- 1.1 Sneak into Hyrule Castle
- 1.2 Enter the castle dungeons
- 1.3 Obtain the boomerang
- 1.4 Rescue Princess Zelda
- 1.5 Use the secret passage
- 1.6 Traverse the sewers to Sanctuary
1.1Sneak into Hyrule Castle
Before leaving Link’s House, make sure to open the treasure chest to retrieve the Lantern as it’ll prove very handy in parts of the upcoming dungeon. Once you have the Lantern, leave the house and head north. Your mission is simple: To get to the castle dungeons to help the maiden Zelda, you first need to find your way into the castle, but it’s not as simple as just walking up to the front door and asking entry. You’ll have to do some searching to find your way in.
Sneaking into Hyrule Castle
You’ll end up in a small nook beneath the castle. You’ll see your uncle there, and he’ll talk to you as you try to pass. It seems like the castle’s guard were too much for him. But he knows you’re capable and have the power of the Hylian bloodline in your veins. He gives you the Fighter’s Sword and Fighter’s Shield as he dies. Hold them up proud before continuing through the hallway and south into the next room.
“Ungh… Link, I didn’t want you involved in this…. I told you not to leave the house….”
Here you’ll meet your first enemies, Soldiers. These have tiny daggers, so they won’t charge you; instead they just wander aimlessly. Green Soldiers take two hits to kill, blue take three, and red take four (though you won’t see red ones for now). You can ignore these if you wish, but proceeding to the right will net you some rupees. Once you’re finished, head south through the door.
You’ll come up in the castle courtyard inside Hyrule Castle’s walls. All that you need to do now is get out of the rain. The castle courtyard is swarming with guards. You’ll meet guards that now have swords instead of daggers; if they see you, they will charge toward you. The best way to defeat these is to stand diagonally from them so that you’re not staring directly at their sword; this way your sword won’t strike theirs, allowing them to parry your attack. Swing your sword to blaze through them. Once you’ve cleared a path, head through the door leading north into the castle.
1.2Enter the castle dungeons
The dungeons of the castle where Zelda is being held are deep within the basements. The staircase down is in the rear of the floor, so there are two ways to get there. The easiest route is to take the west hallway. Fight or ignore the three Soldiers in the entrance chamber and head through the lower-level door to the left.
You’ll come out in the lower section of the next room, and the single Soldier in this room up patrolling the upper platforms, so there’s no way for him to come after you. Simply proceed through the northern door by walking beneath the raised passageway.
This brings you to a narrow hallway with three Soldiers blocking the way, two of which only have daggers (so they won’t give chase or react to Link) while the last one has a sword (and thus will). You can try to pass this trio if you want, but you’ll most likely sustain damage if you do. The best choice here is to kill all three before proceeding. After killing them, if you took some damage, you’ll find two hearts within the pots at the north end of the room. Items won’t respawn in the dungeon after you collect them (unless you leave the dungeon and re-enter), so only take them if you need them. You might need them as you’re trying to escape later. Once you’re free and clear, head through the door in the upper-right.
This brings you to the staircase that leads down into the dungeons. Take it, and you’ll end up in the 1st basement.
The environment will change to signify you’re now underground. To the south is a locked door and is the proper beginning of the castle dungeons. There’s also a treasure chest to open, but you should defeat the Soldier first so that he doesn’t attack you whilst you’re trying to open it.
The Soldier will start heading southward, which gives you a quick moment to attack him with your sword before he can react. As this is a blue-colored guard, he’ll take three hits to defeat, so take your attack of opportunity to knock one of those hits off. Once he’s defeated, he’ll drop a Small Key, which you can use to unlock the door. You should also collect the Map from the treasure chest, to help you navigate the castle dungeons.
1.3Obtain the boomerang
Once through the locked door, you’re now in the dungeons. The opening portion contains a bunch of bottomless pits; falling into them will return you to the start of the room, and you’ll take a heart’s worth of damage for the trouble.
The next several Soldiers are blue, meaning they’re more dangerous than the green ones. However, it is possible to kill most of these with one hit. If you strike them with your sword, they’ll react by being pushed by your sword. If that push manages to back them over the bottomless pit, they’ll fall to their death. The advantage is that it’s easier to get past them; the disadvantage is that they won’t drop anything like rupees or hearts. Choose whichever way is best for you (or ignore the Soldier altogether) before proceeding south.
The path becomes slightly precarious as you face the next two guards. Again, the guard directly in front of Link will be heading south, so there’s an opportunity to not only backstab him but also knock him off the cliff to kill him. The second guard may spot you in the process, though hiding behind the statue may prevent him from seeing Link. Dispatch him before proceeding over the catwalk heading down. There’s one last blue Soldier to fight, but knocking him off the ledge will be tricky; however, the pot near him will contain a heart. Once you pass the third blue Soldier, head down and to the left.
Follow the corridor up into the next room to find two guards patrolling a rather narrow set of corridors. Sneaking past them is going to be very tricky, especially because both will chase you if they see you, so it’s probably easiest to fight them (or at least fight the first and sneak past the second). Once you’ve done so, you’ll see a doorway leading north and a staircase near the southern wall. You’ll use the staircase on your escape back up, so for now continue forward through the doorway.
As you enter the next room, you’ll find yourself trapped by shutting doors. Worse, there’s a green Soldier trapped in with you. You’ll have to kill this Soldier to open the doors to both the south and the east, but the locked door to the north obviously won’t open without a key. That key is in the room to the east.
Similar to the first room on this basement level, there’s a blue Soldier and a treasure chest. You need to defeat the Soldier to collect the Small Key you need, but this time it’s better to snag the treasure chest first because it contains the Boomerang. This item will actually make it exceptionally easy to kill the Soldier, even if he does see you. Equip the Boomerang and throw it at the Soldier to stun him for several seconds. While the Soldier is stunned, you can land all three blows to kill him and collect your Small Key. Once you have the key, head back west.
1.4Rescue Princess Zelda
With the key obtained, it’s finally time to go rescue the Princess. The green Soldier is still defeated, so you don’t have to worry about dispatching him. Just use the key to unlock the door to the north. Head through there and you’ll find an open stairwell leading down to B2. That second basement is exceptionally tiny, solely containing a single room and another stairwell down to B3. Head down there, and get ready to face the boss of the dungeon.
The final basement room first contains a green Soldier; kill him before you head to the right as otherwise you’ll have to deal with attacks from two directions. Once ready, you can head to the right to find the boss; this enemy, the Ball and Chain Trooper, isn’t like most bosses as you’ll see in the future as killing him doesn’t end the dungeon. He’s also relatively tame compared to the rest of the dungeon bosses, but he’s certainly more hardy and dangerous than the castle soldiers. However, there is an easy trick to killing him.
All three pots in the first cell have hearts, but the pots have an even better use than just collecting hearts. Throwing them at the Ball and Chain Trooper will do massive damage to him, which is particularly great since your sword doesn’t do all that much, not to mention that using your sword puts you well within melee range of his massive ball and chain.
If you manage to toss two of the three pots into the boss’ head, you’ll defeat him outright without having to land a hit. If, for some reason, you’re unlucky, you’ll have to do the rest with your sword. Approach him with caution, but don’t get too close yet. Once he’s close enough, he’ll start to swing his ball and chain. Step backwards quickly and wait for the ball and chain to finish its rotation. Once done, you have a very small window to close the distance and strike him with your sword, at which point you should jump back and repeat the process until he’s done.
“The wizard is magically controlling all the soldiers in the castle. I fear the worst for my father…”
Once the Ball and Chain Trooper is dead, he’ll drop the Big Key which will open all of the Big Key-locked doors in the dungeon. Usually this will be the door to the boss’ chamber or a door midway through the dungeon; in this case, it’s the door to Zelda’s cell, so open it up and talk to the Princess, who’ll tell you more of the story concerning the wizard Agahnim. However, Zelda realizes it’s better to tell the rest of the story from relative safety, so she’ll urge you to head up to the throne room. Before you leave, collect the five rupees from the chest.
1.5Use the secret passage
The throne room which holds the secret passage is all the way on the 2nd floor, so you’ll have to head back precisely the way you came. Head up through B2 and into B1. The green Soldier in the trap room might have respawned by now, so dispatch him if he did to open the door to the south.
This will lead you to the room with the two green Soldiers patrolling narrow passageways. Instead of trying to go between them and back the way you came, you should use the shortcut by climbing the stairs to the upper platform at the southern end of the room. Follow this raised passageway right, up, and then right into the other room, and then finally up to the next. Drop down and sneak up the other stairwell into the room where you found the Map. Once there, you can head back up to 1F.
Here, you naturally have the choice once again to use the western or eastern hallways. Both are relatively straightforward, but the western passageway is still slightly less treacherous and slightly faster. Head west, kill the three guards, and then head south and then east to get back to the entrance hall of the castle. Quickly, before the guards see you, climb up the stairway to the raised platform just to the north and then head to the door in the center of the northern wall to ascend to the throne room.
There are two blue Soldiers in the room, but if you just waltz northward they won’t have a chance to catch you before heading up the stairwell. Continue north to approach the throne, and Zelda will tell you how to access the hidden passageway to the sewers. The ornamental shelf is the green-looking device against the northern wall; walk to the left side of it and then hold right on the controller to have Link and Zelda shift it to the right. This will gradually reveal a secret doorway to the north.
1.6Traverse the sewers to Sanctuary
Most of the secret passageway is enshrouded by darkness as there isn’t any natural light that makes it this far. With your lantern, you will see a small distance in front of you. It should give you enough light to spot the few enemies lurking about before they hit you. In this room, there are four Rats squeaking about. If you need more light, you can light any of the torches in the room to increase the lighting for 10-15 seconds before the flame extinguishes. The door you’re looking for is in the upper-right of the room, so take the fork to the right and follow it to the northern wall to head back to the first floor.
The next room will still be dark and is a little more dangerous. The room has six snakes called Ropes. They’re slower than Rats, so you have more time to kill them if you know they are there. You can also light the torches in the lower-left and lower-right corners to easily spot them. You don’t have to kill all six; all you have to do is hack your way to the staircase on the left half of the room to head down to the basement.
The next room is in the shape of a cross, but this time the exit to the room is locked. The Small Key you need is in a chest in the right part of the cross; grab it and then head through the door in the upper part of the cross.
Now you’ll be in the sewers. From here on out, the dungeon is a relative cakewalk as most of the dangerous enemies are behind you. Zelda will talk to you here; wait for her to finish and then walk along the wall to your left to head to the door leading to the second room of the sewers. In this room, walk along the wall to the north, and this will lead you to the door in the center of the room.
The next room is the final dark room, but again the exit out is locked once again. You won’t find a treasure chest containing the key; instead one of the three Rats has it tied to its tail or something. You might find it helpful to light one of the two torches in the lower corners of the room to actually find the rats considering how fast they move. Once you kill the correct Rat, however, the Small Key will drop, allowing you to open the locked door on the right half of the room.
And finally, after all this time, light shines throughout the room, and you can put the lantern away. On the north side of the room, push the block in the center of the blocks up one square to allow you access to the stairs up.
You’re very close to Sanctuary now, and the only enemies from here on are Rats, so you can kill them or ignore them as you like. Head south to find a room with two Pull Levers in the wall. The correct lever is the one on the right, and you’ll know it’s the correct one because Zelda will tell you to operate it when you get close. If you pull the wrong lever, several Ropes will fall into the room, so don’t do that. Once the correct lever is pulled, the door will open, and you’ll be in Sanctuary!
“I will hide Princess Zelda here. Do not worry! Seek the elder!”
It’s here you’ll meet the Loyal Sage, a faithful steward of Hyrule and certain skeptic of the wizard Agahnim. The Princess Zelda will vouch for you and explain to him that it’s because of Link’s courage and audacity that she is free from the wizard’s clutches. Realizing that someone needs to rescue Hyrule, he will gladly give the task to you and tell you that you should meet the elder of Kakariko Village so that he can guide you to the Master Sword. Before leaving, make sure to collect your reward in the treasure chest, which is a Heart Container, bringing your heart total up to four.