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Tears Of The Kingdom: Fans Have New Theories About The 'Tears' In The Game

On April 13, Nintendo released the third and final trailer for "The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom." The segment unveiled many exciting details, sparking fresh fan discussions and theories. Some centered on the identity of a mysterious female character, while others attempted to determine the nature of what will likely serve as the sequel's main MacGuffins: the titular tears.

In the footage, Zelda, Ganondorf, and several key supporting figures bear the tears, which appear as glowing stones of various colors. Though Nintendo has not revealed all seven of the tears depicted in a mural shown in a previous segment, fans believe that they will correspond to the seven tribes established in "Breath of the Wild": Hylian, Gerudo, Zora, Rito, Goron, Sheikah, and Zonai. Trailer #3 seems to support this reasoning, with Sidon of the Zora and Tulin of the Rito each sporting tears. Riju of the Gerudo may also have one.

Earlier "Tears of the Kingdom" theories suggested the tears might play a role in restoring the Master Sword or even bringing Zelda back to life. However, the latest trailer hints at different potential functions for the items in the "Breath of the Wild" follow-up.

The eighth tear and Ganondorf

Fans on Twitter have proposed that the tears could be ancient artifacts protected by the major races. Alternatively, Link may need to recover them from dungeons or temples and give them to each group's representative. After acquiring all of the tears, their bearers could join Link in the final showdown against Ganondorf. This may involve killing or sealing him away once more.

One viewer suggested that an eighth tear might exist, corresponding to the "8th forgotten [race]." This could mirror the lost Eighth Heroine of the Gerudo, who appears to have been erased from historical accounts. According to Rotana, an archaeologist in "Breath of the Wild," the Seven Heroines watched over the Gerudo people. "Each heroine had a different power: skill, spirit, endurance, knowledge, flight, motion, and gentleness," she reveals.

Ganondorf has traditionally hailed from the Gerudo tribe as its only known male member. Some of his past iterations have borne the title "King of Thieves" or "Great Thief." Given this reputation, he might have stolen the tear he wields in the trailer, possibly from the Goron or Zonai. Some individuals found it odd that Ganondorf had one of the tears at all, which seem more like beneficial items for Team Good, so this could help explain the oddity.

Seven tears and Seven Sages

Other fans have put forth that the seven tears correspond to the Seven Sages from "Ocarina of Time." Much like the theory about the tears' origins, six of the Sages (Zelda serves as the final member) belong to one of the major races in the game: Hylian, Kokiri, Gerudo, Goron, Sheikah, and Zora. Instead of tears, the Sages provide Link with Six Medallions, which they use to trap Ganondorf in the Sacred Realm.

The Medallions each have their own elements and colors: light/yellow, forest/green, fire/red, water/blue, spirit/orange, and shadow/purple. The tears in the third "Tears of the Kingdom" trailer seem to follow a similar setup. Zelda holds a yellow tear, while Ganondorf, Sidon, and Tulin possess red, blue, and green tears, respectively. While it's harder to make out, Riju may also have the orange tear.

If the developers did look back to the Sages and Medallions for inspiration, it would lend further credence to the idea that the more classic dungeons will return in "Tears of the Kingdom." Like in "Ocarina of Time," Link may have to clear out corresponding elemental temples to recover each tear. Of course, the Sages have appeared in various forms throughout multiple "Zelda" entries, so Nintendo has lots of material to draw upon.

Link's connection to the tears

The tears could also tie in to the new abilities Link uses in the sequel, such as the exploration-aiding Ascend. As multiple fans have noted, the abilities and the tears seem to be marked with similar symbols. Some gamers are also convinced that Link will have a tear for himself while others insist this doesn't work with the aforementioned theories and would make him too powerful.

Though he carries them in his inventory, Link doesn't use the Six Sage Medallions in "Ocarina of Time." However, that was not always the case. Early on in the production cycle, the developers designed the Medallions to confer special spells that the Hero of Time could activate, but they later cut or changed these mechanics to work with other items (via Zelda Universe).

Nintendo could revisit this concept in "Tears of the Kingdom." Link could get his own tear, or he might draw his new abilities from the tears but give the objects to others to carry. In fact, the company already explored a similar concept in "Breath of the Wild" with the Champion Powers unlocked after clearing each Divine Beast.