May 20, 2024


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Tears from the depths of the kingdom hides one of Zelda’s greatest mysteries

Tears from the depths of the kingdom hides one of Zelda’s greatest mysteries

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom launched weeks ago, but players still find plenty of amazing secrets, easter eggs, and tales of lore throughout the game. One of the most interesting and intriguing of these mysteries involves depths, and it has taken gamers until recently to fully begin to discover just how deep the rabbit hole goes.

Warning: This article addresses some major spoilers regarding the layout and locations in the depths. If you haven’t explored much of the map yet, read on at your own risk!

Early on in Tears of the Kingdom, you might start to get hints about what’s really going on with the depths. For example, you might notice that the Lightroots in the Depths seem to correspond to Shrine’s locations on the surface, and that their names reverse Shrine’s names. So Mayachin Shrine on the surface is Nihcayam Lightroot in the depths. Neat, isn’t it?

But it goes much further than that. Indeed, the depths appear to be a literal dark mirror of the surface above, with all of their major locations and landmarks corresponding to those at the surface.

a Recent Reddit thread He has cataloged a number of these parallels, and IGN has been able to confirm that they are correct. For example, the goddess statues on the surface correspond to the bargaining statues in the depths, and cities correspond to the great mines. The forests on the surface are groves in the depths, and the Leviathan skeletons on the surface are lined with dark skeletons underground. The similarities are striking. At least some Redditors are suggesting that some of the boss locations between the two maps match.

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Moreover, the topography also seems to reflect itself. The tall mountains on the surface seem to be deep valleys with mines in the depths. Those giant walls you keep bumping into underground blocking your progress? Those tend to line up with rivers and other bodies of water above the ground. Basically, to navigate the depths, you can use your surface map and keep an eye out for shrines that correspond with Lightroots to light the way, and avoid rivers, as they will generally hinder progress.

The level of detail here is really incredible, because it means Nintendo has essentially created a “Dark World” version of Hyrule ala Link to the Past, but underground instead of in a mirror. It’s a really amazing secret once you realize what’s really going on.

If you still need a little help getting to the depths in the first place, check out our guide to the Camera Work in the Depths task that will get you there.

And for help with all things Kingdom Tears, take a look at our Kingdom Tears Walkthrough and guide on making your way through Hyrule. In fact, you can start here:

Rebecca Valentine is a senior reporter at IGN. You can find her on Twitter @employee.