Where are the Guardians in The Legend of Zelda Tears of the Kingdom?

Guardians featured heavily in Breath of the Wild, and made the game exciting and challenge, not knowing if these killing robots were hiding around the corner. Given we know that Nintendo are going to be switching up the gameplay in Tears of the Kingdom to be more focused on aerial battles and exploration, what does this means for the role of Guardians in the sequel to Breath of the Wild? Today I am going to focus on that question, look back at Guardians in Breath of the Wild, plus look at how and if Guardians will play a role in Tears of the Kingdom.

Before we get into it today, let me know in the comments if you want to see Guardians return in Tears of the Kingdom. Also, if you have any great stories about fighting a Guardian, let me know in the comments, everyone has a good story about encountering their first Guardian, and I’d love to hear it.

Tears of the Kingdom is now less than 6 months away, and still we know very little about gameplay mechanics in the title. We have a few clues about new abilities, for example, we’re liking to be exploring the sky islands above Hyrule, and Link’s arm looks like it’s going to be key to opening up new abilitiees. We’ve seen Link traveling upwards into the sky, plus freezing items falling down hills. We’ve even seen Link fighting with a flame throwing and traveling through solid concrete.

One fo the features the latest trailer revealed was the Hyrule map. It looks familiar, albeit changed somewhat after the explosion of malice and the sky islands rising upwards. Hyrule is likely to be recognisable, even though some of the places and locations will be changed for Tears of the Kingdom. What this says to me is while Nintedo will be adding new features to the very successful Breath of the Wild formula, it’s likely Nintendo will be building on the foundations, rather than going for a complete rebuild and taking it into a completely different direction.

This is good news, because the original Breath of the Wild was fantastic. However, there are some conversations to be had when it comes to weapons and enemies. I’ve discussed weapons and durability before on the channel, and today I want to have a look at enemies, and one specific type – they are the fearsome Guardians. Before we look ahead to what role they could play in Tears of the Kingdom, lets have a look back at Breath of the Wild.

Guardians in Breath of the Wild

Guardians were a new enemy type introduced in Breath of the Wild. They could be found roaming the open-world, and also as mini bosses in some shrines, known as Trials. We knew Guardians were going to be in the game from the original Breath of the Wild trailers, but we couldn’t predict how much they would impact the game. There’s nothing like exploring the environment as Link, only to come across a Guardian. The speed, the power, the audio… it’s all very memorable, and one of the best additions to modern day Zelda I can remember. Guardians roam the open-world in Hyrule, some variants can fly, some are smaller, but all of them are deadly with their laser attachments and ability to kill Link with a single blast.

Guardians were not originally intended as enemies of Link. They were designed by the sheikah people to help against Calamity Ganon all those years ago, and you can see friendly Guardians wandering around the Royal Palace, where King Rhoam and Princess Zelda are going about their daily business. 100 years ago Calamity Ganon took control of all Guardians and turned them against their owners. Guardians were once seen as a technological wonder from a gifted people like the Sheikah, but now, given they have been infected by Malice and the reach of Calamity Ganon, they have all been lost and prowl Hyrule looking for their next prey.

Guardians are a very important element of Breath of the Wild from a narrative and gameplay point of view. Guarians keep you on your toes at all times, as you never really know where they are going to show up. If you see a wide open field, then you don’t want to run directly through it, because a Guardian might be hiding there, and if you get caught in an open space with a Guardian, it’ll probably hunt you down, and dispatch you quickly. Guardians offer surprises too, for example, the old rusty ones that are dotted around the place, half buried in the ground. Sometimes if you walk up to one of these, they can activate and still offer Link a blast of their laser. From a gameplay perspective, Guardians keep you in check, make you prepare, plus help you practice your parry timing. They are also a decent challenge when it comes to Shrines, with their different fighting mechanics compared to the larger ones.

Will Guardians return in Tears of the Kingdom?

Given Nintendo are likely going to be building on the success of Breath of the Wild in The Legend of Zelda Tears of the Kingdom, I would expect Guardians to play some kind of role. Will they play exactly the same role as Breath of the Wild? That I am not so sure about. We have seen Malice pouring out of the corpse under Hyrule Castle, we’ve even seen what looks to be Malice exploding out the top of Death Mountain. If anything, there is probably going to be more Malice in Tears of the Kingdom, compared to Breath of the Wild. Where there is Malice, evil isn’t too far behind, which means Guardians.

Nintendo are likely to change up the gameplay in Tears of the Kingdom too. We’re going to be in the sky, exploring sky islands, and traveling up and down much more than before, occupying the space between the land and the sky. Guardians made sense when we were traveling across the lands. Buried by Sheikah Technologists years ago, we uncovered them and they roamed the land. While we do have flying Guardians, I don’t know if it’s going to have the continuity it once had for Guardiand to be patroling Hyrule. If pieces of Hyrule are going to float up into the sky, it’s not beyond the imagination to think some Guardians would have got caught and taken up into the sky with the floating piecees of Hyrule.

Breath of the Wild had a focus on the Sheikah people; the Sheikah Slate, buried Sheikah technologies like The Guardians. Will Tears of the Kingdom have the same focus on the Sheikah? I’m not so sure… Rather than focus on the Sheikah, perhaps this time we’ll focus on the Zonai Tribe and their impact on Hyrule. In Tears of the Kingdom we might be able to go back to 10,000 years ago and find out what happened to Hyrule in the past. The Zonai had an impact on Hyrule, their respect for strength, and their love of Dragons is seen in the architecture strewn around Hyrule today.

Guardians were a major part of Breath of the Wild, and I believe they could become a big part of Tears of the Kingdom. I would love to see Nintendo switch things up a little, perhaps allowing us to hack or take control of a Guardian. Friendly Guardians have been explored in Hyrule Warriors, and given Link has powerful new abilities through his arm, personally, I’d like to see the abilities to ‘take over’ a Guardian and have it fighting beside us, rather than against us all the time. Guardians could still pop up around Hyrule, and I full expect them too given the sheer amount of Malice we can see in the environment. Overall, I expect Guardians to be back in Tears of the Kingdom, but I don’t expect them to be the focal point of the story and combat as they once were.

Let me know in the coments what you think of Guardians in Tears of the Kingdom, do you think they are going to come back and if you were Nintendo, how would you make them different compared to Breath of the Wild?

That’s it for this look at Guardians in Tears of the Kingdom. For more Legend of Zelda content like this check out Triforce Times on YouTube and subscribe today.

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