How to Kill Ganon | NowThis Nerd

Over the thirty-year history of the Legend of Zelda series, Hyrule has been menaced by a wide variety of villains, from Agahnim to Zant, but no matter how many baddies Link has battled, none of them have endured quite like the demon king Ganon The porcine peril has been sealed, banished, and on very rare occasions, slain, only to rise again and unleash his evil once more

So sharpen your Master Sword, and lets slaughter some swine, Because I’m Moose and this is How to Kill Ganon Ganon’s weakness is a secret to everybody except us, because your first, best, and last line of defense against Hate and Malice Incarnate, are some simple Silver Arrows Before there were any split timelines, reincarnated heroes, and plural princesses, there was simply ‘The Legend of Zelda’ The groundbreaking NES classic set Link on a quest to reunite eight shards of the Triforce of Wisdom, and defeat “Prince Darkness Gannon” before he can conquer Lesser Hyrule

In Links first confrontation with the ultimate evil, the teleporting tyrant is weakened by blows from the warrior’s blade The bloodied boss turns red, but Ganon will get a second wind unless you’ve found the ultimate weapon: The Silver Arrow One shot to the suffering swine will end his menace for good And unlike most Zelda games, where he gets sealed or banished or blah blah blah, this Ganon is D-E-D dead, like, “deader than 'Fallout 76'" dead He’s so dead the whole plot of the second game revolves around his minions trying to kill Link, so they can drip his blood on Ganon’s ashes and resurrect him in an unholy rite

In fact, the next time we see Ganon, it’s centuries before the first Zelda game, in ‘A Link to the Past’ After annihilating Agahnim, Ganon is revealed as the true mastermind behind the hijacking of Hyrule, so Link journeys to the Dark World and slay the swine once more The battle deep in the bowels of a pyramid plays out similarly to their 8-bit encounter, and much like their NES battle, Ganon gets ganked by four shots from silver arrows As the series progressed, the Silver Arrows were replaced by Light Arrows, which are a little less lethal, but still incredibly effective against the King of Evil In ‘Breath of the Wild,’ Link awakens the Calamity Ganon prematurely, and easily destroys his corporeal chimera form, but things get a little trickier once his spirit escapes into Hyrule Field

No blade can pierce the mystical Malice, but, as always, Zelda has a plan She gives Link the Bow of Light and paints mystical targets across his being, and with enough hits, the core of the Dark Beast is exposed So Link fires the killshot, while Zelda collapses Ganon into a shining singularity From Ganon’s first appearance to ‘Four Swords’ and beyond, ranged attacks are an excellent strategy if you want to skewer some pork, but sometimes you need to get up close and personal That’s where The Master Sword comes in handy

After a brief mention in the ‘Link to the Past’ manual, ‘Ocarina of Time’ introduced us to Ganon’s human form, the Gerudo warlock known as Ganondorf The studly sorcerer who haunts young Link’s nightmares seizes control of Hyrule during the hero’s long slumber, but after seven years of sleep, Link awakens, armed with the Blade of Evil’s Bane and confronts the Great King of Evil in his throne room After hours of cuckoo catching and bombchu racing, Link’s reflexes are almost as sharp as his sword, allowing him to easily reflect Ganondorf’s magic back in his face A barrage of Light Arrows drop the demon lord to the ground, opening him up for a flurry of strikes that leaves him with severe internal bleeding With his dying breath, Ganondorf collapses the castle around him, and rises from the rubble resurrected by the Triforce of Power as a behemoth boar

Separated from the Master Sword, Link is forced to bludgeon Ganon’s tail with his Biggoron blade and Megaton Hammer, although judging from 'Smash Bros,' a yo-yo or a fire hydrant would work just as well Once Link is reunited with his blade, Zelda holds the beast at bay while Link plunges the Master Sword between his beady eyes However, even slicing his brain in two doesn’t kill the King of Evil, he’s sealed away by the sages and curses Link with his last breath Hundreds of years later, Ganondorf emerges once again, and with no heroes in the sight, the goddesses flood Hyrule in attempt to drown the despot Not the greatest plan, but after a new Link arises, the solemn, noble samurai Ganondorf falls to his eternal foe once more

After defeating a puppet of his pig form, Zelda’s Light Arrows weaken the wicked one, and after some precise parrys, Link embeds the Master Sword squarely in Ganondorf’s skull, turning him to stone as the oceans pour in around him In ‘Twilight Princess,’ Ganondorf is actually mortally wounded long before the game begins, when the Sages sentence him to death and plunge a sword of light through his chest The Triforce of Power keeps him alive, so the Sages decide to stuff him in the Twilight Realm and let someone else deal with it Someone like Link After dealing with the tertiary antagonist Zant, Ganondorf hijacks the game and reveals himself as the true villain

First, he possesses Zelda, but his spirit is easily exorcised after a few rounds of dead man’s volley Then he transforms into his dark beast form, but the gaping, glowing wound from his botched execution is still present on his belly After enough wailing on the weak point, Ganon returns to his Gerudo body, and after a thrilling horseback chase, Link and Ganondorf clash in single combat Using the ending blow taught to him by the ancient hero of old, Link plunges the Master Sword through the Dark Lord’s chest, finishing what the sages started long before Like a proud warrior, Ganon dies on his feet, and as far as the mainline games go, that’s pretty much it

But we’re not done yet, because his shadow looms large across the sprawling ‘Zelda’ series, so in our last section, let’s talk about Copies, Clones, and Non-Canon Ganons ‘Skyward Sword’ takes place earlier than any entry in the franchise, and introduces us to Demise, the demonic entity that would be reborn as Ganon through the ages For all intents and purposes, he’s the same being, but since he’s not technically Ganon, we don’t need to tell you that his only weakness is lightning-charged strikes from the Goddess Sword Meanwhile, in handheld Hyrule, you battle a nightmarish shade of Ganon in ‘Link’s Awakening,’ and both ‘Oracle’ games climax with a battle against a resurrected Dark Lord, but since Zelda wasn’t sacrificed to bring about his rebirth, the mindless husk is easily dispatched Similarly, in ‘A Link Between Worlds,’ Ganon is merged with the stylin’ sorcerer Yuga, and the hybrid monster is merced with a lethal dose of Light Arrows The above games might occupy a lower tier in the Zelda pantheon, but make no mistake: they’re as canonical as the Happy Mask Salesman is creepy

Let’s close with a look at some of Ganon’s goofier incarnations, starting with the infamous and extremely off-brand CD-I games In ‘Faces of Evil,’ Link’s resolve is tested when the amorphous green frog man who claims to be Ganon offers him ultimate power Join me, Link! And I will make your face the greatest in Korradi! Or else you will die! But the Hero of Time refuses, and throws the book at him, literally No! Not into the pit! It burns! Once the magic Book of Korradi touches the King of Thieves, he becomes trapped within its pages for all eternity, or until you pop in the ‘Wand of Gamelon’ CD It’s basically the same deal, only this time Zelda herself gets to throw the magic macguffin at the malicious monster, binding him in golden chains, and trapping him in the book again because new animation is expensive

No! You haven't seen the last of me! ‘Zelda’s Adventure’ is somehow even weirder, using digitized sprites and live-action cutscenes in place of bizarre Russian cartoons This cyberdemon looking dude is supposed to be Ganon, and after whacking him enough times with her wand, the tyrant turns into Taz and vanishes in a whirlwind Last and certainly least, we have Ganon’s only animated incarnation, in the short lived ‘Legend of Zelda’ cartoon from 1989 In the grand tradition of cash-in kids shows, the living embodiment of death and destruction is cast as a bumbling, snorting pigman, who gets his butt repeatedly kicked by the most incompetent Link in history Well there's only one thing I can say, I guess

And that is? Excuuuuuuuuuse me, princess! Ganon is bested by bees Bees Bees? BEES!!! exploding magnets

It's overloading! It's going to blow!!! gets sucked into a magic jar and accidentally drops his own evil lair down on his head on more than one occasion It’s easily the Demon King’s lamest incarnation, but that’s sort of the beauty of the whole franchise With Zelda, if you don’t like how characters look or act, just wait a console generation and you’ll get a brand new, wildly different interpretation of the whole saga Still, no matter how much the series changes from game to game, Certain constants will always remain There will always be a triforce, a hero, a princess, and a truly legendary villain that’s dang hard to kill

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