The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is a massive game, depicting a Hyrule with three tiers to explore — earth, air, and underground. This Hyrule is also full of Easter eggs, by which we mean playful little references to other Zelda games. These references are part of the larger mythology of Hyrule, after all. If you’re looking to find them all, we’re compiling a running list of every reference we’ve found, organized by the game they’re from.
The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening (1993)
In the most extreme southeastern corner of Hyrule’s map, you’ll find an island edged by a shoreline called Toronbo Beach with just one landmark, labeled Koholit Rock. If that sounds distantly familiar, that might be because this island (called Eventide Island) was also in Breath of the Wild — or maybe it’s because you heard about it in a dream? Specifically, it’s from the dream that Link has in Link’s Awakening, which takes place in a dream-state alternate version of Hyrule where every person, place, and thing has a name that’s just a little bit off.
At the outset of Link’s Awakening, Link gets shipwrecked and washes up up on Toronbo Shores (that’s “Shores,” not “Beach”). Later in the game, he ventures to Koholint Island, which has a slightly different name than the Koholit Rock depicted here. Why is the “n” missing in Tears of the Kingdom’s version of the name? And why is it just a rock as opposed to the name of the entire island? Again, we’ll just chalk it up to the dream logic of Link’s Awakening. —Maddy Myers
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (1998)
Whenever Link cooks a dish over a fire in Tears of the Kingdom, he hums a little song. The only song I’ve heard so far is “Saria’s Song,” also known as the Lost Woods theme, from Ocarina of Time. According to users in this Reddit thread, Link also hums several other songs from Ocarina while cooking, such as “Epona’s Song,” “Zelda’s Lullaby,” “Song of Storms,” and possibly others yet to be heard and shared by Tears of the Kingdom players.
The Ocarina of Time soundtrack, composed by Koji Kondo, includes some of the most popular and critically acclaimed Zelda songs ever; these songs have influenced musicians for years since their debut. Plus it’s downright adorable to hear Link humming them. —MM
The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask (2000)
Majora’s Mask, the titular accursed mask from The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask, can be won and worn by Link in Tears of the Kingdom, if you can manage to overcome one of the toughest challenges in the game. If you dare attempt the fight, head to the Floating Coliseum (in the Central Hyrule Depths). Once you arrive, the Coliseum will lock up around you, after which point you’ll have to face five increasingly difficult Lynels. If you manage to slay them all, this mask will be your reward — and what a reward it is! Here’s the big perk of wearing this mask, according to its item description: “Wearing it makes it harder for certain enemies to spot you. It’s a rather rare find.” —MM
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess (2006)
In the far southeast corner of Hyrule, you’ll find Eventide Island, an isolated piece of land. Under it, you’ll find the Eventide Depths, which is home to a coliseum full of Bokoblins of varying colors. If you take them all on, you’ll be rewarded for your troubles: Midna’s helmet from The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess.
Midna’s helmet is iconic, as it’s one of the main things people see on her and think, “What the hell is that thing?” In Tears of the Kingdom, it provides a good chunk of defense, but also makes you resistant to gloom, which makes sense, given Midna’s affinity with the Twilight Realm. (I mean, gloom is dark, and so is twilight? I know it’s not the same, but thematically it works, OK?) While you can’t pick things up with the orange hair attached to the helmet, you can put it on and then go stand in a pack of wild wolves, pretending to role-play as your favorite character (Midna), if you want. —Julia Lee