Official art of Link in the Lost Woods from A Link to the Past
|Game(s)|| The Legend of Zelda|
A Link to the Past
Ocarina of Time
Oracle of Seasons
Four Swords Adventures
A Link Between Worlds
|Item(s)|| A Link to the Past|
Piece of Heart ×1
Ocarina of Time
Pieces of Heart ×2
Upgrades (for Deku Nuts, Deku Sticks and Bullet Bag), Gold Skulltulas ×3
|Related place(s)|| Mysterious Woods|
Woods of Mystery
The Lost Woods is a maze-like area of confusing forests that has made several appearances throughout the Zelda series. Its layout is usually designed to make anyone who enters to become irreversibly lost, and the only way to exit the forest is by navigating it in specific directions. If anyone gets lost or wander for too long in the forest, they turn into a Skull Kid (if they are a child), Stalfos (if they're an adult), or a Deku Scrub.
The Legend of Zelda
Its first appearance, in The Legend of Zelda, is as a simple-looking cross-section of dead Trees. However, once Link enters it, he finds that exiting the forest in any direction will cause him to simply appear back at the same spot. The only way to clear the forest is to follow a specific pattern through it. This special pattern is revealed when Link pays an Old Woman for information. She tells him that the proper directions to escape the forest are north, then west, then south, then west again. Successfully navigating through the Lost Woods leads Link to the Graveyard.
A Link to the Past
In A Link to the Past, the Lost Woods are greener than in The Legend of Zelda and is more like a maze than a puzzle. Many notable things can be found here. Most importantly, it is the location of the legendary Master Sword, which is held in a hidden northwestern portion of the woods filled with Animals. Several Fake Master Swords can also be found, resulting in a humorous line if Link picks one up. When Link first enters the Lost Woods, it is covered in a thick fog that makes it hard to navigate; however, once the young hero retrieves the Master Sword after acquiring the three Pendants of Virtue, the mist will disappear.
A secret hideout for a gang of Thieves is located in the eastern portion of the woods, with a Piece of Heart found in a secret entrance under a bush. Other Thieves run amok in the forest, bumping into Link in an attempt to steal his Rupees, Bombs, and Arrows. The Magic Mushroom can also be found here scattered throughout the woods. If picked up and given to Syrup the witch, Link can receive the Magic Powder.
Ocarina of Time
In Ocarina of Time, the Lost Woods are more like the version in The Legend of Zelda than in A Link to the Past. The noticeable difference is that instead of having one screen that is repeated until Link successfully exits, it is laid out more like a map, with each screen having something unique about it. Also, the goal in these Lost Woods is to stay inside, rather than to escape; if Link takes the wrong doorway, he will be warped back to the Kokiri Forest. By following the music of "Saria's Song", Link can navigate through the hollow trees and get to the Sacred Forest Meadow, which is located in the northernmost portion of the Lost Woods and Saria's "secret place." The Forest Temple is located here.
Alternative methods could also be used to determine if a path led to another part of the lost woods or back to the Kokiri Forest. The main method was to simply to analyze the hole in the trunks. If there was gradually increasing light center of the tree trunk (as if it were a tunnel out), it would lead back to the Kokiri Forest, but if it was a flat wall of blackness, it would continue through the woods. The Lost Woods is home to the only Moblins in Ocarina of Time, as well as many Business Scrubs, Mad Scrubs and the only collection of average Deku Scrubs in the game, the Deku Community.
Hidden within the Lost Woods is the Forest Stage, where Link can be rewarded with item upgrades by showing off specific Masks in front of Deku Scrubs. Moreover, scattered throughout the woods are two portals that lead to Goron City and the upper part of Zora's River near the Sleepless Waterfall.
It is said that those who become lost in the woods will become Stalfos. The Skull Kids that inhabit the forest are implied to be children who were lost as well. "Saria's Song" was also going to be used in an early version of The Minish Cap, but that was scrapped for the Minish Woods music. 
In Majora's Mask, the story begins in the Lost Woods of Hyrule. It is where the portal that connects Hyrule and Termina is located, and it is where Link meets Skull Kid, Tatl and Tael. Here, Link gets ambushed by the mischievous group, and, in an attempt to recover the Ocarina of Time and Epona from the Skull Kid, Link is lead to the inside of Clock Tower and is first introduced to the world of Termina.
Oracle of Seasons
In Oracle of Seasons, the Lost Woods are in northeastern Holodrum, connecting to the Tarm Ruins. Near the Lost Woods, there is a Deku Scrub in a cave. If Link has obtained Guru-Guru's Phonograph, the Deku Scrub will say that he likes the song and tell him to go in some specific directions in the Lost Woods. If he does this he will find the Noble Sword (or, if he already has the Noble Sword in a linked game, the Master Sword) in a pedestal. This is the final part of the Oracle of Seasons trading sequence.
Four Swords Adventures
The Lost Woods in Four Swords Adventures operates similarly to that of A Link to the Past in that it follows a concrete map and does not operate as a navigational puzzle. The Woods is populated primarily by Deku Scrubs although other visitors and enemies have congregated in the wood whether by accident or by Ganon's orders.
Statements by the resident Deku Scrubs establish some interesting aspects of the Lost Woods in this game. First, it seems all Deku Scrubs are 'born' in the Lost Woods and any person who lingers there too long becomes a Deku Scrub as well. This may lead one to the conclusion that Deku Scrubs are not a race that reproduces naturally but is entirely composed of those enchanted people who have wandered too long in the Lost Woods. This attribute is similar to how the Lost Woods in Ocarina of Time could turn the lost into Stalfos. Those who enter the Lost Woods are to remain there by order of Ganon, presumably in order to increase his army of Deku Scrub minions.
The Deku Scrubs also state that Ganon's darkness will cause the Lost Woods to spread all over Hyrule. This statement may suggest that the 'Lost Woods' is not the name of one location in particular, but any forest which is enchanted in such a way to grant it the qualities of a 'Lost Wood', such as its ability to cause those who enter to become lost as well as causing those people who are lost for long enough to transform; in this case, into a Deku Scrub. Second, it demonstrates the freedom possessed by those who have been transformed to traverse the Lost Woods without becoming lost.
|Enemies Encountered in this Area||Items Obtained in this Area|
The Minish Cap
In The Minish Cap, the Lost Woods are located within the Royal Valley and are required to go through in order to gain access to the Royal Crypt, similar to the original Legend of Zelda. Unlike previous games with the woods, signs indicate what path reaches the next area.
In Spirit Tracks, the Lost Woods make another appearance, in which Link must navigate through to reach the Forest Sanctuary to open a path to the Forest Temple by performing a song with Gage using the Spirit Flute. When he first enters the woods, Link is sent back to the entrance, and must speak with the residents of the nearby Whittleton to find out how to navigate them. He learns that by following the directions that certain trees point (save the last one, which supposedly has "no sense of direction"), he'll make it to the Forest Sanctuary. Once the Lost Woods are solved for the first time, they disappear.
A Link Between Worlds
In A Link Between Worlds, the Lost Woods houses the Master Sword, much like in A Link to the Past. To obtain the Master Sword, Link must retrieve all three Pendants of Virtue. When Link enters the Lost Woods, he is met with nine Poes. One Poe offers to bring the young hero deeper into the Lost Woods if he can follow the correct one. If Link goes in the proper direction, he will be met again by the Poes. Two of them test him by attempting to mislead the young hero and instruct him to go in the direction that they did not. Afterwards, three Poes will attempt to mislead Link in the same manner. After this, Link will be lead to the meadow housing the Master Sword. Once Link obtains the Master Sword, Sahasrahla will telepathically speak to Link, telling him to use the newly-obtained Sword to destroy the Barrier at Hyrule Castle.
- In Link's Awakening, a forest is located just north of Mabe Village. It is called the Mysterious Woods and is similar to A Link to the Past's Lost Woods. Not much can be found here, but it serves an important role in the beginning of the game. In the Mysterious Woods, Link must find a Mushroom to create Magic Powder at the Witch's house, much like in A Link to The Past. The Powder is then used to be sprinkled on a raccoon in the Woods who was preventing Link from accessing the next screen where the Tail Key for the first dungeon, Tail Cave, was kept. If Link tries to progress to the next screen without sprinkling the powder on the raccoon, he will be warped to a different part of the Woods.
- In Oracle of Ages, the Fairies' Woods are similar to the Lost Woods in that the area changes according to the direction that Link decides to go. Here, the young hero must play a game of Hide n' Seek with three fairies in order to restore the woods back to its normal state.
- In Majora's Mask, woods similar to the Lost Woods can be found in the Southern Swamp, known as the Woods of Mystery, which act in an identical way to the Lost Woods of Ocarina of Time. However, they are now home to Monkeys and Snappers, large, turtle-like enemies, rather than the Deku. A Monkey will guide Link through the woods, showing him the correct path, which will change depending on the day. Koume can be found here, injured from her encounter with the Skull Kid.
- In The Wind Waker, the Lost Woods do not directly make an appearance. Instead, the Kokiri Forest appears to have been overrun by monsters and became the Forbidden Woods, a reference to the Lost Woods. It serves as the second dungeon of the game, the home of the Boomerang, and Ganondorf's minion, Kalle Demos. After defeating Kalle Demos and rescuing the Korok, Makar, The Great Deku Tree's Ceremony is played out, and Link receives Farore's Pearl.
- In The Minish Cap there is a forest in the south east of the map called the Minish Woods. Originally, "Saria's Song" was going to be played in this portion of the map, but the music was scrapped for the Minish Woods theme. 
- In Twilight Princess, the Sacred Grove appears to have replaced the Lost Woods, featuring "Saria's Song" as the theme, and a Skull Kid as Link's guide (first as a wolf, to find the Master Sword and again as a human and a wolf to reach the Temple of Time). The Sacred Grove is the location of the Master Sword, a reference to A Link to the Past, and the Temple of Time which serves a new role as a dungeon as opposed to Ocarina of Time where it was simply the holding place of the Master Sword. It seems likely that the Sacred Grove and Lost Woods are the same place under two different names.
- According to Nintendo Power volume 103, the original name of the Lost Woods was "Maze Woods."
- In the German version of Ocarina of Time, those who become lost in the Lost Woods are said to become plants, instead of Stalfos. In the French version, Fado merely states that one who wanders in the forest will become "a monster."
The Master Sword in a Linked Game of Oracle of Seasons
- "Is this what happens to kids who wander into the forest? It looks like he doesn't like grownups." — Navi (Ocarina of Time)
- "That guy isn't here anymore. Anybody who comes into the forest will be lost. Everybody will become a Stalfos. Everybody, Stalfos." — Fado (Ocarina of Time)
- "Adults lost among the trees turn into Stalfos, while children turn into Skull Kids; both are doomed to wander the woods." (Hyrule Historia (Dark Horse Books), pg. 84)
- "The Lost Woods is our birthplace! If you wander lost here for too long, you too can become a Deku Scrub!" — Deku Scrub (Four Swords Adventures)
- "GO NORTH, WEST, SOUTH, WEST TO THE FOREST OF MAZE" — Old Woman (The Legend of Zelda)
- "This is it! The Master Sword!... No, this can't be it...Too bad." — N/A (A Link to the Past)
- "Hey kid, this is a secret hide-out for a gang of thieves! Don't enter without permission!" — A thief (A Link to the Past)
- Sacred Grove Hidden Music Found, YouTube.
- "This is the Sacred Forest Meadow. It's my secret place!" — Saria (Ocarina of Time)
- "They say that when non-fairy folk enter the Lost Woods, they become monsters!" — Gossip Stone (Ocarina of Time)
- "Dee! What a tune! I love it! I'll teach you the way to my Secret Spot! If temperatures rise as you go far to the west, you'll find it! Yahoo!" — Deku Scrub (Oracle of Seasons)
- "Make sure that all who enter the forest remain here! Lord Ganon's orders!" — Deku Scrub (Four Swords Adventures)
- "Soon, Lord Ganon's power will change all of Hyrule's forests into Lost Woods! Once that happens, we'll be able to travel freely!" — Deku Scrub (Four Swords Adventures)
- "Hree hee hee! Welcome to the Lost Woods! These woods will trick you into going back the way you came! But all hope is not lost! If you can follow me, then you can walk a little deeper into the woods. Watch carefully!" — Poe (A Link Between Worlds)
- "Oh, well done. That was fun, but now we're going to MISLEAD you. Now two of us will bounce around. So don't follow the two of us, or you'll wind up back at the start. Hree hee hee! Think you can get it right?" — Poes (A Link Between Worlds)
- "Oh, very well done! Hmph. I guess it's time to REALLY stump you! Now three of us will bounce around. Don't follow us! Hree hee hee! Think you can get it right?" — Poes (A Link Between Worlds)
- "Hear me, Link... The sword you hold in your hand is the one and only Master Sword! Now that you possess that blade, you can break the barrier at the castle. So make haste. We don't have much time left. Get to Hyrule Castle!" — Sahasrahla (A Link Between Worlds)
- "Sahasrahla: If you really are the legendary Hero of Hyrule...the sword of Evil's Bane will select you as its bearer!
Link: The sword will select me? What if it doesn't?" (A Link to the Past (Nintendo Power), pg. 14)
- "...Wake up, Link..." (A Link to the Past (Nintendo Power), pg. 3)
- "Zelda?! I must rest! I can't..." (A Link to the Past (Nintendo Power), pg. 3)
|Names in Other Regions|
|Japanese||迷いの森 (Mayoi no Mori)||Lost Forest|
|Spanish||Bosque Perdido||Lost Woods|
|French||Bois Perdus||Lost Woods|
|Forêt des Méandres||Meanders Forest|
|Italian||Bosco Perduto||Lost Woods|
|Chinese||迷失的森林 (Míshī de Sēnlín)||Lost Woods|
|Locations in A Link to the Past|
|Locations in the Light World||Locations in the Dark World|
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|Regions in Ocarina of Time|
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