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Artwork of the Lost Woods in The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
|First appearance||The Legend of Zelda (1986)|
|Latest appearance||Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity (2020)|
|Inhabitant(s)||Skull Kids, Deku Scrubs|
The Lost Woods is a large enchanted forest and a recurring location in The Legend of Zelda games, starting with the first The Legend of Zelda game. The Lost Woods has a different layout in its appearances, but it consistently has a maze-like structure that causes people to travel in circles unless they take the correct path. In several games, the Lost Woods is where the Great Deku Tree is found, and a shrine with the Master Sword also often appears within the Lost Woods. Common inhabitants of the Lost Woods include Skull Kids and Deku Scrubs.
The Legend of Zelda
In The Legend of Zelda, the Lost Woods is one of two places in the game (the other being the Lost Hills) where a specific pattern must be walked in order to avoid being trapped. Moving north, west or south aimlessly will result in the exact same screen loading over and over; however, if Link moves east, he will escape the Lost Woods. Moving north, west, south, then west again will bring him to the Graveyard.
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
In The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, the Lost Woods is located in the northwestern section of Hyrule, directly north of Kakariko Village. The forest is mist-drenched and broken up by ridges of impassable ground. Fallen hollow tree trunks litter the forest, providing the only way through the terrain. In the northern reaches of the forest, a glade filled with animals holds the Master Sword. However, there are several fake swords scattered throughout the forest. Removing the Master Sword from its pedestal causes the mist to flee, but even then, the forest is thick enough that it remains full of shadows. The dark shadows of the trees are also good growing conditions for fungi, including the Mushroom.
Thieves have a significant presence in the Lost Woods. Link may be accosted by Thieves while wandering the region who will try to steal his Rupees, bombs, and arrows. The Thieves also run a high stakes Rupee gambling game and have a hideout that holds a Piece of Heart.
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
In The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, the Lost Woods lies directly to the north of Kokiri Forest and is inhabited by Skull Kids. It is a maze of trees that can be navigated by either following the sound of "Saria's Song", or following the paths that have white in them until Link reaches the place where the only "White path" is the one he came through. Taking a wrong path leads back to the entrance in Kokiri Forest; if navigated correctly, the Lost Woods will eventually lead Link to the Sacred Forest Meadow. Portals to Goron City and Zora's Domain are hidden within the Lost Woods. Also found in the woods is a Fairy Slingshot challenge where Link can win an upgrade for his Deku Seeds Bullet Bag. The area is also home to a few Business Scrubs. There are two locations where Link can play songs with the Skull Kids residing there and receive Pieces of Heart.
According to local folklore, any Hylian that does not possess a Fairy will be transformed after becoming lost in the forest: Adults will become Stalfos, while children transform into Skull Kids. According to Fado, Grog has suffered such a fate.
The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask
In The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, the Lost Woods is the starting location, and can only be accessed during this part of the game. There seems to be a portal to Termina deep in the Lost Woods, which the Skull Kid has been using. Link ends up pursuing the Skull Kid back through the portal back into Termina. Apparently this is not the first time the Skull Kid has traveled through the portal: at the end of Majora's Mask, he indicates he met Link in Ocarina of Time in the Lost Woods, at which point he had not met Tatl and Tael; he is shown to meet the fairies in the hollow log in Termina; and he clearly returns to the Lost Woods before he steals the Ocarina of Time from Link. While he seems to mug the Happy Mask Salesman in the Lost Woods, this may have been the same visit to the Lost Woods as when he took the Ocarina off Link. It is not clear whether the Skull Kid is aware he has traveled to another world; he refers to the place where Link taught him the song as 'the woods', as if it were any other part of Termina. The Lost Woods is the only area in Hyrule that is seen in the game. It is never mentioned in game that this area is really the Lost Woods, though it has been referred to as such in other Nintendo licensed materials.
The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons
In The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons, the Lost Woods is the location of the penultimate step in the quest for the Noble Sword. Beneath a tree in the southeastern region of the woods is a singing Deku Scrub. After Link plays the Phonograph for it, it tells Link how to find the Noble Sword by teaching him the correct path to navigate the Lost Woods. Similar to the Lost Woods in The Legend of Zelda, the Lost Woods include a repeating screen in which Link must travel in each direction in the correct order while also using the Rod of Seasons to manipulate nature in order to pass. After successfully navigating it, Link can either travel west to the Noble Sword or north, further into the Tarm Ruins.
The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures
In The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures, the Lost Woods is the first stage of the The Dark World, the game's fifth level. Much of the Woods is overrun with Deku Scrubs and Buzzblobs. Floormasters will occasionally try to pull Link into the Dark World. Many Anti-Fairies are in the Dark World. Although there is no specific path that Link is required to take, many of the screens are very similar to each other. Near the bottom of the level are two items: the Roc's Feather and the Pegasus Boots. The Roc's Feather is used to access the Lantern, which is then used to get past tree stumps and, ultimately, get to the Moon Pearl.
By talking to various Deku Scrubs, Link learns that they have hidden a Shovel. By helping a pair of Deku Scrubs called Dekki and Deppi in the southwestern Lost Woods, Link earns a Power Bracelet that he can use to proceed farther into the forest, where he must defeat several Gohma. He then finds a key that can be used to open their storage shed. After picking up their shovel, Link can continue through the woods through a hole in the ground just east of the circle of Deku Scrubs.
Unlike most stages, the Lost Woods does not have a final boss; however, Shadow Link appears, dropping Giant Bombs. Link must avoid them while searching for an underground passage leading north. After Link escapes Shadow Link, he can continue toward Kakariko Village.
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
In The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, the Lost Woods is not specifically named, but encompasses an obscure section of Faron Woods reached by crossing a series of large gaps adjacent to the Forest Temple's entrance. It must be navigated twice in the game, and can be visited at any time after the second runthrough thanks to a portal. The first time he needs to reach it, Link is trapped in his Wolf form and needs to have Midna guide his jumps; during this, some of the path collapses behind him, making it impossible to navigate through this way again. The second time, he must glide over the gaps with the Golden Cucco while he is a human.
The forest itself once again has a maze of passages made of hollow logs, has "Saria's Song" for background music, and leads to the Sacred Grove, though its paths are more winding and intertwined than previous depictions. It is also again inhabited by Skull Kid, who uses his many Puppets to harass visitors, such as Link and the flower-wearing monkey. Additionally, Skull Kid blocks several of the log tunnels during both navigations, and he must be repeatedly found and attacked for them to be restored. Both trips end with Skull Kid leading Link to a separate circular arena to fight him, after which Skull Kid thanks him for playing his "game" and grants him access to the Sacred Grove. If revisited, the Lost Woods are brighter and all the paths save for the one that leads to the first arena are permanently opened, and there are no enemies barring optional Puppets that can be knocked out of trees by rolling.
The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks
In The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, Link must pass through the Lost Woods in order to reach the Forest Sanctuary and meet Gage, with whom Link must play a "Lokomo Song" in order to restore the Spirit Tracks in the Forest Realm. To navigate through the Lost Woods, Link must follow the trees in the forest; if a tree points towards the right of the tracks right before a fork in the road, Link must take the path to the right, and vice versa. The fourth and last tree that is encountered indicates the wrong direction; thus, Link must choose the track that is the opposite of the fourth tree. Once Link solves this puzzle, he does not need to repeat it.
The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
In The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, similar to The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, the Lost Woods houses the Master Sword. To obtain it, Link must retrieve all three Pendants of Virtue from across Hyrule. When Link enters the Lost Woods, he is met with nine Poes. There are three stages to this test. First, a Poe will tell Link to follow it. If Link goes in the proper direction, he will be met again by the Poes. Two of them test him by attempting to mislead the young hero and instruct him to go in the direction that they did not. Afterwards, three Poes will attempt to mislead Link in the same manner. After this, Link will be lead to the meadow housing the Master Sword. Once Link obtains the Master Sword, Sahasrahla will telepathically speak to Link, telling him to use the newly-obtained sword to destroy the barrier at Hyrule Castle.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
In The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, the Lost Woods is similar to its iteration in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. It is a maze of trees and taking a wrong path leads back to the entrance. The Lost Woods are located north to the north of Korok Forest, in the Great Hyrule Forest region. This iteration of the woods can be navigated by following the changing direction of the wind seen through thick fog and blowing embers of small torches.
Names in other languages
Mayoi no Mori
|The Lost's Forest|
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