Ancient Ruins (Link's Awakening)
- This article is about the mini-dungeon and its surrounding area in Link's Awakening. For other uses, see Ancient Ruins (Disambiguation).
|Quest Reward(s)||Face Key|
In the original game and Link's Awakening DX the ruins form the southern section of the Face Shrine region on the in-game map, which encompasses the ruins, the Shrine Waterfall region to the north-east, and the area around Face Shrine to the north-west. Link's Awakening for Nintendo Switch changes all three areas to be distinctly named regions of the island, as was seemingly the original intention.[note 2]
Entrance to the Ruins
The eastern side of the island houses two related shrines: the Face Shrine in the north, which serves as the game's sixth dungeon, and the eponymous Ancient Ruins in the south that features a relief depicting the origins of the island. As Link travels to Face Shrine he encounters the Owl, who suggests he first venture to the Ancient Ruins.
The region features sandy terrain, with the sand covering a decorated stone path on the ground. Cracked stone walls and broken columns make navigating the area complicated as the path cannot be followed. Many Armos statues are situated among the ruins, though approaching some of the statues reveal them to in fact be living enemies. Gels and Zols are also found in the area.
The region can only be accessed from Shrine Waterfall region to the north-east. To the south of the region is Animal Village and the Yarna Desert, but they are blocked off by cliffs and cannot be accessed from the Ancient Ruins.
A set of stairs leading underground can be found by moving one of the Armos statues. A Secret Seashell can be found here, which is replaced with 20 Rupees if the Level 2 Sword has already been obtained.
The Ancient Ruins is a short, linear dungeon that is guarded by an Armos Knight. Defeating it will reward Link with the Face Key, which unlocks the entrance to the Face Shrine.
At the end of the ruins, Link comes to a room with a relief known as the Writing on the Wall. The relief is written in a riddle-like tone and reveals the secret of Koholint Island and its guardian Wind Fish. It is seemingly addressed to Link directly, and explains that the Island is nothing but an illusion dreamed by the Wind Fish, all of which will completely vanish as soon as the Wind Fish is awoken.
- The Ancient Ruins were referred to as the Southern Face Shrine in all versions of Link's Awakening prior to Link's Awakening for Nintendo Switch. However, as this contradicts the name given in Link's Awakening for Nintendo Switch, it is not considered Canon.
- Unused location text is present in the original version of Link's Awakening that names this region South of the Shrine.
- Encyclopedia (Dark Horse Books), pg. 234
- "Hoot! There are two shrines, one to the north, the other to the south. First, head south, where ancient ruins speak of the Wind Fish... You will learn much there..." — Owl (Link's Awakening DX)
- "TO THE FINDER... THE ISLE OF KOHOLINT, IS BUT AN ILLUSION... HUMAN, MONSTER, SEA, SKY... A SCENE ON THE LID OF A SLEEPER'S EYE... AWAKE THE DREAMER, AND KOHOLINT WILL VANISH MUCH LIKE A BUBBLE ON A NEEDLE... CASTAWAY, YOU SHOULD KNOW THE TRUTH! ... ... ... ... What? Illusion?" — Writing on the Wall (Link's Awakening DX)