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Top 10 Saddest Legend of Zelda Songs

VO: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Johnny Reynolds
These songs wouldn't leave a dry eye in all of Hyrule! Welcome to Watchmojo.com, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Saddest Legend of Zelda Songs. To have your ideas turned into a WatchMojo or MojoPlays video, head over to http://WatchMojo.comsuggest and get to it!
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Top 10 Saddest Legend of Zelda Songs

Majestic, otherworldly, and oftentimes heart breaking. Welcome to Watchmojo.com, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Saddest Legend of Zelda Songs.


For this list, we’re looking at the saddest music that has accompanied the gloomiest scenes in the Legend of Zelda franchise. We’re going to warn you now: Grab a box of tissues because you’re going to need them, though do be aware that there are some spoilers ahead.



#10: “Giant’s Theme”



“The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask” (2000)

This “Ocarina of Time” sequel contains an incredibly somber plot and includes suitably melancholic music throughout. At the core of its story is the Skull Kid, who became a villain once he was abandoned by his four giant friends. Their theme reflects their sorrow that a once good friend has caused so many people so much torment because of them. It features the same notes but is a more complete composition of “Oath to Order,” the song Link uses to call them. Featuring a slow tempo with soft strings and a harp overtop, it perfectly represents the remorse the giants feel towards what the Skull Kid has become and that they have to stop him.




#9: “Farewell Hyrule King”



“The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker” (2002)

The themes for various dungeons and Hyrule Castle seen in classic games were always strong and imposing to imply the majestic power of those places. But the music that plays during King Daphnes’ sacrifice completely flips them on their head. This delightful cel-shaded adventure was the first time we ever got the King of Hyrule as a fleshed-out character as he aided the young Link on his journey. This would make his sacrifice to stop Ganon at the end of the game sad already. But including a slow, string accompanied piano version of those classic themes made it all the more dreary as Link and Zelda had to leave him behind.




#8: “Last Day”



“The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask” (2000)

Before the Giants can show up to save Link, he has to let the clock wind down. This track, also known as “Final Hours,” is what plays during the last moments for the world of Termina. It’s comprised of slow, forlorn tones opposite quick picks of a chord harp. Paired with the echoing bells of the clock tower, it’s appropriately eerie and a far cry away from most jaunty Zelda tunes. The end is literally nigh, with most townspeople in Clock Town having abandoned their homes. There is no tempo to keep rhythm with, no catchy melodies to hum along to. Just pure darkness setting the tone for the apocalypse that is upon us.





#7: “Save Ilia”



“The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess” (2006)

The melody heard in this composition shares notes with “Ilia’s Theme” & “Colin Rescued” heard throughout key cutscenes in the game game (xref). But its this refrain that gave Link’s relationship with the character more weight. The two have been friends since they were very young, and there is a certain softness in her theme music that reflects that warmth. Once reunited later in the adventure, Link is troubled to find that Ilia has lost her memories. This rendition on her theme indicates how personal of a loss this is for our hero while also linking it to simpler times in his life. It almost sounds as if it is coming from a music box, complimented by a peaceful flute.



#6: “Grandma’s Theme”



The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker” (2002)

It isn’t too often that our hero is grounded by family members, but such is the case with “The Wind Waker.” Link’s grandma doesn’t play too big of a role in the overall story. But her theme imparts all of the love, warmth, and care one would expect from a grandmother. It is mostly comprised of tender string instruments underneath a light clarinet theme. It epitomizes the caring home that Link so often doesn’t get and is made even sadder when he returns to find her literally ill with worry. All she wants is for her grandchildren to be safe, though there’s nothing she can do to help them.






#5: “Zelda’s Lullaby, End Credits version”



“The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time” (1998)

It’s hard not to get emotional when the iconic “Zelda’s Lullaby” starts playing, thanks to it’s beautiful slow melody. But the music heard during the end credits of Ocarina of Time elevates the feels from this song with the bittersweet reflection on the end of the player’s journey. Set across empty landscapes of Hyrule, we were treated to a more serene version of “Zelda’s Lullaby.” As the first 3D Zelda game, the world felt more real than it ever had before. And it’s not hard to feel like you accomplished something momentous as those strings swell up. Even when it transitions to scenes of glee, there’s a bitter sweetness to it since Link isn’t even there to enjoy his victory. And that carries fully into Navi’s departure.






#4: “Mipha’s Theme”



“The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild” (2017)

Music plays a more subdued role in “Breath of the Wild,” but it isn’t without moments with powerful sonatas. While Link has interesting relationships with all the champions, with Mipha it is much more personal. Just like Ilia, he’s known her since they were kids and her peaceful theme reflects that. But what makes her piano composition so sorrowful are her strong feelings for Link and her desire to protect him. Which makes her final fate all the more heartbreaking. But there is also a certain hopefulness that is palpable throughout this theme. With just a few key scenes, she’s painted as an immensely loving character whose loss will be felt by many.





#3: “Midna’s Lament”



“The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess” (2006)

With her bold and guarded personality, Midna became one of the more popular characters Link has teamed up with. The mystery surrounding her drew players in so that when Zant nearly killed her, we all felt an urgency to save her. Comprised of quick and short piano notes along rising strings, “Midna’s Lament” exudes a sense of foreboding and suspense while remaining restrained. Being out in the world of Hyrule offered many boisterous themes that radiated adventure, but this scene unsettled by threatening to take away a piece of that. And this feeling of dread is perfectly complimented by a dark and stormy night.





#2: “Song of Healing”



“The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask” (2000)

One of the key themes of “Majora’s Mask” is finding peace in death and this song is what Link uses to help those who have fallen find that peace. It is used multiple times throughout the game and each time somehow gets sadder. From a Goron hero trying to save his people, to a Zora worried about his loved ones, to a father and daughter broken by a curse. This soft, echoing piano theme, though simple, makes players feel mournful as each community of this world has been affected by the Skull Kid’s destruction. It reappears in Twilight Princess as of the themes Wolf Link can howl, and it’s just as haunting yet serene.






Before we get to our top pick, here are a couple of honorable mentions:



“Ballad of the Wind Fish” Original Version

“The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening” (1993)





“Queen Rutela” a.k.a. “Serenade of Water”

“The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess” (2006)





#1: “Fi’s Gratitude”



“The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword” (2011)

The android-like spirit that helps Link on this adventure comes paired with an ethereal theme featuring many tranquil instruments. But at the end of the journey, it is altered to fit with her departure. In order to keep the seal on Demise, she must “enter a sleep without end.” Essentially dying, she states how much she has grown to care for Link and has learned happiness through him. It is here where the tempo of Fi’s theme is slowed dramatically and stripped down to light piano notes and heart-tugging strings. It adds layers of depth to the character as well as the bond between hero and weapon, changing our perception of the iconic weapon forever.
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