Princess of Hyrule
Zelda, more commonly parsed as Princess Zelda, is the title character in The Legend of Zelda series, though not the lead of most games. Generally, she takes on the role of the Princess of Hyrule. She tends to get kidnapped at some point in the game, and the hero, Link, sets out on a quest to save her. She is also usually one of the three holders of a Triforce piece, the Triforce of Wisdom.
The Legend of Zelda
Like in most games, Zelda is the princess of all of Hyrule in The Legend of Zelda. When Ganon attacked Hyrule and took the Triforce of Power and led his army into Hyrule, Zelda took the Triforce of Wisdom and broke it into 8 pieces and told her servant, Impa, to find someone with enough courage to find the pieces and use it to destroy Ganon; the evil king found out about this and imprisoned Zelda. While searching for this hero with courage, Impa gets surrounded by Ganon's minions. They circle in on her, when suddenly, Link comes and slays all the monsters. Impa tells Link of Zelda's plight, and Link goes off in search of the Triforce Shards. Eventually, Link assembles the Triforce of Wisdom, defeats Ganon, and saves the princess.
The Adventure of Link
Even though The Adventure of Link happens right after The Legend of Zelda and even has the same Link, the game has a very different Zelda. This Zelda sleeps in a chamber and cannot wake until someone finds the Triforce of Courage and brings it to her sleeping body.
A long time ago, the King of Hyrule died, and passed the Triforce down to his son, the next king. But, the Triforce was incomplete, missing a third of its power, the Courage. A wizard told him that the only one who knew where it is was Princess Zelda; they questioned her, but she wouldn't say, so the wizard put her in an endless sleep. When the wizard died afterwards, the prince ordered every princess born in the Royal Family to be called Zelda, so the tragedy would never be forgotten, thus started the tradition to bestow this name upon her in every Zelda title.
A Link to the Past
Princess Zelda is a beautiful young girl who is the princess of Hyrule. She is imprisoned in the castle dungeon after her father's adviser, Agahnim, gets rid of the king and takes over the kingdom. She fears for what Agahnim is planning and knows that it involves her since she is one of the descendants of the Seven Wise Men and that the other six have been sent to the Dark World. She tries to prevent Agahnim's plans from taking place by sending out a telepathic message and hopes that someone would hear her. Her hopes are realized when a young boy named Link hears her call and comes to her rescue. After she is freed, they both head to the Sanctuary via a Secret Passage. There she is kept safe by the Loyal Sage and she tells Link to seek the Elder, Sahasrahla.
Shortly after Link receives the Master Sword, Zelda is kidnapped by Agahnim and is brought to his hideaway to become the final sacrifice to open a portal to the Dark World. Link comes to stop the dark wizard and save her, but is unable to and is forced to watch Agahnim finish the spell and send her to the Dark World.
Zelda contacts Link a few times via the Telepathic Tiles to inform him of her whereabouts. The first time is within the Dark Palace where Zelda tells Link that she is locked away in Turtle Rock on top of Death Mountain.
After Link defeats Ganon and makes his wish on the Triforce, Zelda is seen in the ending credits standing next to her healed father, the King, and with the six maidens and unbrainwashed soldiers surrounding her.
Zelda doesn't appear in this game, and thus is not an actual character, but she is mentioned once. Right after A Link to the Past, Link travels on a ship to new lands, but is shipwrecked in an island. The first person he meets there is Marin, who he confuses for Zelda.
Ocarina of Time
One day, princess Zelda awakens from a dream. In her dream, she sees dark clouds in the sky, covering Hyrule in darkness, but then a light shot out of the forest, cleared the sky, and a figure appeared. It turned into a person, holding a stone, and followed by a fairy. Since she had studied prophecies, she thought somebody would come from a forest with a stone and a fairy and take down some kind of evil form just as in her dream.
When Zelda tells her father, he doesn't believe her, but her servant, Impa, the last Sheikah, does, and so tries to protect her. Then, a man from the desert named Ganondorf visits the king. Zelda believes that this man is the evil darkness that surrounded Hyrule in her dream. She tried to warn her father, but he doesn't believe her, so he sends her out of the room so he can talk privately with the Gerudo king. She goes into the garden and looks inside one of the windows to the Throne Room, where her father and Ganondorf are, and spies on them.
Link goes through the castle guards and into the garden where he meets Zelda. She notices that Link is wearing green clothes, like the light, and has a fairy. When she finds out that he is from the Kokiri Forest and has a green stone identical to the one in her dream, she realizes that he is the boy from her dreams. She tells him of her dream, Ganondorf, and the legend of the Triforce. The Triforce can grant a wish to anyone who obtains it, but to get it you need four things: the 3 Spiritual Stones, one which Link has; and the Ocarina of Time, which Zelda has. Using these in the Temple of Time opens the Door of Time which leads to the Sacred Realm, where the Triforce is hidden. She believes that Ganondorf wants the Triforce for himself. She tells Link to find the other Stones so they can beat Ganondorf. He is led out by Impa, and Zelda waits for him to return.
By the time Link found the third stone, Zelda couldn't wait much longer. She went to the Temple of Time, and (somehow) made some kind of vision for Link so that when he grabs the Ocarina he learns the Song of Time. With Impa, she flees Hyrule Castle Town, followed by Ganondorf. On her way out, she passes Link. She throws him the Ocarina of Time, but she misses and it lands in the moat. She hopes that he will open the Door of Time and stop Ganondorf.
The following morning, Zelda notices the Triforce of Wisdom on her hand. She remembered part of the legend that she forgot to tell Link. When a person with an unbalanced heart makes a wish on the Triforce, it splits in 3. The part that mostly represents that person will go to him/her, and the other 2 will go to 2 other people who are worthy of using it. She believes that Ganondorf got the Triforce after Link opened the door, made his wish, and got the Triforce of Power, while Zelda got the Triforce of Wisdom.
For the next 7 years, Zelda trains to become a Sheikah, and goes as far as to change her name to Sheik. She passes herself off as a male so that Ganondorf doesn't recognize her. She/he waits until Link returns, who is trapped between time until he is old enough to use the Master Sword (which led to the Sacred Realm), and becomes the Hero of Time.
Seven years later, Link appears on the Pedestal of Time, all grown up and equipped with the Master Sword. Sheik appears before him, and tells him who he is, where the other sages are located, and where to get a useful item for the first dungeon. Sheik appears later in the game to teach Link the last 6 Ocarina Songs right before each dungeon: Minuet of Forest, Bolero of Fire, Serenade of Water, Nocturne of Shadow, Requiem of Spirit, and Prelude of Light (the last one is not taught before a dungeon). Sheik appears several other times throughout the game: at the Temple of Time, after the Forest Temple, where he tells Link how to go back to the past, how to fight beaten bosses again (3DS version), and teaches him the Prelude of Light; at Lake Hylia, right after the Water Temple, where he witnesses the lake's restoration and speaks with Link for a few seconds; and at Kakariko Village, a bit after the Water Temple, where he tries to fight the Evil Spirit of Bongo Bongo sealed inside the well, and teaches Link the Nocturne of Shadows.
After all 6 sages are safe, Link goes back to the Temple of Time and finds Sheik waiting for him. He tells him about the legend where the Triforce separates during the wish, and that Ganondorf has the Triforce Power, Sheik has Wisdom, and Link has Courage. He also finally reveals himself to be Princess Zelda, and that she was hiding from Ganondorf by changing her appearance while she waited for Link. During this conversation, Ganondorf took this chance of capturing Zelda and lures Link into his castle.
Link goes to Ganon's Castle to get Zelda back. When Link enters the room, all 3 pieces of the Triforce resonate, which Ganondorf explains is due to the fact that the pieces are in the same room, and so he starts a fierce battle with Link. When beaten, Ganondorf uses the last of his power to destroy the castle with Link inside. Zelda and Link only get a few seconds to talk before the castle starts to implode. After leaving the castle, they watch as it crumbles down on itself. All of a sudden Zelda hears a sound from the rubble. Link checks if Ganondorf survived the destruction and sees Ganondorf fly out of the rubble, enraged and quickly turns into his pig form Ganon. He makes a fire fence blocking Link from Zelda and the exit, and knocks Link's sword outside of the arena next to Zelda. After Link stuns Ganon the fire fence vanishes, allowing him to get back the Master Sword, and beats Ganon. Zelda holds Ganon in place with magic so Link can deliver the final blow. Shortly after, Zelda calls upon the sages to seal him away to the "void of the Evil Realm," as Rauru states.
Zelda has a quick conversation with Link, telling him how she is sorry she dragged him into this mess, which is all her fault. She makes the choice of sending Link back to the past so he can get his childhood back, so she asks for the Ocarina of Time and plays Zelda's Lullaby, which sends Link back to the past. Link realizes that he is right at the time before he met Zelda, meaning she doesn't know him yet, the people he helped got their problems back, and Ganondorf is still free to walk around wherever he likes. The last scene of the game is Link meeting Zelda for the first time... again.
Zelda does not have an important role in Majora's Mask. She is only seen once, in a cutscene early in the game. After retrieving the Ocarina of Time from Skull Kid, Link remembers meeting Zelda in Ocarina of Time. Link is standing with Zelda and his horse Epona while Zelda teaches him the Song of Time.
The Royal Princess of Hyrule, Zelda is a sign of hope to the people of Hyrule. She has vivid dreams which allow her to foresee evil in the distance. Zelda sends her royal nurse Impa to the land of Labrynna in order to find Nayru, the Oracle of Ages, and bring her back to safety in Hyrule. However, Impa never quite completed that journey as planned and the evil power of Veran took control of Impa, and eventually the Oracle of Ages herself.
After Link battles through time and defeats Veran, it is revealed the Veran is just a pawn in a grander scheme to resurrect the evil king Ganon. In order to do so, three flames must be lit, the Flame of Destruction and the Flame of Sorrow had both been lit when Link defeated General Onox in Oracle of Seasons and Veran in Oracle of Ages, but the third flame had not been lit yet. Twinrova captured Princess Zelda with the intent of sacrificing her body and light the Flame of Despair and complete the resurrection of Ganon. Fortunately, Link was able to prevent this, and rescue Princess Zelda. Instead, Twinrova sacrificed themselves in order to resurrect Ganon, but it did not go as plan, and Ganon was just a mindless beast who Link would feat once and for all.
In this game, Zelda feels that the Four Sword is weakening, and that its seal will break and Vaati will escape. She takes Link to investigate what's wrong. But when they get there, Vaati has already escaped and captures Zelda. After Link seals Vaati back into the Four Swords, Zelda thanks all four Links (or 2 in the Anniversary Edition: single-player mode). Then, all the Links unite back into one, and he and Zelda go back and put the Four Swords back again.
The Wind Waker
Princess Zelda is the legitimate heir to the Hyrulean royal family. She is actually the pirate Tetra.
With Ganondorf sealed away, Hyrule went to its old self. But the seal eventually broke, and Ganondorf escaped, and since there was no Hero of Time to stop him, he took over Hyrule again. After generations of pain and suffering, the Hylians prayed to the gods to save them. They ordered the Hylians to flee to the mountains, and the gods flooded Hyrule to stop the evil from spreading. The villagers became islanders, the Kokiri became Korok, the Zora became the Rito, and the Gorons became traveler gorons. The royal family was forced to go into hiding to protect the Triforce of Courage, and so became pirates. Ganondorf survived and started looking for the princess and the Triforce.
Bird Ride to Outset Island
The young pirate named Tetra took over as captain at a young age when her mother died and was forced to inherit the crew (apparently they still have some royal customs). The pirates were on an island doing something (reasons unknown), but a giant bird snatched her and took off, the pirates chasing after it. While flying on top of Outset Island, the pirates shot the bird with a giant rock, and Tetra slipped from the bird's claws and fell in the island's forest. A young boy from the nearby village named Link went in the forest to find out what happened, and found Tetra unconscious hanging on a tree branch. She fell off the tree when she woke up, and the pirate called Gonzo came looking for her. When they left the forest they saw Aryll, Link's little sister, waiting for them, but the giant bird came back and took Aryll away.
Link asked Tetra if he could come with them to save his sister, and when she declined, a Rito postman named Quill joined the conversation. He told them that during his days of mail delivery, he heard that the bird called Helmaroc King has been kidnapping girls with long, pointed ears, like Aryll's and Tetra's, inherited from the Hylians, and taking them to a former pirate hangout called the Forsaken Fortress. After explaining that it must have confused Aryll for Tetra, she felt that she was guilty of what happened to her, and accepts Link as part of her crew, ONLY if he could find a shield to defend himself with. After finding a shield, Link says good-bye to everyone and leaves with the pirates.
Tetra tells Link to talk to Niko while they wait to get to the fortress. When they get there, it's already night, and the place is guarded by cannons and searchlights, like an isolated prison. Tetra gets the plan of shooting Link inside the island to get his sister out. While they trick him into their catapult, Tetra sneaks in his pocket a Spoils Bag with an item inside called the Pirate's Charm, a magical stone used to talk through with the other half. When they launch him in, she notices that he lost his sword, so she guides him through the dungeon with the charms. When he reaches the prison cell, the King comes and grabs him by the beak and throws him into the water. The pirates, assuming he was dead, leave and go in search of treasure.
After many days, the pirates decide to switch from catapult to cannon, and go to an island called Windfall Island, and raid the bomb shop. After tying up the owner, Tetra tells them of the cave behind Outset Island, where a treasure is supposed to be hidden, but they need bombs to blow up the stone blocking the way. The pirates get into an argument where they should either go directly to Outset Island or to rest in the inn in town. Tetra looks up to the rafters and barely sees Link's face looking down at them. She decides to let Link take the bombs and go after the treasure as an apology for what happened, so she tells everyone that they were staying at the inn tonight. After Link sneaks in on the ship and has a conversation with Niko who lets him take the bombs, Tetra talks to him through the Pirate's Charm and lets him go with the bombs. The next morning, the pirates go to the cave and find it empty, so they leave disappointed with the results.
A few days later, the pirates decide to do a good deed and go off to rescue the kidnapped girls from the Forsaken Fortress. When they get there, they find they gates bombed, the searchlights off, and the cannons destroyed. The go in and get to the holding cells and finds Link there trying to save the girls, so the pirates help him. Tetra tells him to go on and defeat whoever is in charge, but then she notices that Link has the Master Sword, the blade that she heard from a legend her mom told her about, and asks Link where he found it. Before he could answer, Aryll goes into a rampage saying that he wants to stay with Link but the pirates tell her that she can't stay here, and so they carry her outside with the other girls. Tetra, who forgot about the question, tells Link she'll be back and leaves.
While the pirates take the girls to the ship, Tetra sees Link fighting the King and the prison cell flooded. She (somehow) makes it to the spot the King and Link where fighting but the bird is already dead, and sees Link going up one more floor: the Captain's Quarters. When she gets there, she sees Link confronting Ganondorf, and when he knocks Link unconscious, Zelda tries to charge him, but Ganondorf takes hold of her. Suddenly he notices Zelda's necklace: a golden upside-down V, and he recognizes it as part of the Triforce of Wisdom, meaning Tetra is the girl he has been looking for so long he sent a bird after her. Before he has time to get the Triforce, a giant dragon named Valoo and two Ritos named Medli and Prince Komali come to save them, and when they're out, Valoo burns Ganondorf's Quarter down.
Tetra's True Form
The King of Red Lions, Link's talking boat, takes them to the Tower of the Gods, and after a quick chat with the Ritos, they sink down to Hyrule Castle, which is still preserved underwater. Link gets a message from someone through the Pirate's Charm telling him and Tetra to go to the room where he found the Master Sword. When they get there, a man appears and calls himself King Daphnes Nohansen Hyrule, also known as the King of Red Lions. He says he has guided Link through his journey in the great sea, and also reveals that Tetra is the descendant of Zelda, making her Princess Zelda. King Hyrule fits in the missing piece of the Triforce of Wisdom and Tetra transforms into Zelda. King Hyrule tells Link that he must return the Master Sword's power into his sword so he can find the Triforce of Courage and take down Ganondorf once and for all. They leave Zelda in the altar to protect her from Ganondorf.
With the Master Sword in max power, and the Triforce of Courage in his possession, Link comes back to Hyrule Castle to get Zelda, but she is kidnapped by Ganondorf. Link goes after them, and when he finds them, he confronts Ganondorf. After fighting all of his puppets, Link finally finishes him off and he turns to stone, sword in his face. King Hyrule tells both Zelda and Link that they must find a new place to settle in and to start a new kingdom. Link and Zelda (now Tetra) go with the pirates to find the new land which eventually becomes New Hyrule.
Four Swords Adventures
In Four Swords Adventures, Princess Zelda uses her telepathy to call her friend Link and ask him to come to Hyrule Castle. Link joins Zelda and the Shrine Maidens to investigate the seal on Vaati at the Four Sword Sanctuary, due to the ominous clouds and darkness covering Hyrule. Before they can reach the Four Sword Sanctuary, Shadow Link appears and imprisons Zelda and the Maidens. Link gives chase to the Four Sword Sanctuary, where he draws the Four Sword, splitting himself into four and releasing the seal on the Wind Mage Vaati.
After being sent to a remote area of Hyrule, the Links search the land for the Maidens and Princess Zelda. They eventually find Princess Zelda inside the Tower of Winds and continue to the Realm of the Heavens. Once the Links find the Dark Mirror, they are powerless to stop it from endlessly producing Shadow Links. Princess Zelda uses her power to stop the Mirror and end Shadow Link's presence.
Once the Links defeat Vaati, the Tower of Winds begins to collapse, forcing Link and Zelda to retreat to safety. During this phase, Zelda must be protected and certain puzzles must be solved to allow her to progress. Upon nearing the exit of the Tower, the floor begins to collapse, sending the Links and Zelda deep beneath the Tower.
While the four Links are incapacitated, Zelda attempts to seal away Ganon herself, but is imprisoned once again. The four Links wake up and fight Ganon together, and eventually weaken him enough to break the seal on Zelda. The Links must then protect Zelda from Ganon's attacks while she creates a ball of light intended to paralyze Ganon. Once the ball of light is ready, the Links then shoot a Light Arrow through it and into Ganon, stunning him momentarily. Princess Zelda and the Maidens proceed to seal Ganon away within the Four Sword, defeating Ganon and restoring peace to Hyrule.
The Minish Cap
Once again, Zelda takes on the role as the princess of Hyrule.
Zelda is Link's childhood friend. At the beginning of the game, Zelda takes Link to the Picori Festival. She takes part in a lottery competition and wins first prize. Although there were many fine prizes, Zelda chooses a shield and gives it to Link. However, when celebrating the winner of the sword competition that was held, the winner turns out to be the evil Wind Mage Vaati and he turns Zelda to stone. Thus Link sets out on a quest to find a way to save Zelda.
Vaati was, in fact, searching after the mystic Light Force. After the Picori Blade has been forged into the Four Sword, Link discovers that the Light Force actually resides inside Zelda herself. Vaati had followed Link, and starts to drain the Light Force from Zelda. Link, of course, manages to save Zelda just in time and they try to flee from Dark Hyrule Castle where she was held. But Vaati had absorbed enough power to transform into a monster and tries to kill them. Link seals Vaati away and his cap, which is, in fact, a very powerful cap that is able to grant wishes, falls off. Ezlo, a cursed picori who helped Link on his quest, gives the cap to Zelda. Zelda makes her wish, and with her pure heart, the entirety of Hyrule is purged of all the trouble that Vaati caused.
Zelda returns in Twilight Princess as the princess of Hyrule and one of the game's protagonists. Like other titles in the series, Zelda is kidnapped by Ganondorf during the course of the game.
Hyrule plunged into Twilight
During Twilight Princess's prologue events, Link, in Ordon Village, prepares to transport the Ordon Sword to Hyrule Castle. On the day of Link's planned departure, numerous shadow beasts appeared throughout Hyrule and stole the light of the light spirits in Hyrule, which allowed the land to succumb to twilight. All creatures of the light world are transformed into spirits in the twilight, and they are unaware of the reality of their surroundings. Link, however, is transformed into a sacred wolf - a sign to Midna that he is the chosen hero she seeks to aid her in her own quest for vengeance against Zant. She assists Link in reaching the tower of Hyrule Castle where Zelda resides so that Link can learn the reality of the darkness over Hyrule.
Like Link, Zelda is not transformed into a spirit in the twilight but remains a Hylian as the Princess of Hyrule Castle. Upon meeting Link, she tells Link the tale of how Zant launched a raid on Hyrule Castle with the assistance of several shadow beasts. Zant quickly defeated the throne room's garrison and gave Zelda an ultimatum to surrender or die. Zelda, fearful for the welfare of the people of her kingdom, surrendered to Zant who then plunged the land of Hyrule into twilight.
After Link retrieves the three Fused Shadows for Midna, Zant appears and casts a curse on Link which prevents him from returning to Hylian form when not in Twilight. After Midna refuses to assist Zant in conquering the world of light, he mortally wounds her by exposing her to light. Immediately after this, the Light Spirit Lanayru transports Link and Midna from Zant's presence, and the injured Minda tells Link to hurry to Princess Zelda.
After reaching Zelda, Midna pleads with Zelda to help break the new curse on Link and tells her that he is needed to save the world of light. Zelda informs Link and Midna that the curse on Link was caused by an evil power which can only be cleaved by the sacred blade of evil's bane, the Master Sword. She goes on to tell them to search for the Master Sword in the Sacred Grove behind Faron Woods.
Midna asks Link if he can reach the sacred grove alone then asks Zelda to tell him where the Mirror of Twilight is. Zelda suddenly realizes Midna's importance and desire to help them protect the world of light. Zelda then passes her life energy into Midna to heal her and subsequently disappears.
Battle with Ganondorf
After acquiring the four shards of the Mirror of Twilight and defeating Zant, Link and Midna return to Hyrule Castle for the third time to confront Ganondorf. Upon reaching the castle tower, Zelda's body is locked motionless above Ganondorf on the throne of Hyrule Castle. Ganondorf reveals to Link that after he was banished to the void, he used the hatred of the people of the Twilight Realm as nourishment to grow strong again. He then manipulated Zant to open the path to return to the world of light and usurp control over Hyrule.
Zelda's body is then used by Ganondorf as a puppet in battle against Link. After Link defeats the puppet Zelda and the beast Ganon, Zelda reawakens as herself; she had been using Midna to harbor her soul. Zelda and Link finally team up against Ganondorf in battle throughout Hyrule field. Zelda uses light arrows to stun Ganondorf so that Link can reach him on horseback to attack with the Master Sword. After knocking Ganondorf from his horse with Zelda's assistance, Link defeats Ganondorf with the Master Sword on foot.
In this game, Zelda is Tetra again, and the pirates are in search of land they can call New Hyrule. They travel to the World of the Ocean King in search of it. Once, they come across a huge ghost ship, and Tetra attempts to board it, but the ship sends light on her. Link tries to follow her, but falls into the ocean. When he wakes up, he finds himself on an unfamiliar island. Link later finds and boards the Ghost Ship, only to find that Tetra has been turned to stone. Oshus reveals that her life energy was being sucked out of her. (which is bad since she had the Triforce). When Link defeats the first stage of Bellum, the main antagonist, Zelda wakes up. Bellum tries one more time to take Zelda, but Link defeats him again. Soon after they wake up in the Pirate Ship again, their friends tell them they had only been gone for ten minutes.
Zelda is the princess of the Royal Family of Hyrule and a descendant of Tetra from The Wind Waker. Princess Zelda suspects that Chancellor Cole is involved with the recent disappearance of the Spirit Tracks that seal away the Demon King. After Princess Zelda slips Link a note so that the two could meet in private, they escape the castle and begin a journey to the Tower of Spirits.
Upon their quest, the Spirit Tracks that they are riding on suddenly disappear. Chancellor Cole steals Zelda's body with the intent of using it to resurrect Malladus. Even though Cole seemingly killed Zelda she is not completely dead, as Princess Zelda's spirit has been separated from her body and only Link can see her. However, even though she doesn't have a body, Zelda is more useful on this quest than ever before. While in the Tower of Spirits, she can inhabit the body of a Phantom, allowing the player to control her. Her armor and strength are essential for traversing the tower. For example, in areas with pools of lava, Link will need to hitch a ride on Zelda (in Phantom form)'s shield, as Zelda's armor is immune to the lava, while Link's suit is vulnerable to it. She becomes a great help to Link on his quest. Zelda and Link work with one another to solve puzzles, defeat enemies, and rebuild the Tower of Spirits in order reseal Demon King once again.
During the final battle, Zelda goes back into her body after Link shoots Malladus with a Light Arrow using the Bow of Light. After concentrating her spirit power and revealing Malladus' weakness using a ritual involving the six Lokomos (who may have a close relation with the Seven Sages from Ocarina of Time) instruments, Link's Spirit Flute, and Zelda's vocals played all in beautiful harmony, she takes the bow and shoots while Link distracts him, similar to the Ganondorf battle in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. Finally, after Malladus is finally gone, Link and Zelda hold hands while they watch the six Lokomos leave.
In this game, Zelda is not a princess, but a normal girl with a grave destiny. She is Link's closest friend and rides around on a Blue Loftwing. Her father, Gaepora, the headmaster of the Knight Academy, along with Instructors Owlan and Horwell, chose her to act as the goddess in the Ceremony of the Goddess for the winner of the Wing Ceremony, an annual race in which Link is competing. She sends a letter to Link on the day of the ceremony, asking him to visit her at the Statue of the Goddess. When he comes, she shows him her costume of the goddess and her new Goddess's Harp. After a conversation with Gaepora about Link's ceremony, Zelda throws Link off Skyloft so that his Crimson Loftwing can catch him. But after a few seconds, Zelda and Gaepora notice that his bird isn't coming. Zelda rescues Link, and Gaepora tells him that something is wrong and that he needs to inform Instructor Horwell, the general in charge of that year's Wing Ceremony, to delay the race for him.
After Zelda tends for her bird that got tired from carrying both Link and Zelda, she goes to the The Plaza where she finds that Link and Groose, the school bully, are having an argument in which Link has suspicions about Groose kidnapping his bird. After Groose and his lackeys, Cawlin and Strich leave, Zelda searches for Link's bird in the skies, hoping to find him before the race. After a few minutes, she finds Link with a sword looking in an area below the waterfall, also known as Groose's hideout. They search around there and find the Crimson Loftwing locked up in a cave. After Link saves him, Zelda starts talking to him about the "surface world" beneath the clouds and how she wants to see it. She also speaks with Link about a mysterious voice that keeps talking to her in her head. After talking, they mount their Loftwings for some last-minute review flight practice, and then Zelda goes off to tell Gaepora that they can start the ceremony.
After Link wins the race, Zelda joyfully jumps off Skyloft for Link and his bird to catch her, and then they go to the top of the statue to continue on with the ceremony. Zelda hands him the Sailcloth, a legendary parachute used as the prize for that year's race. She then pushes Link off the statue and tells him to land on the circle in the ground with his new sailcloth. After that, Zelda asks Link out on a date in the sky. While flying, a black tornado appears out of nowhere and sucks Zelda in while it throws Link off his bird unconscious. Link later has a dream of Zelda being swallowed by a huge black monster with scales.
Zelda wakes up in the Sealed Grounds in the surface, and is found by an old woman. She takes her inside into the Sealed Temple and tells her that she has been waiting for her for a long time. She explains to her about Demise and the goddess Hylia, how they fought, how she defeated him and sealed him away, and how she believed that he will escape his prison. She tells the story of Hylia's two plans that she thought of and set in motion almost immediately: first is Fi, the spirit of a sword that Link, as Hylia's chosen hero, will use in his mission to defeat Demise. Fi was made to guide him through his journey on the surface. The second plan was to give up her immortality and reincarnate into a human to hide from the evil forces that still walk on the surface.
The old woman says that Zelda is the reincarnation of Hylia, and that to regain her memory of her past life she must travel to the two springs to pray and purify herself, and travel to the past through a portal in time. She later mentions that Zelda must go into a deep sleep and wait for her chosen hero to finally defeat Demise. She also explains that Link must be tested to see if he can be the chosen hero, and to do that he must go through many challenges to prove himself worthy. She devised a plan to travel to the two springs and to the past so that Link can follow her and can prove himself worthy of that title. The next day Zelda, with her new clothes, sets out into the Faron Woods to find the first spring.
While Link lands on the Sealed Grounds with his new clothes and sword, Zelda is trying to find the Skyview Temple. She got some help from the Kikwis, but they also mentioned that it was dangerous to go there, but she still goes anyways. She somehow made it to the temple and to the spring, and she prayed and purified herself there. As soon as Link gets there, she had already left.
Zelda travels to Eldin Volcano through teleportation. As soon as she reaches this area, she sees Bokoblins everywhere. She did her best to get to the top unnoticed, but the bokoblins surround her at the temple entrance. Two Mogmas see her getting dragged away into the temple, and Link overhears them talking about her. Before the leader of the bokoblins gets to her, Impa, a servant of the goddess, saves her by using her magic. She takes Zelda to the spring and explains who she is and that she helped Link on the way there. While Zelda prays, Link comes in and sees Zelda again, but Impa tells her that she must go to the desert. While Impa scolds Link from being late to save Zelda from the bokoblins, Zelda goes through the portal to the Lanayru Desert.
Temple of Time
Zelda and Impa go through the desert into the Temple of Time, and Impa destroys the entrance to delay the enemy following Zelda. She plays her harp to activate the Gate of Time leading to the past. As soon as it opens, Zelda sees Link come in through the side entrance of the temple, but Ghirahim breaks through the blocked entrance Impa created, and blocks Link from getting closer to Zelda with magical fire. While Impa and Ghirahim fight, Zelda teleports her harp to Link and tells him that he will need it where he is going. After that Link notices that the fire disappeared and attacks Ghirahim while Impa and Zelda escape through the portal. Zelda promises Link that they will see each other again before Impa breaks the portal.
After Link has gotten the power of the Master Sword, he goes off to the Sealed Temple to open the Gate of Time. When he arrives in the past and meets Zelda, she tells him the legend of Hylia that the old woman told her thousands of years later and her plan of using him to save the world. After she tells him all that, Zelda seals herself and asks Link if he can wake her up when the seal is broken and Demise is gone.
This is Zelda, your childhood friend.
Zelda finally woke up after thousands of years of sleep, thanks to Link and the Triforce, who killed Demise with the goddess statue. But just after a couple of minutes of happiness, Ghirahim showed up, injured Link and Zelda, kidnapped Zelda and entered The Gate of Time to resurrect Demise (since he is just sealed in the past). Link got to his feet and ran after them. When Link arrives in the past, he sees Zelda lying on the ground, fainted. Ghirahim is doing a spell to resurrect Demise and sings his theme. Ghirahim sends hundreds of monsters to attack Link. After the one vs hundreds war, Link comes down to Ghirahim to fight against him and save Zelda from losing her soul. When Link is done with the battle, Ghirahim says he has been doing the spell while he fought against Link. He then successfully resurrects Demise. Just as Demise has been resurrected, Demise is taking a sword from Ghirahim's body and takes all of his powers. Groose comes and tells Link he can save Zelda by killing Demise before her whole soul is gone. Demise is making a portal and tells Link he wants to fight in another dimension where there are no going out except Demise gets killed, if he dares. Link enters and faces Demise. When Link has won over Demise, Demise's last words are: "My hate... never perishes. It is born anew in a cycle with no end! I will rise again! Those like you... Those who share the blood of the goddess and the spirit of the hero... They are eternally bound to this curse. An incarnation of my hatred shall ever follow your kind, dooming them to wander a blood-soaked sea of darkness for all time!"
Demise is gone for now and Zelda comes back to normal. While Link seals away Fi for the next Hero, Zelda asks Impa to go to the future with her. Impa says she can't because the past is her present, but she promises that they will see each other again, so Zelda gives her one of her bracelets that she was wearing so that Impa could remember her while she waits to see each other again. When they come back to their time, the Gate of Time disappears and they see the old woman. She shows Zelda the same bracelet, meaning she is Impa in the present. After seeing each other one last time, Impa dies and disappears, her promise finally fulfilled. Later, Gaepora comes down to visit and Groose goes back to Skyloft. Then, while Link and Zelda stand on the Goddess statue alone with the Triforce, she says that she wants to stay and live in the land below.
A Link Between Worlds
Link first meets Zelda after he witnesses Seres being transformed into a painting by Yuga. At first, Zelda does not know who Link is, but she mentions that she saw him in her dreams. After being told about Seres, the princess takes the events seriously and gives Link the Pendant of Courage, one of three crucial elements to obtaining the Master Sword. Zelda then tells Link to seek the elder Sahasrahla, who will be able to give him more information about what to do next.
After completing the Eastern Palace, there is a large earthquake occurs at Hyrule Castle. Once Link arrives with Sahasrahla, a dark barrier has formed around the castle, preventing them from entering it. Sahasrahla tells Link to seek the other two Pendants of Virtue, which will allow him to obtain the Master Sword and break the barrier. Once the barrier is broken Yuga turns Princess Zelda into a painting and takes her to Lorule.
After all seven sages are freed, Link goes to Lorule Castle to save Zelda, where he finds out that her Lorule counterpart planned to obtain the Triforce of Wisdom to restore Lorule, which she gets from Princess Zelda. Later, Yuga betrays Princess Hilda and takes the Triforce of Wisdom from her, obtaining a second Triforce piece. Princess Zelda grants Link the Bow of Light, which is used in the final battle against Yuga.
Afterwards, Hilda is still in the need of obtaining the Triforce and with Princess Zelda now free, a discussion between them occur. Ravio then appears to stop it and to make Hilda notice that chaos is what made their Triforce be destroyed, so Hilda sends Link and Zelda back to Hyrule through Lorule's Sacred Realm.
When in Hyrule, Link and Zelda are found in the Sacred Realm, where they use the power of the Triforce to restore Lorule's Triforce.
Breath of the Wild
|Spoiler Alert! This section describes a subject that is sensitive to plot development.|
Zelda appears in Breath of the Wild, once again as the princess of Hyrule. From a young age, Zelda was scholarly and interested in research. This eventually transformed into a passion with the discovery of the Guardians and the Divine Beasts early in her life.
After her mother died when Zelda was six years old, the duty fell upon the princess to discover the power of the Goddess Hylia that slept within her. This proved to be difficult, however, for varying reasons. Zelda was often more interested in discovering the secrets of the ancient Sheikah technology, from the Guardians, to the Divine Beasts, and the Shrine of Trials that were scattered all over Hyrule. One day, the King confronted her about wasting her time on the Sheikah technology when she should have been using it to awaken her power. After this moment, Zelda becomes more hopeless and spent all of her time praying to the Goddesses.
Furthermore, Zelda's power did not awaken easily, regardless of the steps she took to do so. With each passing day, she became increasingly frustrated with her inability to prevent the impending doom of Calamity Ganon's return. This frustration was also fueled by her relationship with Link. After Link was chosen to wield the Master Sword, and was appointed as Zelda's protector by the King himself, Zelda believed that Link's path as the chosen hero was of relative ease. Compared to the continual failures in fulfilling her role, Link always achieved anything he set his mind to. Early on their relationship, Zelda often told Link that she did not need his protection, and that she preferred to be left alone to continue her research.
After Link bravely defended Zelda from the Yiga Clan in the Gerudo Desert, she began to open up to Link. Zelda realized that Link struggled with his role as well, in that all of Hyrule was watching him and expecting him to be the fearless hero that would defeat Ganon when he returned. After this revelation Zelda started to appreciated Link's presence and company, realizing that the two weren't so different after all.
Calamity Ganon's return
When Calamity Ganon finally returned, Zelda still had not awoken the power deep inside her. The plans she created as the leader of the Champions began to rapidly unravel. All four Champions, many of Hyrule's residents, and her father died soon after Ganon's takeover. Ganon took control of the Divine Beasts and Guardians and used them to annihilate Central Hyrule. With nowhere left to turn, Zelda was on the run with Link, trying to recover any ground they could. The two were heavily outmatched, however, and were trapped by a Guardian Stalker on Blatchery Plain in West Necluda. With his last breaths, Link, still trying to protect Zelda, confronted the Guardian. Zelda however, managed to find the courage to confront the Guardian herself and protect Link in the face of evil. By doing so she finally unlocked her power and used it to destroy many Guardians within the nearby area.
All was not well though, as Link soon collapsed to the ground and died in Zelda's arms. When she had finally lost all hope, the Master Sword began to glow with a blue aura and spoke to the Princess. The voice speaking to her was Fi, who indicated that Link could still be saved if he was taken to the Shrine of Resurrection. After Link began his slumber, Zelda traveled to the Korok Forest and placed the Master Sword in its pedestal to wait for its master to return in one hundred years. She then made her way back to Hyrule Castle, and used her newfound power to contain Ganon until Link's return.
Once one hundred years had passed, Link was awoken by Zelda's voice in the Shrine of Resurrection. She informed Link that her power to contain Ganon within the Castle was weakening, and soon she would no longer be able to contain the evil. After the King's spirit informed Link of how to approach the new world, Zelda watched over Link as he wrested the Divine Beasts from Ganon's control. Combined with the power of these beasts and the Master Sword, Link returned to Hyrule Castle as Zelda's power finally gave way and Ganon broke free of his prison.
Upon defeating Calamity Ganon's initial form, Ganon transformed into Dark Beast Ganon in a field in front of Hyrule Castle. To combat this pure form of malice and evil, Zelda presented Link with the Bow of Light. With Zelda's help to contain the Beast, Link used the Bow of Light to weaken Ganon as much as possible. Zelda then sealed Ganon away, allowing Link and Zelda to finally fulfill their roles in Hyrule's destiny.
In a post-credits scene, Zelda is shown to be surveying the land of Hyrule with Link, hopeful that the two can restore the country to its former glory.
Age of Calamity
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"The princess of Hyrule, in whose veins flows the blood of the goddess. She is devoted to researching ancient technology and awakening her sacred power."
|This section describes a subject that is or may be outside the core Zelda canon.|
Zelda (Game & Watch)
In the Zelda Game & Watch LCD game, Princess Zelda is Link's "sweetheart", kidnapped by eight evil dragons who "refused to live in peace with man." Link intends to "destroy the dragons" in revenge and save Zelda.
Super Smash Bros. Brawl
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Zelda plays a part in the Subspace Emissary story mode.
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"The courageous and wise leader of Hyrule is also a powerful force on the battlefield with elegant weapons and a razor-sharp Rapier."
The story begins with Zelda awakening from a recurring nightmare, which she and Impa believe to be a sign of troubled times approaching. While visiting the training barracks of Hyrule Castle, she sees a particularly talented recruit that seems to be different from the others. However, her attention is quickly directed to a massive army of monsters approaching the castle. Zelda personally leads the defense of her castle. She is soon joined by Impa and Link, the recruit from earlier who had just been revealed as the reincarnation of the legendary hero by his possession of the Triforce of Courage. With the battle seemingly under control, Zelda returns to Hyrule Castle to coordinate her forces, only to be ambushed by Wizzro while her army was distracted by King Dodongo.
However, Zelda managed to evade Wizzro, disguising herself as Sheik and rejoining her army. She eventually reveals herself to her allies after defeating Wizzro (who had disguised himself as Zelda) in the Water Temple in Hyrule's past. She then resumes her open leadership of the Hyrulean forces against Cia - and later, Ganondorf.
Cadence of Hyrule
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- Main article: Gallery:Zelda
Zelda Artwork from The Legend of Zelda
Zelda I sprite from The Adventure of Link
Key art of Zelda in her formal dress from A Link to the Past (GBA)
N64 model of Child Zelda, as she appears in Ocarina of Time
Zelda key art from The Wind Waker HD
Zelda sprite from Four Swords
Zelda sprite from Four Swords Adventures
Zelda Sprite from The Minish Cap
Zelda art for Twilight Princess HD
Zelda key art for Breath of the Wild
Zelda sprite from Cadence of Hyrule