The option to play the Second Quest in Zelda II: The Adventure of Link

The Second Quest, Hero Mode or Master Mode, is a recurring aspect in the Legend of Zelda series. It allows the player to start the designated game again with several differences once they have completed it once.

Some versions of Ocarina of Time have a similar mode, called Master Quest.


Spoiler warning: Plot or ending details follow.

The Legend of Zelda

The Second Quest can be accessed by finishing the game once or by entering "ZELDA" as the player's name when creating a new file. In the Second Quest, all dungeons are rearranged and often found in different locations. The items acquired in each dungeon are also different and usually feature multiple boss enemies per dungeon.

The Second Quest came out of a design mistake by Takashi Tezuka in which he only used half of the available memory for the dungeons. Instead of redoing the game, more dungeons were made to fill the other half of the memory. It was decided to make the second set of dungeons part of a second quest at the suggestion of Shigeru Miyamoto.

Zelda II: The Adventure of Link

After finishing the game once, the player can start the Second Quest. Unlike The Legend of Zelda, the enemies and dungeons remain the same. However, in the Second Quest, Link retains all the level ups and magic spells he had when he finished the first quest. All weapons must be re-obtained, and all palaces must be beaten again to access the Great Palace.

The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages and Oracle of Seasons

After finishing a Linked Game and receiving the Hero's Secret, a Second Quest can be started in either game. The new game has a few changes, the most notable being that Link begins the game with the unappraised Victory Ring. On the Name Registration screen when the game begins, the file will also have the Triforce next to it.

The Return Linked game allows Link to experience the original game without the altered storyline, but with the addition of the main Linked Game's items and upgrade.

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker

Link as he appears in the Second Quest of The Wind Waker

After finishing the game once, the player can start the Second Quest. Unlike the Second Quest of The Legend of Zelda, all dungeon designs and locations remain unchanged. Instead, there are many differences that do not affect gameplay, but do change the appearances of some characters and other subtle differences.

  • All figurines in the Nintendo Gallery that Link obtained in the first quest will be carried over.
  • Link will start with the Deluxe Picto Box, as long as he obtained the Picto Box during the first playthrough. Any pictographs taken with the Picto Box or Deluxe Picto Box are carried over from the first quest.
  • Link is able to wear his blue and orange clothes for the entirety of the game, never changing into the traditional Hero's Clothes. This is explained in the game as Link having obtained invisible clothing. Because of this, all text involving his clothes is changed.
  • All text that was spoken in Hylian in the first quest is translated for the second time around, although while the player will read English (or Japanese depending on the localization), Link will not understand Ancient Hylian.
  • Aryll's pirate outfit, which she obtained in the first play-through, is worn by her throughout the Second Quest.
  • The locations of sunken treasure, obtained with Treasure Charts, change. In the second quest, the treasure is usually further away from islands, so less of the island is visible on the Treasure Chart. This makes identifying the island from the map somewhat more difficult, as several islands look similar when only a small part is visible.

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

"Good morning to you, Link! I'm impressed with your decision to test your resolve in Hero Mode!"

After finishing the game once, the game can be played again in Hero Mode. Doing so overwrites the save file, so the save data must be copied before initiating the final battle if the current progress is to be kept. Hero Mode affects gameplay in several ways:

  • Bugs and treasure are carried over from the save file.
  • The song Ballad of the Goddess is translated in text from Hylian to English when Zelda sings it.
  • Enemies deal double damage.
  • By default, there are no Heart Flowers and enemies do not drop Hearts. However, drawing a heart on a Goddess Wall or carrying a Heart Medal will make hearts appear.
  • Cutscenes can be skipped the first time the player watches them.
  • The Skyward Strike is at maximum power from the beginning, with additional text added to the obtainment of the Goddess Sword stating that it has seen and remembers "countless battles".
  • After obtaining the True Master Sword, the charge-time for a Skyward Strike is reduced to zero.
  • Some characters have different dialogue.
  • All of the Sheikah Stones' hints are unlocked from the beginning.
  • All bosses in Lightning Round are unlocked, including Demise, upon healing Lanayru, and the time taken is carried over from the previous save file.
  • When Link is swimming, his air supply drains twice as fast.

Once Hero Mode has been cleared, the player will be given the option to save the game; if the file is loaded at a later point in time, the game will start just before the final battle. Once progress has been saved, the save file is marked with a golden Triforce.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

After completing the game once, players will have access to Hero Mode. Hearts still drop as normal, but enemies (including Shadow Link) will deal four times as much damage. Other than that, there are only two changes to Hero Mode: Link will be able to find Ravio's Journal in the vacant house in Lorule, and during the ending when Link returns the Master Sword to the Lost Woods, Zelda and the Seven Sages accompany him.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

The Master Mode can be unlocked from the DLC Pack 1 "Master Trials" of Breath of the Wild. The levels of all enemies except dungeon bosses and guardians have ranked up. Red types become blue, blue types become black, etc. Enemies that don't normally upgrade (Hinox, Wizzrobes, and Guardian Scouts) will be affected due to possessing their own tiers, while the base tiers of all affected enemies have permanent locations to ensure their addition to the Hyrule Compendium is possible, provided the player knows where they're located. Four new golden variants have been introduced, the Gold Bokoblins, Moblins, Lizalfos and Lynels, as well as the new Sky Octoroks. At lakes, rivers, ravines and towers, floating platforms supported by said Octoroks appear, and some of them have chests containing equipment or gems. These new enemies have Master Mode exclusive Hyrule Compendium entries. Unlike other new enemies, Sky Octoroks are actually weak enemies tamed by other enemies to turn platforms their tied to into makeshift flying fortresses. All Golden enemy variants are implied to have been Silver variants that were transformed after being struck by lightning. Golden Bokoblins, Moblins, and Lizalfos all gain resistance to all elements while Golden Lynels are simply the most dangerous monsters in all of Hyrule.

Though most enemies are replaced by stronger variants, the Lynel on Ploymus Mountain will always be an eponymous Red-Maned Lynel as its picture is needed for "Lynel Safari". Additionally the Hinox (Youngest Kin), Hinox (Middle Kin), and Hinox (Oldest Kin) from "The Three Giant Brothers" remain the same tier.

Spoiler warning: Spoilers end here.

Non-canonical appearances

Non-canon warning: This article or section contains non-canonical information that is not considered to be an official part of the Legend of Zelda series and should not be considered part of the overall storyline.

Game & Watch: Zelda

After finishing the game, players can play the Second Quest by pressing the attack button. The Second Quest carries over the score from the first game and features quicker enemies.

Non-canon warning: Non-canonical information ends here.