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Hero Mode is a name for a more challenging version of The Legend of Zelda games that began with Skyward Sword. Every Zelda game since then has included the option to make the enemies more difficult to defeat. However, unlike the Second Quest of The Legend of Zelda or Master Quest of Ocarina of Time, the dungeons and story of the game remain the same.
- Main article: Skyward Sword
Hero Mode in Skyward Sword is available once the player finishes the game. After viewing the credits, they are given the option to restart their current file as a Hero Mode file, which, if selected, returns them to the beginning of the game in the more challenging mode. All of Link's treasures and bugs from the previous save state remain. Hero Mode makes things more difficult by removing Recovery Hearts, whether in the form of heart flowers or those found in pots and bushes. The only way to make hearts spawn is by using the Heart Medal. Instead, Link must rely on potions and chairs to heal. Furthermore, all the enemies in Hero Mode deal twice as much damage as they would in normal mode. Skyward Strikes also charge much faster in Hero Mode. The Goddess Sword charges them at the same rate as the True Master Sword in the normal game, and when Link obtains the True Master Sword in Hero Mode, it charges Skyward Strike instantly.
The Wind Waker HD
- Main article: The Wind Waker HD
Hero Mode in The Wind Waker HD is identical to Skyward Sword, where enemies deal double damage and hearts do not appear normally from grass or pots. However, unlike Skyward Sword's Hero Mode, this version can be toggled on or off by the player at will from the game's main menu.
A Link Between Worlds
- Main article: A Link Between Worlds
Returning to its roots in Skyward Sword, this Hero Mode also requires the player to first complete the game in order to unlock it. However, instead of enemies dealing double damage, they now deal four times their original amount. Slightly smarter enemy AI is also included, making battles even more difficult. Recovery hearts are present in this mode though. Should the player beat the game in this mode, they are rewarded with an extended ending sequence. In this, after Link returns the Master Sword to the pedestal, he walks towards the area's exited and meets with all of the game's Seven Sages. Additionally, Link can find Ravio's journal in the Vacant House, which is not present in the normal version of the game.
Twilight Princess HD
- Main article: Twilight Princess HD
Unlike Twilight Princess for the Wii and Gamecube, Twilight Princess HD includes a hero mode that acts much like the hero mode in The Wind Waker HD in which it can chosen at the beginning of the quest, but cannot be switched once the quest is started. Hero mode causes Link to take twice the amount of damage as normal, no recovery hearts are dropped, and the game is mirrored as well.
Breath of the Wild
- Main article: Master Mode
The Hero Mode in Breath of the Wild is slightly different to previous versions, as it is unlocked as a part of the Breath of the Wild Expansion Pass, and can be played right from the start. It features many difficulty increases, such as the enemies each being tiered up slightly, a new tier of enemy altogether: Golden, Sky Platforms, enemies can regenerate health, and more.