The lights are on
It’s rare that I immediately replay a game in my free time after reviewing it for work, but I did just that with The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds. After giving it my first 10 score in my review, I started round two at home in an effort to do everything there is to be done in the game. Now that I’ve beat it twice and scoured every inch of Hyrule and Lorule, I’ve come up with three simple tips that should make your time with this amazing game even better.
Get the Pegasus Boots early
Don’t make the mistake I did. I spent the majority of my first playthrough without the Pegasus Boots, simply because I didn’t talk to the guy in Kakariko Village that tips you off to their location. After the Shady Guy steals the Smooth Gem from the Zoras, he starts hanging out near a wall in the northeast section of the village. He’ll run away from you if you try to approach him, but the way to catch him is easy. Merge against the wall a ways away from him, then sneak up behind him and burst out (here’s a crappy cell phone pic I took for reference). Without much fuss, he’ll give up the Pegasus Boots and you can dash to your heart’s content.
Use the compass fully in every Lorule dungeon
We all know the frustration of spending a bunch of time trying to reach a treasure chest, only to find out that it contains a red rupee. That said, you shouldn’t leave a dungeon in Lorule unless you’ve used the compass to ensure that you’ve collected every single chest. Each dungeon features an optional, but highly useful item that you don’t want to pass up. By making sure you’ve collected everything before leaving, you’ll acquire the Hylian Shield, an item that doubles your stamina bar, upgraded tunics that greatly reduce your taken damage, and most importantly, three pieces of Master Ore that can be used to upgrade your Master Sword (the fourth is found in the Lorule overworld near the Sanctuary).
Make Maiamais a priority
A little southeast of Link’s house in Hyrule, you’ll find a cave that contains a large mother octopus. She informs you that 100 of her babies (called Maiamais) have been lost throughout the world, and that they can frequently be heard chirping. Thankfully, a map is available that makes it clear how many of these creatures are left in each section. As early as you can, spend a bunch of time exploring the world and listening for the chirps of these Maiamai creatures. For every ten you collect, you can bring them back to the mother and she’ll upgrade one of your items. I recommend prioritizing the bow and fire rod, as they’ll come in very handy during battle. Once all 100 are collected, you’re granted a ridiculously useful ability that will allow you to take down even the toughest enemies with ease (especially if your sword is fully upgraded).