[Medli’s Melodies is a series in which we choose our favourite tracks from the Zelda franchise, or highlight a special piece of music from the perpetually creative fan community. Music has always such been such an integral component of Zelda games, and we’re here to celebrate that every week!]

Unlike most people, my first Divine Beast encounter wasn’t against Vah Ruta. Instead, I went directly to Vah Naboris, and then got brutally obliterated by the Thunderblight Ganon. Repeatedly.

It was then that I realized I wasn’t fully prepared for that battle; so I decided to get stronger, take down the other Beasts, and then come back and avenge my past selves (insert “You’re the Best Around” montage here).

During my travels in search of the power, wisdom, and courage needed to fulfill my desire for revenge, my first stop was none other than Zora’s Domain. Everything there was so relaxing, and not just because the place is surrounded by water. Everything came together for an absolutely refreshing experience: the structures, the ambient sounds and colors, and of course, the music. The relationship between Link and Mipha also gives all of this a special meaning. I knew I had a very important mission to accomplish if I wanted to restore the respect of the Zora people, no matter how difficult it seemed — even if I had to sneak between the hooves of a fearsome Lynel while looking for Shock Arrows.

It’s not just the fact that you’re facing the boss itself, but also everything that led you there

Now, where am I going with all this? Before I get off track; this is what makes music in a certain boss battle that much memorable. It’s not just the fact that you’re facing the boss itself, but also everything that led you there, and all you went through in your path. It is knowing that Mipha (or her spirit, more specifically) is waiting for you somewhere inside that ancient colossal pachyderm, the burden of your promise to the Zora King, and that the Zora tribe await in hope for your return.

This theme is the storm pouring down on the battlefield: It starts suddenly and unexpectedly, with rushing keys and strings, and ominous horns blowing as you look up and behold the gargantuan beast before you. But between all this, there is the soothing choir, chanting notes of hope; because you are not alone, you have Prince Sidon by your side in this battle, as well as the wish of all the Zora people for your victory.

For many players, this was their first Divine Beast encounter. It was but a glimpse of what’s yet to come, leaving a promise of many more epic battles like this one ahead of them.