Tuesday, April 30, 2024

Tears of the Kingdom Adventure Log, Entry 34

standing next to the Hateno Ancient Lab, with view on Robbie's balloon and Mount Lanayru

My remaining three milestones for Tears of the Kingdom were finding all Koroks, filling out the recipe book, and completing Hyrule Compendium. I've made good progress on all those three fronts during April and I've even achieved one of the goals, so here's my update.

A Korok A Day Keeps Hestu Away

As for the Korok search, I had made it my mission to find at least one more Korok each day, pushing myself to get the last 15 Korok Seeds. And this went well for a while, where my method was to simply study the map and look for suspicious spots that could be housing another Korok. I've tried to ignore the Hero's Path here, because I've only been wearing the Korok Mask in my late adventures and there is always the chance that I've walked past by a Korok somewhere. (Warning: spoilers for Korok locations incoming!)

A great example of this is the wooden bridge that leads from the Koukot Plateau at the Gerudo Canyon to that little Yiga Clan outpost under the waterfall. I've crossed it several times, but failed to notice the little acorn hanging from it. And this also falls under the "a Korok under almost every bridge" rule. Another of those was at Hyrule Castle, below some rock bridge in the lower area. But there's always one more Korok hiding at Hyrule Castle, so I should probably check again...

a Korok flying above an ice lake with Hyrule at the horizon

A Korok, who was easy for me to find by just looking at the map, was at the ice lake on the Great Plateau, where the Keh Namut Shrine used to be in Breath of the Wild. There used to be a treasure chest there and now it's a Korok, which makes a lot of sense, but for some reason I've never really checked the lake, probably because I was too distracted by the whole eye thing during the "A Call from the Depths" quest. You have big red arrows pointing at the spot, however, so that's not really an excuse.

a Korok between garbage in a bog

Another Korok was hiding close to the Great Fairy Tera at the Military Training Camp. There was even one more stone circle that I hadn't found, next to Walnot Mountain. And a trickier Korok was sitting at the edge of Upland Zorana.

a Korok at a river with a Battle Talus in the background

Some of them also seem to like the proximity of Taluses, where I've found one at the Regencia River, not far from the Battle Talus there, and another between some rock formations at the southern stretch of the Tanagar Canyon, where there is also a Stone Talus not far.

So, I've made new discoveries pretty much all over the map and – with the exception of the one at Hyrule Castle – I've made them all by looking at the map and trying to identify likely Korok locations. But I've exhausted this method and really don't know where to look anymore, so I couldn't keep the pace of one Korok per day in the end, or else I already would have them all. But I'm down to seven missing Koros, so that's something.


Baked and Frozen

While I'm busy with searching for Koroks, at least this makes enough time pass for Kiana at Lurelin Village to come up with another recipe. It seems to take about two to three hours of play time for her to "regenerate", so it's not tied to defeating monsters, as I had previously assumed, and works similar to Uma's crops on the school's field in Hateno Village.

smoking hover bike at the Lurelin restaurant with Kiana and her husband complaining

now the hoverbike is stuck on the sunshade of the restaurant

But this doesn't really cut it... I had almost 100 missing recipes and I hopefully won't need over 200 hours to find the rest of the Koroks. But of course this included many things that Kiana won't teach you anyway, like all the burnt and frozen ingredients, so I've wanted to narrow it down as much as possible to get a clear picture.

at the campfire in Lurelin during the night

I've started by throwing things into the nearby beach fire, but of course it had to rain soon after. So, the best spot to do all this is without a doubt the huge hotplate in the middle of Goron City, because it's always on and it never rains there. Just equip your fireproof set and go:

cooking with the Gorons

This involved some experimentation and it took me a while to find out about the "Campfire Eggs", because I had the "Cooked Eggs" in my recipe book, where I thought that I already had the eggs covered. But those were made from hot spring water and curiously that's the only ingredient in the game that can be cooked like that...

Oh, and I also had to hunt some Eldin Ostriches beforehand, because I've never got any "Raw Whole Birds" during the entire game. I rarely hunt animals, so most of the meat that I have came either from Bokoblins, who were hunting themselves, or from wolves who decided to attack me.

As for freezing ingredients, I've used a Sapphire Rod for this, where you can freeze a lot of them at once. At first I tried to simply drop materials on the ground at the Hebra Mountains, where normally they freeze on their own. You even have to be quick when to pick up meat from a wolf, for example. But for some reason this doesn't happen with meat from your inventory...

Monster Rice Balls, Monster Cake, and Dark Stew in the recipe list

All this freezing and burning already filled a good chunk of the recipe book, but I've also managed to complete all potions (I've never found any Mighty or Tough Elixirs), as well as all the monster and dark food made by Monster Extract and Dark Lumps, where those were quite similar to each other, so I could derive some recipes here.

But this was the easy stuff and while I also managed to discover some more normal recipes on my own, it wasn't a whole lot and I will be dependent on Kiana for the rest of the 36 recipes that I'm currently missing. Let's see what I will be able to finish first... Finding all Koroks or learning all recipes?

Compendium Complete

With that you've already guessed it – the one goal that I have achieved in the meantime was completing Hyrule Compendium. To be honest, this was mainly done in a single evening today, simply to have another milestone to talk about before the month is over. For the most part this was just taking pictures of the horns, which was some boring busy work, which I wanted to make less boring somehow...

So, my idea was to use appropriate surfaces as a backdrop for materials from the same group of monsters or entities. I've already done so with the Construct Horns, near the entrance to the Temple of Time, and now I was doing the same at the other end of the temple for the dragon parts:

camera on a Shard of Dinraal's Spike

I've decided to place them on the pedestal where you put the broken Master Sword after the tutorial, because this felt like an appropriate and meaningful spot for them, considering what happens "later" there. Then I went up on the archway with Ascend to take a picture from above to have a nice camera angle. This only works in the early morning, because the archway will cast a shadow soon and then the sun will then disappear behind the Temple of Time. So, this was whole process was much more of a hassle than to simply drop them somewhere and be done with it... But the result is nothing to sneeze at:

shots of all eight dragon parts in the album, all arranged in the exact same way

It looks really nice arranged like that. And if you do the same with other groups of materials, but with a different location for each group, you will get this nice visual indicator of what belongs together:

a shot of the end of the material section in the Compendium with the dragon parts, Gleeok horns, Frogs fangs, and so on

For the Gleeok Horns I went back to one of the King Gleeok sky islands and placed them where the treasure chest used to be. The Frox Fangs were taken at a Lightroot. For Lynel parts I simply used some grass, for Horriblin horns I went to a sunlit entrance of a cave (at Atun Valley), and for Bokoblin parts I went into one of the new giant camps... Just to give some more examples.

It's a bit inconsistent what goes into the compendium and what not, however. In Breath of the Wild you didn't have any monster materials in its Hyrule Compendium, because there are already the pictures of the monsters and those can lead you to the materials. Well, as I've said before, it can also be handy to use the materials to lead you to the respective monsters, so this change may not have been the worst idea. But it's somewhat arbitrary what monster parts can be photographed, because it's not just the new horns, but not everything either.

It would make sense if this was about what materials give you special fuse effects, but that's not it either. For example, eyeballs are part of the compendium now, but not the wings, even though both have a distinct effect when fused to arrows. And then you have all four different Keese Eyeballs in there, as well as the new Aerocuda Eyeballs, but not the Octoroks Eyeballs for some reason, even though they are as homing as the others... That's Octorok discrimination right there!

Robbie: "What's all this? You've completely filled out your compendium, have you? It's...beautiful!"

But whatever... It's done. My Hyrule Compendium is finally complete and Robbie is happy, so let's see what you can get out of this....

If I ever replay Tears of the Kingdom in the future, which probably won't happen until there is some remaster or updated version, then I will most likely just purchase all the compendium entries, like I did in my last two playthroughs in Breath of the Wild. While I'm quite proud what I have created here, when you are as perfectionist as me about this, it saves a lot of time to buy them. And having all the default "stock images" can be interesting as well.


  • Korok Seeds: 993/1000 (+8)
  • Recipes: 192/228 (+57)
  • Map Completion: 99.71%

Compendium Completion:

  • Materials: 126/126 (+68)

Sunday, April 14, 2024

Tears of the Kingdom Adventure Log, Entry 33

Link was in need of a lengthy break, after searching through Hyrule for one too many hours, and with "Link" I really mean myself. I had arrived at a point where the game wasn't engaging any longer and I needed something else, where for the past four weeks I've been playing some other things for fun, like Lonely Mountains: Downhill and my beloved Unreal Tournament series.

But during all this time I couldn't shake this feeling that I'm 15 Korok Seeds away from the 100%. I've completed all Zelda games so far and I don't want this to be the exception, but I also don't want to be doing it just for the sake of completion. Normally, whenever I go the extra mile in games, like beating the Path of Pain in Hollow Knight, I do so because I'm looking for an excuse to keep playing the game, because it's fun and I want to keep playing it. If I grow bored of a game, then I don't want to force myself to keep playing it. And unfortunately I grew bored of Tears of the Kingdom.

Partly, this is my own fault, because I was replaying Breath of the Wild right before Tears came out, where this ended up being too much of the same. And I'm also too stubborn about not using any guides for my first playthrough, which is only adding to the tedium. But I also blame the game itself for being too much filler and for re-using the same world, which is something I don't want Nintendo to ever do again.

Anyway, with this post I want to briefly talk about what I've been up to before I went into the break, at least from what I can remember. It's not much, but it just makes sense to have this cut, before I return to the game, hopefully refreshed and with less of an urge to play 20 year old arena shooters instead.

Ominous Omelets

Part of the frustration also came from making only very slow progress with the remaining things that I want to achieve, like filling the recipe book and powering up my horses. Even though you can reliably get new recipes from Lurelin, it takes way too long and I have yet to get something that I actually need for Malanya.

I'm still trying to figure out the "Vegetable Omelet" and I thought that maybe I can understand things better by making more of the "Cheesy Omelet", which is the only omelet variant I have so far. For that one I needed to use an egg, Hateno Cheese, but also rock salt, and a mushroom. You leave any of this away and you will only get a regular omelet for some reason. It doesn't make any sense to me whatsoever and replacing the cheese with vegetables didn't get me to the desired result.

It also doesn't help that it only records your last five creations for any given food, which makes it impossible to track in the game what you've already tried. The bright side is that you don't actually have to cook absolutely every variant to complete the thing. And to emphasize this again, it's really a me-playing-blind-problem, because you can just look it all up on the internet and quickly be done with it. But if you don't use any guides or tools, then this doesn't seem to be intuitive in any way, at least not to me.

Link walking next to Payah without a shirt, who thinks "Now I'm hungry".

At least I'm getting closer, because most of the stuff that's still missing in my recipe book are the different toasty and frozen things, which should be easy enough to fill out. I hope.

Bird Watch

The other big remaining goal is filling the compendium and here I have successfully completed the "Creatures" section, where it was just mostly all the different pigeons and sparrows that were missing. With most other animals you might spot them from a distance and then may seize the opportunity throughout the game, but these birds are hard to spot and easily scared, so that you really have to put in a conscious effort to look for them and then use your full stealth gear to be able to take a good picture. I also remember how finding all the sparrows was quite annoying in Breath of the Wild...

Link overlooking the Guchini Plain with the Gleeok in the distance

At least, for the most part I could just refer to my completed compendium from the previous game as to where to find them, but the Rainbow Sparrows still gave me a hard time. I remembered that you can encounter them on the bridge at Lake Floria, but I accidentally scared them all away and then for some reason they never respawned. I was also going in circles on the Guchini Plain again, bringing back flashbacks of my beetle hunt, because the Hyrule Compendium in Breath of the Wild states the "Faron Grasslands" as a possible location. Of course these "common locations" can be misleading and it may also be different for this game... So, after searching through the Faron area for an hour or so, I got nothing and turned the game off in frustration.

me standing in full Sheikah gear right before a Rainbow Sparrow

The game must have felt this, though, because the next time I loaded my save file, it spawned a Rainbow Sparrow right at my feet. Problem solved! (Luckily, I was wearing the full stealth gear.) And once you have them in your compendium, it's enough to find them again for a better picture:

camera close up of a Rainbow Sparrow

Now, what remains are the materials, where I'm missing more than half of them, but that's mainly just all the horns. I have all of them in my inventory, so this will be nothing more than some mindless busy work, which also contributed to my loss in motivation. So, I will have to find a way of making this more interesting...

They Still Haven't Reached Their Friend...

My next goal will be finding the last Koroks, where this has slowed down tremendously, from discovering over a 100 between updates to now only a hand full. Well, it was only really three since last time, which includes a double, where my hope is that I have more of those Backpack Koroks left, because this would lower the number of how many I actually have to find.

Link with the Korok mask in front of a Korok camp in Akkala, the vortex beach in the background

They tend to be in the middle of nowhere, which also explains why I keep missing them, because I'm usually drawn towards points of interest... Now, as already mentioned, 15 Korok Seeds are left for me to find. I will probably document the final 10, just to highlight the ones that have escaped me for such a long time.



  • Korok Seeds: 985/1000 (+3)
  • Recipes: 135/228 (+3)
  • Map Completion: 99.39%

Compendium Completion:

  • Creatures: 92/92 (+13)
  • Materials: 58/126 (+6)

Sunday, April 7, 2024

Twilight Princess Manga, Vol. 11

The tenth volume ended with the battle against Dark Beast Ganon, which is Link's last action as a wolf, both in the game and the manga. As a result, the last volume invests a lot of time into the final battle against Ganondorf, something that the other Zelda manga probably would have resolved in a couple of pages...

There was a lot coming together in the volume before, as one epic battle in Hyrule, and only little of that remains in the final volume. You can see Ilia releasing Epona, who then goes to assist Link and Zelda in their battle, which is nice connection, because in the game the horse basically comes out of nowhere. Ilia then gets attacked by some Bokoblin (or whatever), where the manga cuts off, and we later see her next to a dead King Bulblin, who has given his life to defend her and others... Again, this is a good use of this character and also quite the redemption.

The rest focus almost entirely on Link, Ganondorf, Midna, Zelda, and... the Hero's Spirit. The latter actually joins Link for a chapter during this "duel" with Ganondorf and then has one final moment together with Princess Zelda, who has the memories of the Zelda from Ocarina of Time, re-uniting her with the Hero of Time. It's a very beautiful scene.

Ganondorf gets defeated with the same goofy expression as in the game as he gets pierced by the Master Sword. But the manga leaves out the infamous and creepy neck snap moment with Zant, right before Ganondorf dies for real. This scene has spawned theories and discussions left and right, where Akira Himekawa just dodges it entirely. Well, it never really made that much sense to being with, since Zant was already blown to smithereens by Midna, so I can understand the decision. But it would have been nice if the manga tried to give some explanation.

Instead, it will give you something else to talk about, at least if you're into shipping. Other than Ilia, the game doesn't really dive much into the territory of love interests for Link, but the manga doesn't hold back when it comes to the relationship of Link and Midna. Well, he already kissed her on the cheek in the previous volume and as she is about to leave, he acts like a child, wanting to go with her. So, she first slaps him and then kisses him for real, creating a memorable good-bye moment, worthy of her dominant character. And Link's heart breaks right with the Mirror of Twilight when she departs.

Meanwhile, Ilia is waiting for Link to return, but all she gets is Shad, who has a crush on her in the manga and is looking to score. So, he's in love with someone, who loves another, who loves another, who is out of reach... Typical stuff, but it's more than what you usually get from Zelda games, at least from the later ones. The earlier games had a bit more going on for Link, like with the implied kiss at the end of Zelda II, Marin in Link's Awakening, and even various girls in Ocarina of Time. Today he gets abused by giant, chubby fairies.

Anyway, Link has ran off for adventure, leaving the Master Sword behind. Sadly, the manga doesn't seize the opportunity to show what really happened at the end of Twilight Princess. Link ditched the Master Sword, because he found a much better weapon – the Phantom Crossbow. And the he goes to blow stuff up all over Hyrule! If that's how the manga ended, then it would have been perfect...

Nah, jokes aside, the Twilight Princess manga has too much unnecessary filler for my taste to be perfect. I've really enjoyed the course they've taken with many of the characters, like Zelda and the Hero's Spirit, adding a lot more depth to them. And the overall change of direction, making this more mature and really taking the time to tell the game's story, is so much better than what they've done before. But it could have been at least one volume shorter by cutting out characters and scenarios that aren't from the game.

Still, it's pretty much a masterpiece compared to the earlier manga, and I'd love to see this take on another Zelda game, where the best candidate is probably Skyward Sword. Especially the relationship between Link and Zelda is something that can shine here. Of course, there are the much popular Breath of the Wild and Tears of the Kingdom, but to me the manga always had this "retro" feel to it, where I'd like for them to focus on what's left from the classic Zelda games. A Link Between Worlds would be another candidate, though one for the shorter, less serious style from before, like Four Swords.

In any case, I'm curious to see where Akira Himekawa will lead us next...