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Ranking all the Twilight Princess dungeons

Joined
Apr 16, 2021
Most of this was written a few months or so ago but it read like I was on crack when I wrote it, so I've retyped it in a readable fashion. Since I figured I should actually contribute something game related to this place, I’ll be ranking the TP dungeons and talking a little about my personal experiences with them. I’m also putting a “how challenging” ranking, on a scale from 1 to 5, next to the title of each dungeon. Feel free to post your own rankings or debate me on these but if any of y'all come in here like “aLL tP dUngeOns bAd” i’ll snipe you with my wii zapper
anyways:

#9. Temple of Time - C: 1/5
Before starting this list I should clarify that I don’t dislike any of these dungeons, I liked all of them and I’m simply ranking them by which ones I enjoyed the most. This one was an interesting callback to Ocarina of Time and while it was fun, I found the aesthetic to come across as kind of plain compared to some of the other dungeons. It also wasn’t much of a challenge for me, I didn’t get stuck at all like I had on some of the other ones.

#8. Snowpeak Ruins - C: 4/5
Ok so you know how I just said I don’t dislike any of these dungeons? Well I may actually dislike this one just a teensy little bit. It starts out innocently enough, you get this awesome journey up the mountain, the skiing which is fun as hell, and then you get inside the place and its kind of gloomy. Which is, you know, to be expected of an old torn down house in the middle of nowhere, but it still made me feel cold the whole time lol. But my personal gripes with this dungeon come from this thing:
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This. this right here. This was singlehandedly the hardest part of the goddamn game. I tried every combo I could think of, spent hours just pushing the blocks around trying to figure something out, but just couldn’t. Took the ball and chain and beat up the floor and roof hoping something would break and I could use it like a block. Tried everything to move other blocks onto the ice floor, but absolutely nothing worked. I’d spent a good few hours on this puzzle and was absolutely stumped, so I just stopped playing the game for around a whole month. Till one fateful day when I decided, ya know what, I’m gonna beat that puzzle even if it takes me all night long. I decided to draw a grid of the puzzle and use that to check all possible moves, but it wasn’t even 30 seconds after doing this that the answer became painfully obvious. I really can’t believe I didn’t see it before, and I was bleeding mad at myself for wasting so much time when it was such a simple thing. Rest of the dungeon went fine after that but when I think of that block puzzle I still get mad lol.

#7. Hyrule Castle - C: 1/5
This one was, kind of weird. You get the really exciting beginning, being out in the courtyard in the rain, and there’s a real sense of importance with everything you do ‘cus you know you’re just around the corner from winning the battle. But at the same time, it felt so, short- like, really short for a dungeon. Maybe it was meant to be, or I was just better at the game (probably both) but it surprised me how quickly I was meeting Ganondorf. It even let me skip some of the rooms I had thought would be important, strangely enough.

#6. Twilight Realm - C: 1/5
Another one that was really cool, but also really short. I really enjoyed the visual aesthetic of this one, and of the Twilight realm (looks a lot better than Hyrule’s twilight). Couple things I don’t like about the realm in general though, one being the lack of characterisation (can’t really picture people living there) and the twili didn’t do much, or yaknow, do anything.
Also one thing that hella bothers me was how Link turns into a wolf in Hyrule’s Twilight, but not in the realm. I thought it was the power of the twilight that transforms him, and that I can believe, because the Twili view wolves as heroes and Link, being one, it would make sense for the magic to affect him that way. But if its Zant’s fog that apparently changes him, what’s the logic behind that? Am I missing something? Feels like the devs just didn’t want to make a dungeon that would be compatible with Link’s wolf form, which is why I just go ahead and pretend that he would be a wolf there.

#5. Forest Temple - C: 2/5
First temple of the game, it was a nice challenge and a good warmup for the rest of the dungeons. I don’t really have a lot to say but I like this one, the foliage around was super pretty and the whole Faron woods section in general is a part I’m really fond of.

#4. Goron Mines - 3/5
This was another early one that I really enjoyed, it reminded me a lot of the death mountain based dungeons from Ocarina of Time. It was an interesting place to explore and using the boots was neat, although you couldn’t move very fast. Didn’t really care for the music though, it didn’t really add much (I ended up listening to my own music when in a lot of the dungeons for that reason).

#3. Sky City - C: 3.5/5
This is one in particular that I’ve heard people don’t like, but I loved it. It was one of the more challenging dungeons and the atmosphere was really cool- kind of futuristic/sci-fi, but also run down which reminds me a bit of FF7 looking back. Double hookshot (that’s what it’s called, right?) was an awesome item and the boss fight is one of my favorites in the game.

#2. Desert Arbiter's Grounds - C: 2/5
Ohhh this one was cool. While it wasn’t one I found as hard as the others, the atmosphere was awesome, it reminded me of the backrooms and was just the right level of creepy. (I’ve heard people call this dungeon “dark”, though I wouldn’t say any kid would actually get scared by it tbh.) There were some cool wolf sequences too, but the best part of this dungeon? The roller coaster room.
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I loved this thing, and I had wanted to come back after beating the boss but the game won't let you >:

#1. Lakebed Temple - C: 5/5
This one imho is the best dungeon Twilight Princess has to offer. For the most part I found it to be pleasantly challenging, except for the beginning with the staircases. Took me forever to figure em out but once I did, the rest of the dungeon went along smoothly and I found it all to be a lot of fun.
 

Chevywolf30

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You're gonna catch so much crap for having Lakebed as #1 but I wholeheartedly support it. The slide puzzle in Snowpeak is frustrating, but overall it's a good dungeon. I also agree about Hyrule Castle.
Also one thing that hella bothers me was how Link turns into a wolf in Hyrule’s Twilight, but not in the realm.
I think that since he has the Master Sword, he doesn't transform, because remember how there's like the extra powerful Twili or whatever and you have to power up the sword to slice through it?
 
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Joined
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I think that since he has the Master Sword, he doesn't transform, because remember how there's like the extra powerful Twili or whatever and you have to power up the sword to slide through it?
Oh, that makes sense. I forget he didn't have the sword when the Twilight was in Hyrule, so he transformed then but not later.
 
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You forget I wrote a fanfic where that was a major plot point in the final battle :cool:
Ah, true. I need to reread that sometime, I wasn't sure if that detail was set in stone or if it was more your interpretation of how it'd work. It makes sense, but I can't remember if they specifically mentioned it in the game or not
 

MW7

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Great topic! I've never tried rating the Twilight Princess dungeons by challenge before so I'll try that.

9. Palace of Twilight (Challenge 3/5) - I don't enjoy much of this dungeon. The orb rooms are not difficult, but I like being able to take my time to explore everything in a room so having the hands chase after the orbs is more annoying than challenging. Overall it's not bad.

8. Goron Mines (Challenge 2/5) - There are a lot of cool things in this dungeon, but I hate how slow you walk on walls with the iron boots.

7. Forest Temple (Challenge 1/5) - This isn't the most memorable dungeon, but it's not bad.

6. City in the Sky (Challenge 5/5) - From my number 6 dungeon to number 1, I love all of these dungeons. The City in the Sky was really confusing for me the first few times I played through the game, and it has a cool atmosphere and challenges. The boss is cool too.

5. Arbiter's Grounds (Challenge 4/5) - I like the parallels to the Forest Temple of Ocarina of Time, and the puzzles are interesting. I don't love the boss, but it certainly is creative along with the dungeon item.

4. Temple of Time (Challenge 3/5) - I like the central mechanic of returning the statue and having to solve rooms twice with an added variable in the mix. The dungeon item is great too.

3. Lakebed Temple (Challenge 5/5) - This was really confusing for me the first few times I played through the game, but it is rewarding. It was interesting how Nintendo came up with another interesting central water mechanic after the dungeons in Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask.

2. Hyrule Castle (Challenge 3/5) - I love the atmosphere and uniqueness of this dungeon. The fact that there is a large optional area with an optional key leading to an optional reward room is just really enjoyable to me. That little fact makes this feel like an A Link to the Past dungeon in 3d. The puzzles are fun as well even though there aren't that many.

1. Snowpeak Ruins (Challenge 4/5) - This has the best atmosphere of any Zelda dungeon in my opinion, and I love ice block puzzles. I enjoy the dungeon being a house, and the ice enemies are more difficult than most enemies. One little detail I liked as well was the key hidden that you find by finding the compass. I like stuff like that where things can be done differently on future playthoughs with more knowledge.
 
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Interesting choices on some of the challenge ratings, I can't agree with hyrule castle or twilight realm but the rest are pretty similar to mine. The hands that chase you in the twilight realm didn't annoy me as much as just make me really paranoid lol.
 
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aLL tP dUngeOns
not necessarily bad but tend towards homogeneity in terms of dungeon progression and completion with a few notable outliers like city in the sky
As in, they all tend to have a similar line of progression? I personally don't see that as a negative, it all depends on preference I suppose.
 

Mikey the Moblin

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As in, they all tend to have a similar line of progression? I personally don't see that as a negative, it all depends on preference I suppose.
Step 1 central area go left get a key go right advance past the central area to a long winding more difficult area that loops back around to the central area but a central mechanism has changed granting access to a new part of the dungeon and the boss
Step 2 Battle boss
 
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Step 1 central area go left get a key go right advance past the central area to a long winding more difficult area that loops back around to the central area but a central mechanism has changed granting access to a new part of the dungeon and the boss
Step 2 Battle boss
Yes
the puzzles and specific layout of each one are still unique tho, keeping things interesting
 

MW7

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Interesting choices on some of the challenge ratings, I can't agree with hyrule castle or twilight realm but the rest are pretty similar to mine. The hands that chase you in the twilight realm didn't annoy me as much as just make me really paranoid lol.
I think my sense of scale is different. I think we agreed on the hardest ones (Lakebed is the hardest with City in the Sky and Snowpeak being harder than the others), but I have trouble differentiating between the easy ones and middle of the pack ones. Hyrule Castle and the Palace of Twilight are both really short, but I can recall having to think about what I was doing a little bit more than in the Forest Temple and Goron Mines. Paranoid isn't far off from describing how I feel. The hands remove a level of comfort that you have everywhere else in the game.
 

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