Zelda: Breath of the Wild Beginner's Guide - 13 Tips And Tricks
Surviving The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
It's dangerous to go alone in the world of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild; the unwary can perish in a matter of seconds. That's why we've compiled 13 beginner's tips to help you overcome the game's early threats.
Breath of the Wild is out now for Nintendo Switch; the game also arrived for Wii U. And even after you finish the game, there's more to play: Nintendo offers $20 DLC Pass for Breath of the Wild. For more details about the game, check out our feature covering everything you need to know about it. Otherwise, you can read all our written coverage and watch every video here.
If you need even more Zelda guides, check out our recipe and cooking manual, our beginner's guide, or just our general list of everything you might want help figuring out. And of course you shouldn't miss our official review of Breath of the Wild or our review for its latest DLC, The Champions' Ballad.
Approach Battles Carefully, Think Tactically
Running headfirst into battle isn't always the best way to defeat a pack of enemies; it's often better to take a moment to formulate a plan of action before approaching. For example, if a Bokoblin encampment lies ahead, think about what you can do to eliminate them with as little trouble as possible. You could snipe their archers from a distance with your bow, and then sneak up to the larger group and throw a bomb at them to whittle away their numbers. Or you could even propel a large metal box toward the encampment using the Stasis ability's kinetic force. There are plenty of combat tactics that don't involve wasting your resources that are better than attempting to brute force your way to victory.
Save Powerful Weapons and Equipment For When It Matters
Unlike past Zelda games, almost all of Breath of the Wild's weapons and equipment have a durability mechanic, which causes items to wear down over time and eventually break after extensive use in battle. As you acquire more powerful weapons and equipment, be mindful of when you choose to use them. Save your higher-level equipment for tougher enemies and bosses, as opposed to wasting them against weaker foes that could easily perish against lower-leveled weapons.
It's Okay To Run
Don't think you need to engage in every combat encounter; there's no shame in running away. Your weapon and equipment resources are limited, so it's always in your best interest to avoid encounters if there's no goal in mind. The world is packed with enemies that can easily kill you in one hit. Choose your battles carefully or risk wasting your hard-earned weapons and equipment.
As you explore the more hostile territories of Hyrule, be sure to save often. Aside from a handful of autosaves the game creates for you, you're allotted one manual saveslot. Take advantage of this whenever you need a safety cushion for a dangerous area ahead, or if you need to experiment with important quest and equipment choices that could affect your progression path.
How To Perform A Perfect Dodge, Parry, And Charged Attack
Against a tough enemy, there are three advanced and essential combat techniques: Perfect Dodge, Parry, and the Charged Attack.
Perfect Dodge allows you to slow down time after a precise dodge and inflict a devastating flurry attack upon an enemy. To execute a Perfect Dodge, jump out of the way of an attack right before it's about to hit you, and then press Y to perform the attack flurry.
Parry allows you to use your shield to deflect an enemy's blow, leaving it vulnerable to an immediate counterattack. To Parry, lock onto an enemy and press A right before their attack connects.
The Charged Attack allows you to perform a powerful offensive maneuver. Each weapon type sports a different Charged Attack. For instance, the sword has a 360-degree attack that covers you on all sides, while the spear has a flurry of stabs. To use a Charged Attack, simply hold the Y button in combat.
Seek Out Shrines
Shrines offer a nice diversion from prolonged periods of exploration; completing their puzzling challenges nets you Spirit Orbs, which can be used to purchase useful power-ups that expand your health or stamina. But another bonus you receive from beating a Shrine is the ability to unlock its location as a fast travel point. It's important to take time to complete shrines, as doing so benefits not only your health and stamina capacity, but also your ability to traverse Hyrule quickly and efficiently.
Avoid Guardians Like The Plague
Guardians are deadly six-legged foes that you should avoid at all costs (at least in the beginning of the game). Their charged shots can kill you in one hit, so keep your distance from them. If you're going to take a Guardian on (you really shouldn't yet), we suggest coming to the battle on horseback equipped with an arsenal of bomb arrows and elemental arrows. Be sure to slash at its legs to reduce its maneuverability, and aim at its center eye with your arrows to inflict high damage.
It's possible to slow down time to shoot an arrow, which is an effective technique for picking off multiple enemies at time. To do so, simply pull out your bow while you're high up in the air (preferably from a glide). Keep in mind, the slow-motion only lasts as long as the amount of stamina you have, so if your stamina fully depletes in air, time will resume as normal.
Cooking Gives You Status Boost Items
Cooking is an essential part to your survival that can help you in myriad ways. To cook, simply choose a few ingredients from your inventory and drop them into a bonfire with a pot on it. Depending on the ingredients you choose, you'll get a dish or elixir that offers you a different status effect. For example, cooking a Raw Bird Drumstick and a Blue Nightshade together makes a dish that grants you a low-level stealth boost for two-and-a-half minutes.
You can find out more details about an ingredient's effect on a dish via its inventory explanation. But don't be too greedy with the ingredient types you choose, as using too many cancels out their effects and results in Dubious Food, a dish that only heals one heart.
Keep in mind that cooking status-affecting foods is restricted to bonfires with pots on them. An open fire can only roast or slightly cook food items. It's also impossible to cook while it's raining.
Do Not Use Metal Equipment During A Thunderstorm
If a thunderstorm starts to rage through Hyrule, make sure to remove all metal equipment; that includes armor, swords, shields, and bows. If you wear metal during a thunderstorm, you run the risk of being struck by lightning, which can kill you instantly. When you hear your metal equipment flash and flicker during a storm, that's your cue to jump into your inventory and remove it immediately.
Save That Axe: Bombs Can Chop Down Trees
In the southern section of the Great Plateau, you'll find the Old Man attempting to cut down a tree with an axe. He says you need an axe to cut down the tree ahead to clear a path across the cliffside gap. However, it's actually possible to cut down a tree by detonating a bomb near it. Simply place it at the foot of the tree in the direction you want the tree to fall.
Heavy Weapons Knock Away Enemy Shields
An enemy wielding a shield can block your attacks with ease. However, heavy weapons--like an axe or a hammer--can knock the shield out of their hands, making them vulnerable to attack. Utilize this technique whenever you're up against multiple enemies with shields.
You Can Stealth Kill Enemies
If you sneak up directly behind an enemy without them noticing, a prompt appears that allows you to deliver a devastating blow. This is an incredibly useful maneuver, as it nearly kills enemies in one blow, regardless of their level of health and defense.