|[Zelda Re:] Zelda Re: Issue Five! - SPECIAL - The Zelda Timeline
May 08, 2010 — by
MAGS'S TAKE ON THE ZELDA TIMELINE
TWW - PH - ST - TLoZ - TAoL - (OoA/OoS)
MM - TP - TMC - FS - FSA - ALttP - LA
Before you get out your Fire Rods and Tridents of Power, I do have justifications for these placements, but it may seem that I'm making a stretch on some of them. However, I'd rather make a stretch than leave myself with no evidence otherwise, so here we go.
Okay, yeah, we know why OoT is at the root of the timeline, so let's just skip it.
The first three slots of the Adult Timeline are easy, as their positions have been confirmed by Aonuma and Miyamoto, and Spirit Tracks outright stated its position on the timeline in-game, so that makes our job much easier.
MM and TP are also easy, so we'll skip those, too.
Everywhere else is where it gets really tricky and contradictory, but for starters, let's look at the end of the Adult Timeline. Yeah, we have the original TLoZ era spanning two games that are easily connectable. But why am I putting it after Spirit Tracks?
Firstly, consider the Triforce. At the end of The Wind Waker, the Triforce was completed again after its split during Ocarina of Time. It may have departed for the heavens or the Sacred Realm or what have you, but either way, it's whole. In The Legend of Zelda, however, it is not; as of now, this may be because of the Crown Prince from The Adventure of Link's backstory, which said he could only inherit a part of the Triforce--certainly implying that the Triforce was split again, which explains why it was not whole during the majority of the first two games in the series. Also, since the Zelda that was to be awakened in the second game, who was said to have been asleep for many years and is supposedly not the same Zelda from the first game, was...well, put to sleep, the prince commanded that to remember the tragedy that had unfolded, all female royals were to be named Zelda from that time forward. Seeing that knowledge of the royal bloodline after The Wind Waker was limited to what Daphnes Nohansen Hyrule had told, why not? It's possible that the prince had no knowledge at all of a Zelda being in the bloodline before that time; heck, Tetra didn't even know that she was Zelda, and it's possible that wasn't her real name, after all--maybe only a nod to Ganondorf's lack of knowledge of the world after being freed from the Sages' Seal. He thought that the Hero of Winds was really the Hero of Time ("reborn," more accurate to his words) without any knowledge of the Hero's bloodline, either.
It's an uncertainty exactly when on the Adult Timeline the sleeping spell takes place, but if Hyrule was flooded on the Adult Timeline, I can't be so sure that it would be easy lugging around a snoozing princess with monsters abound and water rising, so if she's on the Adult Timeline, I imagine her being placed under the spell after the events of Phantom Hourglass at the earliest, but even that's a stretch since only a century passed between that game and Spirit Tracks. I'm not ruling out the possibility, though, but personally, I think there was something that happened during the time between Spirit Tracks and The Adventure of Link that we don't know about.
Secondly (back to the reason why it's placed after Spirit Tracks), remember the towns in The Adventure of Link? Supposedly, they're named after the sages from Ocarina of Time, which I doubt could happen in the Child Timeline since Link was sent back before the sages were even awakened, so the founders of the towns in New Hyrule wouldn't have known their names unless they were actually sages to start with (or the names were already those of the current sages, but come on, how likely is that?). That also explains why the sages looked so wraithlike and didn't have any obvious features suggesting different races and genders in Twilight Princess: There were already sages prior to the timeline split. What happened to them when Link was asleep, then? Well, if Ganondorf was on a killing spree around the time The Wind Waker was taking place, I don't see why he didn't kill off the sages from Twilight Princess, either, considering that if he hadn't, his reign over Hyrule likely would've ended prematurely, without there being a need for the Hero of Time at all.
A Link to the Past's and Link's Awakening's places are kinda standard, I think, assuming that the Miyamoto Timeline is still held up to a standard. According to him (which was, of course, before a timeline split was even confirmed, mind you), A Link to the Past came after all the other games--questionable, yes, but other than after Spirit Tracks and before The Legend of Zelda on the Adult Timeline, I don't see much of a better place to put it, especially if The Minish Cap comes before it on the Child Timeline.
However, that's where it gets to be a stretch--when you notice that the Four Swords saga takes place after Twilight Princess and before A Link to the Past. Ganondorf did end up dying at the end of the former and ended up either reincarnated or otherwise prior to Four Swords Adventures. Personally, I think it's easier to assume that this is, in fact, not the same Ganondorf but, rather, someone else with the same name. After all, it's not that hard to assume that given all the iterations of legacy characters that this series is known for and that a Gerudo male is born once every hundred years, we'll have someone new to fill in Old Ganny's shoes. (But then again, the Gerudo were nowhere to be seen in Twilight Princess. Maybe they were just hiding from giant spaghetti monsters? I dunno.) Also, recall from the page on TDC covering the backstory of A Link to the Past that the Triforce's location was unknown until it was discovered upon purging the Dark World of Ganon's reign. There was no mentioning of the Triforce during the Four Swords saga, and the closest thing to that was the Light Force, but both Aonuma and Miyamoto adamantly say that they are two different things. There may be a connection there.
The stretch continues when you remember that in the updated GBA version of A Link to the Past, there's a bonus dungeon called the Palace of the Four Sword. For the sake of evidence, I'm going to assume that this implies that the Four Sword was forged before this time, which means that The Minish Cap must come before it. If you don't like the retconniness of the updated re-release, then...eh, whatever. Believe what you like.
Finally, we get to the Oracle games, which are definitely the hardest for me to place, being so ill-described and without many continuity nods at all that it's not even funny. However, I feel that it takes place at the ends of either one of the forks of the timeline for one reason: the Triforce, once again. At the beginning of each game, the Triforce is whole, and from my perspective, the only times we know for sure when that is, is either after The Adventure of Link or sometime after A Link to the Past. Some may argue for their placement on the Child Timeline due to the similar art styles and recurring characters, but others, as well as I, may argue that they follow The Adventure of Link because that era's Link has the Triforce symbol at the back of his hand, as does the Link from the Oracle games, and neither Link appears to have actually required a piece to obtain that mark. Also, as far as we know, the mark didn't disappear after Link successfully woke up the Princess Zelda of the second game. The Oracles could still fit in either timeline, however.
Well, there we are--my take on the Zelda timeline. I know that one OcarinaHero dude did a take of his, but I'm not copying his idea by any means.
And thus concludes the fifth issue of Zelda Re:. I hope this adds a little more life to the party, and with a promising E3 just around the corner, we can be sure the party's gonna be huge. Be sure to stay tuned for what TDC has in store next month!
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this issue! Keep your eyes peeled (but don't hold your breath) for the next issue! Once again, this is MagmarFire, saying if all else fails, use fire!
...By the way, I lied; there are no free cookies. HnS ate them all. :(
EDIT (5/8/2010): I made a correction on my usage on "Child Timeline" when it should've been "Adult Timeline" and changed my explanation on the placement of the A Link to the Past era to fit the fact that in this theory, it is on the timeline parallel to the original The Legend of Zelda era.
by @ 23 May 2010 02:48 am
Very interesting theory, BUT I think that Twilight Princess takes place after Wind Waker. Surprised? Allow me to explain. In TP, there is a howling stone where you howl a certain song. That song would be... THE BALLAD OF GALES!!! Need proof?
Here's what I think happened. After Links original adventure (in OoT) and he goes back in time, he goes to Termina and goes through his MM adventure. He then returns to Hyrule and when Ganondorf attacks, Link does the OoT adventure all over again. He beats Ganondorf, only this time he does not go back in time. Later, he goes to some faraway land where it would take a VERY long time to get back to Hyrule and has a new adventure (could be an already made game, and upcoming game, or something completely different). That is when Ganondorf attacks, and the king of hyrlue floods hyrule. I say this cause in WW, the king of hyrule says something like when ganondorf was attacking, the hero of time was off on another adventure, then he asked the gods to flood hyrule. Also, in TP, the 6 sages are there, which would mean link came back from termina to awaken the sages which may prove that the adventure the king said link was on did NOT involve Termina, and that link came back to hyrule.