In Skyward Sword there are Gossip Stones littered around the infant world of Hyrule. They tend to be buried in the ground and will come out once you play a “soothing” melody with the harp, showing you how to get through certain areas in the game.

Have you ever wondered why this feature was included in Skyward Sword and not any games before it?

Miyamoto explains that it all has to do with keeping you away from the internet.

“Back in those days, the ways in which we could entertain people in the videogame world were rather limited. And because of that, [having the gamers] find out any and all the solutions themselves was one of the most important elements. Today, there are many, many ways to entertain people in one single video game. And the Internet has made it so easy for people to ask for clues. We are mindful of that changing circumstance. Whenever we are making the game, we are making it for those who really need and want to know about a solution or a hint. But there are those who do not want to ask for those kind of hints. They really want to solve any riddles or challenges for himself, for herself. We are mindful of both of these types of people whenever we are making these games today.”

This has been true of the more recent Mario games and even Donkey Kong Country Returns, a game that is brutally difficult to beat and difficult to master. They include the hints and tips in the game as well as an option to automatically beat the level if you are having extreme difficulties.

It is really interesting to see that they took this into consideration in the Skyward Sword, however to a much lesser extent. It’s a classic Miyamoto move to want to include something like a help system, but within the in-game lore. Did you have to use the Gossip Stone in Skyloft to help you out of a tough spot? For those who didn’t do you find this feature annoying? Let us know!

Source: Spinuzzi

 

  • I like it….

  • To be honest – I only went to them because they had bubbles over their heads with "…" in them, and it made me think they had something super important to tell me. I rarely used them for the purpose of solving a puzzle.

  • Tarkin

    I used them once or twice, so I s'pose they work in the sense that SS was the first Zelda game I didn't use a walkthrough for, although that may also be because I'm getting smarter at solving Zelda puzzles 😛

  • Breg

    I never use these stones or the internet to help me win It's too easy without them.

  • Atticus Finch

    Let's be clear, the gossip stone in skyloft is far different than the others in the rest of the game. The others are like the stones in Ocarina or Majora's, where they told you interesting details about the game and led the way to secret items, but they didn't help solve exact puzzles. I don't think it's cheating to see what those stones have to say. It IS cheating to use the stone in skyloft, though. I assume the movie shows you exactly how to get through what you're stuck on, even in a dungeon? I wouldn't know, I've never used it! I checked out the one in Ocarina of Time 3D, but only because I was curious about what it was (I beat the game way back in '98 and again in '03). I enjoyed watching the mini movies!

    • heroofmasks

      well of corse the stone in skylofs called a shieka ston like oot 3d the others are just cossips stones

  • falconfetus8

    As far as I can remember,the only time I've ever had to use the Gossip Stone was during the Eldin Volcano portion of the Song of the Hero. Other than that, I beat the game completely help-free.

  • maniozelda

    Frankly, I used the Gossip Stone exactly 3 times.
    And each time I tried solving it myself first for about 3-4 hours. Not even kidding.
    I just wish the Gossip Stone would have helped me alittle less.
    I knew exactly what to do when I used it.
    So yeah, the gossip stone is good for, one so you don't always stop the game and look for a walktrough on youtube, but it's also bad because people tend to "cheat" with the gossip stone more easily.
    So at the bottom line, I'd like to have the Gossip Stone in future Zelda games as well. They just should give way less infortmation on what to do.

  • Shaelyn

    I wish the "hint" they dropped was more subtle. they showed you exactly what to do. I guess it's no worse than guides, but guides exist outside of the game for a reason.

  • Vinylzen

    The story of Skyward Sword's life is that there was just too much hand-holding for me. As if Fi didn't almost literally push you in the right direction enough, now there are Gossip Stones here to help me? It's a nice gesture for some of the newer or younger gamers I guess, and I can totally understand Miyamoto's desire to get us to figure things out for ourselves. Still I prefer the more older titles where it wasn't frustratingly difficult to figure out where to go next, BUT it was challenging enough to where it was super duper satisfying when we finally did figure things out for OURSELVES. Doing things on your own without anyone to hold your hand, feels satisfying does it not?

    Skyward Sword isn't the only victim. I've noticed the Zelda games have certainly gotten easier over the years, nobody can deny that. And it seems the consensus here is that nobody here really used the Gossip stones except for OCD reasons like getting rid of the bubble (That was me).

    • Jonathan

      Is it that the zelda games have gotten easier, or is it that you have gotten better at them? The franchise can't rely soledly on bringing back experienced Zelda fans, they have to make new ones too. And the best way to get people to like the games is not by forcing them to stop playing because the game is too difficult.

  • Midnight C.

    I didn't use the Sheikah Stone (or GameFAQs) at all in Skyward Sword, as I wanted to finish the game without any help. But I don't find built-in guides a problem at all, as long as they are optional. I see it as a win-win; those who need help can get it easily, and those who don't (or don't want it) can ignore it.

  • TriforceofCourage

    I never used the stones and never look up hints or read walkthroughs on any zelda games. I like to solve things for myself, not that its even difficult these days. Its so obvious what to do now without any help. I think they should take out the guides like Fi and Navi and gossip stones and all of that and just let me play the game without it making it annoyingly obvious. At least give us a "pro" option or something where you are just left to figure everything out for yourself.

  • lootic

    Actually I have no problem with there being gossip stones to be found for those less hardcore players, what I really didn't like was obvious hints I didn't needed and couldn't escape from. Yes I'm talking about Phi. Sidekick needs to go in the next Zelda, IMO.

    • Hylian_Knight

      Or they could just make them more like Midna. She was one of the only sidekicks that I liked.

      • Eddy

        hear! hear!

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  • Bailey

    I draw penises on those walls so I guess it all works out…

  • ZeldaPlaya

    Personally I thought the idea was a good one. It certainly helped me once or twice when I was stuck.

  • Ashmic

    this is the only zelda game i had to go to the internet for help

  • Rakshael

    I only used the Gossip Stone after I had beaten the game, reviewing everything just to see what I did or could have done differently. It really didn't help me find new sidequests or anything. The one interesting/useful thing I did learn, however, was stealing Demise's lightning. That made my second Demise battle much easier, albeit substantially more epic ;D

    Note: The scattered gossip stones were good for two things: treasures and *possibly* new drawing techniques.

  • Guil.

    I went to watch all the hint movies on OoT after I had played that particular part through in the game. Just because I wanted to see what the hints looked like. I've only watched like on hint in SS and also after beating that part of the game, but I can't remember what they looked like. Might want to go see them all eventually since I've beaten the game twice already. Just because I like to go through every bit of material the game has. I only really had problems with the bosses since I couldn't figure out how to beat them but I just went flailing around the battle and in the end when I had killed the boss I always thought I'm gonna be so screwed the next time I have to fight this thing. It was honestly on my second playthrough when I actually figured out some of the bosses. Ghirahim was the one that eluded me the most since I beat him twice in the game before the end and didn't know how I did it. On my second playthrough I took things slow and watched his every move. That's what frustrated me the most. I beat the game but didn't know how. And the bosses were the only things where I had that not knowing what to do. Everything else mainly followed a simple Zelda-typed puzzle solving that I'm used to since I've been with the series all the way from the 80's. Puzzles weren't hard but many of the bosses had me thinking "What did I do? How did I kill it?".

    • TheMaverickk

      I understand your sentiments with Ghirahim…. I didn't know when he was taking damage really. It was challenging though and it made me enjoy it.

      I didn't really know some of his patterns, and I hadn't even realized I could push enemies with swords back with a proper shield repel until late in the game. I had to rely on the cushion of fairy bottles.

      Mind you after taking time to observe him and watch his patterns and all the ways to attack him and reflect attacks I was floored by the depth of fighting skills to really put him in his place. It made beating him so satisfying.

  • guest

    I found the game much more fun without the help of the stones.

  • TheMaverickk

    There are lots of tools they included to keep people from having to turn to sites like "Gamefaqs"

    – Dowsing – used for people who have trouble finding and searching for items in a game
    – Sheikah Vision Stone – For people who get lost and lose direction easily, or that can't solve puzzles
    – Gossip Stones – For people who have a hard time figuring out what to do with in world features (using bombs, using skyward strike, using the map ect.), or side quests (talking about characters who need help).
    – Fi – For people who have a hard time finding weak points on enemies, and figuring out patterns

    Every single one of these tools is optional to use in Skyward Sword. As a Zelda veteran I never used them personally.

    I found every Kikwi and Key piece without dowsing…. found plenty of treasures…. was able to defeat enemies without too much trouble. Still for someone who is new to Zelda these tools help them complete the game.

  • ChainofTermina

    ……..well, Miyamoto, you came pretty damn close. I only had to use the internet twice. one for how to defeat Ghirahim at the very end, and then how to defeat Demise right after that. hey at least I made it that far without external help. only had to use the internet for the very end.

    • Soulless Creature

      Dude I did the same. when Ghiraham had that sword and kept blocking my moves I got tons game overs and the thanks to the internet Ghirahim was no more.

  • Sage of Hyrule

    I like the idea of the Sheikah Stones as far as the lore of the game goes. I never really purposely used them for hints; but there were a couple of times where they pointed me in the right direction. But throughout most of the game I would get utterly stumped by a puzzle or a boss, to the point where I -almost- went for a hint, but in the end I am so glad I didn't. That feeling of accomplishment was just awesome, and something I hope to re-create in every future game that I ever play. Going through my second playthrough now, I am finding that my skills have certainly developed since I first played the game, and it's so cool to really see how far I've come since I first played. I really feel like Link when I figure things out on my own! 🙂

    In OoT I LOVED reading about all of the little cultural things that the gossip stones had to say, about Malon or the breed of horses the Gerudo use; useless things like that that gave the game so much more depth and I loved it. Wish it was more present in Skyward Sword, but I understand their use for newer gamers. I dunno, they were okay. I think I still prefer the OoT version though.

  • Riix

    i still prefer getting stuck for months to solve a pussle thats what i like from games and why i liked zelda titles theres always one place where you get stuck.

  • ". But there are those who do not want to ask for those kind of hints. They really want to solve any riddles or challenges for himself, for herself. We are mindful of both of these types of people…"

    Dear Nintendo. If this were true, then WHY are you baby walking us though the games these days and not letting us figure out puzzles, explore, and think for ourselves? Repeating the same thing, or rule, not once, not twice, not even three times but EVERY CHANCE YOU GET? That's not letting us do anything. It's nagging.

    Oh Nintendo, how I wish you would read this and get the point. Your coddling ruins half the fun. If I wanted to be walked through something, I would watch a movie.

  • Merq

    I didn't use the Sheikah Stone, but it doesn't bother me that it's there. It's just sitting there, why would it be annoying? I like knowing it exists in case I need help.

  • Plamir

    I used it for a side-quest, I think. Not for the main quest though.

  • Gerudude

    SS wasn't THAT dificult was it?
    The best thing about the stones were the goodies you'd get when they popped up.

  • Hylian_Knight

    When I first used the 'vision' hints on the stones in Skyward Sword…I felt like I was playing Prince of Persia. xD

    (~030)~

  • Nick

    "They really want to solve any riddles or challenges for himself, for herself."

    What riddles? What challenges? I remember Fi telling me, in bright red text EXACTLY what to do but I don't remember any riddles or challenges.

    ..just realized many others have just stated the same thing but, reinforces my point!

  • Craig

    I liked it, it doesn't force it on you at all. It's not like you were constantly bugged to ask for help.

  • Ben

    Not really. I never used them in this or OoT 3ds.
    I enjoy being stuck, but I think it’s better that people use them than the Internet, if they have to get help 😛
    I for one think it ruins the fun of a puzzle holding game if you can get answers, but seeing as the Internet does it anyway, I like this idea.

  • tetra

    i've never used the internet for zelda games, it just takes all the fun out of trying to find out on your own if you think about it

  • Vladislak

    The only thing I used the gossip stones for was hitting them with a bomb to watch them rocket into the sky! xD

    Other than that I wanted to figure it all out on my own.

  • HyruleWeirdo

    I used the one that appears when you lead up to the fire dragon ONCE. That kind of thing won't keep me from using the internet if I want to use the internet, it's too inconveniently located.

  • Kevin Naderi

    very helpful thanks for all