- 10.1 Temper your sword
- 10.2 Enter the Ice Palace
- 10.3 Get the Compass
- 10.4 Reach the fifth basement
- 10.5 Head back up to find the Map
- 10.6 Retrieve the Big Key
- 10.7 Don the Blue Mail
- 10.8 Flip the Crystal Switch
- 10.9 Push the block onto the switch
- 10.10 Defeat Kholdstare
Temper your sword
You’ll emerge from Thieves’ Town with the Titan’s Mitt. With this powerful item, what places you couldn’t access before are now available to you with a scant few exceptions. There are still a couple of nooks and crannies that you haven’t been able to explore thanks to heavy stones blocking the way here and there, and the Titan’s Mitt will also allow you to take huge shortcuts from place to place rather than having to make very circuitous routes that avoid those ill-placed stones.
With the Titan’s Mitt in your possession, you can now collect all of the remaining optional items: the fourth Bottle, the Magic Cape, and the Cane of Byrna. You can also collect Pieces of Heart #19 through #22.
Speaking of ill-placed stones, you might have seen a certain individual that’s been helplessly trapped behind a set of heavy skulls for quite some time. Head south into The Village of Outcasts’ outskirts, and then immediately walk to the west along the tree line. Before long you’ll see a small frog sitting patiently behind a row of dark stones. Lift them out of the way and talk to the creature. He’ll tell you that his partner in Kakariko Village will be missing him, so perhaps you could do him a favor and rejoin the pair.
“Ribbit ribbit… I used to live in Kakariko Town. I wonder what my partner is doing there without me.”
Agree to do so and then head back to the Village of Outcasts. Continue north until you see a pathway heading east off-screen. Follow that pathway; you’ll be blocked by a couple of heavy boulders, but you can move them out of the way now, which is rather convenient. Get to the other side and then pull out the Magic Mirror and warp back into the Light World. The frog will transition back to the Light World, and when he does he’ll become the long-lost Dwarven Swordsmith. How convenient that their house is just at the top of the screen! Head on in, and you’ll find that they have a joyful moment.
Give them a moment by exiting the house, but immediately enter again. You’ll find the duo hard at work. Talk to them, and they’ll offer you the deal of a lifetime. For the incredible deal of 10 Rupees, they’ll temper your sword and make it all the stronger. However, there is one small gotcha: You’ll need to leave your sword behind. But still it’s a small cost to pay in the short term. Leave your sword, and walk out the door.
The quickest way to get your sword tempered is to just cause a screen transition. So head down the stairs leading to the Swordsmiths’ house and then follow the path west. Once the screen scrolls to the left, immediately head back to the Swordsmiths. Head inside, and you’ll find your sword is now done. Hold it high and feel the power throbbing through your veins.
You also have the capability to retrieve the Quake Medallion. You won’t need this until Chapter 12, and admittedly it is a bit out of the way. However, it will still be out of the way when you have to go get it, so consider picking it up now if you want a new magical device to play with.
Enter the Ice Palace
If you’ve traveled at any point to the Ice Lake, you might have seen the Ice Palace there in the center. Unfortunately the entrance to it is completely barricaded from all sides with thick, impenetrable walls. Of course, if you think in the fourth dimension, traveling between worlds, you can imagine that there’s a chink in the palace’s icy armor.
After you’re done with any errands you deem necessary, bring out the Flute. Today your destination is Point #8, which will drop you right outside the Pond of Happiness. If you have any spare Rupees lying around, it’s a great time to spend them and get some bonus Bombs and Arrows. However, if you’re ready to descend back into the Dark World, pick up the single heavy rock in the center of the island. You’ll uncover a Magical Warp Tile that will transcend you into the Dark World.
Once in the Dark World, be light on your feet as there is a Pikit about. It will be sufficiently far from you, but there’s no sense in tempting fate. Hurry down the staircase, and you’ll be in Level 5.
Get the Compass
The Ice Palace is a deep dive into the depths of the lake. You’ll start on the first floor, and the boss is all the way down in the seventh basement. Thankfully the floors aren’t large, but there still is a fair bit of trickery within this dungeon.
You might figure that, this being the Ice Palace, that the Fire Rod will come in handy here. You are absolutely correct. Get it now because, after a few short moments, a Freezor will come out of the wall to attack you. Freezors are beings made out of ice that will aggressively home in on Link to try to damage him. They are only vulnerable to the Fire Rod, so make sure you always have some magic; any time you see their likenesses against a wall, you can surely bet that one of them will become an enemy. Once defeated, the doorway will open up.
Three blue Bari are in the room; by now you should know the drill. Either use the Sword or the Hookshot as you see fit to destroy the Bari. The only complication in this room will be a common theme throughout the dungeon: a slippery ice floor. You’ll need to navigate carefully to prevent yourself from slipping and sliding too badly. Once you defeat the Bari, a Small Key will drop down from the ceiling. Pick it up and unlock the door, revealing a staircase descending into the basements.
The next room seems simple enough; there’s a secret Switch in the lower-left corner and a sealed door. Naturally the switch opens the door. Though there will be two green Zol that ooze out of the floor as you pass over. Kill them as you pass, open the door, and head through.
This four-way intersection has a moveable block in the center. However, since you can only push it one way, you can only open two ways forward instead of three on each visit. Worse yet, the north exit is sealed by the secret switch to the east, a switch you cannot reach this time around. This means that all you can do is push the block forward and then head south.
The next room will feature another iced-over floor, but it will also contain six Pengators. As crosses between penguins and alligators, these bird-like creatures will start running in one of the four cardinal directions, whichever is closest to Link’s direction. After a small sliding start, they’ll jump in the air and slide on their bellies, teeth first, to collide with Link. They might seem fairly intimidating, especially since there are a large number of them, but really they’re not too bad, especially with the Tempered Sword. Defeat all six of them to cause a treasure chest to appear, and you’ll find the Compass within it.
10.4Reach the fifth basement
With the Compass in your hand, your next task is to head into the depths of the dungeon. But just accessing the next basement down is a puzzle unto itself.
Accessing the second basement
The room below you will appear empty at first, but it’s hardly the case. Near the upper-right and lower-left corners of the room are Stalfos Knights; they’ll drop down from the ceiling once you approach. These guys require two attacks to kill them. First, you need to use your Sword to disable them; this will cause them to crumble into a pile of bones on the floor. If you do nothing else to them, eventually they will revive and attack you again. While they’re a crumpled heap, you’ll need to set a Bomb on top of them. When they explode, they will be ground into dust, defeating them. Defeat both Stalfos Knights to open the door south.
The next room features a mechanically moving floor that will oscillate moving right and left. The room is filled with many immobile Traps set up in a rather rudimentary maze. You’ll naturally need to avoid the traps as you make your way left across the room. The room is filled with four blue Bari, and then there are several holes in the wall where black creatures called Babusu live. These creatures simply run from hole to hole in a straight line every so often. They’re absolutely no threat to you if you time your transitions from section to section well enough. Of more interest to you are the blue Bari; one of the four has a Small Key that you need to escape the room. You can use your Hookshot on them to kill them, even if they are electrified. Once you grab the Key, head to the far left. Make sure, before you leave the room that the Crystal Switch is set to brown. Once that’s set, unlock the door heading south.
The next room features a narrow (though thankfully not icy) catwalk and a centrally located Guruguru Bar spinning clockwise. With the Crystal Switch set to brown, you’ll be able to pass the lowered brown blocks. You need to cross this room in two segments. Once the Guruguru Bar passes you, you’re first goal should be to go to the southwest corner of the room, lifting the skulls that are in your way. When you lift the one near the corner of the room, you’ll discover a switch under it that controls the eastern door. Step on it twice to open and close the door, then hide out in the far corner. Once the Guruguru Bar passes on you, make your way east, stepping on the switch a third time to open the door. Toss the remaining skulls out of your way and hurry through the door.
Then it’s pretty much a simple walk to reach the staircase down. Green Zol will pop out of the ground as you walk, but you’ll be going faster than them. Just head down.
You’ll immediately be confronted by six Pengators on the third basement, all of them lined up in a row. Your first task should be to use the Hookshot to kill the top one so that you can break their ranks up ever so slightly. Once done, move left out of the way and then kill the Pengators as they naturally start homing in on you. Once they’re all defeated, the door leading north will open.
The next room, again, is a four-way intersection, but you’ll encounter a Giant Trap for the first time. This Trap, when it sees Link, will immediately zoom towards the end of the room, and then it will slowly reset to its original position. Since you don’t have a Small Key at the moment, you’re goal should be to take the west door. The north door might look like the more challenging (and therefore the correct) door, but it’s a dead end, so just ignore it and head west. As the Giant Trap is resetting, venture out into the hallway and duck west when you can.
You’ll be confronted with a completely ice-covered room with a single Guruguru Bar spinning clockwise around the center of the room. Make your way to the staircase on the west side of the room, ducking south of the Guruguru Bar and finding safe harbor as needed. Once the Guruguru Bar passes the steps, head down them.
Your time on B4 will be very short. You can open the treasure chest if you really wish, but it’s best to save them for later when you absolutely need the Bombs in the room. Instead, just drop down into the pit on the right side of the room. You’ll drop down to the fifth basement, and you’ll see the Big Chest taunting you. It seems awkward to see it right this moment considering you (a) don’t have the Big Key and (b) you’re on the wrong side of the blocks to open it up, but you’ll naturally be backtracking through this room later, so you’ll need to be patient for the time being.
Head back up to get the Map
Now that you’ve made it to B5, you need to go and get the Map… all the way back up on B2. You might think that this is backtracking, but you’ll be exploring an entirely new set of rooms on the way back; you’ll just be heading up a different set of stairs on your way.
Head east from this room, and then hurry east through the next one as a Freezor will come and attack you if you tarry too long. You’ll eventually discover another completely iced-over room with another Guruguru Bar swinging around in the room’s center. It also has an Anti-fairy and four Babusa scampering vertically. Both doors will seal shut the moment you enter. However, there’s more than just a switch hidden within this room. Pick up the skull just north of you when you enter the room, and you’ll find a Small Key waiting for you. The switch, unfortunately, is slightly trickier. Out of the four skulls towards the room’s center just within the Guruguru Bar’s reach, the upper-right one hides the switch. Wait until the Guruguru Bar passes and the coast is clear of Babusa. Hurry over to that skull, pick it up, and sit on the switch. You just need to then hurry south through the door.
You’ll then get the privilege of dodging a Guruguru Bar over a narrow catwalk, except this time the catwalk is covered with ice. You can choose to be extra cautious and just take a hit from the fire as you navigate the catwalk, but you should be able to do it without taking damage if you’re fast enough. Head west to the next room after you’ve navigated it.
The next room is a small breath of fresh air. Lift up the skull to reveal a switch. That switch will cause a treasure chest to appear, which holds a Small Key, giving you a total of two. Once you’ve got it, head up the staircase.
You’ll be using that key immediately on the next door. This room isn’t all that scary provided you’re prepared for it. The bottom skull of the two hides a Rabbit Beam, so you shouldn’t pick it up as that will make this room significantly harder. There are a large number of Zol hiding in the floor in this room, and if that wasn’t enough the Freezor in this room is real too. Kill it with fire before proceeding north through the locked door.
Prepare for a wintry wonderland. This large vertical room is completely covered with ice, and there are two Pengators, two Guruguru Bars, a Bumper, and several Traps hindering your progress. Kill the Pengators first so you only have to worry about the fire and the traps later. If you only have to deal with the fire on its own, it should be a cakewalk. Once you get to the northern end of the room, walk through the door on the east.
Your Hookshot will work overtime in this room. There are four red Bari hovering over an extremely large pit. The only way you can kill them is to use the Hookshot; for that matter, the only way to cross this large gap is with the Hookshot too. Position yourself due west of the block on the right side of the room and just let the Hookshot fly time and time again. You’ll hit one of the Bari or the resulting Biri most times, but given enough persistence the Hookshot will eventually make contact with the block on the other side, pulling you across. Just walk along the catwalk through the door on the south.
Ready to go up? All you have left to dodge are four Giant Traps. The first one will spring soon as you leave the doorway, so hold there for a moment to let it reset. There should then be a narrow gap between the first and second Giant Traps that should be safe to stand. Spring the second Trap, and this should give you enough time to sneak left and up the staircase to B3.
This room will give you your first encounter with beds of nails. You can naturally walk across these obstacles, but naturally you’ll take damage in the process. You can, however, safely Hookshot over them should you have a target on the other side. Deal with the blue Bari on your side of the room and then use the Hookshot on the skull to the right side. If you have it, you can alternatively use the Magic Cape or the Cane of Byrna to cross the room. Pick up the skull, and you’ll see a switch. Stepping on it will cause a treasure chest to appear, of course, on the left side of the room. Either use the Hookshot, Cane of Byrna, or Magic Cape to go back and collect its contents, which will turn out to be a Small Key. While there is a locked door in this room, that’s not your immediate destination; you want to go up the stairs. However, since the skull is gone, you can’t use the Hookshot to head to the right side of the room, though you can use the Cape or Cane or you can go down the staircase and back up to reset the room to allow you to do so. Or you can just eat the damage if you can’t be bothered. One way or another, make your way to the right side of the room and then head upstairs.
You’re finally back up to the second basement. It looks like this room will be straightforward, but again there are two Stalfos Knights to deal with. The first will appear on your side of the room; use your sword and follow up with a Bomb. Once defeated, use the Magic Hammer to whack the Moles and then lift up the heavy block in the center of the room. Be careful as it will have a Rabbit Beam. You might not be able to avoid it, but that’s okay; the worst case is that you just have to wait for the effects to wear off.
But even if you have to wait, you can collect the Small Key that was also hiding under the rock, and this will give you three Small Keys total. Either way, when you’re able, whack the Moles on the west side of the room to draw out the second Stalfos Knight. Kill it and then yank on the tongue of the statue; this will cause the door to open up. And then, under the lower left skull is a switch that will cause a the treasure chest to appear; open it up to collect the Map.
Retrieve the Big Key
The Big Key isn’t actually that far away from the map. Head east through the door and then immediately up the staircase in the next room. You’ll see a treasure chest just south of you, blocked by two skulls. Move the skulls out of your way to get the chest. Open it up to receive the Big Key.
Don the Blue Mail
Thus begins the first big backtracking section of this dungeon. With the Big Key in hand, naturally you’ll want to go open the Big Chest, back down on B5. You have your choice of ways to go about it; you can push the blocks out of your way and head down like you did in chapter 10.4, but really the way you just came up is much faster.
So head down the staircase in this room. On B2, pull on the statue’s tongue to open the door west, and then you can head downstairs once more to get to B3.
Thankfully, both pathways from the top of the dungeon to the bottom intersect, and it’s now that you should switch paths since the way you just came is now more complicated. Use the Hookshot to latch onto the treasure chest on the west end of the room, and then use the first of your three Small Keys on the locked door.
This will take you to the four-way intersection with the Giant Trap. Use the Pegasus Boots to dash through the western door of the room. Avoid the Guruguru Bar in the icy room beyond and make your way down the stairwell down to B4.
Remember that treasure chest you were asked to leave closed before? Now is the time to open it up. It’ll contain three Bombs, just in case you didn’t have any. Two Freezors in the wall will come to life shortly, so you should kill it with the Fire Rod first. Once the enemy is dead, you’ll want to place a Bomb in the center of the cracks on the floor just north of the staircase up. One of those patches of ground will crumble away, revealing a hole in the floor heading down. Jump on down.
This will take you once again to the Big Chest room, and now you both have the Big Key and access to the chest. Open it up to receive the Blue Mail, which will reduce the amount of damage you take from all enemies!
Flip the Crystal Switch
With that extra protection, now you can head down to meet the boss. Or at least, you’re almost ready. There’s one major thing that still has to be taken care of.
You can move the blocks in the room right one square to escape. The next room will be familiar to you; a Freezor will come attack you, and you should kill it with your Fire Rod. Take a mental note of this room; it will become incredibly important later. Specifically, take a note of those four blocks trapped by the blue blocks. You can’t do anything with them yet, so unlock the door to the north and continue through.
You’ll spot three red Bari in the next room, and a Stalfos Knight will appear in the center of the room. However, you can brush past these guys without needing to fight them. There’s a locked door in the north, and all you need to do is unlock it and head down to B6.
A single Anti-fairy is all that will greet you there, which is largely unimpressive. Continue heading to the south.
The central room of B6, however, is the more ominous room, though it should still be rather easy. Four blue Bari and a Stalfos Knight will be attacking you. The Stalfos Knight, of course, should be your first target, and then you can get rid of the Bari at your own pace. Once they’re taken care of, take note of the single skull in the room. If you lift it up, you’ll find a switch that opens up the door at the bottom of the room. However, this switch needs to be weighed down to operate. But the problem is that there’s nothing to weight down the switch. Just how in the world are you supposed to continue onward?
If you’ve already gone into Misery Mire and obtained the Cane of Somaria, you can use that to hold down the switch in this room instead of having to perform the inordinate amount of work required to solve this the intended way. Unfortunately, the GBA remake of this game “fixed” this sequence break, though in the process they made the puzzle a bit more obvious.
Remember the room one level up that you were supposed to note? Those movable blocks upstairs are what you need to weigh down the switch. You will need to push one of those blocks into the pit, which will then land in this room. You can then weigh down the switch and proceed down. But you might remember that you were thwarted from gaining access to them because of the blue Crystal Switch blocks. So where’s the closest Crystal Switch?
That would be in the room just to the east. Flip the Crystal Switch from brown to blue. The blocks in this room will lower, allowing you access to all the skulls, which contain an assortment of items. With the Crystal Switch flipped, all you need to do is get to those blocks.
Push the block onto the switch
But unfortunately, the puzzle isn’t that easy.
Head west, then north, and then up the staircase back to B5. While you’re in this room, you’ll notice that there are two pits in this room that you couldn’t access before because of the now-lowered blue blocks. You can hop into those pits to gain access to a room full of Fairies should you need them. Get them now if you do because, otherwise, this is your last opportunity to get them easily. If you don’t need them, however, just continue back south to the block room.
The blue blocks are lowered, but unfortunately the brown blocks are raised. And, technically speaking, the only block that can possibly weigh down the switch on B6 is the one on the left-hand side of the room, a side of the room that you now can’t reach. You can try pushing the upper block on the right-hand side, but this will only end in tears as it won’t land near the switch below. Thus, you’re going to have to traverse half of the dungeon one more time to make your way back to that block.
So go east. Remember that the switch to unseal the southern door is the upper-right block of the four in the center of the room. Watch out for the Guruguru Bar, the Babusa, and the icy floor. Flip the switch and make your way through the door. You’ll pass across the icy catwalks again, dodging yet another Guruguru Bar. Head west, and then you’ll see the staircase leading up to B4.
The door to the next room will be open here, but you’ll need to watch out for the Freezor that will come alive, the many Zol coming out of the floor, and the Rabbit Beam in the bottom skull. Make your way past all these enemies, and you’ll be able to proceed north.
This next ice-covered room is as far as you’ll need to backtrack, thankfully. Watch out for the Pengators as they come at you from the north; you might want to take the time to slay them so you can take your time since you’re not as agile on the ice. You’ll see three skulls when you enter this room, a lone skull on the left and two skulls on the right. There’s a switch hidden beneath the left tile in the block of two. Step on it, and the sealed door on the west side of the room will open. Go through that door.
This room will also be familiar, but you’ll have never entered it from this direction. Thankfully, there’s not too much decision making here. Fall into the pit, leading you back to the room with the Big Chest. Head east from there, and now you’ll finally be back in the room with the blocks… not to mention on the correct side of this room. Do watch out as the Freezor will come to life again. Take care of it if you feel threatened by it, but once done push the lower of the two blocks right into the pit, and then fall down after it.
The block will land one space to the north of the switch on B6. You can then move it left one square onto the switch, and miraculously the door will open.
The final room is in the shape of an upside-down U. Watch out for the two red Baris and their Biri children as they will be very close to you when you enter. The other thing to watch out for is that there are four blue Bari hiding underneath the heavy block on the right-hand side; however, you shouldn’t need to lift it up unless you’re hungry for the Arrows and Bomb hidden beneath the skulls in the lower-right corner.
Instead, you’ll want to focus on the left-hand side of the room. Pick up and throw the two skulls out of the way. Then you should be able to drag the right statue upwards. Once you’ve cleared a gap, use the Hammer to bop one of the Moles. And then finally, you can lift up the block, revealing one final pit to jump down into. Do so, and now finally you’re ready to face the boss.
The final boss of the Ice Palace is Kholdstare. Kholdstare begins this fight completely encased in ice. The boss itself will do nothing while it has its icy shield; however, a few seconds into the fight, hail will start raining down from the ceiling. Those blocks of hail will do a small bit of damage; however, if ever your Magic Meter is completely empty, they will provide you with small Magic Jars.
Dodge the hail as it falls, and naturally you’ll want to equip either the Fire Rod or the Bombos Medallion. The Bombos Medallion is more preferable since using it once will break the shield entirely; however, since that is an optional item, the Fire Rod is your easy backup, though it will take a little more time to crack open Kholdstare’s encasing.
Once Kholdstare is free from the ice, it will split into three puffy eye creatures. These will scatter and occasionally move from place to place in the room. That’s really the only solid attack they have, attempting to run into you. However, the hail from earlier will still be raining down at this point, and it will continue to do so for the remainder of the battle. If you have any Magic power leftover, the Fire Rod will completely ruin their days and do massive damage to them. Otherwise, the Sword (especially Spin Attacks) will suffice, especially as you’ll never be far from one of the three.
Eventually, as they take damage, each one of the three eyes will die, exploding in a patch of flames. Even when you reduce Kholdstare down to a single eye, the only thing that will happen is that he might move slightly faster, but that’s still easier to deal with than having three at once.
Keep up the effort as you destroy the last eye of Kholstare, and eventually you will knock him down for good. Doing so will give you your standard rewards, receiving both a Heart Container and your fifth Crystal. Only two more to go!
“They say the Hylia people controlled mysterious powers, as did the seven wise men.”