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The Best Side Characters in the Legend of Zelda Series

There would be no legend without these characters

 What is The Legend of Zelda series best known for? Adventure? Story? Heroism? It’s a mix of them all. But, throughout the whole Zelda franchise one aspect has always stood out: its characters.

Sure, we’ve come to expect Link, Princess Zelda and Gannon, but each game in the series has also introduced a whole array of fantastic characters. Whether they’re shopkeeps, helpful guides, or simple wanderers, each Zelda character is designed to be memorable.

In this countdown we pay tribute to those who aren’t the heroes, but at some point have encountered The Hero of Time and have left a meaningful impact. Don’t expect any gods or goddesses, princes or princesses; these are the 20 best supporting characters in the Legend of Zelda franchise.

???

??? is one of the weirdest inclusions in the Zelda series, but that’s what makes them memorable. First appearing in Majora’s Mask, and then Oracle of Ages, this strange character is in constant need of paper. We know very little about them, other than the fact that they’ve appeared in a toilet each time.

Link is able to trade goods with ??? in each game, with a piece of heart being available in Majora’s Mask, and a stink bag in Oracle of Ages. ??? doesn’t otherwise play a huge role in Link’s adventures, but they stick with us purely because of how unique and weird they are.

Talon

Talon is the owner of Lon Lon Ranch, and the seller of the famous Lon Lon Milk. Talon has appeared in Ocarina of Time, Oracle of Seasons, Four Swords Adventures and The Minish Cap. He’s a lovable character, even if he is pretty lazy and irresponsible. His cucco mini game for Link is one of the more memorable mini games in the Ocarina of Time.

Talon may also have the most comedic moment in Ocarina of Time when he rushes out from Hyrule Castle after falling asleep. In subsequent releases, Talon manages to fall asleep once again, and even loses the key to his house. Interestingly, in Oracle of Seasons Talon has what looks suspiciously like a “Mario” logo on his red hat. He’s certainly a memorable character, and one that proves the Zelda series does comedy very well.

Link’s Uncle

We’ve all come to know what to expect from the start of Zelda games: Link is awoken from a sleep. That’s no different in A Link to the Past, with Link being awoken by a vision from Princess Zelda. But what makes the opening to A Link to the Past stand out is Link’s Uncle. He’s the only family of Link we’ve ever seen in the franchise, making his presence rather important.

Link is willing to disregard his uncle’s warning, and this sets up Link’s character: brave, strong and noble. Link’s Uncle also helps Link to learn spin attack, which is one of Link’s most iconic moves. As Link’s Uncle dies, the story takes a much more meaningful tone, and despite his brief appearance, Link’s Uncle is one of the most important characters in the Zelda series.

Agitha

The Zelda series doesn’t only have real princesses, it also has wannabe princesses. Or at least one: Agitha, featured in Twilight Princess is a self-proclaimed ‘Princess of Bugs’. She lives in her own castle within Hyrule, and is a collector of bugs. The 10 year old has a unique personality, and is very memorable due to this.

In Twilight Princess, she asks Link to collect golden bugs for her, rewarding him with different wallets for his efforts. She’s exuberant, a little pompous even, but wholly likeable. Agitha is a stand-out character in Twilight Princess, and the whole franchise.

Jim

Leader of The Bombers Secret Society, Jim has the final say on who is allowed to join his group. Skull Kid was once allowed in the gang that roamed Clock Town in Majora’s Mask, but they were kicked out due to their evil intentions. The Bombers may act tough, but deep down they’re all good kids, right? Just look at their Notebook!

Jim stands out with his red hat, but also because of his brash confidence. The hide-and-seek game that Link must play to become part of Bombers Secret Society is the true start of his adventure in Majora’s Mask; it starts a key chain of events, and it’s the best way to explore the fascinating Clock Town.

Mido

Mido may never accept Link as one of his own, but we certainly accept his awesome (if slightly annoying) character. Mido only appears in Ocarina of Time, but he plays a pivotal role; he is the guardian of The Great Deku Tree, and subsequently is the barrier to the first dungeon.

But it was all for the greater good (the greater good) as Mido wouldn’t allow Link to pass until he possessed a sword and a shield. These were the first weapons a 3D Link ever held, kickstarting his journey to become the Hero of Time. Mido may not have been the most likeable Kokiri, but he’s certainly one of the most memorable.

Gorko

Many have researched the Legend of Zelda, but none quite like Gorko, the Goron archaeologist. Gorko appears throughout many areas of both The Surface and Skyloft within Skyward Sword. He’s particularly interested in Goddess Cubes and Goddess Walls.

Despite only being a side character, Gorko may actually be the biggest aid to Link’s adventure in Skyward Sword. He teaches Link how to summon Gossip Stones, which is a vital ability for Link. Gorko always seems to be in the right place at the right time, making him one of the most helpful characters in the Zelda series.

Dampé

He’s Dampé the gravedigger. His face may be scary, but he’s not a bad guy. His most notable appearance was in Ocarina of Time, but he’s also appeared in Majora’s Mask, Four Swords, The Minish Cap and A Link Between Worlds. Dampé has always been portrayed as an enigmatic character who enjoys being left alone in his graveyard.

In Ocarina of Time, Dampé’s mini game allows Child Link to win a piece of heart, and eventually gives Adult Link the opportunity to win the Hookshot in the pretty creepy maze. Interestingly, in Majora’s Mask he is actually petrified of ghosts, so only works during the day. It’s safe to say that there aren’t many other video game characters quite like Dampé.

Biggoron

Zelda has many memorable different species, but perhaps none stand out more than the Gorons. And no Goron stands out quite as much as Biggoron. First appearing in Ocarina of Time, Biggoron goes on to appear in Majora’s Mask, Oracle of Seasons, The Minish Cap and Phantom Hourglass. Certainly, due to their size alone, Biggoron is not someone to be forgotten quickly.

They also help Link out in his adventures, too. In Ocarina of Time they give Link the Giant Sword (after some fixing) and it becomes one of the most powerful weapons. In Majora’s Mask, however, it’s Biggoron that needs Link’s help to be cured of a cold. But in their later appearances, Biggoron gives Link valuable items and even declares Link as an honourable Goron who can enter their village.

Beedle

Beedle is perhaps the most memorable merchant in the whole Zelda series. No matter the location, or game for that matter, Beedle just always seems to be where you need him. First appearing in Wind Waker, Beedle went on to be included in The Minish Cap, Phantom Hourglass, Spirit Tracks, Skyward Sword and Breath of the Wild. We’ve no doubt Beedle will be about in future Zelda games, too.

Always circling around the island you’re on, Beedle’s shop boat always has plenty of goods on offer, and no matter how much his business location changes in later games, his usefulness always remains. In Breath of the Wild, Beedle played a pivotal role in Link’s exploration by trading in handy goods.

Groose

No one loves Groose more than Groose loves himself. He’s self-obsessed and delusional, but throughout Skyward Sword he becomes much more likeable, and serves a greater purpose than just adoring himself.

Still, there’s no avoiding the fact that Groose starts out really annoying. He’s jealous of Link’s relationship with Zelda, fuelling a rivalry between the two. However, once he learns his true destiny, he becomes a vital part in Link’s adventure by staying with the Old Woman and keeping watch for The Imprisoned. No side character in the Zelda series has as great a character arc as Groose, and this makes him a stand-out in the franchise.

Aveil

The Gerudo are some of the most respected and feared warriors in the whole Zelda series. And none stand out quite like Aveil, who appears in both Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask. Interestingly, in Ocarina of Time Aveil is the first Gerudo to help Link, but in Majora’s Mask she looks to attack The Hero of Time.

The battles against the Gerudo are some of the standout moments in Ocarina of Time, and Aveil is willing to show respect towards Link for his victories against her peers. Aveil even makes Link an honorary member of the Gerudo. But in Majora’s Mask she is a feared pirate.

Malon

Malon is the daughter of Talon, and the one who looks after a young Epona until she is ready to be owned by Link. Malon has appeared in Ocarina of Time, Majora’s Mask, Oracle of Seasons, Four Swords and Minish Cap. She’s carefree, and highly intrigued by Link’s nature.

Malon is one of the most important characters in the series as without her there may well be no Epona. She’s also an innocent and caring character who stands out because of her bond with Talon. Not to mention, she’s also future wife of Link – unless of course Talon was joking…

Ralph

Despite Ralph seeing Link as a rival, he’s of the most memorable characters in the whole series. In The Oracle of Ages, Ralph is the main protector of Nayru, and seems to enjoy the ‘competition’ Link offers. He appears throughout the game, and constantly assists Link in his adventure (even if inadvertently).

Ralph, it is revealed, is actually related to Queen Ambi, but this is only discovered near the end of the game and it doesn’t stop his quest. He may not actually help Link too much in the final battle, but he’s a great character who provides a welcome twist to the end of The Oracle of Ages.

Tingle

Easily the strangest Hylian ever, the want-to-be fairy Tingle is actually a 35 year old man playing dress-up. First appearing in Majora’s Mask, Tingle has since featured in Oracle of Ages, Wind Waker, Four Swords, The Minish Cap, Phantom Hourglass, Spirit Tracks and Skyward Sword. He’s even had his own spin-off game.

Tingle is always ready and willing to help Link in his journey. Of course, a fee is usually required – a pretty hefty one in Wind Waker too! He’s a map expert who admires Link because he’s a hero with a fairy, and he wishes to be like him. Despite only being introduced relatively late in the Zelda franchise, Tingle’s flamboyant personality makes him one of our favourites.

Linebeck

You’d expect most treasure hunters to be pretty selfish, but Linebeck really takes the biscuit. First appearing in Phantom Hourglass, the sea-captain also makes appearances in Spirit Tracks and Triforce Heroes. Despite being pretty cowardly, he’s key in Link’s adventures.

Linebeck always manages to find an excuse as to why he can’t enter any island Link has chosen to dock at. He adores his ship so much that he even named it after himself, so perhaps it’s understandable why he’d rather stay onboard than step onto dry land. He’s kind enough to allow Link to ‘borrow’ the S.S. Linebeck, and throughout the story he becomes much more compassionate and friendly.

Marin

Marin is the kind-hearted daughter of Tarin, and is a character who instantly endears herself to all Zelda fans. She first appears in Link’s Awakening, and sadly hasn’t made another canon entry in the series yet. Her one appearance has left enough of an impact on us, though.

If it wasn’t for Marin, Link may well have never have fully recovered in Link’s Awakening. Interestingly a relationship is also hinted at between Marin and Link, even though it’s never actually confirmed. Princess Zelda will always be the most memorable female character in the series, but Marin is right up there.

Anju

Anju is one of the many residents in Hyrule/Termina who gives Link a small side-quest to complete, but hers are some of the more memorable ones. First appearing in Ocarina of Time, followed by Majora’s Mask and The Minish Cap, Anju quickly became one of the most loved residents of Kakariko Village/Clock Town/Hyrule Town.

Anju constantly loses her Cuccos in Ocarina of Time, and the side-quest to find them all is both a light-hearted escape from the main plot and a great chance to explore Kakariko Village. Anju, however, shines most Majora’s Mask where she is involved in a tense three-day countdown to her wedding day where Link plays a key part.

Kaepora Gaebora

Also known as ‘that annoying owl who always makes me repeat what they’re saying by accident’, Kaepora Gaebora is a key character and guide in the Zelda series. Despite only appearing in Ocarina of Time, Majora’s Mask, and Four Swords, he’s by far the most memorable side character for many in the franchise.

Kaepora Gaebora is always willing to give Link helpful advice when needed (and occasionally when not needed), and this makes them a valuable ally to Link. Interestingly, he’s unnamed in Majora’s Mask, but the ‘Arts and Artifacts’ book refers to him by name. Along with being an excellent advisor to Link, Kaepora Gaebora also provides one of the most spectacular cutscenes in Ocarina of Time when he flies  Link from the top of Death Mountain.

Impa

Few Zelda side characters have appeared in as many titles as Impa. From The Legend of Zelda, to The Adventure of Link, Ocarina of Time, Oracle of Ages, Skyward Sword, A Link Between Worlds and Breath of the Wild, Impa has become almost as important to the Zelda series as Zelda herself. She is often the guardian of Princess Zelda, and it’s clear that there is always a strong bond between the two.

The Sheikah is always presented as being noble, and is always willing to help Link out in his journey. In fact, in Ocarina of Time she is the Sage of Shadow. She is vital in Skyward Sword as the disguised Old Woman, and is one of the first characters to guide Link in Breath of the Wild. Undoubtedly, Impa is one of the most important characters in the series for both Link and Princess Zelda.

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