshot, or, to make it easier, the Double Clawshots. These upgrades allow Link to hold 60 and 100 arrows, respectively.
This game features Bomb Arrows, which are projectile explosives that can destroy faraway obstacles. They can be equipped by first making Link equip his Bow, and then moving the cursor over a Bomb Bag, and pressing the appropriate button.
The Bow in Phantom Hourglass is found in the Temple of Courage. Because this game features touch screen controls, here you touch the screen where you want to shoot and release to fire. Link starts out with a quiver that can hold 20 arrows. After completing the Temple of Courage, Link gets a Letter from Romanos, which tells Link about his new Shooting Gallery. Playing his mini-game and scoring between 1,700 and 1,990 points awards Link with a larger quiver; one that can hold 30 arrows. Purchasing the final upgrade for 1,000 rupees from the Molida or Mercay island item shops allows Link to hold 50 arrows.
The Bow is found in the Fire Temple, and is fired in the same way as it was in Phantom Hourglass. In the Sand Temple Link obtains the Bow of Light, which he must use to activate certain switches and defeat Malladus. After completing the Fire Temple, Link can purchase the first quiver upgrade at the shop in Goron Village for 2,000 rupees, allowing Link to hold 30 arrows. For an upgrade to 50 arrows, score between 3,500 and 4,000 points in the Pirate Hideout Mini-Game.
The Bow is again featured in the 16th The Legend of Zelda installment, Skyward Sword. The Bow is received in the Sandship, and can be used to defeat far-off enemies, activate Timeshift Stones, and more. The controls are much different than that Link has ever since before. It is used with the Wii Remote in the right hand and the Nunchuck in the left. After holding C to nock an arrow, Link can pull back the Nunchuck, as if Link is pulling back the string on an actual bow, and release the C-button to shoot an arrow. This is the same control scheme that can be found in Wii Sports Resort for archery. As usual, Link can shoot enemies with the Bow, and items can be knocked off trees and other objects. Additionally, items dropped by enemies (such as hearts) can also be shot with the Bow and pinned to walls. By doing this, Link can reclaim his dropped heart as well as his arrow.
A Link Between Worlds
The Bow returns in the newest The Legend of Zelda adventure, A Link Between Worlds. The Bow can be rented (50 rupees) or purchased (800 rupees) from Ravio's Shop. However, there are no arrows in this game. Instead, every time Link uses the Bow, his Energy Gauge depletes; this is the first game since the original The Legend of Zelda to feature the Bow, but not collectible arrows.
The Bow is first made available while Link is in search of the first dungeon of the game, the Eastern Palace. While Link is in the Eastern Ruins, he comes upon a dead end, with signs that have a picture of the Bow on them. If Link returns to his home, he tells Ravio about what he saw. Ravio asks Link what was the picture on the signs, and when Link answers correctly, Ravio lets Link borrow his Bow. With the Bow in hand, Link can get past the dead end and make his way into the Eastern Palace, where the Bow is used frequently.
The first time Link gets a Game Over, Sheerow comes in and takes the Bow back from Link, meaning if he needs it again, he must pay the rental fee of 50 rupees. However, if Link dies before completing the Eastern Palace, he can rent the Bow for 10 rupees instead of the 50 rupees.
Later on in the game, Link can upgrade the Bow into the Nice Bow. This upgraded version shoots three arrows at a time instead of one, dealing three times as much damage. It can be acquired by returning ten Maiamais to Mother Maiamai, and then giving her the Bow. However, Mother Maiamai can only do the upgrade on the Bow if Link has purchased it, not rented.
Tri Force Heroes
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Cadence of Hyrule
In Cadence of Hyrule, the Bow is a modular permanent item. After acquiring it, players can find Fire Arrows, Ice Arrows, Lightning Arrows, Poison Arrows, and the Great Bow scattered across Hyrule. The Bow starts with a maximum capacity of ten arrows, but can be upgraded to hold 20 arrows.
- Main article: Hero's Bow
The Bow is featured in Battle Quest, one of 12 attractions that make up Nintendo Land, a launch title for the Wii U. It is specifically called the Hero's Bow. It is the weapon of choice for Link who is using the GamePad. It is used by holding down the right control stick to load the shot, and then releasing to let the arrow fire. The GamePad's gyroscope is used to aim.
Super Mario Maker 2
In Super Mario Maker 2, when Mario uses the Master Sword power-up to transform into Link, Link can use the bow to shoot either straight ahead, up diagonally or down diagonally. The resulting arrow is strongly affected by gravity, and shoots in a ballistic trajectory.
- In the Second Quest of The Legend of Zelda, the Bow is found in the fifth dungeon of the game instead of the first.
Million Publications Strategy Guide artwork from The Legend of Zelda
Fairy Bow from Ocarina of Time
Hero's Bow from Majora's Mask
Hero's Bow from Twilight Princess
Iron Bow icon from Skyward Sword
Sacred Bow icon from Skyward Sword
Nice Bow from A Link Between Worlds
Bow from Cadence of Hyrule