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Tail Cave

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Tail Cave
Entrance to Tail Cave
Location(s) South of the Village
Game(s) Link's Awakening
Main Item Roc's Feather
Mini-boss(es) Rolling Bones
Boss(es) Moldorm
Quest Reward(s)Full Moon Cello
Heart Container
Theme Music

The Tail Cave is the first dungeon of Link's Awakening.[1] It is the resting place of the Full Moon Cello, one of the Eight Instruments of the Sirens. The main tool of this dungeon is Roc's Feather, which is necessary to jump over several pits and needed to defeat the dungeon's mini-boss. The mini-boss of the dungeon is Rolling Bones, and the guardian of the instrument within this dungeon is the giant Moldorm.

This dungeon is also one of the few dungeons in Link's Awakening that contains an optional Secret Seashell. The seashell is in a secret room behind a cracked wall, requiring the use of bombs purchased from the village shop. As the introductory dungeon, the Tail Cave introduces a new feature to the Compass, which alerts Link to keys hidden in a room. Another new feature is the Stone Beaks and respective Owl Statues providing hints to nearby challenges.

Entrance to the Cave

The entrance to the dungeon is located south of Mabe Village and north of Toronbo Shores. Link learns that in order to enter the Tail Cave, he needs a special key to fit into a keyhole in the central Moldorm statue in front of the cave. The Owl reveals that the key rests within the Mysterious Woods, just north of Mabe Village.[2] Going forward into the forest, Link discovers that although the key appears to be in a chest that is in plain sight, the path to the chest leads through a grove containing a strange raccoon, who casts a magic curse upon the grove that will not let anyone go forward from it, causing him to laugh and jeer at Link when he attempts to reach the chest. Seeing that he would have to deal with the raccoon before he could get the key from the chest, Link acquired some Magic Powder and sprinkled some onto the raccoon, causing him to spin wildly all around the grove before transforming into Tarin, the father of Link's rescuer, Marin. With this, the curse on the grove is lifted, allowing Link to reach the chest and obtain the Tail Key.

Themes and Navigation

Link obtaining Roc's Feather within the Tail Cave

Taking the key back to the entrance of the cavern, Link fits it into the keyhole in the central Moldorm statue, causing the iron bars blocking the cave's entrance to rise up, allowing entry into it at last. Link enters the cave in search of the first of the fabled instruments the owl had spoken of. Deep within the cave, Link comes across the being known as the Rolling Bones, a small imp-like creature that attacks with a spiked roller that spans the length of the chamber, hoping to crush Link. Utilizing the Roc's Feather he had found in another part of the cave, Link is able to jump over the roller and attack Rolling Bones by hitting a small orb atop its head with his sword. With the defeat of Rolling Bones, Link opens the way to the cavern's true boss and guardian of the instrument, the giant Moldorm.[3]

Using the Roc's Feather to dodge the beast's attacks, Link strikes the back part of the creature's tail several times, each time causing the beast to increase its pace. Ultimately however, Link triumphs over the beast, and it disintegrates into nothingness, opening the way to the cave's final chamber. Inside, Link finds the Full Moon Cello, completing the first step in his quest to wake the Wind Fish.

The dungeon appears to be carved into a cavern of pink-colored stone with a floor made up of blue and grey stone. When looked at on a map, the dungeon is in the shape of a Moldorm, which seems to be a recurring theme of the dungeon, judging by the boss, the statues outside, and the Mini-Moldorms that appear in a few of the cave's chambers. The name of the dungeon, "Tail Cave", is likely a play off of the shape of the dungeon as well as its multiple references to the Moldorm, which may in turn also be a reference to the tail being the most notable trait of a Moldorm. It could also be a reference that the room containing the Full Moon Cello is located at the tip of the dungeon's "tail".

Enemies and Traps


  • The Mini-Moldorms and Moldorms featured in Link's Awakening (as well as in A Link to the Past) are known respectively as Tail and Degu Tail in Japanese, explaining the name of the Tail Cave.
  • The keyhole to open the dungeon is called the "Tale Keyhole", probably a typo for "Tail Keyhole".[4]


TMC Forest Minish Artwork.png Names in Other Regions TMC Jabber Nut Sprite.gif
Language Name Meaning
Japan Japanese テールのほこら (Tēru no Hokora) Tail's Shrine
French-speaking countries French Cave Flagello Flagellum Cave
Federal Republic of Germany German Wurmpalast Worm palace



  1. "Level 1--
    Tail Cave
    " — N/A (Link's Awakening DX)
  2. "Hoot! Ho, brave lad, on your quest to wake the dreamer! Welcome to the Mysterious Wood! Much of mystery you will find on this uncharted Koholint island! I'm afraid you may find it a trifle difficult to leave the island while the Wind Fish naps. ...By the by, have you ever visited the Tail Cave, which is south of the village? Go there with the key you find in this forest... The Wind Fish is watching...Hoot!" — Owl (Link's Awakening DX)
  3. "BUZZZZZ! BUZZZZ! OUTZZZIDER!" — Moldorm (Link's Awakening DX)
  4. "Hunh? A keyhole here? It says, 'Tale Keyhole'" — N/A (Link's Awakening DX)
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