Zora. What comes to mind when you hear the word? The blue colored Zoras you see in Ocarina of Time, or the tan-greyish Zoras you see in Twilight Princess? No matter what type of Zora you picture, the Zoras are a race with a large history as well as a race that has evolved throughout the entirety of the Zelda series.

Ocarina of Time

Princess Ruto ~ Young

The first appearance of the Zoras is in the game Ocarina of Time. The appearance of the Zoras here comes in two main important parts: assisting Link in collecting the Zoras’ Sapphire, and assisting Link in collecting the Water Medallion. Later in Link’s child journey, after he has already collected the Kokiri’s Emerald and Goron’s Ruby, he finds himself on a trek towards Zora’s Domain, the place he knows houses the Zora’s Sapphire. After he passes through the monster-infested Zora’s River, he plays Zelda’s Lullaby and gains access to Zora’s Domain. He makes his way through the domain to see the King, but finds the King does not have the stone he searches for; Lord Jabu-Jabu does. He gives Link permission to enter Lord Jabu-Jabu only if Link promises to save his daughter, Princess Ruto, while searching for the Zora’s Sapphire. Link agrees and enters the large fish Lord located in Zora’s Fountain.

Using Princess Ruto to press switches for Link, to throw her onto ledges he cannot reach, and carrying her around with him throughout the dungeon, they finally reach the root of Lord Jabu-Jabu’s issues: Barinade. This electrical boss can only be defeated with the help of Link’s boomerang, but is pretty easily defeated. Once defeated, Princess Ruto and Link exit Lord Jabu-Jabu, who is now at peace. As promised, Princess Ruto gives Link the Zora’s Sapphire, along with a marriage request once they are both older. Link reluctantly agrees, then leaves quickly to the Temple of Time, where he opens the Door of Time.

When Link awakens as an adult in the Temple of Time, he is given a mission to collect the six medallions from six temples across Hyrule: The Medallions of Light, Forest, Fire, Water, Shadow and Spirit. With the Light Medallion given by Rauru, Link begins his treks across the land, eventually finding himself in Zora’s Domain once again in search of the Water Medallion. When Link arrives, he is shocked with what he sees: Zora’s Domain has frozen over, trapping most of the Zoras in ice. As Link makes his way towards the Zora King, he finds him covered in red ice, something that can only be melted by a substance called blue fire, which Link can keep in his bottle. Once Link is able to track down and melt the red ice around the Zora King, the Zora King tells Link of what happened and how he can fix it. Link must trek through the Ice Cavern and find Sheik before he can go to the Water Temple to get the Water Medallion. During his tough journey through the cavern, he finds a pair of Iron Boots, which is one of the key things he needs to survive the Water Temple. When Link reaches the end and defeats the White Wolfos guarding his way, Sheik appears to teach him the Serenade of Water, a tune that will teleport him to the entrance of the Water Temple.

Princess Ruto ~ Adult

As Link begins to make his way through the temple, he finds someone he had not seen for a long, long time: Princess Ruto. Princess Ruto tells Link their marriage plans must be postponed, and leads him to where he needs to go next in the temple. After Link successfully defeats Morpha, the boss of the Water Temple, the curse is broken and he discovers Princess Ruto is the sage of the Water Temple. She gives him the Water Medallion, and he is then teleported back outside. Lake Hylia returns to the usual water level, but, for reasons unknown to all Zelda fans, Zora’s Domain still does not unfreeze unless Link goes back in time.

Majora’s Mask

The Zoras make their second appearance in the game Majora’s Mask. In this game, Link’s main goal is to prevent the moon from falling with the help of the four sages. Each sage is trapped in a temple around Termina: Woodfall Temple, Snowhead Temple, Great Bay Temple, and Stone Tower Temple. Now, when talking about the Zoras, only Great Bay Temple is really very relevant. After Link frees the sages from Woodfall and Snowhead Temples, while he treks towards the Great Bay Temple, he finds Mikau, the guitar player of Zora band the Indigo-gos mortally wounded on the beach of Great Bay Coast. Mikau tells Link of what happened. The Indigo-gos were set to play in the Carnival of Time but after the lead singer, Lulu, had her Zora eggs stolen, she lost her voice, forcing them to cancel the performance. Mikau attempted to retrieve the stolen eggs at the Gerudo Fortress, but was mortally wounded in the process and left to die in the waters of Great Bay. Link realizes that no matter how he tries to help, Mikau is going to die. To free him, Link plays the Song of Healing, a song Link has used to heal others before. Mikau thanks Link, then dies, leaving Link his mask. This mask allows him to transform into a Zora by putting it on, basically taking the form of Mikau.

Up to this point, the other band members of the Indigo-gos are unaware of Mikau’s death and believe Link to be Mikau while in his Zora form. Link then must finish Mikau’s dying task to retrieve Lulu’s eggs from the Fortress and when successful, is taught the New Wave Bossa Nova by the eggs. This song will allow Lulu to recover her voice. When Link returns to Zora Hall, he plays the New Wave Bossa Nova for Lulu, restoring her voice, as well as awakening the entrance to Great Bay Temple. The entrance just so happens to be a giant turtle; the only living creature who is able to navigate to Great Bay Temple.

The Indigo-gos playing in Zora Hall

Once Link enters the temple and defeats the boss Gyorg, he frees the sage of Great Bay Temple and restores peace to the area. Once this all occurs, The Indigo-gos (including Link posed as Mikau) plays for a large crowd on the grand stage in Zora Hall.


Oracle of Ages

Zoras’ third appearance is in the game Oracle of Ages. There are Sea Zoras, as well as River Zoras. When Link comes across a village south of Labrynna, he comes across a race of Zoras called the Sea Zoras. The Sea Zoras tell Link of the evil breed of Zoras called the River Zoras. Like in Ocarina of Time, the Zoras’ leader is Lord Jabu-Jabu. Link must make his way through Lord Jabu-Jabu to collect Rolling Sea, an Essence of Time. Unfortunately, the only way for Link to enter Lord Jabu-Jabu is with the permission of the Zora King. Even more unfortunately, the Zora King has already died once Link reaches the Zora Village. Link then must travel back in time to find the Zora King, and when he enters the past, he finds the Zora King mortally ill, but not dead. Link must find a potion to cure him, and once he is able to do so (from a Gasha Seed), he finds the Zora King alive when he returns to his present time. The Zoras played a crucial role in allowing Link the chance to collect an Essence of Time and for that he would be thankful.


The Wind Waker


In The Wind Waker, Zoras play a significantly less role than in the aforementioned games, yet there is one who is crucial to completing the game. After Link progresses throughout the game to the Earth Temple, Link enters the temple only to find the old sage dead. This old sage is a Zora by the name of Laruto. Laurto teaches Link the Earth God’s Lyric, allowing him and the new Earth Temple sage, Medli, to enter the temple and complete it.


Twilight Princess

Queen Rutela

The involvement of the Zoras in Twilight Princess increased greatly from The Wind Waker. This time, during Link’s journey, he is sent to Lake Hylia, and eventually Zora’s Domain, which he finds frozen in ice, as it was the last time he encountered the Domain in Ocarina of Time. After Link melts the ice using a molten rock, Zora’s Domain returns to normal, and Lake Hylia fills back to its normal level. It is around this time Queen Rutela visits Link and asks him to save her son from the dangers he will encounter, and return him back to Zora’s Domain, she will aid him on his journey. After Link restores light to Lanayru Province, Link helps Ilia and Telma take the Zora Prince, Queen Rutela’s son, back to Kakariko village where Renado will heal him. Once this occurs, Queen Rutela returns and guides Link to her husband’s grave, where he is given the Zora Armor, clothes that allow him to swim underwater without a limit, but are weak to fire and ice attacks. This allows Link to complete Lakebed Temple and collect the third fused shadow.




PS. Zolas are not Zoras, that’s why they aren’t in this article.
  • That One Kid

    Needs a shorter jump for the front page, please. This took so long to load that it crashed my browser(granted my computer sucks, but that isn't the point).

    • anon

      ikr? I thought I accidentally clicked on the article when the website was loading up…

      • Jonah


        Sorry about that.

    • Craig

      Get a faster processor maybe? Everyone else is ahead in technology. Always use Google Chrome too.

  • Ashmic

    usually what comes to my mind is "frozen" lol

  • Niachrez

    What about the zoras in ALTTP? They were considered monsters but they appeared early in the series, as far as I know they were also in Links awakening.

    • Trolldad

      The ones in all four games aren't Zoras,
      they just happened to be similar to the Zoras

  • KingOfHeart

    Yes, what about Z1, LA, LTTP?
    Also, why not make a quick mention of how they evolved into birds?

  • ZoraMikau

    What about the Zora's evolving into the Rito's? And what about the zora's from the older zelda games? The evil ones?

    • cloverplayer

      a thought came… maybe in skyward sword, the zoras would be the evil ones and it would explain how they changed?

      • guest

        No, in the timeline Skyward Sword comes before Ocarina of Time (and Majora's Mask, Twilight Princess, etc…). On the other hand, the games with the Zora's as enemies take place much later in the timeline than Ocarina of Time.

  • Cayenne Pepper

    Do the Gerudo next!

  • RurouniRinku

    The two King Zora's aren't the same or even related. The Zora King in OoA is an Ocean (Salt) water breed, whereas King Zora in OoT is a fresh-water breed.

    Which leads me to my theory of (zora) evolution
    The Zora's evolved. We all know this, but why would they evolve when their environment became abundant? Because it didn't. The zora's who evolved into Rito evolved from the freshwater (river and lakes) breeds when the land flooded into an ocean. The saltwater breeds also evolved somewhat, but into more of an aquatic bird. This can be seen in PH and ST as there is the enemy 'Zora Warrior', who often emerges from underwater to fight Link.

  • AstroPenguin

    my cat's name is Zora

  • Jonah

    I didn't add the evil Zoras because I was focusing primarily on the "good" Zoras in this particular article.

  • Jonah


  • guest

    I started to read this article, but then I got to the line, "The first appearance of the Zoras is in the game Ocarina of Time." NO! This article was ruined for me in one of the first sentences because of a pretty massive error. Is no one editing these articles?

    • TnzSki

      The Zoras in previous games were evil, while Jonas was focusing on the good Zoras in this article. The first time good Zoras appeared was in OOT. So go back and read the article, it's not too bad.

    • Kaepora21

      I expressed the exact same reaction as you did, except I do not feel it was an editing mistake, but rather a blatant disregard for previous games.

      I do not understand why some feel it is appropriate to simply exclude games that appeared before OoT. Zoras, regardless of their alignment, are still Zoras, and including them, if only nominally, is the only way to write a complete article on a race.

      The author responded above by saying that he was only focusing on the "good" Zora, but why remain so limited? The differences of the Zora in LoZ and aLttP make the discussion about the race that much more interesting. Including them would have made this article a lot more substantial; instead, we have a synopsis of their involvement in insufficient sample of games.

      The idea had such great potential, I am saddened to see it crash as hard as it did.

      • mcdude910

        I was thinking the same thing. It would have been much more interesting to show that they aren't always good. If he had named the article, "The History of the Good Zoras", I wouldn't have gotten my hopes up.

  • guest

    No, they are referred to as Zoras. They may be enemies instead of allies, but they are still Zoras.

  • Frintu72

    They ARE called Zoras (Zolas). The difference as far as the Zelda community is concerned is that the earlier ones were banished by the Hyrule Royal Family to small rivers and became monsters. The newer ones serve the Royal Family and come from the sea.


    Wow! Zoras really have evolved over Zelda's chronology!

  • gward

    "Lake Hylia returns to the usual water level, but, for reasons unknown to all Zelda fans, Zora’s Domain still does not unfreeze unless Link goes back in time."


    Shiek tells link that it will take time for zora's domain to unfreeze

    • Twilit_Dragon

      Yep i totally agree, timelines were split cause Zelda sent Link back probably when he first met her and told of the events to come, then probably banished Ganondorf right away. So he couldn't take over the world and that's why in Twilight Princess, he didn't realize why he had the Triforce of Power, but cause the events already happened in another timeline.

      You really should update this article and take out some info and add some, otherwise great article.

      Also to the webmasters, you seriously need to get rid of the full page ads, it comes up when i'm typing stuff and then freezes cause my anti-virus says it's a trojan virus.

      • mcdude910

        AdBlock Plus. Come on people, I'm tired of the whining. I haven't seen an ad on the internet in months.

    • Jonah

      Well, it never did unfreeze, now did it?

      • gward

        You can't know… It doesn't really show what happens later in the future period…

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  • When I hear the word, I think of King Zora scooting out of the way for about forty-five seconds.

  • Ultimate OOT Fan

    How long does it take King Zora to move his fat butt over?
    A week, week, week, week, week . . . .

  • mcdude910

    Technically, in those three games, they were called "Zolas", but that was because they were Zoras that were banished from Hyrule, and became monsters. Though, I agree that should have been explained.
    As for the Zoras evolving into Ritos, it should have been mentioned.

  • mcdude910

    They're only in a couple of games. It wouldn't be as interesting. He should do Gorons! 😀

  • TS-ai

    I don't think the benevolent Zora race will ever matter as much to me as the classic Zoras. I was very disappointed to see no mention of the classic Zoras in this article.

  • fds

    and wats the point of this

  • Jesse

    zolas and zoras are the same thing. the difference in name is due to a translation error in the first games, hence the similarity of river zoras and zolas

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