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What's Ganondorf's motivation for wanting the Triforce and world domination?

Spirit Mask Snowman

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IN all fairness his people are forced to live in the desert and suffer the blistering heat, the fleshing removing sandstorms and the shivering ice of a desert night and so he might indeed have just wanted a better realm for his people initially but, he was greedy and desired more power than he had.
Yeah, except he was still Ganondorf, the man, after having had the ToP 7 years, and he didn't even improve the lives of the Gerudo despite being in a position to be able to. I don't think he ever really cared about them. Ganondorf the man is selfish, he only cares about himself. He used the Gerudo as his own personal army, but as soon as he got the ToP, he didn't go back to the desert, he made his own castle atop the ruins of the original castle and just got all moody about how the other 2 Triforce pieces eluded him. Let's not also forget...



He was just up in the castle playing the organ and being all salty for 7 years... That was how Ganondorf occupied his time.

An army of Gerudo theives was sufficient before he had a Triforce piece, but afterwards, he kicked his own people to the curb and made no effort to improve their situation. He was the King of Hyrule for 7 years because he had so much power and nobody could stop him. He could have let the Gerudo settle into Hyrule itself, instead they are still living in the harsh desert.
 

Jirohnagi

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Yeah, except he was still Ganondorf, the man, after having had the ToP 7 years, and he didn't even improve the lives of the Gerudo despite being in a position to be able to. I don't think he ever really cared about them. Ganondorf the man is selfish, he only cares about himself. He used the Gerudo as his own personal army, but as soon as he got the ToP, he didn't go back to the desert, he made his own castle atop the ruins of the original castle and just got all moody about how the other 2 Triforce pieces eluded him. Let's not also forget...



He was just up in the castle playing the organ and being all salty for 7 years... That was how Ganondorf occupied his time.

An army of Gerudo theives was sufficient before he had a Triforce piece, but afterwards, he kicked his own people to the curb and made no effort to improve their situation. He was the King of Hyrule for 7 years because he had so much power and nobody could stop him. He could have let the Gerudo settle into Hyrule itself, instead they are still living in the harsh desert.
Hey it takes a long time to learn the organ and grow yer hair out like a hippy y'know.
But for real i think by ALTTP/TP/WW time ganondorfs used gerudo as an army either as iron knuckles or possibly darknuts (maybe koume n kotake were the only ones able to make iron knuckles)
 

Spirit Mask Snowman

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Hey it takes a long time to learn the organ and grow yer hair out like a hippy y'know.
But for real i think by ALTTP/TP/WW time ganondorfs used gerudo as an army either as iron knuckles or possibly darknuts (maybe koume n kotake were the only ones able to make iron knuckles)
I think I see where you're going with this. In OoT the first area we ever see Iron Knuckles is in the Spirit Temple. The only other place they can be found is Inside Ganon's Tower. So it could be possible that Iron Knuckles are brainwashed Gerudo. But we're jumping to that conclusion just based on one incident, that being Nabooru having been brainwashed and turned into an Iron Knuckle.

Yeah mullet growing requires patience! Truth is, Ganondorf just wanted to start an 80's Power Rock band, and he wanted to play lead organ.

 

Jirohnagi

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I think I see where you're going with this. In OoT the first area we ever see Iron Knuckles is in the Spirit Temple. The only other place they can be found is Inside Ganon's Tower. So it could be possible that Iron Knuckles are brainwashed Gerudo. But we're jumping to that conclusion just based on one incident, that being Nabooru having been brainwashed and turned into an Iron Knuckle.

Yeah mullet growing requires patience! Truth is, Ganondorf just wanted to start an 80's Power Rock band, and he wanted to play lead organ.

Actually i was basing it on the fact that after OOT there are no traces of Gerudo in two timelines and in the third they live deeper in the desert that or the deserts advanced, and that we see a lot more Iron knuckles and dark nuts afterwards
 

Spirit Mask Snowman

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Actually i was basing it on the fact that after OOT there are no traces of Gerudo in two timelines and in the third they live deeper in the desert that or the deserts advanced, and that we see a lot more Iron knuckles and dark nuts afterwards
True, but it's also noteworthy that in OoT we only see them in the Spirit Temple, and in Ganon's Tower.
 

Jirohnagi

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True, but it's also noteworthy that in OoT we only see them in the Spirit Temple, and in Ganon's Tower.
Exactly which makes me think that Koume And Kotake were the ones to create the Iron Knuckles, via brainwashing, the Iron Knuckles were, you could say, the prototype and the darknuts are transformed gerudo, the original nuts were born from darkness and were demonic creatures, we see them in MC and could be explained as having been sealed away hence why those ones seem so different from the others and the ones we see later on are Gerudo converted into the creatures via ganondorfs magic.
 

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I think I see where you're going with this. In OoT the first area we ever see Iron Knuckles is in the Spirit Temple. The only other place they can be found is Inside Ganon's Tower. So it could be possible that Iron Knuckles are brainwashed Gerudo. But we're jumping to that conclusion just based on one incident, that being Nabooru having been brainwashed and turned into an Iron Knuckle.

Yeah mullet growing requires patience! Truth is, Ganondorf just wanted to start an 80's Power Rock band, and he wanted to play lead organ.

In Majora's Mask we can see in the character model that Iron Knuckles contain a regular Gerudo. They could have just kept the nabooru one but for some reason they changed it.

We know that Yoshiaki Koizumi snuck story elements in under Miyamotos nose so perhaps this is something he intended. That the Iron Knuckles were brainwashed Gerudo.
 
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In my opinion, Ganondorf and Demise are vastly different...and yet the same. Here's my take on it.

A lot of people have speculated on what Demise is supposed to be. From demigod to some being from an alternate dimension, etc. The truth is quite clear to me... He's the Devil. He's the Satan of the Zelda universe. All evil comes from him, and is implied to look different to whoever is looking at him. He's the Devil. And like Satan in Christian theology, he hates the Golden Goddesses/God. That's why he hated Hylia, because she is basically a lesser Goddess. It's an insult, in his opinion. The only difference between Satan and Demise, is that while Satan was originally Lucifer and created by God, I think we're supposed to think that Demise always existed. Because he is the ultimate evil in the universe...he cannot truly die. His spirit of evil lives on in the misdeeds of others. The only thing that was lost after his battle against Link was his consciousness. His hatred, his pure energy...his soul, if you like, was destined to be born again in human form, just like Hylia and Zelda... This brings us to the Dorf.

Now, while Ganondorf is, in my opinion, the reincarnation of Demise, he is also very much his own man, just like Zelda was her own woman. As she says to Link, "I'm still your Zelda". Essentially, Demise's soul and hatred is attached to Ganondorf. They're not quite one and the same, but they're not exactly separate entities either. Ganondorf was chosen because of the evil that always lived within him. I'm sure that Ganondorf did at one time truly want to help his people in the desert, but as others have pointed out, once he attained the power of Din he did nothing to help the Gerudo. He left them to rot in the desert. The truly evil within him, and the hatred of Demise consumed him and he became the King of Darkness, the King of Evil.

In Wind Waker, Ganondorf is different. Why? Because for some reason or other, maybe due to his defeat in OOT, Demise's hold has lessened. Here we see Ganondorf as he would have been if not for Demise. Still an evil man, but with some spark of goodness in him. We see regret, genuine longing, his old desire for wanting to help the Gerudo, etc. He also doesn't want to kill Link and Zelda if he can help it. But even so, Ganondorf is still very much evil in Wind Waker. He's just not quite the monster he is in all the other games.

In the end portion of the Downfall Timeline and in Breath of the Wild, neither Ganondorf nor Demise exist anymore. All that's left is Ganon, which is a straight up hybrid between the two. He could hold it together as Ganon for a time, but by the time of BOTW he's essentially just a force of evil. Nothing human or demonic about it at all. Just a supernatural wrecking ball, intent on destruction.

So there you have it. My take on the nature of Ganondorf, the greatest video game villain of all time (Bowser does push him close, though).
 

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Every being is selfish to some degree. I believe this stems from the simple fact that each being takes in stimuli itself and not as any other being. Our precieved reality being based exclusively on what we take in (Which is a completely pragmatic view, a scientific one though not one I completely share. I'll keep the non-scientific out of it though.), we cannot help but be, by definition, selfish.

Ganondorf (or more specifically, Ganon) strikes me as the ultimate realization of that selfishness. We can all reach a place of rationality by which we say that killing off everyone or destroying everything will leave the power gained hollow as there would be no one and nothing over which to have power. This thought has merit but until that actually happens (and maybe even if it happens), the one consolidating power is driven by pure selfishness. Sure, it makes sense that killing everyone makes you king of no one but that hasn't happened and selfishness says that competition is a threat, an evolutionary or created advantage.

I don't believe Ganon would stop if he realized he needed to destroy everyone to succeed in final power. Here's the thing, I believe our flesh is selfish, we put ourselves first because that is what makes sense (coincidentally, what I consider Divinity to be: love, the nature of which places others before oneself, trumps selfishness by virtue of being superior to the purely physical) from our deepest and basest id. This is realized in the incarnation of Ganon (and by extension, sometimes Ganondorf) in my opinion. The incarnation of selfishness would serve itself best by overcoming competition in the absence of love. This, I see as at least partial impetus for Ganon's seemingly inane refusal to draw a line demarcating his limits of selfishness.
 
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I just discovered this thread (and just registered), and wanted to chime in; this is still on the front page, so I hope my response doesn't count as a necropost.

My reading of Ganondorf's monologue in The Wind Waker is that he's trying to talk himself into believing that he's still the good guy. He doesn't give a darn what his enemies think, so long as they think it while running away; he knows that Link and Zelda will never be persuaded to do anything less than fight him; but he had always been pretty sure that he was Batman, until the gods drowned Hyrule to keep him, personally, from taking it, and now he's trying to rebuild his confidence in himself. His attempt to conquer Hyrule was never about his people (Nabooru is speaking out of the Gerudo consensus when she complains about Ganondorf, as shown by how Ganondorf and his most loyal followers are hiding in the Desert Colossus instead of operating openly in the Gerudo Fortress); but if his war for Hyrule had been about his people, he would have been a self-sacrificing martyr. So maybe he can persuade himself that it was.

(He's also trying to figure out why he tried to conquer Hyrule in the first place. Ganondorf is not exactly introspective, however much he broods over his wrongs.)

But if not for the reasons he gave, why did Ganondorf do it?

To start with, consider his personality.

The psychologist John B. Oldham has a theory that normal human personalities are less extreme versions of recognized psychological disorders; I doubt that this is true, but [this](http://ptypes.com/aggressive.html) seems to sum up Ganondorf at least as well as [this](https://www.16personalities.com/entj-personality) does. (The Oldham Aggressive personality profile continually talking about power is definitely a plus.) Also watch Ray Harryhausen's [The Golden Voyage of Sinbad](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Golden_Voyage_of_Sinbad), paying careful attention to Prince Koura; and read Pearl Buck's [Sons](https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40776308-sons).

(Yes, that Pearl Buck. No, I'm not kidding. Wang Lung's third son, who ran off to be a soldier towards the end of The Good Earth, grew up to be an ambitious warlord, who spends the whole book trying and failing to conquer all China because it's there. It hasn't occurred to him that this might make him the bad guy. It hasn't occurred to the narrator, either.)

Beyond his personality: Hyrule is very unforgiving with its enemies, but Ganondorf is a vassal of the crown in good standing when Ocarina of Time begins, which suggests that he fought for the crown during the Hyrulean Civil War. Or at the worst, he stuck to armed neutrality, like he did in Hyrule Warriors until Cia was defeated; either course of action feels plausible enough.

After the war, Ganondorf felt cheated of his rightful share of the spoils. Part of it was that he wanted all of the spoils, and would have felt cheated even if he'd gotten a fair share; but part of it was that the king stiffed him. Think about it: if you were a king, and one of your vassals was an ambitious, aggressive, magically potent, insufferably cocky ENTJ, and all the rest were aimiable nonentities, how much land and authority would you give to the one guy who could potentially threaten the throne?

And even if Ganondorf didn't have Bad News written all over him, he would've been cheated for another cluster of reasons: Darunia was the king's sworn brother, the Gorons and Gerudo were feuding (wear the Gerudo Mask and talk to Darunia), and even if they hadn't been feuding there's no way Darunia and Ganondorf would have gotten along. From Ganondorf's perspective, Darunia was a dim-witted bro; from Darunia's perspective, Ganondorf was an arrogant pansy. They were just similar enough to hate each other, and neither of them was going to be the bigger man and keep their personal grudge from messing with the kingdom's politics.

So, after the Hyrulean Civil War, Ganondorf had a grudge against the king, against the king's sworn brother, and probably against Hyrulean civilization in general because it was more aligned with the king than it was with him. The Hyrulean Civil War had gotten him used to the idea of killing people and breaking things in order to get what he wanted; it might also have given him a case of PTSD. (His concept art in OoT was specifically meant to suggest that he wasn't quite all there.) He had a cadre of veteran warriors, loyal to himself and no one else, certainly not to the Gerudo as a whole. (Just ask Nabooru!) And he had a pair of demonic-shrine-maiden foster-mothers, who whispered to him about a divine artifact that could solve all his problems, put him on the throne, and incidentally get rid of Darunia and the Gorons in the process...

In this situation, all Demise's influence had to do was to make Ganondorf strong enough to get the ball rolling -- in particular, giving him the power to curse the guardian gods of the Kokiri and Zoras, even before he had access to the Triforce. But, in the absence of evil magic from before the dawn of time, I'm sure Ganondorf could have found some other way to kill the local gods when they didn't give him what he wanted. He's resourceful like that.
 
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SEE ninty?? We never needed any stupid "Demise" Oh! The Dorf's just possessed by the spirit of some primordial demigod who's really pissed that he almost didn't take over proto-hyrule and he would have gotten away with it too if it weren't for those meddling kids!!!
Good thing that's not what's happening.

Demise himself is long gone by the time OoT takes place, so Ganondorf isn't being ''possessed'' by him. Ganondorf was said to be the incarnation of his hatred, yes,but that doesn't mean he's incapable of making his own choices; in the CT, Link uses his knowledge of the AT events of OoT to stop Ganon before he even rises to power, and it was Link's destiny to awaken as the HoT, and yet, he didn't in the CT. Destiny can be changed in Zelda. Even if it's Ganon's destiny to be the incarnation of hatred, he could've made different choices, but he chose not to.
 
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Maybe Ganondorf felt outnumbered in the Gerudo population being the only male Gerudo in a generation or so, and wanted to make himself important and powerful enough to make the most out of his life as a male Gerudo before his life is gone. Of course he's reincarnated multiple times over history, but perhaps he's trying to make a name for himself and prove his worth or something. I wonder if he was ever shown love as a child or was ever taught why it's not a good idea to have evil motives.
 
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He just has a lust for power. Even before he turned into Beast Ganon, you see in Ocarina of Time that he's willing to kill the Deku Tree, starve the Gorons, and mess up Jabu-Jabu just to get the keys to the Sacred Realm and get the Triforce. And remember what Nabooru said about him stealing from women and children and even killing people? Ganondorf was always messed up.
 

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