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The Bow is a ranged weapon with great power found throughout The Legend of Zelda series. It's a recurring weapon appearing in most Zelda games, the exceptions being The Adventure of Link, Oracle of Ages and Oracle of Seasons. 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 can't be reached by the sword. However, the Bow is ammunition based so he 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.[1] The Bow is only required to complete the game because it is the only weapon capable of beating Gohma. 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."

— Nintendo Power Player's Guide

"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.

— Nintendo Power Player's Guide

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. Similarly to the original The Legend of Zelda, Link obtains the Silver Arrows inside the Pyramid of Power, which do incredible amounts of damage and are needed to defeat Ganon.

Link's Awakening

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, everytime Link enters the shop after he has stolen an item, the shopkeeper will yell at him and kill Link.

The Bow is required to defeat Gohma in this game.

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, he will receive the Light Arrows from Princess Zelda once he has awakened all of the Seven Sages. Using the bow will put 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 Gerudo horseback archery mini-game, respectively.

Majora's Mask

Main article: Hero's Bow

The Hero's Bow is obtained in the Woodfall Temple in Majora's Mask, and functions in exactly the same way as Ocarina of Time's Fairy Bow, with the only difference being in its appearance. Link will also get 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 will upgrade 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 will receive the Fire Arrows and Ice Arrows from the Fairy Queen, and the Light Arrows in the catacombs.

Four Swords

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 will upgrade it to the Level 2 Bow, which can have 3 arrows on the screen at once.

The Minish Cap

This game's Bow is found in Castor Wilds. It's 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 you perform an optional sidequest, which is rather lengthy.

Twilight Princess

Main article: Hero's Bow

In Twilight Princess, the Bow is called the Hero's Bow and is obtained in the Goron Mines. This game features Bomb Arrow, 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. Depending on whether you are playing on the GameCube or Wii version the controls will vary. In the GameCube version, the aiming system is the same as in previous 3D Zelda titles. On the Wii, you must aim the remote at the point where you want to shoot, and you can rotate or run with 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.

Phantom Hourglass

The Bow in Phantom Hourglass is found in the Temple of Courage. Since 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 beating the Temple of Courage, Link will get a Letter from Romanos, which tells Link of his new Shooting Gallery. Playing his mini-game and scoring between 1700 and 1990 points will reward Link with a larger quiver; one that can hold 30 arrows. Purchasing the final upgrade for 1000 rupees from the Molida or Mercay island item shops allows Link to hold 50 arrows.

Spirit Tracks

The Bow is fired in the same way as it was in Phantom Hourglass. It is found in the Fire Temple. In the Sand Temple, Link will obtain the Bow of Light, which he must use to activate certain switches and defeat Malladus. After beating the Fire Temple, Link can buy 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 3500 and 4000 points in the Pirate Hideout Mini-Game.

Skyward Sword

Main article: Iron Bow
Main article: Sacred Bow

Link with wooden bow in Skyward Sword.

The Bow makes a return in the newest Zelda installment, Skyward Sword. In this game, the Bow is received in the Sandship, and can be used to kill 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, you pull back the Nunchuck just like you are pulling back the string on a 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. Unlike in previous games, the bow will not make the slingshot useless. Since it takes a relatively long amount of time to aim and fire arrows, it will mostly be used for more precise shots. As usual you 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.

After getting the Bow from the Sandship, Link can upgrade it to the Iron Bow and then the Sacred Bow at the Scrap Shop in the Bazaar in Skyloft.

A Link Between Worlds

The Bow returns in the newest The Legend of Zelda adventure, A Link Between Worlds. The Bow can be rented or purchased from Ravio's Shop, for 50 and 800 Rupees, respectively. However, there are no Arrows in this game. Instead, every time Link uses the Bow, his Energy Gauge depletes.

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.




  1. "For every arrow Link shoots, he loses one [Rupee]." — The Legend of Zelda Game Manual, pg. 24