Ocarina of Time: Gerudo Valley, Spirit Temple and the Spirit Medallion
The Spirit Temple happens to be my favorite temple of Ocarina of Time. After having to talk about my least favorite temple for this game I feel it is only fair that I get to talk about this one. But just as the Water Temple had a precursor dungeon (Ice Cavern) this temple has one as well that is of course the Gerudo Fortress.
Initially to even get to the precursor dungeon you have to cross a ravine in which the bridge to the Gerudo valley has been destroyed. You can cross this either by using your longshot or jumping the gap on Epona at full speed. After doing this for the first time you meet the Head Carpenter, the same one hired by Impa to help build up Kakariko Village. It’s here you learn that the bridge was destroyed by the Gerudo to keep people out and that the other Carpenters have abandoned their job to join the Gerudo.
Interesting part in all of this is the fact the Gerudo is a group primarily made up of women due to a weird quirk in their race. A male is born once every 100 years which most likely leads to the Gerudo living rather long lives that or they must take in males outside of their race/culture to mate with to further them. The Gerudo are one of my favorite races of the Legend of Zelda Series of which unfortunately Gannondorf (Gannon’s Human form) often hails from.
While the group is made up mostly of females the thing that I really like about them is that they are all badass laddies. See the Gerudo’s are a warrior race and a lot of the ladies you encounter in the Fortress walk around with Ningata’s (Japanese pole arm). Some of the warriors do use swords. Which brings us back to the carpenters. You must stealth through the entire fortress using your bow you can stun the guards allowing you to move about the Fortress. You still have to fight warriors as you release the four carpenters. The carpenters who abandoned the rebuild of the bridge all were rejected by the Gerudo since they revere strong warriors and the carpenters were not warriors and so the four of them were jailed.
If at any point you mess up (are caught) when in the Gerudo Fortress also known as the Thieves’ Hideout a guard will grab you and throw you back into a locked room. The same room you are thrown into soon as you reach the hideout. After you release the three carpenters and beat of the final Gerudo Warrior the 2nd in command of the Fortress left in charge by their leader Nabooru commends your prowess as a warrior and gives you a Gerudo Token which gives the holder the ability to walk around the Fortress as an ally and allows you passage to the Haunted Wastes the way to the Temple. It also nets you the ability to do the Gerudo Horse Archery Trial at their Gerudo Training Ground. Upon completion of the trial Link is awarded with the Ice Arrow.
So to even reach the Temple again you must complete the Gerudo Fortress; in doing so you complete the carpenter quest which they vow they will rebuild the bridge as thanks for saving them. After becoming freely able to roam the hideout by going to the top of the watch tower you can ask the guard to raise the gate to allow you into the Haunted Wastes. Now you must complete two trials so to speak to reach the Temple. The first trial is that of the rivers of sand amidst a raging sand storm you must use your hoover boots or longshot to cross the shifting sands otherwise you will be swallowed up. After crossing the rives of sand the player must follow some flag sticks that will lead her/him to a small stone barracks. If at any point a player is disoriented going from one flag stick to another immediately turn around and go back to the stick otherwise you will start back at the gates of the Gerudo’s.
Once on top of the stone barracks the player must use the Lens of Truth to succeed in the second trial; The Phantom Guide. Using the Lens reveals a Poe following this Poe through his twisty way gets you through the desert and once you see a pair of flags you will know you have reached your destination. Past the flags and you will reach the Desert Colossus the entrance to the Spirit Temple.
The Spirit Temple is a rather curious using both light and time mechanics to get to the end of the Dungeon. The player must first go back in time in order as a kid to get the temples Silver Gauntlets which allow you to move items but these were originally suppose to be given to Nabooru as she the leader of the Gerudo does not want to follow Gannondorf. She insists that you get these gauntlets in a bargain for her and she will enter the temple and steal the treasure in the temple which should hinder or hurt Gannondorf’s schemes… However by the time you reach the gloves and claim them you hear a distant scream. You look down from atop the Colossus and see Nabooru being circled by two evil Gerudo Witches before she is sucked down into the sand. Your task as kid link is done you must return here as an adult again.
Returning to the temple with the silver gauntlets you can finally move the block in the beginning of temple of which you couldn’t before hand and now you must move on. You will again go through rooms you’ve seen before as well as using light to bounce off mirrors to unlock your path. Before moving forward however don’t forget on the outside of the Temple playing the song of storms returns the pool to its former glory and brings back fairies. Also on the side of the Colossus there are two palms and near to them is a crack in the wall. Blasting this crevice will uncover another Great Fairy’s Fountain and will unlock Nayru’s Love besides also healing your wounds.
When you reach the end of the Temple again you will meet the two Witches that kidnapped Nabooru but before you can do anything they call upon their guardian a huge Iron Knuckle which goes down like a regular Iron Knuckle of which you will have faced several within this temple. The fights they bring are often exciting but upon defeating this huge Iron Knuckle the armor falls away and reveals Nabooru but before she can escape the Witches reclaim her.
But following them you enter a room that holds of five platforms of equal height and by reaching the center one (also happens to be the largest) you encounter the two witches once again. So begins the fight but I left out a critical part. See along the way through the adult portion of the dungeon you will have picked up the best shield in Ocarina of Time: the Mirror Shield. With this stunning shield you must reflect the shots of the witches towards the opposite witch as the two represent Fire & Ice. Upon hurting at least one of them four times the sisters will get serious and will fuse into a single being: Twinrova. Twinrova begins to throw fire and ice faster at you but instead of reflecting you now must collect energy from the same kind of attack. By collecting three fire or three ice attacks in your shield you will launch a magical strike of your own one which you can direct it’s initial path with your control stick.
When you hit Twinrova with one of these magical attacks they will land on a platform allowing you to strike at her with your sword. Doing that three times will see her defeated and they will defuse and ascend to the sky. The witches defeated you will enter the warp circle coming back to the Chamber of Sages where you will be greeted the Sage of Spirit, Nabooru whom you have saved. She thanks you of course and bestows to you the 6th Sage Medallion the Spirit Medallion. After beating this temple and receiving the last medallion you must of course continue the game by meeting Shiek in the Temple of Time before facing Gannon.
This temple is my favorite temple perhaps because of it’s overall feel… I like the Gerudo’s as a tribe/race. I like the mechanics within the temple itself the light mechanics themselves are kind of out of place and that’s why they tend to lend credence to a Light Temple… But I like Nabooru she’s an interesting character and didn’t want to follow Gannon. She may have been against him less because he’s pure evil but rather more so she wouldn’t have to bend to his will making her both strong and pragmatic and therefore a more believable character. I like the silver gauntlets tho more so I like the mirror shield both it’s design and it’s function despite both items having been in previous games I like that they come from the same temple with similar craftsmanship. I like the fights within the temple both from the Iron Knuckle mini bosses to the huge Iron Knuckle and of course the Boss fight with the two witches. But the thing I like most of all is the music. I like the Gerudo Valley theme and always have. The Temples actual song I find to be very spiritual and the teleportation song Requiem of Spirit to me is badass and all three fit the area, the people and the temple very well.
I didn’t go into full walk through of the temple that’s true but had I gone through it like that this post would be at least another 1500 words. I critically panned the Water Temple of which most others do as well as for this temple my biggest issue is the Light mechanics but that’s my only gripe to be honest.
Malcura- Gerudo Valley
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