After reading through over 93 valid entries and struggling to choose a top twenty, and then a top ten, and finally a winner with five runners up (what is this, ZU’s Next Top Contest Winner?) we are excited to present the winner of our Skyward Sword Giveaway!

Back on July 15 we posted an article asking you, the ZU news reader, what the prize should be for this current giveaway. 184 comments later, the four most common suggestions made their way over to our monthly poll, once again asking you guy to vote on which of those four you’d want to see us give away. 134 people voted for a Legend of Zelda manga, 306 chose an Ocarina replica, an even 1,000 said they’d like a Master Sword replica, and 1,133 screamed for a pre-order of The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword.

And so on August 13, the contest began with this post, letting our readers know that they had until midnight EST on Friday, August 27th to submit their entry.

To win this pre-order of Skyward Sword, we asked that you submit either a written work, an image, or a video showing us just how excited you were for Skyward Sword, with entries to be judged on quality and creativity.  We couldn’t have imagined the quality of entries that would be submitted.

So many fantastic entries were submitted, and we want to than each and every one of you. And because nearly all of them were created with some level of creativity, it made it very difficult for us to make our decision. However, a clear front runner appeared to each of us judges, and that selection was instant and unanimous.

That being said, hit the jump for the five runners up and the Grand Prize Winner!

Runner Up # 5

Name: Jacob
ZU Username: N/A

Runner Up #4

Name: Wally
ZU Username: N/A

I Want Skyward Sword because I love to sword fight but nobody will sword fight with me so I can sword fight on Skyward Sword. Also, I am a BIG, BIG fan of the Zelda games even the game boy Zelda games. I am really excited about the beetle, whip, rolling bombs and the story line. I think it is really cool that you can hypnotize eyes with your sword, the giant scorpion, shield bashing and bow and arrows. I also like that Link can drop off a cliff because he has so much courage and feel like “this is important and I need to do this”. I love that there is a spirit in Links sword, that you can shoot out laser beams, that it is al realistic motion and that the sky loft is in the sky. I mean it is SO amazing, just like the whole game will be. I don’t know that much about Skyward but I need to sword fight or else I will feel crazy. Even the simplest little things like swinging on vines and that Link can run for as long as you want him too.

Wally Heinrich, Age 9

Added by his mom:
Wally has seen the trailer for the game about 150 times and make everyone who comes to our house watch it. He watched the instruction about it from E3 more times that I want to think about.

Runner Up #3

Name: Kaylee
ZU Username: N/A

The Skyloft people didn’t know who settled their land, and they only had a legend that they told as a bedtime story to their children. It was a tale about three golden women who carved the earth, made the law, and created life. They didn’t have any other legends, so they only had their opinions to decide if the story was true.

One man, who didn’t really have an opinion of the story, was old enough to own his own house and his parents lived on the other side of the village. His job was to tend his neighbors’ goats and sheep, for he didn’t have any of his own. It was morning when he was filling the water troughs and he heard one of the neighbors’ children scream. Jerking his head up to see what was going on, he witnessed humanoid beings holding intimidating axes crawl out of the forest. They had tiny horns on top of their heads and ugly, drooping faces. Their wide eyes glared at everything they could see.

Already getting over his shock, the man yelled at the child to get inside the house.

“What about you, Link?” The boy shouted back.

Link told him not to worry and to get out of there. He gave Link a frightened look before doing as he was told.

He wove his way between the sheep and climbed over the fence into open field. He was about to follow the boy into the house, but he realized that the monsters had already spotted him.

Link didn’t have any more fighting experience than the sheep did, but his only thought was to fight even if he didn’t have any weapons. The creatures gave strange, triumphant grunts and charged at him.

Fear almost caused Link to run off and hide, but he stood his ground and waited until the last possible moment. One of the three monsters took a swing at him with its axe, and he ducked. The blade had been swung too hard and it hit the monster in the chest beside the first one. The wounded creature fell from the blow and didn’t get up.

While the other two humanoids were distracted, Link grabbed an axe from one of the monsters and drove it into its side. It gave a strangled cry as it collapsed and the remaining creature tried to make a run for it.

Link made a last-second decision and threw his axe at its retreating back. To his surprise, it hit its target.

Link was resting at the bottom of a waterfall. He had made an excuse to escape from the attention of the townsfolk who had heard about his victory over the group of monsters. They had asked him where he had gotten his training and Link would respond that it was the first time he’d fought anything.

Everyone who listened was all deeply impressed and came up with the idea that Link had a gift. He neither accepted it nor denied it, and he didn’t even feel proud about what he did.

He was about to reach down into the pool to wash his face, but a reflection of a bright light stopped him. He dropped the water he already had cupped in his hands and slowly tilted his head up.

Floating above the water was a girl.

“Hello.” was her simple greeting. Her voice was calm and almost a whisper, but Link could hear her just fine. “Are you the one who defeated the monsters?”

Her blank, pure white eyes were not unnerving, but more like a curious child’s as they observed Link.

His long green hat bounced as he cautiously nodded.

“So I assume you have had training before now, have you not?”

He shook his head and relaxed.

She looked a little surprised; an eyebrow raised just a fraction.

“So you are brave?”

Link shrugged.

“And modest, too.” She commented, a hint of a smile on her lips. The girl tilted her head, considering him for a moment, then said suddenly, “I need your help.”
Link was a bit confused, but he nodded slowly anyway.

The glowing, floating girl looked almost sad that he had answered so quickly and hesitated before turning away from him.

“I cannot explain this task I am about to give to you at this time. But it will most likely cause you great sorrow and much sacrifice. Are you sure you want to do this?”

Link noticed that she was extremely serious and he nodded again.

The girl immediately turned away and started moving in the opposite direction, and Link had to hurry to keep up with her. She led him to the end of the land, where sky was all around them.

“Jump off the edge, I will catch you.”

Runner Up #2

Name: Leland
ZU Username: N/A

Runner Up #1

Name: Erik
ZU Username: KyleLink

Grand Prize Winner

Name: Emmanuel
ZU Username: EMaN21354

Thanks for entering!

Thank you to all who entered our Bank of Hyrule contest! We had so many fantastic entries, it was a joy to judge. We had entries running the gambit from serious to hilarious, from professional-quality art to comics, from musical compositions to Impressionistic cosplay, poems and stories and photos (oh my!)… We just wish we could feature more than the five we had to select.

We will be holding another Bank of Hyrule contest soon – in fact, as soon as you want it!

What’s the next contest?

The next Bank of Hyrule contest will take place once we have received another $200 in donations deposited into The Bank. If you liked this contest, please consider adding to this contest fund! We’re really excited about this next contest because we think the prizes will make a bunch of you squirm with joy – we’re calling it the Be Like Link contest. And we’re giving away a full-size Master Sword and Hylian Shield replica to one lucky guy or gal.

Once again, congratulations to our five runners up!

And a big congratulations to our grand prize winner–you’ll be receiving an email shortly with details about how to claim your Skyward Sword preorder!