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The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time’s creepiest boss has returned to haunt me

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One of the strangest foes from The Legend of Zelda series is making a comeback in a corner of the internet, and I’m reliving some very unpleasant memories.

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is nothing if not compartmentalized. Each of its puzzle-filled dungeons follows a strict motif, whether it’s an element (fire, water, earth, etc.) or a very specific claustrophobic fear (being swallowed by a giant fish, stuck in a giant tree, etc.). Or get lost) in a mine full of dinosaurs). In any case, the theme of its two dungeons – Bottom of the Well and the Shadow Temple – seems to be “Let’s try to inflict permanent trauma on a bunch of kids and teenagers.” And in my case, the designers succeeded, thanks in no small part to Dead Hand, an oft-recurring boss that has made a number of strange returns on the Zelda subreddit over the past few months.

In 2023, the Zeldathon is starting. Join us on our journey through The Legend of Zelda series, from the original 1986 game to The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom and beyond.

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for those who haven’t played Ocarina of Time, protagonist Link’s journey to the bottom of the well comes about 4/5 into his journey, and this is, in my opinion, the game’s masterstroke. before this point, ocarinaThe time-travel system is designed as a one-time act of change: Link was a child in a Swiftian Hyrule, and suddenly, he was an adult, seven years later, in a dark world. But when you pass the infamous Water Temple and return to Kakariko Village engulfed in flames, ocarina strongly suggests that you return to the Temple of Time (the site of the temporal jump) be a kid again, By revisiting Kakariko Village as young Link and completing a spectacular Effect and Cause side quest, your child-sized hero can squeeze through a small hole at the bottom of the town’s well, where a deadly The unit is poisoning the water supply.

This is where things go from Haruki Murakami to Junji Ito. The bottom of the well is filled with soul-sucking zombies, transparent giant hands, and bat-like monsters. There’s also a litany of invisible (for now) holes in the floor through which you can fall into a combination torture chamber/pool of putrid filth. Wow!

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But it’s Dead Hand, the boss guarding the mini-dungeon’s treasured Lens of Truth, who really takes things too far. I mean, look at this thing. Not only does he look like the naked, half-molten mouth of Sauron, but he’s also accompanied by a series of gangly arms that sprout from the floor to present you in an embrace before him. He’s a complete 180º from the mostly cartoonish bosses up to this point, and he stopped the 7-year-old in my tracks dead. (I asked my brother, who is seven years older than me, to beat Dead Hand for me. ocarina The parallels are not lost on me.)

Not only does Dead Hand reappear in later dungeons, he’s also showing up on the Zelda subreddit, where users are making 3D printed models and clay sculptures of the creature. I can’t pinpoint the exact point when the boss started popping up on r/Zelda, and that just makes its rebel resurgence all the more mysterious (read: terrifying). Thanks, Reddit! i’m going to play less-messed-up Majora’s Mask.

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