- 4.1 Ascend Death Mountain
- 4.2 Reach Spectacle Rock
- 4.3 Enter the Tower of Hera
- 4.4 Obtain the Map and Big Key
- 4.5 Retrieve the Compass
- 4.6 Get the Moon Pearl
- 4.7 Defeat Moldorm
4.1 Ascend Death Mountain
You’ll arrive back at the front of the upper section of the Desert Palace, and your goal now is high on Death Mountain. There’s only one path up the steep mountainside, and so that should be your aim. There’s also not really any errands that need to be run before you get there (that is, unless you need to go buy some potions before you go), so there’s nothing stopping you from heading straight up the mountain.
Head southeast in order to drop off the raised cliff and then continue southeast across the desert until you reach the valley. Continue through it, working your way through the enemies until you finally reach the Great Swamp. Once you’re there, you can actually take a shortcut back to central Hyrule. You can head due north and you’ll find a small pass through the rock wall separating the swamp from central Hyrule; you wouldn’t have been able to lift the giant rock here before, but the Power Glove allows you to do so.
Now that you have the Power Glove, you are now able to purchase the Zora Flippers if you have 500 Rupees. You won’t need these until Chapter 7, but if those rupees are burning a hole in your pocket or if you’re getting close to the 999 maximum, it’s not a bad time to spend them.
Continue heading north through the woods, bearing east when you finally get to the bridge to Hyrule Castle. This time, head clockwise around the castle, constantly on the watch for bomb-throwing Soldiers from atop the castle’s outer wall. Eventually you’ll be led to a path over the moat heading west. Take that, and continue bearing north through the forest, dispatching Soldiers as you meet them. Once you clear the forest, you’ll be back on the path between northern Kakariko and Sanctuary. However, the entrance to Death Mountain is further north still, so continue past the pond with the whirlpool in it.
If you keep going, you’ll eventually find a group of trees clustered in the shape of a V. The cave entrance to Death Mountain is up on a ledge just to the northeast of these trees; you should see a rock blocking the road and a sign just to its west. Lift up the rock and enter the cave. Only do so if you really don’t want to be returning any time soon as, once you enter, you won’t be coming back for a bit.
It’s dark inside, but as there are no torches available, you don’t need to bother bringing your Lantern out. Leap off the cliff and then carefully make your way through the cavern maze. There are bottomless pits strewn about, so go slow and make sure you’ve got steady footing. At the first junction, head right. Continue heading that direction until you come to a wall with a passageway leading north and south. Squeeze through the narrow passageway north and then take an immediate right turn.
Here you’ll come across an old man lost within the caves. The man’s lantern went out, and he got stuck, unable to find his way out. He’ll ask you to guide him out, and you’ll naturally say yes. For the trouble, he’ll ramble on about his life, telling you about his granddaughter who apparently was sent to the castle on the order of the King, but surprisingly she never returned. Perhaps she’s one of the missing maidens Zelda told you about?
“Many people have vanished while looking for the Golden Power. don’t get too involved in such a mad quest.”
At any rate, continue through the cave. The old man will guide you out, but the path is fairly simple regardless. Continue bearing east, being very careful for a pit in the floor just ahead of you. Keep going as far as you can until you’re left with a choice of heading up or down; choose to go southward, watching out for the Keese that inhabit the halls until you reach the entrance.
When you finally emerge, the old man will be grateful for the help. Continue heading east until you arrive at the next cave entrance, and he’ll then depart inside to his secret abode. But before he departs, he’ll give you a very useful treasure, the Magic Mirror. You can’t use it just this moment; in fact, equipping it and trying to use it will cause an error noise. But that will become one of the more commonly used items in the game.
4.2 Reach Spectacle Rock
Now in the foothills of Death Mountain, it’s time to continue your way to the Tower of Hera. But seeing as how the tower is practically at Death Mountain’s highest point, you’ll have to journey your way up. Fresh out of the cave, you’ll see a new enemy and perhaps one of the most annoying ones to date: Deadrocks. Deadrocks are pretty dangerous as they do a fair bit of damage; what’s more is that they’re more or less undefeatable; striking them with any weapon will cause them to turn to stone. While they might be safe to touch while in stone form, they will block your path, which can be annoying at times. This can be especially dangerous since Boulders are constantly raining down from on high. If you have managed to get the Magic Powder by now, you can use that to convert these enemies into Slimes, which are much easier to kill.
Thankfully, there is a Boulder-free shortcut halfway up the mountain. That shortcut happens to be the cave that the lost, old man went into, which also happens to double as his “house.” Whenever you talk to him, he’ll restore your health to full, which will give you a little bit of damage buffer from the sometimes unavoidable Boulders. Instead of heading out of his house, head further back and up the stairs, continuing through the doorway in the back.
You’ll see a passageway forward with three Keese and a pot at the end; you can ignore it because it’s just a single Heart, so take the passage downward that eventually ends at another doorway. Faced with two new directions, head southeast, and eventually you’ll see a fork heading due south, which leads outside once more.
Once you’re outside, head towards the west as fast as you can to avoid the falling Boulders. If you decide to dash, be wary of the fact that there’s no guardrail on the cliff face straight down, and running completely at breakneck speed might cause you to fall down back to where you came from. Eventually you’ll see a cave entrance and a staircase cut into the mountainside. The cave is actually the way back down the mountainside, so you’ll want to dash your way up the staircase. About midway, the Boulders will stop falling, letting you know that you’re nearing the top.
As you make it to the top, you’ll start to see that you’re well above the cloud line of Hyrule now. Continue east, and eventually you’ll see a massive rock structure to the north called Spectacle Rock, the official apex of the mountain. The Tower of Hera is just on the other side of Spectacle Rock, but unfortunately there’s a cliff between you and the Tower that you won’t be able to find a way to ascend.
You can find the ninth Piece of Heart around here if you want to go looking for it.
4.3 Enter the Tower of Hera
It’s at this point that you should just pass Spectacle Rock and continue east. You’ll see a curious little blue tile, and you should totally go stand in it. Suddenly, the world will fade away, and you not only find that the world has changed around you but that you yourself have changed. You’re now a furry, pink defenseless bunny rabbit trapped high on the mountain. You won’t even be able to use your sword without some much needed opposable thumbs.
Thankfully, there are no enemies over here; there’s just a clearly agitated looking monster kicking around a ball-shaped creature around, both of which will be happy to talk to you. You can explore around, but there’s really nothing to find here, especially as ill-equipped as you are.
At any rate, welcome to the Dark World.
“I came here to get the Power of Gold, but now I’m a freak and I can’t go back to the real world!”
You might notice that there’s a light patch of ground below that vaguely looks like the shape of Spectacle Rock where Spectacle Rock would be in the Light World. Go stand in the dark patches of ground within the light patches, grab your Magic Mirror, and use it to warp yourself back to the Light World.
And suddenly, you’ll be standing atop Spectacle Rock. A shimmering circle will remain where you once stood, which will serve as a one-way trip back to the Dark World. This is the purpose of the Magic Mirror; should you ever need to return to the Light World from the Dark, use the Mirror to bring you there. To go from Light to Dark, you’ll either need to use one of the eight warp tiles scattered about Hyrule or the temporary portal created from the Mirror.
The tenth Piece of Heart will be right next to you when you re-emerge back in the Light World, so you might as well grab it now.
Back in the Light World, jump off the cliff to the north. It’s then just a simple walk up and to the right to enter the Tower of Hera.
4.4 Obtain the Map and Big Key
You’ll start the Tower of Hera on the second floor instead of the first, and you’ll immediately see a row of blue blocks blocking your path forward. However, there is a Crystal Switch, currently colored brown in front of you. Strike it with your sword or anything else, and the switch will turn from brown to blue; at the same time, the blue blocks will fall while the brown blocks at the edges of the screen will rise. This is the core mechanic of this dungeon, and this will be present in most of the remaining dungeons after this point. With the blue blocks lowered, head left and head down the stairs to the first floor.
The room will contain two Stalfos—one white and one red—and a new enemy, the Mini-moldorm. The Mini-moldorm wanders about fairly randomly, travelling alternatively in straight lines and circular arcs; their movements are very difficult to predict, though they’re easy to destroy once you manage to get hits on them. However, in this room you don’t need to deal with any of the enemies at all since you’re just here for the Small Key. Use your Boomerang to pull it out of the Mini-moldorm pen before heading back upstairs.
Head outside of the blue blocks guarding the staircase and hit the Crystal Switch back to brown. You can then head up to the north end of the room where you’ll find a Telepathy Tile. You will also find two pens holding enemies called Kodongos; these will wander about randomly before firing bursts of fire across the room, alighting anything that it touches. Be careful to avoid their fire and pass them to find the Map sitting easily available in a treasure chest. Once you’ve got that, head to the northwest corner of the room and use the Small Key to descend to the other part of the first floor.
You’ll enter a room that looks simple at first until your favorite trap—the Flying Tiles—start to emerge from the floor. There’s no shortcutting this room; you have to wait and dodge them until they’re done. Once they finish flying, the door to the right will unseal itself. But to get to that door, you’ll need to flip the Crystal Switch to blue.
The next room will bring your first real encounter with the Mini-moldorm. There will be three, but two are contained within pens. Defeat the first one with two hits from your Sword before hitting the Crystal Switch to face the other two. Defeat or bypass them and then head south into the final room of this floor.
You’ll be done with Mini-moldorms for a brief moment, but you will have two red Stalfos that will hamper your efforts. Use the Boomerang to defeat them to get some breathing room. Once the room is clear of enemies, use your Lantern to light the four torches in the room to reveal a chest. That chest will contain the Big Key and allow you to access the upper floors of the dungeon!
4.5 Retrieve the Compass
You’ll want to head back to the second floor. In each room with a Crystal Switch, you’ll want to toggle them all again, first from brown to blue in the Mini-moldorm room and then from blue to brown in the Flying Tile room so that you can actually get to the southern half of the second floor. Don’t hit any Crystal Switches on 2F and head towards the lower-right and ascend the steps up to 3F.
The upper levels of the dungeon are very much the more annoying part of this dungeon. The Tower of Hera has clearly fallen into decay as there are holes appearing in the floor everywhere. Unlike the pits seen in earlier dungeons, these will not return you to the center of the room but instead drop you down one floor (or possibly more, depending on their placement). So from here on be careful lest you have to redo these sections along with defeating all the enemies again.
Surviving the third floor
Finally, up on 4F, make your way south into the pseudo-maze below. The Mini-moldorm above doesn’t need to be messed with and should stay in its pen. The two below do. You can smash the pottery into the Mini-moldorms if you can in order to defeat them; failing that, just use your Sword. Once you’ve cleared a path, head to the center of the room to find a Telepathy Tile and a treasure chest containing the dungeon Compass. There’s no surprise where the boss is though; he’s all the way at the top of the dungeon.
4.6 Get the Moon Pearl
With all the dungeon items in your possession, it’s time to get that big chest. That chest is just up at the top of this room; however, there’s a nice little pit that will keep you from accessing it, and no amount of Star Switch manipulation will make it accessible. That means that you’ll have to drop down from above. Beware the Kodongos to the left as they will spit fire at you as you’re navigating the small maze towards the staircase up in the northwest of the room.
The fifth floor is a huge open room like the one below it, and you will have to face some more Hardhat Beetles, a spinning bar of fire called the Guruguru Bar, and lots of pits. There are so many pits to choose from; how do you know which one you need to drop into to get the Moon Pearl? First, you will need to activate the Star Switch right next to the Guruguru Bar, so wait for your opportunity to do so. Then, head to the north part of the room and you should see a pit due north from the Bumper in the center of the room. It is extremely important that you approach that pit from the north side as otherwise you might not be north enough to avoid the Star Switches on 4F. Fall in and descend to land just in front of the Big Chest, which you can open to get the Moon Pearl.
From the Moon Pearl’s chest, head confidently over the Star Switches to the south so that you can clamber back up to 5F. If you want to get some Fairies, you can fall into the only pit adjacent to the north wall (in the northwest corner), which will cause you to fall all the way to 2F via a series of connected pots; you’ll find a couple of fairies and a Magical Warp Tile taking you back to 5F. There are also 12 clay pots on the far right of the room, just south of the stairs up, each one containing a heart. When you’re ready for the boss, journey on up to 6F.
4.7 Defeat Moldorm
You’ve been facing Moldorm’s miniature cousins the entire dungeon, but the giant-sized Moldorm is much more of a pain. You’ll see it scooting its way across the platform in the center of the room as you head towards the south side of the room to gain entrance to his private room. Moldorm combines the worst part of Mini-moldorms (their erratic movement) and Hardhat Beetles (their extreme knockback) and adds the fact that it is only able to be damaged at the red tip of its tail. Hitting it anywhere else on the body will send you flying, and there is a very large pit on the periphery which will send you back down a floor (or maybe two). Even worse is that, every time you fall, Moldorm will regain all his health, meaning you’ll start over from scratch.
When you’re ready, drop down into the central podium and combat Moldorm. The best strategy is to stay on the right-hand side of the podium where there’s lots of maneuverability and wait for Moldorm to come to you. It might take a while, but it will come. Do your best to avoid its assaults and move around him to strike the tail. If you can manage it, Spin Attacks will do twice the damage at the expense of limited maneuverability. It will take six hits with the Fighter’s Sword to kill him (three with Spin Attacks), and each hit will cause Moldorm to become more irritated and move more quickly. Keep up the effort, remembering the hearts and the Fairies down on 5F should ever you fall and eventually you will prevail, earning you the Pendant of Power and one more Heart Container.