The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is a massive game that, like its predecessor, basically gives you free rein to pursue nearly all of its goals at your discretion. The training wheels are taken off early and you are sent along your way with gentle hints as opposed to specific directions. This is one of the reasons Tears of the Kingdom is a fantastic game (read our spoiler-free review here), but it does lead to some instances where I wish I had known or acquired certain things before I was dozens of hours into the game. If you’re not concerned about spoilers, you can click the boxes below a few entries for additional context, but I encourage you to play as blind as possible! At least initially.
Don’t Forget About Ascend
Ascend was one of the few mechanics that were detailed before the release of Tears of the Kingdom, but if you still don’t know what it is, I won’t spoil it here. What I will say, though, is to try to keep it in the back of your mind. It changes the way you move through the world, but I found myself often forgetting how versatile and helpful it is, even late in the game.
Do Robbie And Josha’s Missions
After completing what is essentially Tears of the Kingdom’s tutorial, you will meet characters named Robbie and Josha. They have missions for you that are easy to brush aside in the face of everything in front of you, but it’s a good idea to take care of their requests early as the rewards are worthwhile.
Following Robbie’s mission underground will award you the Autobuild Rune. It’s a useful tool that is helpful to have early.
It may be tempting to dive from the sky and glide everywhere, but you’ll miss so much of what Tears of the Kingdom has to offer. There may be faster options, but consider walking to your destination.
This is actually tangentially related to Robbie, but it would not be a bad idea to explore the northeast before even starting the main quest to seek out a useful item that you will be grateful to have for the full journey.
Specifically, you will want to head to the Akkala Ancient Tech Lab to find the Traveller’s Medallion, which let’s you create your own fast-travel points. You will have to work with Robbie to get it powered up, but it’s an incredibly useful item.
Then Head Northwest
Speaking of cardinal directions, the game subtly encourages you to head northwest when the adventure starts proper, and it’s not a bad idea to take that advice. I still think heading northeast first before starting the the main quest is a good idea, but when I decided to actually start the adventure, northwest was the direction I decided to pursue, and I am glad I had its reward early in the game.
Every dungeon in the game rewards a new ability, and the Rito Village dungeon in the northwest offers an item that helps you move through the sky. The Vow of Tulin blasts a tunnel of wind behind you while you are paragliding to shoot you in a vertical trajectory. It’s not the best combat ability, but it helps tremendously in moving from point A to B.
Pick Bomb Flowers
One thing I will spoil for you is that remote bombs do not return in Tears of the Kingdom. You may miss having infinite bombs early on, but thankfully bomb flowers are pretty easy to come by. That being said, they are not infinite, nor are they cheap in stores. This makes them a valuable resource. Make sure to grab them whenever you see them and be somewhat precious with them. A few can be found in just about every cave.
Pick Brightbloom Seeds
Every cave you enter has a ton of a new material called Brightbloom seeds. They are plentiful to the point where it feels like you can ignore them, but you should grab as many as you can. You will be grateful to have a big cache of them as you progress through the game.
Fuse Almost Everything
Fuse all your weapons. Fuse with reckless abandon. There will always be a need for a weapon with a rock fused to it, so it’s a good idea to keep one of those on hand. That being said, it’s not a bad idea to keep at least one decent un-fused weapon and un-fused shield in your pocket to help with puzzles.
Use Every Zonai Device Dispenser
It’s a good idea to use every Zonai Device Dispenser whenever you find one, even if you feel like you don’t need the materials. Each one offers different tools and the map will mark where they are and what they hold after you use them, which is handy information to know when your stores of specific Zonai items are running low.
Visit Old Friends
It is both fun to see what has changed and worthwhile to visit the populated towns you remember from Breath of the Wild.
Kakariko and Hetano in particular are worthwhile pursuits. They have changed and each have their own dedicated missions with interesting unlocks and rewards.
Load Up On Crystallized Charges
During the opening tutorial area, you will meet a Forge Construct. They can be a little confusing, but the thing you want from them are the Crystallized Charges. They are bought with a specific currency that isn’t always easy to come by, but buy what you can. You need to clear their shelf so they can start processing more. Making more Crystallized Charges takes time, so you will return to them periodically to buy out their stock. The Zonai Charges they sell are useful in gameplay and can be used for Zonai Devices, but the Crystallized Charges can be exchanged with a different character for something far more valuable.
You can exchange 100 Crystallized Charges near the Nachoyah Shrine, the The Ability to Rewind shrine, for new Energy Cells that Link carries around with him, which makes your Ultrahand Zonai creations last longer. It’s especially valuable to have lots of battery power for your vehicles.
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