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Top 10 Worst Legend of Zelda items [top ten]
 
Figured I'd try this out!

There's really no other game series like Zelda that has such a rich history of diverse, memorable items. Most games bring with them at least one memorable tool that helps Link navigate through dungeons, help out townspeople, and thwart evildoers.

Every now and then though, Link gets a real dud. An item that isn't fun to use, seems utterly pointless, or is just flat out dumb. So, here we go! My top 10 worst Zelda items!

Keep in mind, I have not played through Oracle of Seasons, which I'm ashamed of (since I liked Ages a lot), and I haven't played through Spirit Tracks (which I was never interested in at all).

Also not including the sword. Just sticking to everything else in
Posted: 01/18/11, 07:32:00  - Edited by 
 on: 10/30/13, 00:16:15
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The Seed Shooter
While I loved Oracle of Ages, the Seed Shooter never felt right to me. It always felt like a lazy, all in one item...which I suppose it kind of was. Rather than have unique items that could do different things and all work differently, why not just have one item that can take care of everything? Light things on fire, blow things with wind, etc. It was useful in the game, no doubt, but to me it just felt like Flagship (Oracle of Ages' developer) just said "Well what should Link do in this situation? Ehhhh just give him another type of seed that can get him through this mess."

 
The Pictograph Box
An optional item for the most part, the Pictograph Box was never any fun for me. Not once did I ever go looking for things to take pictures. I couldn't have cared less about unlocking figurines in Wind Waker. Hell, I'm a little kid with a sword! I don't wanna take pictures, I wanna go slash up some moblins and light things on fire! :p

 
The Gust Jar
Ok. I know Minish Cap was supposed to be lighthearted and whimsical. But really? This is one of the main items in the game, and we couldn't put any more thought into an item other than "a jar that can shoot wind?" We couldn't have given Link some sort of magical accordion? Some sort of balloon that never runs out of air? While I am usually able to wrap myself in a suspense of disbelief in Zelda, I could never wrap my head around THE JAR THAT CAN SHOOT AND SUCK IN AIR. I've always preferred Link's arsenal to be a little more practical. I was all about the Deku Leaf. It was a magical leaf that could flap gusts of air. It was like a giant fan/parachute hybrid. The Gust Jar should've been left in the hall of dumb ideas.

 
Magic Beans
Has anyone ever had fun using the magic beans in Ocarina or Majora? Maybe it was the fact that you'd have to buy beans in the first place (which wasn't always an option due to an item I'll get to later). Maybe it was the fact that you had to take your little bottle and fill it with water. Maybe it was the fact that you had to be standing on the damn planting spot just right. Maybe it was the fact that in a world trying to immerse the player, the game was filled with arbitrary planting spots, specifically for the reason of getting Link to a heart piece. All of these things just combined to make an item that took up a precious slot in the inventory in two of the greatest games ever made. Could've done without this one for sure.

 
The Lens of Truth
BREEEENGGG! BRONNNGGGG!

That is the least appealing sound in the world. And it happens whenever you toggle the Lens of Truth on and off. And honestly, that's what everyone winds up doing, because everyone wants to conserve magic. Why leave the thing on all the time when you just need to spot a fake wall for a moment?

What always bothered me was the mere fact that that the game starts to establish the precedent that some walls aren't really walls at all. It always just made me second guess everything in the game from that point on, at least in dungeons. While it wasn't as bad as in the original Zelda's second quest, where you not only have to bomb every wall, and THEN have to start WALKING into every wall, it was still a game mechanic I was never fond of at all in the 3D Zelda games.

 
The Cane of Pacci
I didn't hate Minish Cap. I really didn't. I just didn't like it a whole lot. It had great music. Fun graphics. A really technically sound game. BUut man, I just thought some of the items were really dumb. Here is my second offender from Minish Cap - The Cane of Pacci. The Zelda series has had canes before. A Link to the Past included two canes, one of which that could create your typical Zelda block, while another made Link invincible.

This cane flips things upside-down. Conveniently enough in Hyrule, there are apparently a bunch of things that were just not set up correctly. Objects that are completely usable and functional, but are just upside-down. It's fun and wacky, but I could never really buy into it. Some of Minish Cap's absurd items are actually making me a little nervous about Skyward Sword...I can already tell I think that flying beetle thing is really dumb. It's just so out of left field!

 
The Slingshot
Here you go. It's a slingshot. It shoots seeds. It apparently was in Oracle of Seasons, which I didn't get to play, but was basically a crappier version of Oracle of Ages' Seed Shooter. In Twilight Princess, the slingshot serves hardly any purpose, as it is soon made obsolete by the Bow and Arrow.

And really, that's what the slingshot is. It's a crappy version of the bow and arrow. It's always disappointing to get for me. I will say though, that I didn't mind its appearance in Four Swords Adventures, but only when you powered it up and could shoot 3 at a time.

 
The Deku Nut
The only purpose the Deku Nut has is for Link to go throw in the street on New Year's Eve. It was that item that you kept on the C-buttons because...well, something has to go there. I suppose you could've used it to stun the spiders, but I honestly always just waited for them to turn around. And soon enough, you don't even need it anymore anyway, because you get the boomerang and the bow and arrow. Nuts.

 
Wallets
Ok. This is one of my least favorite mechanics that Zelda has adopted into its gameplay. In A Link to the Past, you could hold up to 999 rupees. From the get go. And you NEEDED them. You needed them to buy the flippers, and eventually other things like unlock a dungeon, buy a large bomb, etc.

In Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask, Link is only capable of holding a certain amount of rupees because he's a kid. Of course. He's a kid! He's only capable of holding a child sized wallet.

............................

Let's just disregard the fact that Link basically has A MAGICAL BAG IN WHICH HE KEEPS A COMPLETE ARSENAL OF ARROWS, SWORDS, SHIELDS, BOMBS, AND VARIOUS OTHER THINGS DESIGNED TO KILL THINGS. He can carry a shield bigger than he is. He can carry along not just one, but two extra pairs of clothes. 4 bottles full of God knows what. 7 different medallions (easily worth a shit ton of rupees on Hyrule's black market). A pair of IRON BOOTS for God's sakes.

And you're going to tell me that I can't hold more than 200 rupees at a time? Outrage!

 
The Shovel
This is honestly what influenced me to make this top ten.

The shovel and its incarnations have not ever once been fun to use, or really all that useful. Because you know what? When I'm out adventuring, and I'm running around with my Pegasus boots, swimming around with my flippers, and bombing mysterious cracks in walls, you know what I want to do? Dig some holes in the ground.

And in Minish Cap, which I think may have been just the source of great thinking in the world, they try to disguise the shovel in the form of Mole Mitts. Well, maybe if they make it look and sound cooler, then digging will be more fun? Nope!

I just really, hate the shovel. Even when you're not using it, it's awful. Was waiting for Dampe to dig in Kakariko's graveyard enjoyable for anyone?

It's a shovel! Link shouldn't be using it to dig. He should be using it to bludgeon snitches in the mob and hide them in the trunk of his car.

I mean....it's a shovel! I really don't even know what else to say. You use it in Link's Awakening to find a lot of Secret Seashells from what I remember....but I THINK the game at least had the sense (like LttP) to keep it as a temporary item. Unfortunately in Link's Awakening, by the time you get rid of the shovel, you're almost done the game.

It's a shovel!!! Gah!


Does that look like fun to ANYONE?
 
This was just for fun. My complaints may sound picky, but hey, that's what Top 10 lists are all about! I guess if there's anything you may have learned about me, it's that there are certain things I don't enjoy in any Zelda game. Digging, taking photos, running out of money, stunning enemies with shitty weapons, flipping things upside down arbitrarily, planting beans....which is really just another form of digging, by the way...

Anywho, yeah. Maybe one day I'll do a more positive post about my favorite Zelda items? Was just browsing some pictures and I definitely know what my favorite is...if you could count her as an item that is, haha.

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Posted: 01/18/11, 07:32:00  - Edited by 
 on: 10/30/13, 00:16:15
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Booo! Lens of Truth is great!
Posted: 01/18/11, 07:36:17
The Sling shot is stupid. It's a lamer Bow. When you get the Bow, the sling shot is useless.
Posted: 01/18/11, 07:39:35
You are 100% correct regarding the wallet and the magic beans. Pains in the neck they are.

I always had a soft spot for the shovel though. Digging up buried treasure... Err, seashells in Link's Awakening was fun.
Posted: 01/18/11, 07:48:58
I love the shovel lol.
Posted: 01/18/11, 07:52:31
The shovel has never felt fun to me. It's always just felt like work. I suppose I didn't mind its limited uses in Link to the Past...sometimes that digging minigame can get REALLY annoying though. At least the Flute is always in the same spot?
Posted: 01/18/11, 07:52:38  - Edited by 
 on: 01/18/11, 07:53:02
Excellent list . Actually, most of the items are pretty useful. But with a long series like Zelda, you will always get a few items here and there that maybe could have been done a little better.

Deku nuts. 'Nuff said. I never used them in OoT.

But! They are absolutely essential and downright useful in Majora's Mask. So the nut redeemed itself quite well.
Posted: 01/18/11, 07:53:08
Yeah I mean the problem is, they're always going to be useful, because Nintendo designs situations to make them useful. The Mole Mitts, for example, help you get through a dungeon in Minish Cap...but man I still thought they were dumb.

The Spinner and Ball and Chain were hardly used in Twilight Princes...but man, at the very least, they were fun as hell to use. The Spinner, despite its arbitrary design, at least resulted in an awesome boss battle. And the Ball and Chain? Hell, it was a Ball and Chain. I knocked down suits of armor, yo.
Posted: 01/18/11, 07:59:52
But sir! Shovel™ leads to the saddest moment in the history of the Zelda series! Shovel™ tells the sad tale of Flute Boy! Making it the best item ever! *awesome moment, bad item*

The lack of the Deku Leaf, though, is pretty shocking. Overall, good list though. Even though Shovel™ and the Lends of Truth lead to some of the coolest moments in the series (if you didn't find it utterly shocking and awesome that there was a soldier invisible in that circle of rocks in Majora's Mask...) they were pretty worthless.

A lot of Twilight Princess could have made this list. Rod of Dominion is probably the dumbest. In fact, any time I have to take control of another character or object just to complete some basic puzzle I die a little inside.
Posted: 01/18/11, 08:11:25
Nice list!

Rods are generally pretty lame in Zelda...

Dominion Rod: just used for a couple of puzzles involving controlling very, very slow-moving statues.

Staff of Byrna: Meh, who bothers with this cheeseball force field?

Cane of Somaria: A thing that makes blocks. The sole purpose of this item is to render block puzzles obsolete, but it has no practical use beyond that. I don't like items that are essentially "keys".
Posted: 01/18/11, 08:32:32
10- Wallet and Bomb bag sizes... I'm slightly torn. Getting them is usually kind of fun with the various mini games and all, but better equipment could replace them in the scope of things.

9- Shovel... Used it twice.

8- Link's Adventure Flute... Take that, River Devil! Sure showed you.

7- Wind Waker... I HATED it. It was like the Ocarina, but shitty because you had to whip it out constantly and switch items while sailing and retrieving treasure. This just came to mind and I need to throw out there: how absolutely awful sounding was the howling in TP?! Oh, I may as well add the Sail because that should have been hard-mapped to another button whilst in the boat.

6- Pictograph Box... Lame.

5- Great Fairy Sword... Just because it's an item and not an actual sword you equip. I fail to grasp why that was done.

4- Ball and Chain... I just found it too absurd, even after the Megaton Hammer in OoT, and there was barely enough (good) use for it.

3- Sling Shot / Seed Shooter... Just give us the bow.

2- Deku Nuts... Only good for replacing with a jar by doing the extra jar glitch. I don't actually recall using them in Majora's Mask... Did you bomb with them as the Deku Scrub?

1- Ooocoo and Oocoo Jr... I don't care if they're from M.C. Escher artwork: they're hideous and I never used them. In fact, I think I only ever used Farore's Wind once in OoT when I wanted to see what it did.

the Dominion Rod gets dishonorable mention. I really enjoyed the puzzles with it in the Temple of Time, but it could have been used more, or on enemies too! How cool would it have been to assume control of enemies?! You'd have to be in a safe spot, lest you get hit and lose control, but you could go around hacking other baddies, and it wouldn't break floor-switch puzzles because switching back to Link relinquishes control and the enemy is free to roam again. It could be an upgradeable item too, like you're only able to control weaker enemies at first.
Posted: 01/18/11, 08:33:16  - Edited by 
 on: 01/18/11, 22:16:50
@Paperclyp

So did I! I would dig whole screens up (just like that screenshot). I would equip the sword and the shovel and press both buttons at the same time just so it would look like I was digging out the bushes instead of cutting them, then digging.


...yeah, I realize now that being a kid with few games to play makes you squeeze enjoyment out of the most mundane tasks.
Posted: 01/18/11, 08:41:09
Gust jar was awesome!!!

I kind of agree with wallets though, you save up a bunch of rupees or whatever to get a bigger wallet, and then you realize that there isn't all that much to buy anyway... except another wallet.
Posted: 01/18/11, 08:43:27
Yeah I guess I just didn't like a lot of the items in Minish Cap. I like the items to be a little more practical.

But not TOO practical, haha, otherwise you have Link getting wallets and writing checking deposits and taking out mortgages and what have you.

I don't know why I never had a problem with the Dominion Rod. I guess part of me was just relieved not have to play some sort of song every time I wanted to possess something. That song in Wind Waker with controlling the statues was atrocious.

I was very close to putting the Wind Waker on there, if for the only reason that I think the sounds they used for it were absolutely dreadful. Would it have really cost them that much to just hire a choir to do the voice sounds? It sounded terrible!
Posted: 01/18/11, 09:22:18
Lens of Truth should not be on there, c'mon!
Posted: 01/18/11, 10:26:58
autokymatic said:

2- Deku Nuts... Only good for replacing with a jar by doing the extra jar glitch. I don't actually recall using them in Majora's Mask... Did you bomb with them as the Deku Scrub?

Yes. While using the flying ability of Link's Deku form, they can be dropped with B, hitting unwary targets situated directly below Link. If used in this manner, the Deku Nuts will cause damage rather than stun. This was very useful when trying to reach the Woodfall Temple.
Posted: 01/18/11, 17:54:44
The Pictograph Box is the worst item in the history of the universe. The gust jar was a great item, and so was the cane! As a matter of fact, Minish Cap was awesome and the mole mitts are actually fun!
Posted: 01/18/11, 20:07:08
Deku Nuts - OOT
I had to read through this thread to remember this completely useless, not fun, failed attempt at "guns - Zelda version" of item.

Slingshot - OOT/TP/SS
A poor man's bow. Completely rudimentary to bow & arrows.

Breakable Swords - OOT/MM
A sword that breaks after some minor usage? nothanks.jpg.

Bunny Hood - OOT (not to be confused with Bunny Hood - MM)
Bunny Hood in OOT: lamest item ever used in a Zelda game ever.
Bunny Hood in MM: coolest item ever used in a Zelda game ever.

Pictograph - WW
Leave it to the least visually appealing Zelda characters in a Zelda game to force it on you to take pictures of character designs I LOATHED.

Oocoo - TP
Damn you Nintendo. Oocoo and Oocoo Jr ruined my adulthood forever.

Dominion Rod - TP
One of the most useless items. I'd have taken Power Gloves (i.e. pushing giant statues) any time instead of that rod, especially considering how it was only used 5 times total and 4 of them in the dungeon that it was found.

Spirit Flute - ST
Spirit Flute got old by the second time I used it. Not only do you look like a dumbass blowing on the DS mic, but it also fails to register 3 out of 2 times. DO NOT WANT.

Whirlwind - ST
If there is anything that I hated more than the Spirit Flute, is the Whirlwind, a primary example of why just because Nintendo can, they shouldn't use gimmicks when they do absolutely NOTHING to enhance the experience. I'm sure Miyamoto has fun looking at all the dumbasses that blow on DS because they have no other choice. But I am not Miyamoto. I am one of the dumbasses who looks like a moron so that Miyamoto can get amused.

I'm going to stop here since I am too lazy to go down on memory lane and nit pick items that I thought were either lame or poorly implemented in a Zelda game. I think the list above should suffice for now.
Posted: 01/18/11, 20:12:18  - Edited by 
 on: 01/18/11, 20:21:21
@Zero

I feel the same about that.
Also loved the Lens of Truth.

By the way, Pogue, I'm digging all the Zelda love you've been bringing to the front page lately! Getting me even more psyched for Skyward Sword. Hopefully items will have more uses outside dungeons this time around.
Posted: 01/18/11, 20:43:26
great list.

i'm so excited for Skyward Sword!
Posted: 01/18/11, 21:47:31
I agree that blowing into the mic has to go... For every DS game EVER.

I remember when the DS came out and there was a preview for "Feel the Magic." That was the first time I saw the mechanic and I thought it was GENIUS! I was wrong. The end.

Also, the shovel remains amazing.
Posted: 01/18/11, 22:15:32
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