Poe from Twilight Princess
Poes are recurring enemies in The Legend of Zelda series. They are cloaked spirits that freely roam Graveyards and other haunted locales about Hyrule and other lands. They carry a Lantern with them that serves as the container for that specific Poe Soul. Poes are spirits of the dead that have become monsters due to a lingering attachment to the world of the living.
As ghosts, Poes can disappear and reappear as part of their strategy, and can easily move through walls. Most Poes are known for being wicked, venegeful spirits, however some Poes are helpful and serve as guides, although not without their deceitful trickery. Poes can be defeated with merely the Sword in most games, however, they often have high health or defense mechanisms in place to hinder Link. The Bow can also be an effective weapon, and in some cases is the only weapon that can defeat them. When a Poe is defeated, its physical body disappears and its lantern is dropped and breaks, sometimes releasing its Poe Soul, which may be collected in certain games. These Souls are often important as sidequest items, or can be sold for Rupees.
The Poe bears many similarities to Ghinis, and may serve as a replacement to them in console Zelda games since A Link to the Past, as Poes behave similarly to them in that title. Poes have since developed separately from the Ghini, and now often employ different strategies and behavior. Poes are not common in the early 2D games, and Ghinis otherwise take their place in those games.
Other variations of Poes have also appeared. The Big Poe is a much larger, and in some cases, stronger variant of the Poe. Prankster Poes of Tri Force Heroes bear a close resemblance to Link. The Composer Brothers and Poe Sisters are notable Poes that appear in several games, the latter as mini-bosses. Jalhalla and the Big Poe of Four Swords Adventures are a pair of Poe bosses.
A Link to the Past
In A Link to the Past, Poes appear at the Graveyard near the Sanctuary in the Light World, flying sporadically around the area and circling tombstones. They always tend to appear in large groups. Their behavior is similar to that of Ghinis. Much like the Ghini, they also have high health and endurance, and tend to take many hits before they are slain. Poes usually drop items, such as Magic Jars or Arrows when defeated.
Ocarina of Time
In Ocarina of Time, Poes take on the appearance of hooded wraiths with glowing eyes, and faces shrouded underneath their oversized cloaks. Their distinctive lanterns immediately identifies them, and is the only part of them that will not turn invisible. Targeting a Poe will cause it to temporarily become invisible, although they will reappear in even, predictable intervals. They attack by swinging their lanterns madly at Link. These Poes appear predominately in the Kakariko Graveyard, and rise from their disturbed tombstones, much like Ghinis of earlier games. A second kind of Poe with a square-shaped head also appears around Hyrule Field when Link is an adult, and appears in the same spawn spots as Big Poes, except that they will only appear when Link is not riding Epona. These Poes do not disappear when Z-Targeted, and instead circle around Link and drop flames around him. All Poes will leave Poe Souls when defeated, which can be collected inside Bottles. These Souls can then be sold to the Poe Collector when Link is an adult for a sum of Rupees. The Poe Soul is a purple-flamed face with melancholy, which will disappear after a short while of inactivity.
The aforementioned Big Poes are a variety that only appear in Hyrule Field when Link is an adult, and appear only when Link is riding Epona. These Poes can only be killed with the Bow, as dismounting Epona will make them vanish. Only ten Big Poes exist, and they drop unqiue Big Poe Souls when defeated, which can be sold to the Poe Collector for more Rupees and an empty Bottle as a reward after giving him all ten.
There is also an individual Poe encountered in the Haunted Wasteland called the Phantom Guide. It is a helpful spirit that guides Link to the Spirit Temple through the wasteland, and is necessary to follow to avoid getting lost and starting over. It can only be seen with the Lens of Truth.
The Composer Brothers are a pair of notable Poes that appear in the Kakariko Graveyard, and are fought as enemies if Link disturbs their tombstones before learning the "Sun's Song". After they are defeated, they reveal that they were the song's composers and left it inscribed in the Royal Family's Tomb. The Poe Sisters also appear as mini-bosses in the Forest Temple. These four Poes steal the fire in the central room and impede Link's progress, forcing him to hunt down each Poe Sister before ultimately facing the fourth sister in battle, Meg.
In Majora's Mask, Poes appear identically to those of Ocarina of Time. They carry lanterns with them which remain visible when they are Z-Targeted, and leave behind Poe Souls when defeated. Their Poe Souls can be sold to the Curiosity Shop for a sum of Rupees, though they have little else use aside from profit. Ordinary Poes appear in the Stone Tower Temple. As with Ocarina of Time, Big Poes also appear and drop Big Poe Souls when defeated. All Poes are encountered in the Ikana region and surrounding area.
The Composer Brothers and Poe Sisters make a reappearance in Majora's Mask, appearing around the Ikana region as well. The Composer Brothers were the composers of the "Song of Storms", and playing it to the brother Sharp after learning it from Flat will calm him and revive the dried up Ikana River. The Poe Sisters are optional mini-bosses fought at the Spirit House, and defeating all four rewards in a Piece of Heart.
In the Oracle series, Poes do not appear as common enemies, instead having their roles fulfilled by Ghinis. Poes, however, make less prominent appearances in both games. In Oracle of Ages, a lone Poe appears inside a fenced tomb in the Yoll Graveyard. On his way to the Spirit's Grave, Link overhears a group of young boys speaking in fear of the ghost. With the Power Bracelet obtained in the dungeon nearby, Link can lift the rock blocking the entrance to the tomb and investigate for himself. The young hero discovers that the Poe is harmless and that it simply wishes to have its headstone moved, as its actual self is trapped within the grave. Using the Power Bracelet, Link is able to accord him the favor, allowing the Poe to move on to the afterlife. As thanks, the Poe gives the young hero its Poe Clock, which is the first item in the Oracle of Ages Trading Sequence.
In Oracle of Seasons, a pair of Poe Sisters appear as the mini-bosses of the Explorer's Crypt. One Poe Sister carries a lantern she uses to throw flames, and the other uses a sword. These Poes curse the rooms they are encountered in, so that Link is forcefully expelled out of the room if any of the torches go out.
The Wind Waker
In The Wind Waker, Poes have a distinctively different appearance, and appear as multicolored ghosts with mask-like facial features. Their bodies appear to be sack-like, as their heads are tied up in a knot. They harass Link by ramming, throwing, and burning him with their lamps. If Link attacks them enough to make them drop their lanterns, they can also jump into his body, possessing him and temporarily reversing his movement controls. After the possession is over with, they leave and disappear, as if they had been defeated. The Poes are now permanently translucent until direct light is shone on them using the Mirror Shield (or Medli's Harp in the Earth Temple). The Poes will then become solid and run frantically about the room in an attempt to avoid Link's now effective attacks. They appear in the aforementioned Earth Temple and also inhabit the Ghost Ship, among other places.
|Poe (Figurine from The Wind Waker)|
|| Habitat: Earth Temple|
Best Attack: Possession
These ghostly creatures have no physical form, so physical attacks pass right through them. Shining light on them with the Mirror Shield makes them take form.
In Twilight Princess, Poes take on a role similar to that of the Gold Skulltulas in Ocarina of Time. A man in Castle Town named Jovani was cursed for his greed and had his soul stolen by Poes, of which there are a total of 60 throughout Hyrule.  In the Prima guide, they are known as Imp Poes. Poes only come out at night and can only be defeated as a wolf by using Wolf Link's heightend senses. Once a Poe has been damaged, it will fall to the ground and its Poe Soul will become visible, which can be ripped out and collected by performing the Ending Blow on it while still in Wolf form. Collecting 20 Poe Souls will break part of the curse on Jovani, and he will give Link a Bottle full of Great Fairy's Tears as thanks, as well as the Ghost Lantern in Twilight Princess HD. After all 60 Poe Souls have been collected, the curse will lift completely, and Jovani's cat Gengle will give Link 200 Rupees every time he enters the room thereafter.
Poes in Twilight Princess possess a unique doll-like appearance, and carry a large scythe with which they use to attack. Their lanterns are instead attached to their feet. When Link is a human, only their floating lanterns can be seen. When a Poe is about to strike Link, it will glow brightly if seen through Wolf Link's senses. In Twilight Princess HD, the number of Poes defeated and remaining in each region are tracked on the map screen. Once Link obtains the Ghost Lantern, he can use it to help pinpoint the exact locations of each Poe: the lantern will glow if there is a Poe nearby in the general area.
Four Poes also appear in the Arbiter's Grounds. These Poes more closely resemble Poes of previous games, as they wear heavy cloaks and carry their lamps in their hands. Similarly to the Poe Sisters of Ocarina of Time, they steal the fire from the four torches in the central room, thereby impeding Link's progress and must be defeated to retrieve the fire. Like the other Poes, they can only be seen and attacked while as Wolf Link, and carry Souls which can be ripped from them. The last Poe has the strategy of duplicating itself and encircling Link, the same strategy used by Meg, the last of the four Poe Sisters. Along with the Poe encountered in Jovani's house, they are the only Poes required to be defeated in the game.
In Phantom Hourglass, Poes have a radically different look in comparison to their earlier incarnations. They resemble brightly colored puffer fish with body markings, and notably lack lamps. They appear aboard the Ghost Ship and attack by teleporting back and forth, periodically spitting a ball of blue fire at Link. They can only be struck when visible and will actively avoid Link's attacks.
A Link Between Worlds
In A Link Between Worlds, Poes are based on those from A Link to the Past. They fly sporadically and circle around the general area. As ghosts, they are able to move through walls as well. Like the Poes of A Link to the Past, they generally take several hits of the Sword to defeat. As enemies they appear in the secret passage connecting the Graveyard and the Sanctuary.
A group of nine Poes also appear in the Lost Woods. They help guide Link to the resting place of the Master Sword, however, they also try to mislead him by moving in tricky formations and having Link follow the correct Poe through the woods. The Poes test him several times doing this. If Link fails and makes a wrong turn, he will have to start over from the beginning. After the Master Sword has been retrieved, they will no longer appear in the Lost Woods, and entering the woods will immediately bring Link back to the sword's resting place.
Tri Force Heroes
In Tri Force Heroes, Poes appear in Levels of The Ruins. They appear in four different colors: white, green, red, and blue. The white Poes can be attacked by any Link, however the colored Poes can only be attacked by the Link whose color corresponds with it. Some of the Poes also float at higher elevations, requiring that the Links form a Totem to reach it, with the top Link as the one who matches the target Poe. A Poe boss called the Grim Repoe is also battled in Palace Noir. When the Links enter its boss room, they first encounter three colored Poes and must defeat them to make Grim Repoe appear, however these Poes will actively flee from the Links, making fighting them difficult.
A variation of the Poe, called the Lantern Poe, appears in the first Stage of Palace Noir. True to its name, it is a yellow Poe that flies around the room carrying a large lantern. It cannot be harmed directly by the Links, and the only means of defeating it is to light all the torches in the room. Once it is defeated, the Triforce Gateway to the next stage will open.
- Dampé in Ocarina of Time bears some resemblance to Poes after he is deceased. He carries a lantern with him with which he uses to throw flames to lead Link through his grave, and makes a cackling laughter that is identical to that of Poes.
- In Majora's Mask, the ghostly aliens that invade Romani's Ranch bear a resemblance to Poes. The balloons Romani practices on bear a much stronger resemblance to Poes than to the invaders.
- If Link uses his Grappling Hook on a solidified Poe in The Wind Waker, it will float motionlessly in the air for several seconds, in a different stance than if it had been stunned with the Boomerang.
- The Cubus Sisters from Phantom Hourglass bear a resemblance to previous incarnations of Poes, and are often thought as similar to the Poe Sisters of Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask.
- In Skyward Sword, the Watchers, patrolling the trials of the Silent Realm, bear a striking resemblance to Poes, even holding lanterns.
Poe may be derived from the name of the famous poet Edgar Allan Poe, who is known for his dark, gloomy works. It could also come from the Chinese word "po," meaning spirit.
|Names in Other Regions|
|Japanese|| ポゥ (Pō)
ポゥフィー (Pōfī) (TP)
|FrenchCA|| Esprit (OoT3D | MM3D)
Esprit du cimetière (OoT3D)
Ghost Spirit (TP)
|SpanishLA|| Poe (OoT3D | MM3D)
Poe del cementerio (OoT3D)
- "POE" (Art & Artifacts (Dark Horse Books), pg. 389 (ALttP&FS))
- "Poe" (Art & Artifacts (Dark Horse Books), pg. 176 (OoT3D) & 292 (TPHD))
- "This is different from Poes, which are spirits that become monsters due to a lingering attachment to the world of the living." (Encyclopedia (Dark Horse Books), pg. 102)
- "You caught a Poe in a bottle! Something good might happen!" — N/A (Ocarina of Time)
- "Your second trial is... the Phantom Guide!" — Gerudo at the Gate (Ocarina of Time)
- "One with the eye of truth shall be guided to the Spirit Temple by an inviting ghost." — Tablet in the Gerudo Desert (Ocarina of Time)
- "To tell the truth, each of us was studying a different song, one to summon the sun and another to summon the moon. If you were really sent by a member of the Royal Family, I will tell you about the results of our study. We inscribed it on the royal tombstone." — Composer Brothers (Ocarina of Time)
- "You who do not fear the dead, learn well the song that is inscribed behind me... And if you ever meet my brother, I'd like you to inform him... The thousand years of raindrops summoned by my song are my tears. The thunder that strikes the earth is my anger!" — Flat (Majora's Mask)
- "No way! It's too scary! It's pitch black inside that grave beneath the tree! Besides... It might come out... ...The ghost." — Boy (Oracle of Ages)
- "Someone finally came! This headstone blocks my path to the afterlife. I'm actually below here, right? I'd appreciate it if you could help me out." — Poe (Oracle of Ages)
- "You must have moved my headstone! That means I can move on to the afterworld. My heart lifts at the thought of it! Thanks!" — Poe (Oracle of Ages)
- "You came out! Since I'm moving on, I don't need this anymore. Take it! I hope you can reach the afterworld soon, too!" — Poe (Oracle of Ages)
- "These ghostly creatures have no physical form." — Nintendo Gallery (The Wind Waker)
- "Shining light on them with the Mirror Shield makes them take form." — Nintendo Gallery (The Wind Waker)
- "This gigantic ghost rules over all Poes." — Nintendo Gallery (The Wind Waker)
- "I'm Jovani. I...became consumed by greed long ago, and sold my soul to a dark creature that did this to me... I can't move... I can't go see my girlfriend... My pet cat Gengle is frozen on my head... I don't think I could be more miserable... I have to ask you a favor, doggie... Can you find and defeat the 20 ghosts that lurk in the dark for me? I think if you can free the pieces of my soul from the ghosts that hold them, I'll be free..." — Jovani (Twilight Princess)
- "But...my body is still golden... Does this mean my soul is still not whole? That's strange... Maybe we need the souls of 60 ghosts... Can I ask another favor of you, doggie? Can you defeat more ghosts?" — Jovani (Twilight Princess)
- "Imp Poe" (Art & Artifacts (Dark Horse Books), pg. 292)
- "Once you've found and defeated the 20 ghosts that lurk in the darkness, come here by digging by the wall where the cats gather..." — Jovani (Twilight Princess)
- "These woods will trick you into going back the way you came! But all hope is not lost! If you can follow me, then you can walk a little deeper into the woods. Watch carefully!" — Poe (A Link Between Worlds)
- "You can't actually damage a Lantern Poe directly. They'll light the area around them in dark rooms. The way to defeat them is by lighting all the torches in the room they are in." (Tri Force Heroes Official Player's Guide (Prima Games), pg. 18)