Old Man

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Old Man
BotW Old Man Model.png
Old Man from Breath of the Wild
Race Hylian
Pronouns He/him[1]
Game(s) The Legend of Zelda
The Adventure of Link
Oracle of Ages
Oracle of Seasons
Four Swords Adventures
Breath of the Wild
Non-canon Appearances The Shadow Prince
A Link to the Past comic
Era Era of Light and Dark
Era of Decline
Era of Shadow
Family Daughter (Old Man from Rauru)
Niece (Old Man from Ruto)

Old Man is a title given to several characters serving different functions throughout the Zelda series.

Appearances

The Legend of Zelda

OldManSprite.png

In The Legend of Zelda, there are several Old Men across Hyrule, each serving various needs, such as supplying Link with his first Sword,[2] or giving helpful advice regarding enemies such as the Dodongo.[3] Many helpful items can be obtained from these old men, and a mini-game can be played with them called the Money Making Game.[4] If he is found in dungeons and is stabbed, the Torches around him will fire energy blasts at Link, similar to those of a Stone Statue.

Link can receive a Letter from the old man in a northeast cave of Hyrule.[5] When Link shows the Letter to various Old Women, they will sell him Life Potions and 2nd Potions.[6]

The Adventure of Link

Old Man (The Adventure of Link).gif

In The Adventure of Link, also known as Wise Man, one Old Man resides in each town.[7] They teach Link useful Magic once he has achieved the necessary prerequisites.[8] These magical abilities are usually required for access to the next area that Link must travel to.

TriforceKeeper.gif
In the Great Palace, a dwarven Old Man keeps the Triforce of Courage. When Link enters the chamber of the Triforce, the Old Man stands atop a pillar and summons Shadow Link out of Link's body. When Link defeats his dark counterpart, the dwarven Old Man hands him the Triforce of Courage.

Oracle of Seasons

Old Man OOX.png
The gold-robed Old Man in Oracle of Seasons

In Oracle of Seasons, Old Men appear in caves that Link finds using by using the Shovel or burning trees using Ember Seeds. Some bribe Link not to tell anybody about their secret caves by giving him a large sum of approximately 300 Rupees. Others will thank Link, and charge him a large sum of money in order to repair their doors.

There are three special Old Men in Holodrum who differ from the rest. The first (and only required one) lives in a house in Holodrum Plain, accessible after getting the Flippers. At first, the Old Man will only mutter to himself about someone he is waiting for.[9] After getting the first five Essences of Nature, Link must visit and speak to him once more to receive the Round Jewel.

The second is a gold-robed Old Man living in a cave on the bottom of the river just below the Gnarled Root Dungeon, only accessible in Summer. At first, he will simply instruct Link to find and slay all four Golden Monsters; once Link has done so, he will reward him with the Red Ring.

The last one can be found in a hidden underground cavern behind the Clock Shop after beating a non-Linked game. This Old Man asks for a Secret, and if this secret is retrieved from a linked Oracle of Ages game and given to him, he will upgrade Link's Noble Sword to the Master Sword (or his Wooden Sword to the Noble Sword, if applicable).

In a linked version of the game, another Old Man can be found inside the Hero's Cave.

Oracle of Ages

Only one Old Man cave is present in Oracle of Ages and is found in Rolling Ridge Base. In the past it is inhabited by a generous Old Man, who would give Link 200 Rupees. On the opposite, the Old Man inhabiting it in the present would charge him 50 Rupees to repair the door.

Four Swords Adventures

Old man ghost FSA.png

Old Men return in Four Swords Adventures, as Spirits who will assist the four Links by giving them hints in form of bizarre remarks. One appears in the Cave of No Return, jealous over Link for having friends, something he himself never had. He informs them that they can make it over the chasm by throwing themselves over.[10] However, it is not a given that they'll give the four Links any hints or usable information, as sometime they will just give bizarre remarks, such as the old man found at the graveyard.[11]

Breath of the Wild

In Breath of the Wild, an Old Man lives in the Great Plateau. He is first seen after Link emerges from the Shrine of Resurrection, beneath a small alcove. Link can attempt to steal the Baked Apple near the Old Man's fire, only to be chided for stealing.[12] However, the Old Man reveals this to be a joke, and welcomes Link to eat it.[13] He introduces himself as a strange, old man and informs Link that they are on the Great Plateau, the origin of the kingdom of Hyrule.[14] He then points out the Temple of Time, which was formerly a site of sacred practices.[15]

After Link causes the Resurrection Tower to rise, the Old Man descends upon Link with his Paraglider at the base of the Tower. He greets Link and informs him that Sheikah Towers across Hyrule simultaneously arose, and asks Link if he noticed anything peculiar while he was atop the Tower.[16] Upon hearing of the disembodied voice that was guiding Link, the Old Man points out the caliginous force surrounding Hyrule Castle, declaring it the Calamity Ganon.[17] He tells Link that one century prior, the Calamity Ganon brought destruction upon Hyrule until it was contained within Hyrule Castle.[18] Warning Link of the inevitability of the Calamity Ganon's escape, he asks whether the young hero intends to confront it and draws attention to the fact that leaving the Great Plateau is impossible without a Paraglider.[19] Upon Link asking for the Paraglider, the Old Man directs him to the nearby Shrine Oman Au, telling him that he will trade the Paraglider in exchange for the treasure inside.[20]

After Link completes the Shrine of Trials, he is met outside by the Old Man, who congratulates him on obtaining a Spirit Orb and reveals the significance of the Spirit Orb in relation to the ancient civilization of the Sheikah, who constructed the Shrines of Trials across the land.[21] He amends his bargain and tells Link that there are three remaining Shrines of Trials on the Great Plateau, and that he will receive the Paraglider upon having completed them all.[22] Encouraging Link to use the Resurrection Tower as a vantage point to locate the other Shrines, he teaches Link about the Sheikah Slate's ability to Warp to Sheikah Towers and Shrines of Trials that he's encountered before as a shortcut for ascending the Tower.[23]

The Old Man later appears at Mt. Hylia's peak to teach Link about the Sheikah Slate's Scope ability.[24] He also gifts Link a Quilted Shirt as a reward for ascending the mountain.[25]

Non-Canon Appearances

Non-Canon Information hide

The Shadow Prince

The Old Man in the A Link to the Past comic

In The Shadow Prince, Link can encounter mysterious Old Man if he chooses to take the Town of Ruto detour instead of going through the Midoro Swamp as he tries to reach the Water Town of Saria. Just as he is about to arrive to Ruto, he bumps into an Old Man, who gives the young hero a key.[26] The old man goes on to say that he shouldn't go through Ruto on his way to Saria since there is a traffic jam, and the old man disappears before Link can ask any questions.[27]

A Link to the Past Comic

In the A Link to the Past comic, an Old Man lives in the Sanctuary, replacing the Loyal Sage from the game; however, he has a short role in the comic and only appears in the first chapter. Princess Zelda, after being rescued, suggests to Link that they go to the Sanctuary and see the old man living there so that he may help them with their next move.[28] Upon reaching the Sanctuary, the Old Man explains the consequences of Agahnim's plan: if Agahnim succeeds in opening the way to the Dark World and breaking Ganon's seal, the King of Thieves would gather his army against Hyrule.[29] He then warns Link that he should not underestimate Agahnim if he is going to fight against him, since he can sense that an evil force is guiding the wizard's actions.[30] The Old Man is last seen in the comic after Princess Zelda is kidnapped by Agahnim in the Sanctuary. He tells Link to not worry about him and find the Master Sword since he is the only one who can defeat the evil wizard.[31]

Other Similar Old Men

Trivia

  • The Old Men share many similarities with the Wise Men from A Link to the Past. In The Adventure of Link, the daughter of the Old Man Link meets in Rauru calls them "Wise Men".[7] Also in The Adventure of Link, there are nine Old Men: one in each of the eight towns and one keeping the Triforce of Courage in the Great Palace.
  • In The Legend of Zelda, Link was originally going to have a choice between taking the Wooden Sword or the Boomerang.[32]

Etymology

Forest minish.png Names in Other Regions Jabber Nut MC.gif
Language Name Meaning
Japanese Japan ジイサン (Jīsan) (TLoZ)
マジシャン (Majishan) (TAoL)
Old Man
Magician
French France Vieil Homme Old Man
German Germany Alter Mann Old Man

Gallery

See Also

References

  1. "He's kind of mysterious-looking, and in the first of the series, I think you met a guy like this." — Eiji Aonuma, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - Introduction - Nintendo E3 2016, YouTube (Video), published June 14, 2016, retrieved July 15, 2016.
  2. "IT'S DANGEROUS TO GO ALONE! TAKE THIS" — Old Man (The Legend of Zelda)
  3. "DODONGO DISLIKES SMOKE" — Old Man (The Legend of Zelda)
  4. "LET'S PLAY MONEY MAKING GAME" — Old Man (The Legend of Zelda)
  5. "SHOW THIS TO THE OLD WOMAN" — Old Man (The Legend of Zelda)
  6. "BUY MEDICINE BEFORE YOU GO" — Old Woman (The Legend of Zelda)
  7. 7.0 7.1 "EACH TOWN HAS A WISE MAN. LEARN FROM HIM." — Old Man's Daughter in Rauru (The Adventure of Link)
  8. "IN PARAPA DESERT USE THIS MAGIC TO SURVIVE" — Old Man in Rauru (The Adventure of Link)
  9. "Soil, time, sun, rain, warmth... I await one who knows many essences..." — Old Man (Oracle of Seasons)
  10. "Urrk urrrk... You...have friends... I'm jealous... If you have friends, you can toss 'em across chasms... I never had any friends. You're a lucky guy..." — Old Man spirit (Four Swords Adventures)
  11. "I came to visit my departed wife's grave. Then she showed up, saying she came to visit MY grave... I wish someone would tell me which one of us is the ghost and which isn't!" — Old Man spirit (Four Swords Adventures)
  12. "I BEG YOUR PARDON! I do believe that is my Baked Apple! You can't just go about taking whatever you please!" — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  13. "Har har har! Forgive me--I couldn't help myself! Please, enjoy! An apple and an open flame is a recipe for a succulent treat." — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  14. "It is a bit of surprise to see a fellow traveler these days. [Who are you?] I need not be a concern of yours. I'm just a strange old man, that's all. One who has lived here, alone, for quite some time now. Enough of that. What about you, young one? What are you doing here? [Where are we?] Answering a question with a question. That is fair enough. As I cannot imagine our meeting to be a simple coincidence...I shall tell you. This is the Great Plateau. According to legend, this is the birthplace of the entire kingdom of Hyrule." — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  15. "That temple there... Long ago, that was the site of many sacred ceremonies. Since the decline of the kingdom, it now sits abandoned, in a state of decay. Yet another forgotten entity. A mere ghost of its former self..." — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  16. "My my... It would seem that we have quite the enigma here. This tower and several just like it have erupted across the land, one after another. Very interesting... It appears that some long-dormant power has awoken quite suddenly. Did anything...odd happen to you while you were on top of that tower?" — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  17. "[I heard a voice.] I suspected as much... And did you happen to recognize the voice at all? [No.] I see. Well, then...that is a shame. I assume that you caught full sight of that atrocity swarming around the castle. That...is the Calamity Ganon." — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  18. "It brought ruin and corruption upon the kingdom of Hyrule 100 years ago. It appeared suddenly...destroying everything in its path. Leaving countless innocents in its wake. Over the last century, the kindgom's purest symbol, Hyrule Castle, has been able to contain that evil. But just barely." — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  19. "There it festers, building its strength for the moment it will unleash its blight upon the land once again. It would appear that moment is fast approaching... I must ask you, young one... Do you intend to make your way to the castle? [I do.] I thought so. Here, on this isolated plateau, we are surrounded on all sides by sheer cliffs, with no way off or down. If you were to try and jump, well...no death could be more certain. Or foolish. Of course, if you had a paraglider like me, that would be quite another story!" — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  20. "[Give it to me!] Har har har! Sure! Why not? But there is no such thing as a free item in this world, you know. Let's see now... How about a trade for a bit of treasure that slumbers nearby? Come. Let me show you something." — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  21. "Seems you managed to get your hands on a Spirit Orb! Well done! [Paraglider, please?] Let's slow down for a moment there, my young friend. The appearance of those towers and the awakening of this shrine... It's all connected to that Sheikah Slate you carry on your hip there. [What do you mean?] It has been quite some time since I've seen or heard of the Sheikah Slate... Long ago, an advanced civilization known as the Sheikah inhabited these lands. It was the power and wisdom of the Sheikah that saved this land time and time again. But their civilization disappeared long ago...or so it is said. It is interesting, however, to think...that something of them might still remain hidden away in a shrine such as this. These shrines are tucked away in numerous places all across this land." — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  22. "On this plateau alone, I believe there are still three more. Secure the treasure from those shrines...and I will give you the Paraglider. [So I need more now?] I said "treasure," but I never said there would only be one treasure. Whether it's one treasure or four, what's the difference for a young go-getter like yourself?" — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  23. "If you will, allow me to teach you a trick for finding the shrines. It's always best to survey the area by looking around from a high point. Let's see here... Why don't you see if you can make your way up to the top of that tower again? [Are you joking?] Har har har... Hardly. Let me show you something... Take a look at the Map on your Sheikah Slate. Do you see those blue icons? One is a shrine, and the other is the tower. You can travel instantly to either of those places with the Sheikah Slate." — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  24. "Ahhhh... Quite the view from up here. [B-b-breathtaking...] This may be the best place to get a full view of the entire plateau. Did you know that there's a Scope on your Sheikah Slate? Look through it, and you can stick a pin anywhere you'd like to mark on the map. Those pins will appear on your Map as reference points for your travels. Just stick a pin where you want to go! [How'd you know?] Har har har! Just a few tricks I've picked up over many, many years in the wild... You may take my advice or leave it. Go ahead and take a look when you're so inclined." — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  25. "You did well to make it this far wearing that. Please take this Quilted Shirt as a reward for your tenacity. Be sure to try it on if you get too cold. Like...now, perhaps?" — Old Man (Breath of the Wild)
  26. "An old man with a long cane suddenly appears in the road in front of them. 'Just a humble townsman,' the man says. 'And a friend to you.' [...] The man shuffles forward, waving his cane. 'That's right, young fella!' He smiles, showing a row of crooked, yellow teeth. Then he reaches into his cloak and pulls out something that glimmers like gold. [...] The man places it in Link's hand." (The Shadow Prince (Mammoth), pg. 69, 70)
  27. "'A key!' he says with a wink. 'A key, that's what she is! Listen, take my advice and don't go through Ruto on your way to Saria. Terrible traffic jam in there.' Before Link can ask any more questions, the man turns and disappears into the tall grass by the roadside." (The Shadow Prince (Mammoth), pg. 70)
  28. "We must escape and make our way to the Sanctuary!! The Old Man there will help us" (A Link to the Past (Nintendo Power), pg. 13)
  29. "Yes...and were he successful, the master of evil would marshal his forces against this world again!" (A Link to the Past (Nintendo Power), pg. 14)
  30. "Link? If you are going to battle the wizard Agahnim, do not underestimate him! I sense a powerful evil force is guiding his actions..." (A Link to the Past (Nintendo Power), pg. )
  31. "Don't worry about me! Find the Master Sword! Link--it's up to you alone!" (A Link to the Past (Nintendo Power), pg. 16)
  32. The Legend of Zelda manual, pg. 41