Just What Exactly Does the Triforce in Zelda Do?

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Zelda just needs a new villain that isn't another fucking reincarnation of Ganon.

Hey, Nintendo? You know something is wrong when my favorite Zelda antagonist is a floating, sentient mask.

Oh and Yahtzee. If you could be bothered, I would eat up something by you that essentially parodies Zelda and/or JRPGs. Be it poetry, a novel, short story, or stage play ft. Gabriel.

Alpha Maeko:

Mcoffey:
It would be an excellent twist if, at the end of a particularly brutal and epic Zelda adventure, the Triforce is assembled and didn't do anything and all that suffering was for nothing.

But Nintendo definitely doesn't have the balls to pull that off.

Hmm...

Ganon: "HAHAHA! The Triforce is mine!"

Nothing happens.

Ganon: "... c'mon. Glow or something. DO SOMETHIIIIIIII-"

Master sword intervention through skull.

I like that interpretation; that the only power the Triforce has is everyone in the world believing it's powerful.

Link Satonaka:
(...)

Read above. I could easily say that yes there are some direct continuities and the rest are variations of the same story, however it's perfectly reasonable to say that all of them have evolved from one single story. One story spread across the world, retold and evolved over the ages in different, isolated locations, and reunited centuries later in very different forms. Someone trying to make sense of all the incredibly different variations might think they were chronologically ordered events that actually occurred in all the different regions of the world. He might even come up with something as silly as the continuity from Hyrule Historia! Heh, I kid, I kid.

You could say, that, but there is so many elements you have to dismiss to consider that interpretation that it ends up being even more far fetched than what Hyrule Historia propose.

Yeah, I myself just ignore all the parts of WindWaker and the other games that treat the triforce like a trinket anyone can dig up with a boat and map. It's a symbolic representation of the virtues of three people, dammit! It has no physical form that can be thrown around like an empty beer can, or worse, broken into pieces (seriously wtf windwaker)! When the three people are in the same room I'll buy that it can manifest into an object that grants wishes, but as a manifestation of virtues within three people it cannot be *taken*. This would explain why it's in Ganondorf's interest to kidnap but not kill Zelda: to lure Link into the same room and with the three of them, allow the triforce to manifest into the wishmaking gizmo.

Well, if you ignore all those parts, you definitely enter the realm of fanon. The triforce IS a tangible object and can be stolen. It usually lay in the sacred Realm or lay in the soul of those who inherit it (it then actually took an intangible form). But it has a solid manifestation when no one bear it.

Mind you when it is hidden in the soul of the hero (like in Between Worlds), the hero has to prove is worth for the shard of courage to reveal itself, but that's how it work when it is shared by bearers. When it is complete, it's solid.

GUIGUI:

Link Satonaka:
(...)

Read above. I could easily say that yes there are some direct continuities and the rest are variations of the same story, however it's perfectly reasonable to say that all of them have evolved from one single story. One story spread across the world, retold and evolved over the ages in different, isolated locations, and reunited centuries later in very different forms. Someone trying to make sense of all the incredibly different variations might think they were chronologically ordered events that actually occurred in all the different regions of the world. He might even come up with something as silly as the continuity from Hyrule Historia! Heh, I kid, I kid.

You could say, that, but there is so many elements you have to dismiss to consider that interpretation that it ends up being even more far fetched than what Hyrule Historia propose.

Not really- I grant that this is a lazy argument but a retold story over an infinite amount of time can become anything. It is far simpler an explanation, more elegant, allows for infinite creative license within each Zelda game, and retains a legendary, ancient atmosphere that Zelda traditionally capitalize on so well. Hyrule Historia's interpretation is a mess of details with a lot of invented aspects created just to tie certain events together. Forgive me for not finding it enchanting.

Yeah, I myself just ignore all the parts of WindWaker and the other games that treat the triforce like a trinket anyone can dig up with a boat and map. It's a symbolic representation of the virtues of three people, dammit! It has no physical form that can be thrown around like an empty beer can, or worse, broken into pieces (seriously wtf windwaker)! When the three people are in the same room I'll buy that it can manifest into an object that grants wishes, but as a manifestation of virtues within three people it cannot be *taken*. This would explain why it's in Ganondorf's interest to kidnap but not kill Zelda: to lure Link into the same room and with the three of them, allow the triforce to manifest into the wishmaking gizmo.

Well, if you ignore all those parts, you definitely enter the realm of fanon. The triforce IS a tangible object and can be stolen. It usually lay in the sacred Realm or lay in the soul of those who inherit it (it then actually took an intangible form). But it has a solid manifestation when no one bear it.

Mind you when it is hidden in the soul of the hero (like in Between Worlds), the hero has to prove is worth for the shard of courage to reveal itself, but that's how it work when it is shared by bearers. When it is complete, it's solid.

OK, I turn to "fanfon" here. But you have to admit that the canon is just so overly, unnecessarily complicated that it was definitely created to serve gameplay rather than story. I choose to interpret those aspects as a design choice in a game that's meant to be played at the cost of a better story, and I simply play the segments and ignore whatever contorted form the story had to make to accommodate those segments.

Edit- I mean that's the whole point of Yahztee's article. The triforce behaves so differently across each game that you either have to think of it as something with incredibly intricate and specific reactions to various stimuli.... or my each story is merely a legend and as such what the triforce does or how it works changes from retelling to retelling. I suppose I didn't consider the ramifications of my own argument for a minute there :D In OoT it could simply be what I described, virtues of each person manifested, and in the retelling of the same legend (WindWaker edition) the triforce is said to be a physical object. tl;dr each game is its own isolated retelling of the same story and how the triforce (or any object) works in each game does not have any impact on any other game. Trying to unite all the games under one universe is just too much of a mess.

The three pieces of the triforce are wisdom, power, and courage in their most pure forms. If you optain enough power, wisdom and courage, via the triforce you can reshape the world in whatever image you like. If you gain ultimate wisdom, ultimate courage, and ultimate power, you become god.

The Try Force was magical enough to be an emblem in Halo.... But then again so was the Fleur-De-Lis....

Meh....

I never paid attention to the official Zelda Timeline as its more of a selling point for people who are obsessed with continuity. If I had to consume it like that I'd be more angry about all this filler with no end.

RatGouf:
The Try Force was magical enough to be an emblem in Halo.... But then again so was the Fleur-De-Lis....

Meh....

I never paid attention to the official Zelda Timeline as its more of a selling point for people who are obsessed with continuity. If I had to consume it like that I'd be more angry about all this filler with no end.

My sentiments exactly.

GUIGUI:
What did the Triforce ever do?

-In Link Between world, it restored a whole parallele world who was decaying and about to die.

-In Link to the past, it brought back dead people that Ganon's minions had killed to the life and undo all the evil Ganon had do.

-In Skyward Sword, it killed Demize (at least its Imprisoned form the one where he look lik a giant Scally Thumbs monster). Ghirahim had to go back in time before he was killed by the triforce to sacrifice Zelda and reawoken him before getting killed (don't ask about the time paradox that might have caused).

It's worth mentionning that Ganon almost never get the full triforce but only the shard of power, this shard alone is able to maintain him alive while other have to reincarnate to come back and kill him. (when a person of evil intention touch the Triforce for the first time he only get one shard and the two other go to the one it fit the most). To have the full Triforce, the one with evil intention has to hunt down and take the two other shards. This is what happens in wind Waker where he finally reunite the Triforce and its only after the reunification porcess that he can get his wish (the king outrun him while he was gloating).

The only time Ganon really get in full possession of the Triforce was before Link to the past and at this point the only way to stop him was to seal him in the sacred realm where the Triforce is usually stored when not possessed by bearers. This way he couldn't affect Hyrule's world.

Don't forget Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, where he used the triforce to wake up Zelda from a 100 years long coma.

You know, Yahtzee... The smallest amount of research could answer your question for you. However, you apparently are too busy criticizing the Zelda series to actually play it and find out or even do a simple Google search on the Triforce; the Zelda wikia probably has all the information you could ask for.

The Triforce, to put it roughly, fulfills wishes. It's a gift from the immortals to the mortals as explained most notably in Skyward Sword. It tends to only allow a single wish per person but I don't believe that rule is completely set in stone as a person who wants to keep the Triforce for themselves seems to have little problem in doing so. I don't think the extent of what it can do has been explored in the series but one can assume that there are limits to its power.

There are times when I question whether or not Yahtzee has ever played any Zelda games other than Wind Waker, OoC, and Skyward Sword, and with this article I find it further harder to believe he finished Skyward Sword. It's fine if he hasn't played any others but I think he should forfeit his right to talk about the series as a whole if he's played so little and is so willingly ignorant of it.

Flaery:
You know, Yahtzee... The smallest amount of research could answer your question for you. However, you apparently are too busy criticizing the Zelda series to actually play it and find out or even do a simple Google search on the Triforce; the Zelda wikia probably has all the information you could ask for.

The Triforce, to put it roughly, fulfills wishes. It's a gift from the immortals to the mortals as explained most notably in Skyward Sword. It tends to only allow a single wish per person but I don't believe that rule is completely set in stone as a person who wants to keep the Triforce for themselves seems to have little problem in doing so. I don't think the extent of what it can do has been explored in the series but one can assume that there are limits to its power.

There are times when I question whether or not Yahtzee has ever played any Zelda games other than Wind Waker, OoC, and Skyward Sword, and with this article I find it further harder to believe he finished Skyward Sword. It's fine if he hasn't played any others but I think he should forfeit his right to talk about the series as a whole if he's played so little and is so willingly ignorant of it.

You've not said anything that wasn't discussed in the article. You also seemed to have missed the entire point of the article as well, which was to discuss what these limits on the triforce are.

But uncle Peter is my favourite uncle ;(

Actually though I think that the problem with the Zelda series being judged in a category of its own is just as much a problem stemming from gaming media as it is from nostalgic fans. Of course this is something common among many long running game franchises like Call of Duty, FIFA and much of Nintendos catalogue to name a few. But the Zelda franchise is certainly one of the worst cases, in articles and arguments growing steadily further and further from comparison to other games into some kind of weird introspective and cyclical meta-debate. Writing witty articles about franchise extravagances notwithstanding =)

The problem as I see it is that most of the time when I read new Zelda related articles or reviews they are decisively focused on the games as parts of the franchise, not individually in comparison to other games of the time. In general nowadays this tends to be from a negative point of view, focusing on the to some people apparent 'stagnation', 'lack of innovation' and 'backwardsness'. Most new Zelda games are first and foremost citicized for being just that, "Oh god not another" Zelda game.

Of course to people like me who like uncle Peter, the fact that there are many recogniseable characters, that the gameplay is similar and that "it's just Dungeon-Overworld-Dungeon-Overworld, the tired Zelda structure" is part of the core concept and will seem like quite asinine criticism. For example me criticizing the Silent Hill series formula of 'enter area-check all doors-solve a puzzle, rinse repeat', the stereotypical psychological horror imagery and claiming that the personal trauma driven story is boringly predictable by this point would be equally dense.

It doesn't surpise me that it often comes to this. If I was doing video games coverage for a living (or as a hobby) and had to write about gaming franchises I didn't really care about over and over again because they were overwhelmingly popular I wouldn't be too happy about it either. Especially since many franchises never seem to die in this industry. Focusing more on the individual games and how they compare to others in the genre at present and more descriptions of the actual game per se(game reviews seems to assume I am versed in the gameplay and standards of every genre) will make it easier for everyone.

No one enjoys being called out as a rabid fan or to be demoralized for liking something. Even though the opinion is the same, directing the criticism against aspects of a game instead of the franchise and its associated sub-culture is more clear, poignant and simply nice. Though its not neccesarily more fun and does not grant more page views, unfortunately.

Of course expressing personal opinion is important too, but this can be done in more or less belittling ways. Going back to the series first in question; some people feel that the Zelda series not aiming for a higher aged target audience with more challenging content and story is a big issue for them. Expressing that through "Zelda games are only for children" for example, is not a very constructive way.

So this block of text got alot more bloated then I meant it to be, sorry about that!
TLDR: Lack of constructive criticism surrounding gaming franchises. Flaming is bad ;( Kittens are cute :) Feel free to flame me for being Captain Obvious, naive or both (open goal, yes).

CaitSeith:

Don't forget Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, where he used the triforce to wake up Zelda from a 100 years long coma.

Oh, yeah. I didn't brought out Zelda 2, because that Princess Zelda just rise further questions, continuity-wise. First, it's a different Zelda From Zelda 1 (what happened to the Zelda of Zelda 1, nobody knows) Second, it is said to be the first Zelda, as it is said that when she was set asleep, Her brother made it a tradition to name every firt girl of the royal family "Zelda", hence why there is always a princess named Zelda in the zelda game.

Does this means She is actually the Zelda from Skyward Sword (also labelled as being the first mortal Zelda), having been put to sleep by a lately born brother? And meaning that SS Link and Zelda never ended up together and she had to sleep up until Zelda 2 to finally be awoken by an other Link (and smooch him as soon as she woke up)? This hardly make sense...

GUIGUI:
we don't know what they do with the Triforce, as it is not mentioned in Zelda 2.

DAFUQ?!

There you see the Triforce de-distressing the damsel, and leading to a make-out session, probably the most powerful display for the Triforce yet (considering the barrier of Nintendo prudishness on the subject). But, alas, as someone on the gamefaqs forums stated:

The one time Link does get a kiss from Zelda, she (most likely) has horrendous morning breath. Fantastic.

Link Satonaka:

Yeah, I myself just ignore all the parts of WindWaker and the other games that treat the triforce like a trinket anyone can dig up with a boat and map. It's a symbolic representation of the virtues of three people, dammit! It has no physical form that can be thrown around like an empty beer can, or worse, broken into pieces (seriously wtf windwaker)!

*cough*

Um.

Wind Waker didn't come up with the idea of a piece of the triforce being broken into pieces that then have to be gathered to re-form the triangle.

Zelda 1 did that.

Oskuro:

GUIGUI:
we don't know what they do with the Triforce, as it is not mentioned in Zelda 2.

DAFUQ?!

There you see the Triforce de-distressing the damsel, and leading to a make-out session, probably the most powerful display for the Triforce yet (considering the barrier of Nintendo prudishness on the subject). But, alas, as someone on the gamefaqs forums stated:

Oops, indeed, turin out I remembered Zelda 1 and 2 completly wrong. I corrected that.

I think we have reached a point where we can completly rule out thhe Zelda from Zelda 2 being the first Zelda.

The Triforce in Twilight Princess kept Zelda and Link from becoming the Ghostly things when they were trapped in areas of darkness that had to be purged with the vessel, in Link's case instead becoming a wolf instead of a ghostly thing.

sageoftruth:
Well, a long time ago (like 20 years ago) I read a comic book of Nintendo characters including Link from Legend of Zelda (the "excuuuuuse me princess one. Does that count?).

While those old cartoons are hilarious, I dont think its safe to count them as lore - that was pretty much during Nintendo's "Lets sell everything we can under our name in all shapes and forms" phase so I wouldn't be surprised if the storylines for the comic and cartoon were pretty much agreed by Nintendo waving their hands in dismissal at the cartoonist while saying, "Yeah whatever mate, just make it look good" as they watched the money roll in.

Noble_Lance:
The Triforce in Twilight Princess kept Zelda and Link from becoming the Ghostly things when they were trapped in areas of darkness that had to be purged with the vessel, in Link's case instead becoming a wolf instead of a ghostly thing.

Having Wisdom passed to her also cured Midna of her light poisoning.

The Triforce does grant wishes, but since it is made from the essence of the Goddesses, to wield its full potential, you need to be a god yourself.

Actually, Skyward Sword stated exactly the contrary: only mortals can wield the triforce to its full potential, a fact which angered Demise so much that he started a genocidal war against the very mortals who worshipped his race of demigods... So actually, the whole Zelda series storyline stems from a spoiled aristocrat throwing a huge, destructive tamper tantrum and being stopped by his more cool-headed fellow semigoddess who eventually train and manipulate a mortal to become the instrument of his final humiliation. Although I consider it largely inferior to Twilight Princess in every other domains except perhaps for the art style I actually really like the way Skyward Sword affected the series mythos.

Ganondorf failing to control the Triforce might come from the fact that he carries the Id of Demise, or simply because his very wish is to become a god, a thing against which the Triforce seems to have built-in failsafes.

I can just see it now; Tingle is Love, Tingle is Life. You're welcome.

Johnny Novgorod:
The Zelda IP is what you get if you tried to string every Mario game ever made into a single continuity - messy and dissonant, to begin with.

Would that make Mario some omnipresent being, wherein' every game is simple another Universe (the characters never aging or dying and old rivalry's put aside for party games and go-karting)?!

MrHide-Patten:
I can just see it now; Tingle is Love, Tingle is Life. You're welcome.

Johnny Novgorod:
The Zelda IP is what you get if you tried to string every Mario game ever made into a single continuity - messy and dissonant, to begin with.

Would that make Mario some omnipresent being, wherein' every game is simple another Universe (the characters never aging or dying and old rivalry's put aside for party games and go-karting)?!

Well we have an origin story (Yoshi's Island). I suppose everything else would string more or less lineally, dropping the "alternate universe" thing whenever things get a little too hectic to follow. Or just don't follow at all, from a logical POV.

Invadergray:
Before the Hyrule Historia made the timeline continuity canon, there was an interesting fan theory that the Zelda games were all the same story told through the lens of different cultures. I agree that creating the official continuity detracted from many of the games.

I agree. Before the official timeline (which I haven't read) was published I aways considered each game to be independent of all the others with the exceptions of direct sequels like Majora's Mask and Phantom Hourglass. it just made more sense that way, since there were so many conflicting details.

Enlong:

Link Satonaka:

Yeah, I myself just ignore all the parts of WindWaker and the other games that treat the triforce like a trinket anyone can dig up with a boat and map. It's a symbolic representation of the virtues of three people, dammit! It has no physical form that can be thrown around like an empty beer can, or worse, broken into pieces (seriously wtf windwaker)!

*cough*

Um.

Wind Waker didn't come up with the idea of a piece of the triforce being broken into pieces that then have to be gathered to re-form the triangle.

Zelda 1 did that.

Oh I know, however my argument that "story was put aside for the purposes of gameplay" amplifies ad infinitum if you want to talk about the earliest titles. More accurately though, "The Legend of Zelda" is a NES game with a simple backstory. You don't have much depth of mechanics or story there. I would argue that, upon entering the world of 3D games, the Zelda franchise had a soft reboot in terms of lore. As well as gaining a 3rd visual dimension, the plot in the first 3D Zelda also gained some depth. WindWaker was a revisit to the concept of it being fallible material. Something I hoped they would just forget about.

In short, the Triforce is a physical manifestation of the Goddess Hylia's power. But it needs some context.

In Skyward Sword, it is stated that there was a great war with the Goddess and the mortal races (Hylians excluded) against Demise (basically the Devil) and his demons. Demise was sealed away, but not truly defeated. Afterwards, the Goddess Hylia split her power up, so that it would be harder for the forces of Demise to effectively counter it. The first part is her avatar, Zelda and her reincarnations. The second part is the Goddess Sword (later to become the Master Sword), a specialized weapon for countering demon magic. The third part is the Triforce, which is in turn, composed of 3 separate pieces, and designed to split apart if anyone other than a paragon of good were to touch it. Each piece, power, wisdom, and courage, conveys certain powers separately, but when all 3 are gathered together, they form a greater power than it's constituent parts; the power of a god, to create and destroy at will.

When Demise is defeated by Link, he loses most of his power, but still has enough left to create his own avatar, Ganondorf. Not having been able to make his own anti-Triforce, he must now obtain the Triforce of the Goddess to bolster his power, and to prevent it from being used against him, again.

The Triforce exists to ensure that Hyrule will always have a future. It does so by hanging around waiting for Ganon to steal it so Nintendo will make another game.

Fasckira:
Nintendo's "Let's sell everything we can under our name in all shapes and forms" phase

I remember Nintendo breakfast cereal. It had two half-bags in the box, one of Mario-themed cereal and one of Zelda-themed cereal. I can't remember what it tasted like, but I'm pretty sure the Link on the box had a word balloon saying something like, "It's an adventure in breakfast flavor!"

"I always find it to be a bit of a futile exercise to critique Nintendo's major tentpole franchises, because I'm not sure who I think I'm talking to. The people who like them like them in the same way they like seeing familiar old Uncle Peter showing up to sing them their favorite old songs and tell them their favorite old jokes, and they don't want me complaining about how you've heard them all before and Uncle Peter should grow up and find better things to do with his life."

No that's Mega Man fans and I'm starting to think that maybe that's part of the reason why Capcom is ignoring the blue bomber lately.

I can't speak for all Nintendo fans but my approach is, if you wanna piss on Nintendo's games, have valid points instead of nitpicks and stop pretending they're all the same like you think they are. (Notice how he didn't acknowledge that the backlash was the result of his comment towards Zelda fans at the end of the review?)

Or better yet, just skip Nintendo and stick to reviewing the AAA market. That seems to be what you're best at Yahtzee: looking past all of the hype the AAA market shoves in our faces and actually analyzing if the games are worth picking up or not.

And for the love of god while I'm ranting I feel I need to bring this up: DON'T REVIEW SMASH 4! That'll really kill any reliability you have as a reviewer.

Link Satonaka:

Enlong:

Link Satonaka:

Yeah, I myself just ignore all the parts of WindWaker and the other games that treat the triforce like a trinket anyone can dig up with a boat and map. It's a symbolic representation of the virtues of three people, dammit! It has no physical form that can be thrown around like an empty beer can, or worse, broken into pieces (seriously wtf windwaker)!

*cough*

Um.

Wind Waker didn't come up with the idea of a piece of the triforce being broken into pieces that then have to be gathered to re-form the triangle.

Zelda 1 did that.

Oh I know, however my argument that "story was put aside for the purposes of gameplay" amplifies ad infinitum if you want to talk about the earliest titles. More accurately though, "The Legend of Zelda" is a NES game with a simple backstory. You don't have much depth of mechanics or story there. I would argue that, upon entering the world of 3D games, the Zelda franchise had a soft reboot in terms of lore. As well as gaining a 3rd visual dimension, the plot in the first 3D Zelda also gained some depth. WindWaker was a revisit to the concept of it being fallible material. Something I hoped they would just forget about.

Alright. There's not much more that can be said to that point of view, since it takes into account all the existing material, but just makes the choice to interpret it differently.

I will say that it's not really the manifestation of a person's courage/wisdom/power. Rather, the pieces go to people who prove that they already have those qualities. Take the triforce from Link, and he's still brave.

Beat Writer:
In short, the Triforce is a physical manifestation of the Goddess Hylia's power.(...)

Uuh no? Not at all. Even when Hylia was still a Godess, the Triforce already existed. The trriforce was created byt the 3 Goddesses: Faror, Naryu and Din. The things is, only mortals can use the Triforce. As Hylia was unable o fully destroy Demize, she chose to become a mortal to wish Demize away. The Triforce is made of the essence of the 3 original Goddesses, not Hylia.

Wordsmith Extraordinaire:
it just made more sense that way, since there were so many conflicting details.(...)

Except there isn't a single contradiction inthe Zelda Series. As a matter of fact, there is much more ellement that contradict the "It's the same tale, jut with different takes" theory. The story of the different Zelda games tend to differ too much and have too varied themes, (not to mention actually having elements of continuity) for it to work whtout discarding many ellements.

Also, even if it wasn't in the game themselves, the manuals already brought a deep story (for an 80's game) to the series. Back then, manual was were the story was.

It's interresting that in the first ame you only get the Shard of Wisdom and Power and have to wait for the second game to have the third shard, the one of courage.

Maybe the Triforce acts as a kind of insurance so that the Hylians renews itself and doesn't stagnate or maybe it's used Because it stagnates?

Yahtzee, as fun as your theory is, a little research would go a long way to explaining the Triforce, what it's done, and how it works.

Firstly, it has been repeatedly shown to have incredible power - such as restoring its Lorule counterpart, killing a demon god, dispelling a seemingly unbreakable curse, shaping an entire world, and so on. Hyrule being sealed away in Wind Waker was the work of the gods, not the king, and only the power of the gods could break the seal and flood it. Its ability to grant wishes is not in dispute by any means.

Secondly, Ganondorf very rarely gains possession of the true Triforce - he usually only has the Triforce of Power, just one portion of three, after his first attempt to acquire it resulted in it splitting because of his wicked heart, meaning he had to hunt down Link and Zelda to retrieve the other parts to actually use its full power. Even the Triforce of Power itself has the power to basically cheat death - in OoT, he literally wills himself back to life for the final battle, forcing Zelda and Link to seal him away instead, and in Twilight Princess, the Sages tried to execute him, and failed miserably. The guy shrugged off being impaled in the chest by a sword literally made from his weakness, for pete's sake.

Thirdly, even when he has gotten the full Triforce, its implied that it doesn't necessarily respond to any specifics when it comes to wishes unless a wish is strong enough - hence the Dark World in ALttP and Hyrule turning into a hellish wasteland in Hyrule Warriors. Its quite possible that his nature as the reincarnation of Demise, who is quite possibly a deity himself (at the very least, a demon king who is certainly not mortal), he cannot properly use the Triforce, because the Triforce cannot be used by Gods, only mortals, and thus it only responds to the basic desire to 'rule the world', which shapes the world into something that reflects his evil heart.

The Triforce isn't exactly consistent across games, to be fair, but it's not like there isn't an established ruleset and history for it.

"So why pretend it was the Triforce granting his wish? That's obvious: because it's in everyone's best interest for Ganondorf not to realize that the Triforce is scrap metal, something he was moments from discovering. If he couldn't be eternally distracted by the wild goose chase, then he may finally start devoting his energies to finding the true artifact of ultimate power in the Zelda universe"

Ooh, I like that! Could be true! :D
Anyway, Tingle's Jockstrap aside, I'd hunt the Master Sword if I was Gannondorf, as that appears to be what always does him in.
And he could use it himself it not destroy it so Link can't use it.

Plus, in other games he does stuff against/with Elders, medallions and shards or something if I recall correctly.
Generally it's Zelda that needs the Triforce to defeat Gannon, not the other way around.

I think that the green tunic is the real deal. Has the power of turn a 12 years old in to a mass murder.

I'm more willing to accept Hyrule Historia's timeline as the correct (not that I have much saying). However, each new Zelda game is centuries apart from the previous one (with exceptions) which leads to some detail being forgotten or changed when retold. That's why some things in WW aren't explained the same as it happened in OoT. The people who you meet don't know what actually happened. They just know the story, the story is retold over and over again until it changes and becomes a legend. Each previous Zelda game is a legend in the next one (chronologically speaking, not by release date).
That's why the story about the creation of the Master Sword in SS isn't the same as told in other games.

That's why I don't consider it to be "retconning" when a character says "It happened like X" and another character in a different game says "It happened like Y". They are telling the story, the history, the legend as they know it. Depending on how far apart the things that happened are, they will lose details.

Saying that the games can't be put in a continuous timeline is doing the franchise a disservice. Sure, it's hard to believe that Miyamoto thought how Zelda 1 happened because a previous Link lost against Ganon, a huge Imprisoning war happened, Ganon got the Triforce, was trapped in the sacred realm, broke out, got killed, got resurrected, got killed, got resurrected and new resurrection prevented. I doubt he planed the timeline a it is. But there is no doubt that there are hints in games that there is a timeline connection between them.

As for the triforce, if someone unworthy touches it, it will break apart into the 3 parts. Power, Wisdom and Courage. What the Triforce of Power does is rather straightforward. It gives power. The Triforce of Wisdom is less straightforward. It gives less of a bonus, it's rather a proof of the person being really wise. It does appear to increase the magical/holy power and give regenerative magic, but not even a tiny bit as much as the Triforce of Power.
And last is the Triforce of Courage. As it appears, it doesn't actually give any bonuses to the person possessing it. It just shows that the person is worthy of holding the piece and it's a necessary trait to obtain the whole triforce.

How to obtain it is rather simple. There are 2 cases. 1st case is if it's already complete. 2nd if it's separated.
1. You touch it. If you're deemed worthy, you get 1 wish. If you're deemed unworthy, it breaks apart, you get the part that fits the best to your trait and the other 2 find hosts in the people who are deemed to be most fitting. To obtain the whole thing, you have to take it from the other 2.
2. It's separated. You have to prove yourself to be worthy of each part before you can obtain it. Sometimes it's just a collection quest, but only the one who is worthy of it will be able to finish the quest.

Personally, while I support the notion that the Triforce always DID have power in the previous games, and how the power manifested with the personalities of Link (Courageous Hero), Zelda (Wise Ruler) and Ganon (Powerful Tyrant), the concept of it losing power over time does give something to ponder about if it affected a future game, or if a game decides to take a meta look on the 'perpetual cycle of the Triforce' over the series.

I already gave my suggestions for what a Zelda game subverting the usual plotlines of the game could look like ( link ), but here are some things I would add based on Yahtzee's points:

First, the villain (still codenamed Mr. X for now), isn't just a genre-savvy villain who kills Ganon before the game, and uses the Triforce of Power to kickstart a steampunk empire that conquers the world before Link and Zelda are even children, but also has motivations based on Yahtzee's long-standing complaints against the Zelda series: the fact all the games were reincarnation cycles of Link, Zelda and Ganon going through the motions of "Ganon wants to take over world, Ganon gets Triforce to take over world, Link (and sometimes Zelda) set out to stop him". This happens after Mr. X studies historical and mythological records referring to this reincarnation cycle (or perhaps realizes it after the cross-continuity explosion of Hyrule Warriors makes him realize the scope of the 'problem'), and concludes Hyrule would be doomed to stagnation because of it. So, he takes out Ganon when his reincarnation first makes his presence known in Mr. X's timeline, and takes the Triforce of Power to forge an empire of his own. However, that's only the first step of Mr. X's plan.

The second step is that Mr. X and his new government suppresses any person or item that in some way mentions the reincarnation cycle, hoping it would prevent the Link and Zelda of this cycle from realizing their destinies this time around. However, this is ultimately a stop-gap measure for Mr. X to continue building his empire and army, since he knows there will be some documents of the cycle that would escape his purging, or people who know enough of the legends but are able to escape his notice. Eventually, the reincarnated Link and Zelda do indeed learn of their destinies, or are taken in by a movement that knows of their destinies, and thus set off to stop Mr. X. But then there's the final part of Mr. X's plan.

The third step involves Mr. X's army defeating Link and Zelda in a way that doesn't just kill them, as that would only send their souls to begin the next cycle, but to claim their souls along with their Triforce pieces, and add them to the great machine that Mr. X used to power his empire - once he added their Triforces and souls of Link and Zelda to those of Ganon, Mr. X would use the concentrated power to destroy the cycle caused by the Triforce, even if it risked destroying his empire, the world, or even all of creation - as far as he's concerned, it's best to completely wipe the slate clean than go through another rerun of The Legend of Zelda.

Sadly for Yahtzee, Mr. X is still defeated by Link and Zelda, and the cycle would still continue - however, the effects of this one game would actually make Ganon less of a villain in future games, as his torment within Mr. X's machine, along with the realization of his role the cycle, would begin to make Ganon question why he's eternally doomed to become a monster that would always lay waste to the world, only to be repeatedly destroyed or defeated by Link and Zelda for his troubles. This may even result in one incarnation of Ganon openly defying Demize (the demon who started Ganon's side of the reincarnation mess in Skyward Sword) to become a genuine hero in his own right, and also leading to more villains in the series in his place - either those who wanted to take Ganon's position as Demize's disciple on Earth, or wanted to follow Mr. X's example of destroying the reincarnation cycle to reform the world in their own image.

Over time, it would result in a situation akin to the Mario RPG series, where Mario/Link is still the hero, but Princess Peach/Zelda serves more as an active ally instead of a captured damsel, and even Bowser/Ganon more often than not joins the heroes to stop whatever new villain is trying to conquer or destroy the world HE wanted to destroy or conquer in the first place. No, it won't completely break the reincarnation cycle, or render the Triforce to useless chunks of metal, but it would finally give the 'meta-aware Batman/Joker rivalry' that Yahtzee mentioned at the beginning of the review. For some long-running franchises you're not a devoted fan of, that's probably the best you can hope for.

You fool. The triforce doesn't need to do anything because it doesn't want to do anything. It exists not as this great artifact of power to benefit some kind of "chosen" that can assemble it. The triforce isn't some source of magic. It is a magic drain. Something that feeds on magic. It causes the things that happen in Zelda. It causes a similar story to happen every time because it has identified that these certain key individuals feed it the most. And what exactly is that? It is the energy directed throughout the tale. All the hope and all the struggle and battles and magic thrown around and magic items procured and put to use. The triforce feeds on all of it and becomes more powerful. To continue the charade it will then convert some, which it then bestows upon someone, to give the whole nonsense some credibility and validity. But it isn't an even conversion. The triforce keeps most of the power for itself. But as time passes it gets less and less from those from which it takes. And as its power grows it becomes more and more evil. As these things happen it gets stingier with the power it is willing to give away. And this is what causes the games to get darker and darker as time goes by. Those that it has fight and struggle for it must struggle harder and harder in their weakend states to appease its greater desire for power, for less reward each time, making them even colder and harder. To say nothing of the impact the constant battles have on them. Somebody showing up at the last minute seems awfully convenient doesn't it? Why didn't they just do that before? Well that's because that was before the triforce was fed with another giant struggle. But the triforce had other plans about what would happen when it came time to bestow some magic this time. This is the truth of things. You identified that there is something wrong with the story and that it has to do with the triforce but you missed what's really happening in Hyrule.

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