Hello, its JaidynReiman back once again. This time I want to tap into a new subject; could the upcoming Legend of Zelda for Wii U be a sequel to Majora’s Mask? Now, when talking about it being a sequel, I don’t specifically refer to it being a direct followup to Majora’s Mask itself as in gameplay, but chronologically, I think that Zelda Wii U could take place a few years after Majora’s Mask when Link returns to Hyrule.
There are multiple reasons why I discuss this topic, and the main reasoning for me thinking more into this is the Game Awards preview of Zelda Wii U shown off at the end of last year. And the big thing we get from this preview is the locations of several key areas from the Zelda universe and how they tie into other games. The Overworld’s map is shown off briefly in this trailer, and its very important for the discussion of this topic.
Overworlds Across the Series
One thing that any huge Zelda fan should know is that the Overworlds throughout the series are inconsistent. There’s always a series of key areas to explore throughout the games. Ever since the original Legend of Zelda, Death Mountain has been a central location throughout the games. Other recurring areas from the original game include the Lost Woods, and a large lake at the center of the map which could be Lake Hylia before it was given a name. There’s also a desert region on the map as well.
Fast forward to Zelda II and the only recurring location is Death Mountain. Presumably, Zelda II takes place in areas north and east of Death Mountain from Zelda I, and across the ocean. In A Link to the Past, like in Zelda I, Death Mountain is in the north central part of the map, though in Link to the Past it extend to the northeast corner. Death Mountain is also in the northeast corner of the map in Ocarina of Time. Twilight Princess is one of the few games where Death Mountain is not located in this location and is instead directly to the east.
There’s also Mount Crenel from Minish Cap which could arguable be a predecessor to Death Mountain, which is in the northwest corner. Eldin Volcano is in the north central location of the World Map, and, once again, could be a predecessor to Death Mountain. Another version of Death Mountain comes from Four Swords Adventures, which is in the usual location, though other locations in Four Swords Adventures are far away from their usual locations.
Other areas vary much more wildly, though. The Lost Woods in Zelda I is in the southwest corner of the map, but in the northwest corner in A Link to the Past and Four Swords Adventures. In Ocarina of Time its in the southeast corner and Minish Woods from Minish Cap are also in this location. Twilight Princess is roughly the same, though Faron Woods is in the south central region. Skyward Sword’s Faron Woods are also in the southeast corner.
The desert region of Hyrule almost never matches up game to game. In Zelda I its just south of Death Mountain. A Link to the Past and Four Swords Adventures pits the desert in the southwest corner. This matches up with Skyward Sword, and pits it very close to Twilight Princess, where the desert is west of Lake Hylia. In Ocarina of Time, however, the desert is northwest of Lake Hylia, more north than west, and Minish Cap doesn’t even have a desert.
Ocarina of Time also has another recurring area, Zora’s Domain and Zora’s River. In A Link to the Past there is also a Zora’s River featured just south of Death Mountain. Ocarina of Time’s is pretty close, but Twilight Princess puts Zora’s Domain at the far northern portion of the map right next to Snowpeak, while Snowpeak never appeared in Hyrule prior. Lake Florian from Skyward Sword and Lake Hylia from Minish Cap and Four Swords Adventures all line up fairly close to where Zora’s Domain appears in Ocarina of Time, though Lake Florian appears to be a lot further south than these other locations.
Speaking of Lake Hylia, in Link to the Past its in the southeast corner of the map. Meanwhile, in Ocarina of Time its in the southwest corner (though it doesn’t extend as far to the west as the Desert Wasteland), and just southwest of Hyrule Castle in Twilight Princess. However, in Minish Cap and Four Swords Adventures, its closer to the location of Zora’s Domain in Ocarina of Time, while Link to the Past’s Lake Hylia is closer to Lake Florian from Skyward Sword.
Hyrule Castle is generally always at the center of Hyrule and there’s really no debate here. Even in Wind Waker, Hyrule Castle is directly at the center of the Great Sea at the bottom of the ocean. In Ocarina of Time its at the north central region, but Twilight Princess shows that there could potentially be areas north of Hyrule Castle.
How Often does Nearly Every Area Match Up?
With that overview of the different major areas of the games, let’s look at how often almost every single major area lines up between multiple games. The only time I can think of is in A Link Between Worlds, which was directly indicated to be a sequel to Link to the Past and revolves heavily around the events of Link to the Past. Every single major location matches up perfectly to their locations in Link to the Past. Lorule is different, though, since its not the same as the Dark World, and many areas are different in Lorule.
Now, let’s take a look at the Zelda Wii U world map. The start of the trailer showcases Link close to the southeast corner and there’s a vast forest surrounding him. We can see a bit more forest on the map itself as well. North of this section is a large lake and a river running northwest a bit, then curving back to the south to another lake. This large lake is in roughly the same location as Zora’s Domain from Ocarina of Time.
In numerous sequences during both the E3 trailer and the game awards trailer, Death Mountain can be seen, and we can clearly tell its in the northeast corner of the map, though slightly west of the eastern lake. In the original E3 trailer, there’s an open plain and you can see Death Mountain slightly to the east, and some have noted what could be Hyrule Castle to the north, which would make this Hyrule Castle far further north than in most Zelda games barring Ocarina of Time. This central plains region matches the location of Hyrule Field in Ocarina of Time.
South of the open field on the overworld map is the second of the large lakes. This one clearly contains a bridge spanning the center of it even on the full world map, and as we see in the Game Awards trailer, that bridge appears to be the Great Bridge of Hylia, confirming this must be Lake Hylia. At the same time, the Great Bridge of Hylia only appeared in Twilight Princess. However, this bridge’s columns aren’t in ruins like the ones in Twilight Princess, which would imply its either been repaired, its being well-maintained, or it was just recently built.
On the full world map, this Lake Hylia is directly south of Hyrule Field and Hyrule Castle, while in Ocarina of Time, Lake Hylia was slightly more to the west. Regardless, compared to all the similarities this world map shares with Ocarina of Time already that’s minimal.
The final piece of the puzzle is the desert region. The western portion could be the desert, but look carefully at the northwest corner. You should be able to see a large gorge, highly reminiscent of the one from Twilight Princess. Northwest of that gorge appears there could be a vast desert proper, and southeast of it is roughly the region where Gerudo Valley lies, which would fill in the remaining two pieces, and match up all areas from Ocarina of Time in almost the exact same locations. Then there’s a few additional areas that extend outside of these regions, including a vast ocean to the east.
The Great Bridge of Hylia is Key
So, let’s go back to the Great Bridge of Hylia for a second here. Even if this world map is directly based on Ocarina of Time, it doesn’t necessarily have to take place after the events of Ocarina of Time; instead, it could take place just before Ocarina of Time during the Hyrulean Civil War. GameExplain are the ones who first pointed out the Great Bridge of Hylia to me and noted that it appeared to be intact, but they still keep coming to the conclusion that it could take place after Skyward Sword.
Here’s the problem. First of all, the similarities to Ocarina of Time are fairly obvious if you look at every detail. So, if they directly based this on Ocarina of Time and recreated the Ocarina of Time world map, but on a much larger scale, they’re clearly paying attention to detail. As such, they’d also have considered the fact that the Great Bridge of Hylia ONLY appeared in Twilight Princess. Since its not in ruins, that means it probably takes place before Twilight Princess. But unlike in Link Between Worlds, it’d be difficult to base this map directly on Zelda Wii U, but then have it take place hundreds of years after Ocarina of Time, because Twilight Princess already exists in this time period.
Since they also put so much detail into recreating the Ocarina of Time map, they’d also know that the Great Bridge of Hylia doesn’t appear in Ocarina of Time at all. Which means it had to have been built after the events of Ocarina of Time. This would then mean that Zelda Wii U probably takes place shortly after Majora’s Mask, perhaps after Link returns to Hyrule.
Bridging the Gaps
The other advantage to this time period is there’s a lot of gaps in the storyline at this point. We know what happens to all the characters in the future of Ocarina of Time, but what about the past? The only person we see is Link himself and Zelda in a flashback. We never know much about the Happy Mask Salesman, what Majora’s Mask is and what the Fierce Deity Mask is. We also never find out what happened to all of Link’s companions from Ocarina of Time.
At the very least, Gorons and Zoras appear in Twilight Princess, but the Kokiri have never appeared again and the Gerudo have had an odd presence, being gone in Twilight Princess then back again in Four Swords Adventures. We also don’t know what happened to Link following Majora’s Mask. We know he survived and married, because he had a descendant in the form of Link from Twilight Princess. But at some point he dies without passing on his knowledge.
Link is also likely feeling alone in a massive world. No one knows the trials he has faced and is not recognized as a hero. This could result in him deciding to explore the land of Hyrule and try and find his place in the world, at first leaving his title of Hero behind. Which could be an explanation as to why so far we have not seen his green tunic; he doesn’t wear it because he doesn’t consider himself a hero.
Whenever a new Zelda game is first announced, Link is ALWAYS shown off in his green tunic right from the very first trailer. At this point we STILL haven’t seen his green tunic yet. I’m starting to believe that maybe, his green tunic will either be optional, or it’ll come much later in the game than normal.
At some point, this game might also involve Ganondorf and show off Ganondorf’s botched execution mentioned in Twilight Princess. This could even bring back a plethora of characters from various games, especially Ocarina of Time, which is something many, myself included, have been wanting to see for a long time. Nintendo even teased that the Happy Mask Salesman may be coming back in a future game, as noted in a GameExplain discussion. This would perfectly match with everything I’ve already discussed.
So, after hearing all of that, are you convinced? Could Zelda Wii U actually be a sequel to Majora’s Mask? Naturally, this is just speculation and is subject to change, but I think its very likely.
Check the links in the description below for World Maps, the E3 and Game Awards Zelda Wii U previews, as well as an article on NeoGAF I found that backed up and even reinforced my theories (this article is where I heard the mentions of Hyrule Field and the Gerudo Desert regions). Of course check out the GameExplain discussions as well where they talked about the Game Awards trailer, including the Great Bridge of Hylia, as well as the discussion about the potential return of the Happy Mask Salesman.
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