Ice is a recurring theme in many titles of The Legend of Zelda series. It appears in many forms, sometimes as an obstacle for Link to overcome, as a mere hindrance, or even something to be used to Link's advantage. Ice and Snow are found in areas with sub-zero temperatures, and are a common occurrence during the Season of Winter in Holodrum, in cursed Snowhead, and in the Snow Realm. Ice has plot significance as well, as the entire Zora's Domain and the surrounding areas freeze in certain points of the plot of Ocarina of Time and Twilight Princess. The Zoras become encased in ice to be freed by Link on his quest. In Twilight Princess, the ice of Zora's Domain is thawed by warping the Molten Shard of Death Mountain to the area.
- 1 Common Forms
- 2 Uncommon Forms
- 3 Ice-Based Items
- 4 Ice-related characters
- 5 Ice-Themed Areas
- 6 Ice-Based enemies
- 7 Ice-Based bosses and mini-bosses
- 8 Gallery
- 9 References
Perhaps the most common form of ice seen in the Legend of Zelda is iced floors and surfaces. Icy surfaces reduce traction, causing Link to slip and slide (and even fall in The Wind Waker) when moving across it. Icy surfaces are always present in ice-themed areas and dungeons, and may serve to solve certain puzzles by pushing blocks, or ice blocks (see below) across its surface. In The Wind Waker, Link occasionally uses inclined icy surfaces as a slide to reach certain areas.
In Oracle of Ages and Oracle of Seasons, a ring called the Snowshoe Ring prevents Link from sliding on icy surfaces when worn. Link can use the Iron Boots in Ocarina of Time, The Wind Waker, and Twilight Princess, the Goron Mask in Majora's Mask, and the Cozy Parka in Tri Force Heroes to achieve a similar effect.
Ice Floes are a second common formation of ice. They appear often on the water in areas with cold temperatures. Wherever ice floes appear, Link must jump from one to the other to cross the body of water he is on. When preparing for a jump, Link must take into consideration the steady movement of the ice floes. Link must also be careful jumping from one floe to the next, as the icy platforms may cause him to slip off the ice floe. Should Link land in the icy water, he will have to swim back to the edge (sometimes taking damage from the freezing-cold water) and begin again.
In Majora's Mask, Link can create his own ice floes by shooting an Ice Arrow into the water. Octoroks can also be frozen by the Ice Arrow in order to create a floating ice block, to be used as a platform. This is essential to the completion of the Great Bay Temple, and must be done to cross the Ikana River. Blue Chuchus can also be frozen to create blocks of ice on solid ground (see below).
Ice floes appear in Zora's Fountain (when Link is an adult) in Ocarina of Time, in the Mountain Village in Majora's Mask, within the Ice Ring Isle in The Wind Waker, and at the entrance to Snowpeak in Twilight Princess.
Ice Chunks occur most prominently in Majora's Mask, but appear in other titles as well. They usually serve as barriers or obstacles, often blocking off passages or covering openings or holes. These large chunks of ice can be melted with fire-based items (such as the Fire Arrows and the Fire Rod) or Hot Spring Water, or shattered by objects such as Link's Ball and Chain in Twilight Princess. If Link touches the ice, it will temporarily freeze his entire body and sap his life energy until he breaks away from the ice encasing him. In Twilight Princess, ice chunks will not freeze Link if he touches them; some can even be shattered by regular attacks.
Ice chunks may also encase certain objects; anything from Rupees to Jars to Treasure Chests and even enemies. Just as for regular chunks, the ice can be melted by fire-based items or Hot Spring Water to reveal its contents. In Majora's Mask, ice covers the hearth of the Mountain Smithy, making it impossible for Zubora and Gabora to conduct business. Just like any other ice chunk, the hearth can be thawed with Hot Spring Water or a Fire Arrow. Alternatively, lifting the curse on Snowhead by defeating Goht causes the ice to melt when spring arrives to the area.
This form of ice has plot significance as well. For example, the Goron Elder of Majora's Mask becomes trapped in a chunk of ice, and must be unfrozen using the Hot Spring Water from the Goron Graveyard (as Link has not obtained the Fire Arrows at the time). By doing so, the Elder can teach Link the beginning of the Goron's Lullaby, which will eventually allow the hero to access the ice-themed Snowhead Temple. Also, the boss of said temple, Goht, is originally frozen in ice, and must be unfrozen by a Fire Arrow in order to begin the battle. In this manner, Kholdstare of A Link to the Past and Dera Zol of Four Swords must also be broken out of their icy prisons in order to begin the battle. In these two latter instances, ice plays an important role in the battle; the first as an important strategic element in the defeat of the boss, the second as a method of attack employed by the boss to be avoided.
Ice Blocks are another form of ice seen in the Zelda universe. Usually found within ice-themed dungeons, ice blocks are usually used to solve puzzles by sliding them across icy floors. In Twilight Princess, ice blocks do not appear, replaced completely by metal blocks. However, these blocks still have the same role, as they must be pushed across ice to solve puzzles. Some blocks will be encased in ice, which must be shattered using the Ball and Chain.
In the Temple of Droplets of The Minish Cap, ice blocks may also encase keys. By opening trap doors on the floors above, these blocks can be slid under Light Beams, which will melt the ice and expose the key. After obtaining the Flame Lantern, ice blocks can be melted using said item instead.
In the Great Bay Temple in Majora's Mask, a particular type of Chuchu, called a Blue Chuchu, can be frozen by an Ice Arrow to create ice blocks. Enemies in A Link to the Past can also be trapped in blocks of ice with the Ice Rod.
Ice Stalagmites and Stalactites
- Main article: Stalagmites and Stalactites
These ice formations, usually seen in caverns of sub-zero temperatures, appear fairly often in The Legend of Zelda series, although they only interact with the environment in Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask. Unlike ice chunks, stalagmites will not freeze Link when touched; they are simple barriers that can be destroyed using a Sword or another weapon. Occasionally, stalactites may fall on Link as he passes under them, causing him to take damage.
Chunkier stalactites can often be knocked down by Arrows. This can be used to Link's advantage by making the stalactite falling onto ice chunks below, shattering them and clearing the obstacle. In Twilight Princess regular (non-icy) stalactites appear in the Lakebed Temple. They can be knocked down using Bomb Arrows and can, once embedded in the ground, can be used as platforms to reach higher ledges.
- Main article: Red Ice
Red Ice is a variant of the Ice Chunk. It is seen exclusively in Ocarina of Time, primarily in the Ice Cavern. Just like regular ice chunks, Link may also find objects encased within the ice. However, Red Ice will not freeze Link when he touches it. Red Ice possesses magical properties, and can only be melted using Blue Fire. On his quest, Link must unfreeze King Zora, who is encased in Red Ice when Link arrives to the frozen Zora's Domain.
- Main article: Mega Ice
Mega Ice is a type of ice seen only in Spirit Tracks. This powerful ice is used on several occasions, namely to calm the raging magma erupting in Goron Village. Obtained from the Noko the merchant Anouki at Wellspring Station, these large chunks of ice are carried in the freight car of the Spirit Train. Once Link exits the Snow Realm, the warmer climate will begin to melt the ice. Therefore, Link must hurry to his destination in order to have enough ice to accomplish his task, whatever it may be.
Ice Crystals are magical objects (not unlike the Mega Ice of Spirit Tracks) seen only in the Sword & Shield Maze in Oracle of Seasons. They are an essential element of the dungeon, which has the peculiarity of having a fire-themed first floor and an ice-themed second floor. Three ice crystals, said to be magical and capable of freezing anything, are found on a raised platform on the second floor of the dungeon. Using the Power Bracelet, each crystal must be carried to one of the three openings in the floor and dropped down into the floor below. When the ice comes in contact with the lava of the fire floor, the magical ice crystal will harden the molten rock, allowing Link to progress further in the dungeon.
- See also: Snowboard Race
Ice Leaves are ice-encrusted leaves hanging from the lone tree at Snowpeak Top. These leaves, which can be knocked down from the tree, are used by Yeto as a "snowboard" in order to glide down the mountain to the Snowpeak Ruins. After seeing Yeto "snowboard" down the mountain, Link can knock down a "snowboard" of his own and follow suit. After completing the dungeon, Link can engage in Snowboard Races with Yeto and Yeta.
On his various adventures, Link will obtain certain objects for his Inventory that harness the power of ice. These items are often used to quell raging fires or to freeze enemies, or simply to create ice.
- Main article: Ice Arrow
The Ice Arrow, an ice-powered addition to the regular Arrow, is the most common type of ice weapon. Capable of freezing enemies on the spot and encasing them in ice, the Ice Arrow is an effective weapon for defeating certain enemies, especially in The Wind Waker when it is used in combination with a swing of the Skull Hammer. In Majora's Mask, freezing enemies such as Octoroks and Blue Chuchu creates blocks of ice that can be used to reach higher ledges. Link may also shoot an Ice Arrow into the water to create a platform of ice in order to cross certain bodies of water. In The Wind Waker, the Ice Arrow is used to cool the raging volcano of Fire Mountain.
- Main article: Ice Rod
The Ice Rod is another ice-based weapon, appearing in A Link to the Past and A Link Between Worlds. When used, the Ice Rod sends forth an icy cold frost that instantly traps any enemy in a block of ice when they come in contact. The Ice Rod drains Magic Power, some of which can be replenished with Magic Jars that can be obtained by smashing frozen enemies with the Magic Hammer.
- Main article: Blue Fire
A particular type of ice-based object is Blue Fire, which is actually a type of "cool flame". Found only in the Ice Cavern in Ocarina of Time, Blue Fire can be bottled and used to melt the "hot" Red Ice. In Spirit Tracks, a similar type of "cold flame" appears. It has the capability of lighting Link's Boomerang, which will then have the ability to freeze water as it travels across it. Blue Fire is also an important element of the battle with Fraaz.
Various ice-themed locations (including overworld and dungeons) are seen on Link's various adventures, which usually contain several of the aforementioned ice formations. The following is a gallery of all such locations in The Legend of Zelda.
Frozen Zora's Domain (Ocarina of Time)
Frozen Zora's Domain (Twilight Princess)
Frozen Zora's Fountain
Frozen Zora's River (Twilight Princess)
Temple of Ice
(Four Swords Adventures)
Temple of Ice
Ice-Based bosses and mini-bosses
The Goron Elder encased in ice
An Ice Chunk with a Treasure Chest inside from The Wind Waker
An Ice Chunk with a Rupee inside from The Wind Waker
An Ice Chunk with a Jar inside from The Wind Waker
An Ice Chunk with a Moblin inside from The Wind Waker
An ice barrier in Phantom Hourglass
- "I'm sure you've already seen it! Zora's Domain--totally frozen!" — Princess Ruto (Ocarina of Time)
- "If you came here to meet the Zoras, you wasted your time... This is all there is... With one exception, the Zoras are now sealed under this thick ice sheet..." — Sheik (Ocarina of Time)
- "Who'd have thought that Zora's Domain was covered in ice..." — Midna (Twilight Princess)
- "To cross the valley of Ikana, aim at the river beasts with the arrowhead that freezes." — Garo (Majora's Mask)
- "Unfortunately, we're not doing any business right now. It's because of this abnormal cold snap we've been having. See? Our hearth has been frozen over!" — Zubora (Majora's Mask)
- "Eh? What's that? You say if we had hot water, we could melt the ice off the hearth?" — Zubora (Majora's Mask)
- "You've gotta understand, I have to melt this ice off my hearth before I can go to work. Come back in the spring after the ice melts." — Zubora (Majora's Mask)
- "Ice that glowed red possessed magical properties. Heat could not melt it, but the supernatural flame of Blue Fire could." (The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time Official Nintendo Player's Guide (Nintendo Power), pg. 78)
- "The ice is fine until ya get to warmer areas. Then ya gotta look out! If ya putter around too long in the grass, all that sweet cargo's gonna melt." — Noko (Spirit Tracks)
- "The magical ice freezes all." — Owl Statue (Oracle of Seasons)
- "Link, did you know that if you destroy frozen enemies with the Hammer, you will often get a Magic Decanter?" — N/A (A Link to the Past)
- "You put a Blue Fire into the bottle! This is a cool flame you can use with [<], [v] or [>]" — N/A (Ocarina of Time)