Princess Zelda

Zelda, as she appears in Ocarina of Time.

Game Series The Legend of Zelda
First Appearance The Legend of Zelda (1986)
Alter Ego: Shiek, Tetra
Japanese Name: ゼルダ
Species: Hylian
Gender: Female
Creator(s): Shigeru Miyamoto
Voice Actor(s): Cyndy Preston (TV series)
Jun Mizusawa (Ocarina of Time, SSBM, and Twilight Princess)
Hikari Tachibana (The Wind Waker)
Yu Shimamura (SS, BoTW JP)
Patricia Summersett (BoTW En)
For other uses of Zelda see Zelda (Disambiguations)

Princess Zelda is the titular character of The Legend of Zelda series. While she is the eponymous character of the series, Zelda generally plays a supporting role to the main character Link, often serving as either as an aide or damsel in distress.

Like Link, Zelda refers not to one character, but rather several incarcerations of a character across different eras. In each era, Zelda and Link work to defeat the Great King of Evil, Ganon and save Hyrule.


Zelda generally serves as the princess of the Kingdom of Hyrule (with Skyward Sword being an exception). Her appearance and personality varies across each incarnation, far more drastically than Link. Though Zelda never actually fights Ganon alone, her role is essential in what ever kind of victory over him Link is able to muster (typically some sort of seal)

Unlike the standard damsel in distress, Zelda is generally capable of holding her own, and often provides guidance to Link. She sometimes has alter egos which take her outside of the typical princess persona.

Game Appearances

The Legend of Zelda

The Legend of Zelda for the NES has Zelda playing the damsel in distress. Hyrule has entered a dark age, where it's inhabitants hide in caves from the monsters roaming the land. She became kidnapped by Ganon, in his new pig demon form. To keep Ganon from meeting his evil ends, she splits her piece of the sacred Triforce (the Triforce of Wisdom) into 8 pieces. Her attendant, Impa, runs into a dashing young adventurer named Link. Link ventures through the dungeons where the 8 pieces are guarded, then battles Ganon. He saves Zelda and the land of Hyrule.

Zelda II: The Adventure of Link

In Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, the hero from the previous game sets out to find a third Triforce piece and awaken another Princess Zelda, who was put to sleep by a wizard who was ordered by the prince to get Zelda to disclose the location of the aforementioned Triforce piece. At the beginning of the game, Link starts off in her crypt.

Link ventures the land, visiting towns, learning magic, and placing six gems in the six Palace-Temples scattered across the land so that he may enter the Thunderbird Palace and retrieve the Triforce of Courage and wake Zelda, hoping to get some lovin' in return.

At the end of the game, Zelda thanks Link and, as the curtains come down, we see her moving, lips forward ever so close to Link, until we can only see their feet under the curtain.

A Link to the Past

One of the most celebrated SNES games, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past was a gamer's dream. Zelda was in the game at the beginning, relaying a psychic message that the King's advisor, Agahnim, has overthrown the King and has locked her up in a dungeon. Link tells his uncle about this dream and he goes off. Several hours pass, and Link worries.

He goes after his uncle, guided by the psychic message. He takes his injured uncle's sword and shield to continue the mission. He finds pretty Zelda locked upon in her cell. He takes her to a sanctuary through a passage hidden in the castle. She tells him to go get the 3 Pendants of Power, Wisdom, and Courage from the 3 dungeons in the countryside, so that he can get the Master Sword and defeat Agahnim. Unfortunately, Agahnim takes Zelda into the Dark World, an evil version of Hyrule.

Link pursues and then must awaken the 7 Maidens, to enter the castle. Agahnim turns out to be a puppet for the evil Ganon, who fights Link. Eventually, Link saves Zelda and the other Seven Maidens and fights Ganon. Link wins and they get the complete Triforce. In a satisfying ending, order is restored to Hyrule, Ganon is gone for good (or at least until the next game), and all the wrong things turn right.

Link's Awakening

In Link's Awakening, Link and the Wind Fish dreamed an island into existence that the two of them were stuck on. Link meets a girl on this island, Marin. Marin is actually Link's memory of Zelda. Of all the Zelda games, none has really been more of a love story than this one. At one point, Marin actually becomes Link's girlfriend, and follows him around until he reaches the Animal Village, where she stays to sing to woodland creatures. The song that Marin teaches Link, the Ballad of the Windfish, turns out to really be the Song of Awakening, and has the power to end Link's slumber, but not unless it's played on the Instruments of the Sirens, and is heard by the Wind Fish. When Link wakes up, the island, and Marin, disappear.

Zelda in the CD-i games

Although Zelda was the main character in two of the CD-i games, this role is almost never mentioned, because of the critical and commercial failure of the CD-i games.

Ocarina of Time

Young OoT Zelda

Young Zelda in Ocarina of Time.

Adult OoT Zelda

Princess Zelda of Hyrule.

Zelda was a 10 year old princess who had a prophetic, apocalyptic dream. Link would eventually find his way to her by sneaking past her castle guards. The princess isn't taken seriously by her father. In fact, the King of Hyrule has gotten a pledge of allegiance from the Gerudo King of Thieves, Ganondorf, the same man who started the "Imprisoning War" earlier.

Zelda believes Ganondorf has not stopped in his quest to conquer Hyrule, and that he has been searching for the Triforce, a legendary artifact said to bestow one wish upon whoever finds it. She sends Link off to find three Spritual Stones, relics that will allow them access into the Temple of Time, where the sacred Triforce is said to rest. They eventually get all three stones. Ganondorf, however, stages a takeover of the capitol, and Link must travel through the Temple of Time alone, using the three Stones and the Ocarina of Time. However, in doing so, he opened the gateway to the Sacred Realm, and allowed Ganondorf to obtain the Triforce of Power.

The Triforce of Courage goes inside Link, making him The Hero of Time, but because he is too young to be a hero, he sleeps for 7 years. Link awakens to a dark Hyrule. Old enough now, 17, he quests to find Zelda and defeat Ganondorf. Link is guided by Sheik, the last surviving member of the Sheikah tribe. This "man" is none other than a cross dressing Zelda. After Link awakens the six Sages, who can open a dimensional gate to imprison Ganondorf, Zelda reveals herself to him. As soon as she does, her cover is blown and Ganondorf captures her, but not before bestowing the Light Arrows upon Link. When Link defeats Ganondorf, Zelda reveals to him that she is the seventh and final sage. The Seven Sages then imprison Ganondorf within the Sacred Realm.

Majora's Mask

In The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, Zelda has a brief appearance. She appears to Link in a flashback to when she gave Link the Ocarina of Time. She doesn't appear afterward. Oddly enough, most of the characters in Majora's Mask have counterparts in Ocarina of Time. One of the major exceptions to this rule is Zelda herself.

Oracle of Seasons/Ages

The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages and The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons, could be linked by passwords, and playing through one game after entering a password that confirmed you had already beat the other unlocked new things. One of them was a cameo by Zelda, who is just passing through (as the games take place in countries other than Hyrule) and she's briefly kidnapped and then saved by Link. At the end of the game, she kisses him on the cheek.

The Wind Waker

Zelda appears again in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. 12-year old Link lives on an island in the far reaches of the Great Sea. A pirate ship captain, Tetra, was kidnapped by a massive bird monster, the Helmaroc King, who has been instructed by his master to hunt the Sea for girls with pointy, elf ears.

Link saves Tetra, but his pointy-eared sister, Aryll, is now kidnapped by the Helmaroc King. Tetra lends Link a hand by allowing him to travel on her ship to pursue the bird. Tetra does not meet Link again until near the halfway point of the game.

Then, she saves Link after he goes to confront the Helmaroc King's master, Ganondorf, and save his sister. Tetra is eventually taken to a castle preserved under the Great Sea. She is revealed to be the last female of the Hyrule royal family bloodline, thus making her the Princess Zelda. She is kept in this castle until Link can restore the sacred Master Sword to its full potential.

Link comes back to the castle to find Zelda kidnapped. Link scales Ganondorf's fortress. On top of Ganondorf's tower stronghold, Link fights the Evil King. This time, Zelda takes his Light Arrows and Bow to give Link cover fire as he fights Ganondorf. They defeat him and learn the truth about the land under the waters. Link and Zelda, who becomes Tetra again, head back to the world above to find a new land for the people to live in.

Four Swords

In The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Zelda senses that Vaati's seal is weakening and goes to check it out but gets kidnapped. That sets Link in a difficult journey in order to rescue Zelda and the lost maidens and restore order once again. Link uses the Four Sword to save her.

Four Sword Adventures

In The Legend of Zelda: Four Sword Adventures Zelda gets kidnapped by Vaati. Link saves her. At the end of the game, she creates balls of holy power that Link shoots into Ganon using the bow and arrow.

The Minish Cap

In The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap Zelda and Link are childhood friends. Zelda gets turned to stone by Vaati. He tries to extract the Light Force from her, and uses it to become really strong. But Link kills him anyway (totally expected!!!) and uses the power of the Four Sword to restore her.

Twilight Princess


Zelda in Twilight Princess

In The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, Zelda wears a black funeral robe to show her remorse for the fact that she let Hyrule be taken over and misused. At one point she sacrifices herself in order to save Midna. She gives her power to Midna. After Midna revives her, Zelda aids Link in a horseback battle with Ganondorf by firing Light Arrows.

Phantom Hourglass

While on a journey, she (as Tetra) is held captive and turned to stone on a mysterious Ghost Ship.

After Link defeats an evil creature called Bellum, Oshus brings them both to Linebeck's ship and heals her.

Bellum later appears to grab Tetra and pull her out of sight.

When Tetra and Link finally reunite, they have to say farewell to the new friends Link made, because when he and Tetra touched the ghost ship, they were sent to another world created by the Ocean King to help the people of that world.

Tetra and Link wake up to find themselves back in their world on the ghost ship with their ship sailing by them. Tetra gets back on their ship and Link follows. Tetra yells at her crew for not coming to rescue her and their crew says that they were only on the ghost ship for ten minutes and Tetra says that the ghost ship is really dangerous. The crew suggests that it was all a bad dream.

Spirit Tracks

The Zelda in The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks is a descendant of Tetra. While investigating the disappearance of the Spirit Tracks in New Hyrule, she is killed by Chancellor Cole and her body is taken so that Malladus can be revived in it. Zelda's spirit contacts Link and helps him to restore the Spirit Tracks so that they can stop Chancellor Cole's plan to revive Malladus in her body. In the Tower of Spirits, Zelda's spirit can possess the armor of a Phantom Knight in order to aid Link through the floors of the tower to reach rail maps to various regions in New Hyrule.

Breath of the Wild

Zelda’s alter egos


OoT Sheik

Zelda as Sheik.

Sheik is Zelda's alter-ego in Ocarina of Time. She uses this disguise so that she can guide Link on his journey while remaining hidden from Ganondorf. She teaches Link a number of useful songs for traveling quickly through Hyrule, and is only caught after she reveals her true identity to him. Sheik also appears as a playable character in SSBM and SSBB. Sheik has been confirmed to be a playable character in Hyrule Warriors.



Zelda as Tetra, from The Wind Waker.

Tetra is a girl pirate who, in The Wind Waker, helps Link start his journey. Her mother died a few years before the events of The Wind Waker, and she was left to lead the group of pirates. She is the one that Ganondorf intended the Helmaroc King to kidnap, instead of Aryll.

She periodically helps Link out during his quest, and later her true identity is revealed in Hyrule Castle: she is Princess Zelda, the last heiress in the Hylian Royal Family bloodline. Before this, Tetra did not know she was Zelda, yet knew of Hyrule, the legend of the Hero of Time, and the Master Sword, and wore a large piece of the Triforce of Wisdom around her neck as a necklace.

Tetra also appears in the Japan-only Tetra's Trackers game, a part of Four Swords Adventures, as well as in The Wind Waker's sequel, Phantom Hourglass. Her likeness is seen on a stained-glass window of the New Hyrule Princess Zelda's throne room in Spirit Tracks.