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The Zelda Timeline Thread!

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Mar 31, 2010 at 5:09 PM
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#1
Okay, so this is one of the most hotly debated and discussed topics amongst Zelda fans and always has been. What's the Zelda timeline, in your mind? When do the games take place? Is A Link to the Past really before Zeldas 1 and 2 as you'd normally believe, or was the title misleading? Where do the Oracles games, Link's Awakening, Four Swords, etc. fit in? Should silly games like Soul Calibur 2, Smash Bros. and the CD-i series fit anywhere?

It's all up to you! I realize that some people are adamant about the fact that Zelda doesn't/shouldn't have a solid timeline except obvious connections a few games share with each other (such as OoT/MM, and Wind Waker/Phantom Hourglass/Spirit Tracks) but I've always thought it was really fun to think up how things stack up together.. and I've formulated quite the theory myself between my own observations having been a Zelda fan for 20-some years since I was a toddler on the NES, plus others' theories and things I've read and learned online. So, here's mine:

- Zelda: Ocarina of Time is, thus far, the earliest game in the series.

- At the end of Ocarina of Time, Zelda sends Link back seven years so he can experience his childhood normally instead of having to skip it to save Hyrule. This creates a rift in dimensions;

- There's a dimension in which Link, as a child, is able to convince the King of Hyrule of Ganon's treachery and goes on to experience Majora's Mask. We'll call this Timeline A.

- There's a dimension in which Link, after defeating Ganon, was sent back and 'erased' from the current timeline, after which Ganon returned and, with no Link to stop him, completely ruled over all Hyrule. The gods, with no other choice except to allow mankind to be swallowed by Ganon's evil, flooded Hyrule so that only a spread of islands that could sustain life remained. This is where Wind Waker comes in. We'll call this Timeline B.

TIMELINE A:

- Majora's Mask

- Oracle of Ages and Oracle of Seasons BOTH take place either directly before or directly after Majora's Mask in my opinion. It seems to be the same young Link, the same Epona and the same Hyrule Castle as Ocarina of Time, which would be impossible in Timeline B except possibly at the very end of the timeline anyway. Some people claim that each Oracle game takes place simultaneously on either timeline, but they seem to forget that there was going to be a third Oracle game, themed after Farore and the color green, and unless you give Minish Cap/Four Swords its own timeline there are only two..so I find it plausible that all three--or at least these two--take place one after the other in either order in the same timeline

- Twilight Princess. I have to admit that I still am nowhere near finishing this game even though I've owned it for years, I've just had too many huge games to play and this one hasn't made its way into my schedule yet. However, from what I do know, I feel pretty certain of a few things. First of all, this probably takes place about the same time as Wind Waker does in Timeline B.. but Hyrule's not flooded. Ganon's warped the power of the Triforce and the Twilight Realm is created.. a precursor to LttP's Dark World.

- Link to the Past. The Golden Land has fully formed under Ganon's command of the Triforce into the Dark World. Ganon seems to be completely destroyed for good at the end of this game in Timeline A.

- I like to think that Link's Awakening takes place after Link to the Past. Besides the obvious fact that it was released just after it in real life and the player was probably meant to connect this Link to the one in LttP, one of the Nightmares that Link must face is a Ganon that fights just like he did in LttP, and another Nightmare is Aganhim, who only appears in LttP.

TIMELINE B

- After a few centuries pass, The Wind Waker takes place.

- Link and Zelda head north to find a new land to colonize. The Phantom Hourglass takes place.

- Link and Zelda begin to colonize the land they've found. Spirit Tracks takes place.

- After a huge gap in time, the original Hyrule has finally dried up after the massive flooding. The few remaining people who live in this area have taken residence in caves, many of which are hidden and/or sealed off, due to the fact that the land is swarming in monsters. Ganon has returned and taken the current Princess Zelda hostage, hiding himself in the ancient Spectacle Rock above Death Mountain. The Legend of Zelda takes place.

- The same Link from the Legend of Zelda has grown up and a mark of prophecy has appeared on his hand. Zelda's caretaker, Impa, reveals to Link that he must travel north and find the Triforce of Courage. Link finds that northern Hyrule is much more civilized, full of towns and palaces--it's likely that this is the area that the Link of ages past found and civilized long ago in Phantom Hourglass/Spirit Tracks and where the majority of Hyrulians live at this point. Link must find the Triforce of Courage--the one piece he doesn't have at this time, as he pieced together Wisdom in the previous game and found Power from Ganon--to reform the complete Triforce and awaken a Princess Zelda that fell asleep eons ago. Zelda II: the Adventure of Link takes place.

- It would seem Ganon was destroyed for good from this timeline as of the Legend of Zelda and an attempt to revive him in Zelda II failed.

Now, there are still some more important Zelda games left untold here;

- The Minish Cap--many people seem to think this takes place even before Ocarina of Time, but I think it could take place pretty much anytime in Timeline A. It has to take place after Ganondorf became Ganon in OoT given the existence of Moblins, and the way Hyrule's made up heavily reflects how it looks in Timeline A... plus, the very final form of the Nightmare in Link's Awakening is extremely similar to Vaati from this game, and for the reasons I listed before I'd say Link's Awakening takes place in Timeline A, soo... yeah.

- Four Swords/Four Swords Adventures has to take place in the same timeline as Minish Cap for a myriad of reasons. Yet another thing that tells me these games all probably take place sometime in Timeline A is how outrageously similar Hyrule looks in these two games compared to in Link to the Past.

Whew... and that's all for now. What do you guys think?
 
Mar 31, 2010 at 7:36 PM
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#2
Man, that's an awful lot to take in at once. I think I'll just try and address a little bit of it for now >.>

Before I start though, I should mention that there are a few Zelda games I've not played, those being Link's Awakening, Spirit Tracks and Phantom Hourglass, Minish cap, and Four Swords (I thought that was just a multiplayer deal for LTTP?).

I agree that OoT is the earliest and Link to the past is probably the final, and I also find the "Split timeline" theory works pretty well for me. However, I would be more inclined to think that the timeline where link has been returned after defeating Ganon would be the one leading up to Link to the Past, and the one where he lived as a child would be the one giving rise to the world flooding as he doesn't actually do anything to stop Ganondorf's reign of terror. Mainly because in Link to the Past, it mentions the seven wise men [seven sages I suppose] sealing the gates to the golden land. It says it was at the behest of the King, but that could be because the tale is so old at that point certain details have been corrupted.
 
Apr 1, 2010 at 1:44 AM
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#3
Nice timeline.

The guys down at nintendo say they already have one big timeline for Zelda, but they will never release the information to the public, so we can only wonder.
 
Apr 1, 2010 at 5:32 AM
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#4
Why wouldn't they release it?
Makes no sense to me. :o
 
Apr 1, 2010 at 9:56 AM
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#5

Hidden text highlight (or click) to view:

Because they don't actually have one ):

 
Apr 2, 2010 at 2:53 AM
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#6
ragnaroq;91093 said:
- The Minish Cap--many people seem to think this takes place even before Ocarina of Time, but I think it could take place pretty much anytime in Timeline A. It has to take place after Ganondorf became Ganon in OoT given the existence of Moblins, and the way Hyrule's made up heavily reflects how it looks in Timeline A... plus, the very final form of the Nightmare in Link's Awakening is extremely similar to Vaati from this game, and for the reasons I listed before I'd say Link's Awakening takes place in Timeline A, soo... yeah.

- Four Swords/Four Swords Adventures has to take place in the same timeline as Minish Cap for a myriad of reasons. Yet another thing that tells me these games all probably take place sometime in Timeline A is how outrageously similar Hyrule looks in these two games compared to in Link to the Past.
I would have to disagree. When Ocarina of Time was released it was officially stated that it was at the time the earliest game in the timeline, but when Four Swords was released it was officially stated that it was the earliest game in the timeline at that time. Minish Cap is obviously a prequel to four swords so therefore it is the earliest game in the timeline.
 
Apr 9, 2010 at 6:19 AM
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#7
If you watch the opening cutscene to wind waker, it seems the dimensions split slightly differently than what ragnaroq said:

timeline the has the big flood:

this happens when link goes back to relive his childhood. While he is off in termina (all of majora's mask), ganon returns and wreaks standard slow moving ill prepared ganon havoc. Gods flood the world, and BOOM. Big ocean and wind waker and all that.

Then timeline not ocean:

link stays in the future and is able to stop ganon wreaking havoc, which may be any number of Zelda games (no ocean ones though). Has twilight princess, oracle games, others.

Maybe there's a big loophole in there somewhere, feel free to point it out.
 
Apr 17, 2010 at 7:18 AM
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#8
I disagree with the whole A and B time lines.

As we know(or should). Link uses the Master Sword to go into 'hibernation'. And to go back in time he put's the sword back. Making it as if he didn't pull it. When he goes back in time. Via the Ocarina of Time. He leaves the Master sword in the future. Making it so that there is only one master sword in the past.

The link that leaves (when it comes to MM) is now forced to leave knowing that he can't stay in Hyrule due to the link still in the Temple Of Time. After MM he probity settles somewhere and doesn't bother to go back to Hyrule. Gannon escapes from the realm he's trapped in (he even says so in WW) and takes over.

What could be Links great descendant is then left to follow in his footsteps. Sealing Gannon for good. Then leaves with Tetra to find new land and creates the new Hyrule. The end.

Or so we thought. As Gannon escapes to the Twighlight realm and takes over that guy i can't remember xD. And again, like the last few games i mention. The main character along with the princess and gannon are branded with the three triforce pieces.

The history for each game is only left there to give breath to the world you travel.

In short. Only the the 3D versions are connected. I can't say anything for the spirit train one or the hourglass one.


It seems that Minish cap "might" be related to the four swords series. Though I havn't played four swords with the gameboy since it requires more than one person to play.

Thats all I have to say.

xD peace xD
 
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