It’s been a while since I’ve played. Probably a week. I’ve been busy.
Last time I played, I was on the Eldin region and explored a bit there, and unlocked the map before deciding I need to get to Rito village and start completing quests there if I want to get anywhere in the game.
I’m trying to figure out how to open up the Fairy Flowers that I’ve found, so I can upgrade my outfits and start to have a chance in combat against tougher monsters and groups.
I fast travel to the Hebra Skyview Tower, and blast off into the sky. I am hoping to get as deep into the winter lands as I can on a glider and minimize travel time to Rito village.
Up in the sky, though, of course I get other ideas immediately. To the west, there’s an archipelago in the sky, and I can see a shrine on it, which I’ve already pinned with my scope, so I definitely want to get there if I can, so I can open it as a future fast-travel destination.
It takes me a try or two to get properly oriented so that I don’t fall too far to make it to land at the archipelago. But it’s not actually hard to get there once I have my bearings. Each time I launch from the tower, it faces me the same direction, and I can’t pre-set my direction facing before I launch. The direction I want to go is backwards of the way the Skyview Tower launches me, so I have to quickly turn around and then glide. And it’s been a while, so I’m not as good at the controls and I have to get used to it.
The first try, I notice the archipelago too late and fall to grab the side of it, at a point where I can not climb up, nor can I find a flat spot to stand on so I can try to Ascend upward.
The second try, I get rammed out of the sky by an Aerocuda, and have to start over and try a third time.
The third time, I try to get directly to the sky island with the shrine, but I don’t quite make it.
The fourth time, I easily reach the near end of the archipelago, and hike it to the shrine sky island, making a few glides to get from one piece of floating rock to the next. As I get closer to the destination, I see what looks like floating viking long ships in the sky. When I get even closer to them, I discover that rather than sail rigging, they seem to have what looks like a kind of trampoline instead, which I can use to jump on and bounce off of to get a high boost into the air.
This gets me the rest of the way to the shrine. When I ender, the challenge is a series of more viking ships to bounce on, in order to gain altitude and get to the next floating platform.
I almost skip the shrine when I encounter a locked gate at the very start, but after I reconsider I realize that I can shoot an arrow through the gate and activate a trigger. It’s not very obvious, it’s just a glowing pillar of stone that doesn’t seem obviously like a door switch. But when I shoot it, the door opens, and I can retrieve the arrow, so I’m out nothing.
Getting through this shrine is really easy, the only challenge being at the end when there’s a moving skyship, which makes bouncing straight up and down a little tricky, and then a final gate, which I need to hit with another arrow, to open a door in the floor that I can then bounce up through. But it’s very easy.
I don’t notice any chests as I move through, so I probably missed something, but it’s probably not worth going back for. Unless it happens to be one of those rare permanent power-up items, like part of an outfit.
Having cleared the shrine, I want to see what else is to be found in this part of the sky, so I have a look around.
It’s hard to keep oriented, and not get turned around. The sky is dark and there are a lot of clouds, and the sky islands kind of don’t provide a lot of reference. Nevertheless I do figure out that if I keep going, I can hop a few more gaps and get to a tall structure a few islands over, and probably there’s something good over there.
I make may way over and fight a couple of Zonai construct soldiers, but they’re easy, just cannon fodder, really. I eventually get to the top of what I’m able to climb to, twice making clever use of Recall + Ascend to reach overhangs that I couldn’t Ascend to from the ground, by lifting boxes and then reversing time on them so I can ride them up high enough to where I can get up to the ceiling above me.
Unfortunately this seems to reach a point of dead end. Up above me, I see a large swirling snow cloud, which seems like it’s surrounded by a massive fleet of those “viking” long ship trampolines. If I could get up there, probably I could bounce up high enough to get into the snowstorm, but that’s almost certainly suicide with how I’m presently outfitted, even if I could make it up to the lowest of the long ships, which I can’t see how I could. There’s also Aerocudas flying around, patrolling the sky. I’m sure there’s got to be some bad monster inside the storm cloud, probably creating the bad weather that is starving out Rito Village, but I feel like I’m a long way off from being able to do anything about it.
Down and a ways off, I spot another Zonai Flux Construct, marching around on a larger sky island, and I expect that if I could make it over to there, I could probably fight it well enough to obtain another Old Map showing some part of the Underworld that I should try to visit.
And way down below, back on the ground, I spot another Shrine. It’s not far away at all, and I reason that if I could open it, I can fast travel there and use it for another starting point to explore these regions.
Over on the ground in another direction, there’s another SkyView Tower, the one for this region, which I haven’t unlocked yet. And that’s a priority, too, but I don’t know what I’ll need to do to unlock it yet, and it’s a bit further off than the Shrine, so I dive down and head to the shrine.
The shrine is near a hot springs area, but I’m full on health and don’t need healing, so I just enter. The shrine is a difficult one. There are numerous Zonai construct soldiers patrolling, some weaky armed, but most have decent arms and at least one has a shield. They’re guarding and patrolling, and I’m supposed to infiltrate, but I’m not clear how to do it.
I’m stripped of all my gear, and given a weak shield and two weak weapons to complete this mission, so I’m probably supposed to rely primarily on stealth.
I can trip the alarms and get away, and they reset after a while, so it’s not like being discovered is an automatic do-over, but there’s far too many of them for me to fight them effectively, and even if I try to pick them off and go one at a time, I’m not able to make much progress, beating one or two of the Constructs, if that. There’s one with a shield and a spiked club who is really lethal to fight against with my weak equipment.
Eventually, I work out that I could sneak around past the outermost guards, and get to an inner chamber, where there are, to my best count, at least three if not four more of them. There’s an elevated gangway above the floor, which I can Ascend to, and around the back way there’s a doorway, with some easily avoidable laser tripwires that will sound an alarm if I do hit them by accident, in which case I can just hide for a while until things calm down again. Inside this inner chamber, there are two rooms, off in opposite corners, and inside the first are a Zonai flame emitter and a beam projector. There’s a cover on the roof that I can move out of the way using Ultrahand, and then jump down and Fuse these two devices to my weapons, giving me a bit of range and a bit of extra damage dealing capacity.
It’s not very much though, and even if I Ascend up out of the room to the obscurity and safety of the roof, I still don’t know what I can manage against all these constructs at once. If I try to fight them, they quickly surround me and most of them are capable of one-shotting me, so I stand very little chance against them if I don’t have a flawless battle against them. One of them has a shock weapon, and one of them has a bow, and it’s too much for me, with my current skill level.
The second room, I don’t make it into, but the doorway is covered by tripwires, arranged so that there doesn’t seem to be a way to avoid them, and this one is a bit taller, so that I can’t get onto the roof from the gangway.
I don’t want to waste the entire evening trying to get through this gauntlet, so I give up for now and fast-travel back to the previous Shrine, high above in the skyworld. Before I travel back there, I take out some ice lizalfos, who die easily when they taste the flame emitter shield. They are elementally weak to fire and die instantly, and I get a few easy Lizalfos parts and a nice hammer weapon one of them was carrying. Once I claim them, I zip back up to the shrine I just completed on the Sky world.
I try gliding down the other way, trying to get to the Skyview Tower, but it’s a bit too far for me to reach in one flight, with all of my stamina, so I look for a safe landing as I’m close to running out. As I get closer to land, I spot another Shrine, near a gorge. There’s a few camps of monsters, from the look of it, and some camp fires, which may or may not be friendly around nearby, but right now I’m only interested in that Shrine. I land, recharge my stamina meter, and take off again, crossing over the gorge and landing right in front of the Shrine.
This Shrine is much easier than the other one I gave up on.
I merely have to avoid a few tripwires. Some are low, I have to jump over; some are high, I have to duck under. At the end, there’s a grid of them, mounted on an enclosed housing that is sliding along the walkway. But it’s obvious that I can evade them by using Ascend to pop through the roof of the beam housing, and that’s exactly what I do. It’s easy, I make it on the first try.
I only didn’t see how to get into the treasure chest chamber off to one side, but I didn’t try to look hard or think about it, either. I’m really only here to unlock the fast-travel point and to collect another Light of Blessing. I will return just to make sure the chest doesn’t have something really good in it, but it almost certainly doesn’t.
I go back into the Shrine, and discover that the item in the chest is a spicy elixir which gives 8:40 of resistance to cold, which is perhaps going to come in handy if I don’t find more warm gear to wear soon, but so far the cold has been bearable with just my cold weather pants that I got way back at the start of the game. I’m sure that will change eventually, though.
My next stop is the Skyview Tower. It’s just a short glide away from the Shrine I just completed. As I get close I observe that the base of the tower is overgrown with thorny brambles. These will do damage if I touch them, but I could fly over them, probably, or I could clear them with flame. I have plenty of bombs, fireseeds, and a flame emitter shield. I have the shield equipped, so I just use it, and it immediately breaks, but not before the brambles light up, and the fire spreads around the base of the tower, consuming everything. In just a few seconds the way is clear.
There’s no one at this tower, nothing damaged needing repair beyond the blocked entrance, so I just walk in and activate it, shoot up into the sky, and scan the terrain to update my map.
While I’m in the sky, I can see another archipelago nearby with another Shrine on it. This one is easy to reach, and I go directly there, and land right in front of the Shrine, and enter. The challenge here is a series of Zonai construct soldiers, weak ones, which have something to teach me about Fusion and Shields. I take the soldiers out quickly with my bow, which I have several that have high damage potential and rip these guys to shreds in one or two hits. The first construct happens to have a Zonai device attached to his shield, but I knock it out of his hand with a heavy weapon and take him down before he can use it against me, getting a flame emitter shield right back to replace the one I just used up to enter the Skyview Tower moments ago.
The second construct has a steel plate fused to his shield, and after defeating him I see why: flame jets blocking the way forward. I can just block them with this shield, but there’s another steel plate if I want to fuse it to one of my shields already in inventory. I don’t want to do that, though, so instead I just Ultrahand the plate and move it to block the flames in front of the door, which works just as well, and I walk though.
The final obstacle is the trickiest, and if I hadn’t failed to avoid seeing some spoiler videos showing this in use, I might have been confused for quite a while until I figured it out. A high wall, with no way to climb or fly, apparent to me, but four rockets strewn on the floor. After I defeat the soldier in here, I can get up this wall in two ways: I could go back and grab that steel plate, and mount the four rockets to it, like a platform, and ride it up, or I can Fuse a rocket onto my shield, and when I deploy the shield, it shoots me up into the sky, a bit like Revali’s Gale from BOTW.
I opt to do this method. I know that in some places it’s going to be necessary to get up higher than I can using terrain, Ascend, and even Recall tricks. So I had been wondering how I would get up to those trampoline ships in the sky, and this might just do it for me if I go back again.
Outside of the Shrine, I look around and see not too far away yet another Flux construct. Was this the same one I saw earlier, when I was in the other sky archipelago? Or is this a different one?
I think it’s time to test out that rocket shield and see what I can do now that I can zoom up into the sky.
Except… when I exit the Shrine, I don’t see where the Flux Construct is. I lost track of it when I was flying to this Shrine, and I don’t recall where I saw it. I scout around in all directions with the Scope, but I don’t spot it.
Instead I walk around on the sky island the Shrine I just cleared sits on, and look around. There are a few frozen over fountains or pools, which when stepped on, the ice cracks. After several jumps, the ice breaks away, and I fall into a shallow depression still filled with a little bit of water, and find a treasure chest or two.
Nearby is another Zonai device dispenser, so I give it 5 small charges and see what it gives me — I get a few time bombs, some rockets, some flame emitters, a balloon.
There’s another one of those rotating catapult contraptions near by that I use to launch myself over to the last island in the archipelago, where I find a treasure chest containing an Old Map, which tells me the the location of a treasure I already found, which I expect must be that bright mining garment I found in the underworld that one time.
Looking around again, I spot another Shrine, far below on the ground, at the western edge of Hebra. I jump off the edge and glide down to it, making it without having to land and walk at all.
This Shrine’s challenge is a series of time-reversal puzzles, which are fairly easy and don’t give me any real trouble. I just roll some balls uphill and get them to go where I need them to. I do learn from this that the range of Recall is considerably longer than the range of Ultrahand — a fact which I’m sure will come in handy at some point. I still probably underutilize Recall, and could stand to find more creative ways of employing it.
So I’ve managed to cover a good bit of Hebra, unlocked the map for this zone, and cleared several Shrines, but I still haven’t made it to Rito village, and I’m not quite sure where it was located. As I’ve explored so much of this zone already, it doesn’t seem like I’ve needed any special cold resistance items beyond the pants I found early on in the game. I’m a little surprised by that, I thought for sure I would need more extreme cold gear to survive for long in this area, and so far that hasn’t been the case at all, not even high up in the sky where you would think things would be even more frigid, and not even when I’ve gotten dunked in some freezing water.
It turns out I’m actually not far at all from Rito village. I check the map, and it is easy to see the village from there. It’s an obvious round feature on the map, a nearly circular lake with a series of islands in the center, which in person are very tall pillars of rock. And it’s not far from the Shrine I just cleared, either. Just a couple of quick glides downhill, in fact.
I glide down, and I can see a Shrine inside the Rito Village, and if I can get over to it, I should be able to activate it as a travel point. But as I’m gliding out, I look down and spot what looks like a friendly, inhabited cabin, and some bonfires. I decide to stop here first and talk to the people and find out what they can tell me. It’s basically just the same information I have heard before, about Rito village being in a state of famine due to the extreme cold. They do have a book which talks about some legend of a god who came down from the sky, and the Rito tried to help him get back up to where he belongs, but needed to use materials to build something because even they could not fly high enough. The materials were used to build air ships, which from the description match what I’ve seen already from being up among the clouds. The legend mentions the storm cloud, too, but I’m not all that sure what to make of it. I’m sure I’ll figure it all out eventually.
After I take a few items that are offered to me, I head out, intending to try to glide the rest of the way to Rito Village. However, since I descended to check out this cabin, I don’t have enough altitude from where I am currently to make it, and it looks like I should just walk around the edge of the lakeside cliffs to where the old bridge is. I remember this from BOTW.
As I come around the lakeside cliffs perimeter, I come across a small bokoblin camp, with 3 or 4 bokos. They don’t look too tough, and they’re all sitting around a blazing fire trying to keep warm and cook some meat. I hit the blue one with a bomb arrow, headshotting him and taking him out entirely. Another boko dies, caught in the blast, leaving just two behind. Incredibly, they don’t even seem to know that they are under attack. They just seem puzzled, look around and don’t see me, and quickly forget about it and go back to standing around the fire. Idiots! I finish them both off with a couple more normal arrows, and loot the camp. They have a treasure chest, which contains a weapon that doesn’t seem very interesting, weaker than most of what I have already, so I just leave it.
The next stop is the old Rito Stables, only now it’s the Lucky Clover Gazette, a newspaper that has started up since the Stables had to close due to the extreme cold. I talk to everyone there. First I learn that the bridge to Rito Village is out, and there’s no way across currently. Oh they haven’t seen what I can do, have they. I bet I can get across in any of several ways, if I want to. And I do want to.
One of them tells me about pine cones being extremely oily and flammable, and how they can create updrafts. I’ve learned this already. He also tells me he used to own the stable, and decided to stay on to help out when they got bought out by the newspaper.
Then I talk to a Rito who recalls talking to me a while ago. He’s the pelican looking fellow, I barely remember him, as in real time it was several months ago, but he was the one who said I should meet him in Rito Village. And now here I am. He recruits me to work for the Lucky Clover, and introduces me to the boss, a Hylian woman named Traysi. She offers me payment in the form of a Froggy Armor suit, which has the special property of enabling me to cling to surfaces without falling. I guess this will be extremely handy in wet conditions, and perhaps may even enable me to climb ceilings. I hope.
Well, cool, I’m in.
They want me to take an assignment of going around to the various stables looking for information about Princess Zelda sightings. She’s been spotted all over, apparently, and they want the scoop.
So I guess if I would have come out this way first, like they suggested I do back at the beginning of the game when I first met people at the stable near Lookout Landing, I could have picked up those stories when I went around and found all the other stables. But now I have to backtrack. But that’s not a big deal since I can fast travel to all of them pretty quickly.
I really hope this advances some part of the side quests to get the fairy flowers unlocked — to get that traveling musical group to re-form, so they’ll play music to bring back the Fairies. Then I can get up-armored and start kicking some ass.