Suppose you’ve crash-landed here looking for a guide on how to beat Sidon’s quest for collecting electric arrows to lunge at Vah Ruta. In that case, the answer is easy: Teleport back to Kakariko Village and purchase the Sheikah armor set. Check out a guide for optimal cooking recipes, if you want to play it safe.
Mr. Lynel will knock Link around like a ragdoll, and it’s a nightmare.
Although, I’m not here to write a guide today. I’m here to rant about what you’re not supposed to do. Let me tell you the story of the fish who cried Lynel, alternate title: “Some Lessons We Learn The Hard Way.”
I accepted Prince Sidon’s quest within my first few hours of playing Breath of the Wild. I hadn’t explored many shrines. I hadn’t figured out the locations of any statues of Hylia. I was busy tossing all my premium food ingredients at wildlife, jotting down notes on what they would eat.
So without further delay, here’s my story:
Make no mistake. I won’t be joining the Prince Sidon fan club in this or any other lifetime. Sure, our beloved Zora hero is dashing, charismatic, and eloquent. He has a solid and respectable stature. He’s gifted with the empathy of a Zora.
I still have a bone to pick with him.
Aside from having three Zora cheerleaders: Tula, Tona, and little Laruta, Prince Sidon has a cult following amongst gamers, too. He’s often hailed as a voice of compassion in a barren and desolate BotW overworld.
I circle option number one: Strongly disagree.
First, I chased this aquatic menace from Inogo Bridge clear to Zora’s Domain. He continually broke up the lush scenery by keeping tabs on me like a clingy ex. Instead of offering a lift, Sidon greeted me with the hollow words of encouragement you’d expect to hear from a distant relative at a family reunion.
“You got this! Hang in there!” The type of stuff you’d expect to see on a motivational poster in a high school guidance counselors office.
After traversing what felt like a hundred miles of treacherous terrain – littered with enough lightning damage to warrant the jealousy of Zeus himself, mind you – Sidon didn’t greet me with a free meal or an outing to the local swimming hole. No.
Instead, a twenty-foot-tall Fishman with a cheerleader squad rivaling Gary Oak stepped into my face. His breath reeked of rotten tuna, and he continually cried out that Link should gather shock arrows from a savage Lynel atop the highest peak in the region. The locals named it Shatterback Point. That was my warning, and I chose to ignore it completely.
Of course, Prince Sidon rambled on about some rare fish disease and used language flowery enough to win me over. Looking back, he spoke with the blatant vulnerability of a dismissive politician.
Link adorns himself in a thick tunic of destiny. Saving random strangers is totally his jam, so I wasn’t going to let my first impression ruin my friendship with Sidon… not yet.
But this Lynel he spoke of, half-man half-lion… I can only look back and think, “Oh Link, you sweet summer child.”
Surely, someone as empathetic as a Zora wouldn’t send Link to an early grave, right? Surely Mipha’s own brother wouldn’t lure Link into a trap… right?
The walkways of Zora’s Domain spoke the heartfelt language of a skilled craftsman. Each path was paved in gorgeous brick patterns and bejeweled with Azureus etchings coated in a gentle stream of running water. Luminous archways lined the kingdom with the sensation of pure affluence. Lavish pillars held the streets on a lofty saucer. Zora’s Domain was gushing with luxury.
Clearly, the Zora were a sophisticated species. Elegant and raring with precision and ingenuity. Their faces were stern and dutiful. Their hands were steady and purposeful.
Yet somehow, only this weary-eyed Hylian could brave the hardship of slaying a mighty Lynel. I don’t buy it! With the rise of dignified opulence comes the strain of lethargic neglect.
No big deal.
Link is fierce. Unstoppable. So, I ascended the daunting path toward Shatterback Point without an ounce of fear. I rushed past the shimmering coral foliage. I sprinted beyond the imposing sight of roaring waterfalls.
Along the way, I discovered an enormous stone tablet that spoke of a legend starring our 20-foot-tall Zora friend, Prince Sidon. It was a stately memorial – crafted with the same skilled hands as Zora’s Domain, even. It made immaculate claims that Sidon single-handedly slew a giant Octorok after being swallowed whole and jabbing it with a steel spear from within.
Sorry. Sidon did What!? Look, Link just woke up from a century-long nap. He gazed upon the Sheikah slate in the same way I’d expect my grandma to look at a new phone. Have you ever gone a hundred years without eating anything? He can’t be tough enough to go all epic-tale odyssey, Beowulf-ham-sandwich on some boulder-munching sea monster a hundred times his size.
Still, I wasn’t ready to give up on Sidon quite yet.
As I finished my grueling hike to the precipice of Shatterback Point, I laid eyes upon the feral beast that Sidon spoke of. The untamed Lynel. All 2,000 hitpoints of him. Meanwhile, I had 4 hearts, all of which vanished in the span of an isolated ax swing.
Now, I’ve played my fair share of Zelda games, but I’ve never once witnessed half as many ‘Game Over’ screens as I did on that cursed evening.
Link blazed through uncooked meals. He snapped every wooden bow in his inventory. He gazed longingly through the screen at me, begging for forgiveness.
Together, we tightened our movements and collected information on our enemies’ attack patterns. With each fall, we grew more persistent. We kept our eyes vigilant for unrelenting barrages of fire. We wept. We laughed. We considered smashing our heads against each of the four puny rocks on that summit that provided us with cover.
Finally, I led our poor malnourished hero to victory with snappy button inputs that I never thought myself capable of executing.
All those sweaty gamers boasting about their trials and tribulations with Dark Souls had nothing on Link and I. We had scoured all 7 levels of Dante’s Inferno and arose from the ashes scarred from battle and emotionally tattered.
We lost track of the number of attempts it took to take down that mighty Lynel. Link gallantly looted his shock arrows. I kept his bow as a trophy throughout my entire playthrough – as a harsh reminder to never trust a fish who cries Lynel. It wasn’t the strongest bow in the game, but it still held a ton of sentimental value.