THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: SKYWARD SWORD======================================
MOTION CONTROLS GUIDE ==================================================
(What, were you expecting ASCII or something?)
Introduction and Warnings [ntrwrn]
Version History [hstry]
E-Mail and Contact Info [cntct]
Item Motion Controls [tmcntrls]
- Sword [swrd]
- Shield [shld]
- Slingshot [slngsht]
- Beetle [btl]
- Bombs [bmbs]
- Gust Bellows [gstbllws]
- Harp [hrp]
- Whip [whp]
- Clawshots [clwshts]
- Bow [bw]
- Mogma Mitts [mgmmtts]
- Bug-Catching Net [bgnt]
Misc. Motion Controls [msccntrls]
- Recalibrating the Wii MotionPlus [rclbrtng]
- General Menus [gnrlmns]
- Item Menu [tmmn]
- Loftwing [lftwng]
- Skydiving [skydvng]
- Swinging on Ropes [swngng]
- Tightrope Walking [tghtrp]
- Climbing [clmbng]
- Drawing on Walls [drwng]
- Swimming [swmmng]
- Mine Cart [mncrt]
- Firing the Cannon [frngcnnn]
- Boss Door Sculptures [sclptrs]
INTRODUCTION AND WARNINGS [ntrwrn] =====================================
As acknowledged by many, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword is an awesome game
made even cooler by its extensive and accurate use of motion controls. Ive
heard many people complain, though, about how the controls just arent working
for them, and then write off Skyward Sword as another one of those gimmicky
Wii games. This puts a wet blanket on my Zelda spirit, because the motion
controls seem to be generally accepted as more than functional, and with only a
few exceptions the controls never gave me any problems.
So whats the difference between me and them? How come the controls worked so
well for me, but not for them? A big part, I believe, is faulty hardware.
Something went wrong for them - malfunctioning Wii Remote, malfunctioning
console, whatever. But the problems dont lie in the game itself.
Another big part, one which this guide is dedicated to correcting, is how they
didnt fully understand just how the controls worked. Ive had a pleasant
experience with this game, but Ive also recognized how the motion controls can
be misunderstood and misused by someone not used to them, or at least by
someone who just hasnt adapted to Skyward Swords control setup. For all
Skyward Sword's strengths, its lack of clear explanation for motion control
functions has bit it in the behind somewhat.
To see if I can ease your arm-waving pain, Ive written this guide to help you
better understand how to use everything motion control-related in Skyward
Sword. If rolling bombs feels like Pin the Tail on the Donkey, youve come to
the right place. Its my hope that reading this guide will set you on the right
To those of you who are confused, no, you do not need to play Skyward Sword
standing up, so sit down. Ive only ever played Skyward Sword while on my bed,
and youve heard me say the game hasnt given me any real problems. Rest those
calf muscles. Take a seat.
Skyward Sword is also not a physically tiring game if you know what youre
doing. You dont need to swing your arms around in some huge circle to get Link
to do what you want. Like most Wii games, a simple flick of the wrist will
suffice. In fact, despite how motion controlled the game is, you dont need to
move your body a whole lot. If you were worried about the game exhausting you,
dont be. Just dont go flailing your arms everywhere when you play and youll
I also want to issue a word of caution for those who are considering buying
Skyward Sword (and an omen to those who already own it): if you dont like
motion controls or are even just uncomfortable with them, this game will lose
some of its appeal. Yes, this guide was created to help you get around control
problems, but if you dont like how it all works in the first place, theres
nothing I can do to help you. Take a look at the Contents section up above. A
ton of stuff in this game is governed by motion control. If youre not willing
to not only accept this, but to embrace it, Skyward Sword will become a lot
less fun for you.
Got it all wrapped around the ol' noodle? (Translation: Capiche?
Translation...you get it, I think.) Ive classified the guide into two
sections: One for using items (like the sword and Beetle) and one for
everything else (like tightrope walking and riding your Loftwing). In each
topic, Ill tell you exactly how to do what the game wants you to, then offer
advice and warnings for you to keep in mind so you wont make mistakes. I
attempt to be as clear and detailed as I can be, but if you have any questions,
you can always e-mail me. Just be sure to read the e-mailing guidelines first.
That wraps up the introduction. Now that everything in this document is wearing
a figurative Hello, my name is tag, you may proceed with enlightenment. Not
that I could have stopped you from moving on before, of course.
VERSION HISTORY [hstry] ================================================
This section is meant mostly for me and the site hosting this guide. Its
basically a captains log of what I wrote and when, and it also helps when
determining how far along the guide is.
Version .05 (12/2/2011): Completed the introduction, e-mail, and sword sections.
Version .09 (12/5/2011): Added some details to the sword section, completed
theshield and Slingshot areas, and got started on the Beetle section.
Version .4 (3/17/2012): Been awhile since I worked on this. Did everything up
tothe whip and added a couple parts about Fatal Blows to the sword.
Version .5 (3/22/2012): Completed the whip and bow parts.
Version .65 (3/29/2012): Completed the Mogma Mitts, Bug-Catching Net, Misc.
Items, Recalibrating the Wii MotionPlus, General Menus, and Item Menu sections.
Version .85 (6/16/2012): If I wasn't such a procrastinator, this guide would
have been up long before this and probably would have solved the problems of
many who were disappointed in Skyward Sword. At any rate, everything right
before the Swimming section is complete. Shouldn't be long now.
Version 1.0 (6/19/2012): Finished the guide (finally!). It's ready a good eight
months longer than it should have been, but I hope this guide is put to good
Version 1.01 (12/6/2012): Posted a response to a question I was asked and put
in a small addendum about e-mail info.
Version 1.11 (12/15/2012): Created a section for the Clawshots where it had
been curiously missing and added dynagirl to the Acknowledgements for pointing
out the mistake to me in the first place.
Version 1.12 (12/21/2012): Added a couple of snippets about my website and blog.
Version 1.22 (3/30/2013): Added a bunch of pointers and corrections from Ali's
Version 1.32 (2/22/2015): After realizing the guide's format inexplicably
resembled bad poetry, probably as a result of some format change the website
made as the years went by, I went back and cleaned up the guide so it actually
looks somewhat presentable. Also answered Mike K.'s questions and added him to
the Acknowledgements section. Removed those snippets about my website and blog,
as I've dropped them and moved onto other things. Added a couple pieces of
advice to the bomb and bug net sections respectively.
Version 1.33 (3/12/2015): Realized the guide looked presentable after the
updated version, but still not great. Rectified that with more spacing and a
couple more anecdotes for humor's sake.
E-MAIL AND CONTACT INFO [cntct] ========================================
If you have any questions or otherwise want to e-mail me, feel free. Before I
tell you my e-mail address, though, I want you to read the general guidelines
for sending me messages. It might save you and me a few headaches....
Feel free to send me e-mails regarding these topics:
- You have a question you want to ask relating to the guide. For instance, if
youre still having control problems with some doohickey or another, you can
contact me for even further details. If the question really doesnt relate to
what this guide is about (like how to beat the Skyview Temple), I may still
answer your question, but it wont be posted here. Answered questions will show
up in the FAQ section.
- You want to host this guide on your site. If you are hosting my guide, your
website name will appear in the Acknowledgements section. Due to my annoyingly
distractible nature, I may forget to put the websites name there even if you
are hosting it. I apologize in advance if this happens, so give me another
e-mail if Im being a forgetful moron.
- You have a piece of advice or youve seen something in my guide which needs
correction. Im not overly concerned about spelling and grammatical errors, so
I may or may not update the guide accordingly if you point them out to me. Im
pretty sure my guide is relatively free of them. If your e-mail does prompt me
to update the guide, youll appear in the Acknowledgements section. Be aware
that if you dont give me any other name to go by, Ill just put the first part
of your e-mail address down.
All this is good, but think twice before sending me e-mails containing the
- Unreadable content. If you spell like a frog or youre too vague to give me
the clear meaning of your message, theres nothing I can do. Spelling like a
frog includes writing like youre texting on a phone (im hav prob pls hlp
me!!!!111). Being vague means saying something like I cant figure out how to
use the ropes. You can either use ropes for swinging or walking on, and if you
want to get picky, the Whip could count as a rope as well. Be clear and
specific when sending me messages you actually want answered.
- Flaming and/or bad language. Being flamed (insulted) has the side-effect of
reducing your odds of being taken seriously, and I'd prefer this guide to be
free of coarse language. If you honestly want me to post your e-mail on this
guide and it has a swear word, itll be censored in some format. But its
easier if you just dont curse at all.
- Questions unrelated to the guide. By all means, e-mail me on how to get into
dungeon number five, but it wont get posted on this guide. I may answer your
question, but not here. Besides, if you really want to know how to enter
dungeon number five, there are plenty of walkthroughs you can read that will
most likely answer your question.
With these guidelines in mind, you may send e-mails to email@example.com. To
make your e-mail easier to spot, title it Skyward Sword Guide. Its not
necessary, but itll help me. Additionally, if you don't give me a name to go
off of, I'll just use the first part of your e-mail address so your personal
name isn't displayed for all to see.
ITEM MOTION CONTROLS [tmcntrls] ========================================
This section covers every motion controlled item and weapon in the game. For
various things like riding your Loftwing or steering a mine cart, go see the
Misc. Motion Controls section. If Ive missed an item that you think should be
included, well...e-mail me.
You press B to bring out most items (like the slingshot and Beetle) if theyre
already selected. To select another item, hold B to bring up a radial menu,
where all your obtained items will appear in a circle. Point to the desired
item and release B to select it and bring it out. From there, pressing B will
put the item away.
SWORD [swrd] ==========
the most complex item in your arsenal. Youll likely have it sheathed most of
the time. To draw your sword, move the Wii Remote quickly in any direction.
Link will sometimes strike when you do this. Getting him to just draw it and
nothing else can be a bit tricky, but it doesnt affect your playing much.
With your sword drawn, you attack by moving the Wii Remote quickly in the
direction you want to attack in. Note that the sword cant curve mid-swing, so
you really cant pull off any fancy moves. You still have a lot of control over
your attacks, as your sword can go in any compass direction. To stab,
deliberately thrust the Wii Remote forward as if you were actually stabbing
something in real life. You know, as one does.
You can perform a spin attack by moving both the Wii Remote and Nunchuk. Move
them to the side to do a horizontal spin attack in that direction. You can also
do a vertical spin attack by moving them both up or down. You can usually
perform the spin attack even if the Wii Remote and Nunchuk go separate ways,
unrealistic as it may be. Spin attacks deplete roughly a third of your stamina
gauge, so dont go wild with them.
In the heat of combat, you will occasionally knock an enemy over and stun it
for awhile. When its down like this, you can lock on and raise both the Wii
Remote and the Nunchuk quickly to perform a Fatal Blow. In most cases, a Fatal
Blow will kill an enemy in one hit. If you miss your target for some reason,
youll be vulnerable for a few seconds as you struggle to get your sword out of
the ground, so timing matters a bit. Youre also open to other enemies even
when you do pull a Fatal Blow off, so use your best judgments when jumping on
your opponents and stabbing them through the chest.
After you acquire the Goddess Sword, you can use Skyward Strikes (basically the
traditional Zelda sword beam) by pointing your blade up in the air. A light
will travel down the length of your blade; when it gives off a small flash and
a sound cue, its fully charged and ready to go. The charge will last for
awhile, so you can maneuver your sword wherever you want to before launching
the Skyward Strike. Swinging your sword with this heavenly energy produces a
kind of rotating disk. Stabbing will release a ball of light instead. However,
youre not officially in charging mode unless Link strikes a pose, grunts,
and holds the sword steady.
Finally, the Goddess Sword lets you dowse. You know what dowsing in real life
is, right? Finding various objects with some device? To dowse, press C, and
Link will stick his sword out to locate whatever youre currently set to
looking for. If you hold C, you can switch to another thing to dowse for.
Examples include hearts, Zelda, and temporary objects related to the story,
such as the Kikwi race of forest-dwellers. While dowsing, youll go into
first-person mode. The Control Stick lets you move, but youll have to aim and
turn by pointing the Wii Remote. If you want to re-center the cursor back in
the middle of the screen, press down on the Control Pad. This helps if you were
pointing to the side when you entered dowsing and want to reset to make
things easier for yourself. Remember, Skyward Sword doesnt make use of the
pointer in the Wii Remote, just the gyroscope.
- I see a lot of people just waggling the Wii Remote back and forth to attack.
Flailing doesnt get you very far. Most enemies dont respond well to you
attacking in the same two directions over and over again, so make all your
strikes clean and deliberate.
- Your sword doesnt register individual speeds much; if you move the Wii
Remote too fast, Link will strike in that direction. Keep this in mind when
attacking enemies like Technoblins, who wield electrified weapons. Move your
sword slowly before executing a tactical strike. It may help just to practice
moving your sword around outside of battle so you can tell how fast you can go
- Ill say it again: dont flail. Flailing gives way to shaking the Nunchuk in
your excitement. Shaking both the Nunchuk and the Wii Remote makes you do a
spin attack. Spin attacking too much completely drains your stamina gauge and
leaves you open to enemy attacks. Make sure you keep your Nunchuk in one place
before beating the crap out of your enemies.
- Having trouble stabbing? Remember I said its a DELIBERATE thrust; merely
poking the Wii Remote forward a bit usually wont cut it. Quickly move your arm
about eight inches forward (or more if youre zealous) to register an accurate
- Due to the above bit of advice, its easy to accidentally move the Nunchuk
forward as well. Again, keep your Nunchuk in one place if you dont want to do
unintentional spin attacks. Practice outside of battle if you need to.
- Remember, to perform a Fatal Blow, lift both the Wii Remote and the Nunchuk
STRAIGHT UP. Do not just flick them, or Link will do spin attacks. Your timing
also cant be off. Too soon and you may do a spin attack anyway. Too late and
you may miss your chance.
- Another way you can perform a Fatal Blow is by slowly lifting the Wii Remote
and Nunchuk up, then quickly moving them down. As Ali, the point-giver, puts it
in her e-mail, "immersion is key." If my way isn't working well for some
reason, you may want to try her way.
- You dont need to raise your arm all the way in the air to charge a Skyward
Strike. Just tilt the Wii Remote up.
- Are you having trouble getting Link to do Skyward Strikes at all? Look at
where youre pointing the Wii Remote when you attempt to do one. It has to be
straight up in the air to work - aim for a perfect 90 degree angle to the TV.
No, it does not have to be exactly 90 degrees to work, but this mentality will
help you. Just pointing your Wii Remote in the general direction of the ceiling
wont do much for your cause. Look at your Wii Remote as you turn it if you
have to. Eventually, youll do it right by instinct.
- If you have an annoying tendency to strike with your sword while drawing it
from your sheath, youre probably moving the Wii Remote in a way its not
supposed to go. To draw the sword without attacking at the same time, quickly
move the Wii Remote to one side, almost as if you were attacking, but without
moving the Remote forward at all. Pushing it forward even a little bit tends to
make Link stab while drawing the sword. Ive also found that drawing it in a
semicircle to the side works easier. Remember, practice makes perfect.
- The sword is meant more for precision than speed. If you attempt to slice
with it too much, too fast, the Wii MotionPlus will be unable to recognize your
attacks correctly, and Link will eventually just start slicing in random
SHIELD [shld] ==========
The shield is an optional item, but one that can save your bacon more often
than youd think. With your shield up, you can block most attacks and avoid
damage in doing so. If it takes too many hits, though, itll shatter and youll
have to buy a new one. Unlike previous games, you can carry multiple shields
with you in the (-) item menu. Damaged shields can be repaired at Gondos Scrap
Shop in Skyloft for a small number of rupees.
The main reason youll be hefting the shield, though, is for the shield bash.
This move is used mostly for deflection; enemies who hit your shield during a
shield bash will usually lose their balance and be open to attack for a bit.
Projectiles sent your way may also rebound on their launchers. Your shield also
wont take damage if a shield bash is used correctly.
To perform this wonderful move, just shake the Nunchuk. It doesnt matter
whether your sword is drawn or sheathed for this to happen. Your goal is to
pull this off just as the enemys attack is about to hit you. Do it too early
and your shield will take damage, and the enemy will still keep their balance.
Do it too late, of course, and you take damage yourself. Simply shaking the
Nunchuk will raise your shield, but timing it right will perform a shield bash.
Shield bashes dont work for everything, so dont go crazy with them. It also
helps if you jerk the Nunchuk forward to initiate it rather than just rattling
it. If an enemy is about to land a hit on you and you cant react meaningfully
in time, shake your Nunchuk on impulse. Youll be glad you brought your shield
- I know I say this a lot, but keep your Nunchuk in one place unless you plan
on using your shield or a spin attack. Shaking in excitement makes you raise
your shield and spin attack more than youll want to.
- When low on health, keep your shield raised as often as you can. Even if it
takes damage, its better than dying.
- You dont need to hold your arm all the way out to use your shield. Unless
you just like getting really into the game.
- Throw awkwardness aside! Flick the Nunchuk sharply but shortly to raise your
shield. Pushing it forward slowly throws your timing off and may not even lift
SLINGSHOT [slngsht] ==========
The slingshot is your first projectile weapon aside from the Skyward Strike.
Itll soon be commonly replaced by the Beetle and the bow, but it has its
purposes. The seeds this thing launches will stun some enemies, and itll solve
some early puzzles. Your ammunition can be replenished by picking up small
seeds, and buying Small Seed Satchels will increase the amount of seeds you can
carry if you take the satchels with you.
The slingshot is one of the easiest weapons to use in the game. You aim the
shot by pointing with the Wii Remote, similar to how you would get around your
Wii Menu. Press A to fire a seed. You dont necessarily have to be pointing at
the screen for it to work, but it typically feels awkward any other way. To
center the cursor back in the middle of the screen, press down on the Control
Pad while aiming. You can use that however you like.
Remember, though, that seeds are affected by gravity and dont travel far
before plummeting. The little red dot that shows where your shots go isnt
necessarily where the finished product will wind up. Its more like a
guideline than an actual rule (hooray for Pirates of the Caribbean
references!), so experiment with it to consistently predict where your shots
- If your target isnt very close to you, aim just a little higher than it to
try and hit it. The farther your target, the higher youll have to aim. Some
targets are just too far to hit with your slingshot.
- Aiming feels natural for most people when its done by pointing at the
screen. Through normal play, though, you may reach a point where the Wii Remote
moves the cursor even when its not aligned much with the screen. To reset back
to the preferred position, point at the middle of the screen when your
slingshot is out and press down on the Control Pad. The cursor will go straight
back to the center. This is the general rule for weapons you have to aim.
- If youre honestly having trouble hitting your targets with the slingshot,
consider getting Gondo to upgrade it into a Scattershot as soon as you have the
necessary materials. By holding A with a Scattershot, youll charge a circular
meter. When the meter is full, releasing your shot will scatter it into a bunch
of other projectiles which make hitting your target much easier. The charge
only uses one seed to boot.
BEETLE [btl] ==========
Yes, the favorite Skyward Sword item in the eyes of many, though admittedly
tricky to use at times. While holding it out, press A to launch it. From there,
you guide it by tilting the Wii Remote. Imagine the Beetle is attached to your
Wii Remote. Thats how it works. You cant slow it down, and you can only speed
it up by holding A after you upgrade it once from Gondo. Pressing B calls it
back to you. The Beetle only flies for a limited time, so use that resource
Later in the game, your Beetle will be upgraded to be able to carry certain
objects like bombs and pots. To pick these items up, just fly into them with
the Beetle. By holding Z after doing this, you can slow the Beetle down, look
below, and create a flight path for your held object. Pressing B will release
the object and call the Beetle back to you. Note that you can still release the
object without holding Z.
While holding the Beetle out before launching it, you aim it identically to the
Slingshot - by pointing it at the screen. Pretty basic stuff. If you want to
center your cursor to make aiming easier, press down on the Control Pad.
You can collect small items like rupees and arrows by making contact with them,
even before upgrading to the Hook Beetle. You can also sever things like ropes,
spider silk threads, and even Deku Baba stems by flying into them. Same goes
for activating switches and pretty much anything else that turns on by being
hit. Use these abilities to solve puzzles and, uh, get rich.
Upgrading the Beetle once enables it to fly fast by holding A, though it cant
do this if its carrying an object. Upgrading it again grants it more stamina
and lets it fly farther.
- The Beetle doesnt make very sharp turns. If you want to pull a U-ie or go
tight around a corner, trying flying the opposite direction you want to turn in
for a second, then making the turn. Obviously, flying fast makes your turns
- After your Beetle upgrades to the Hook Beetle, certain objects like pots
will instantly appear in its grip when its flies close to it. Try not to
dive-bomb these objects if you dont want to accidentally break them by
smooshing them against the ground.
- Is the rope not severing, no matter how many times you fly into it? Ropes
cant be cut unless one end has been tied to a base, in which case you need to
sever the rope at the base for it to work. May save you a bit of a headache in
the final dungeon.
- The Beetle really isnt an offensive weapon, but you can use it instead of
your slingshot or bow to kill small enemies like Skullwalltulas.
- This flying item makes a good scout. If youre not sure what lies around the
corner, try sending your Beetle in first so youre not surprised by something.
BOMBS [bmbs] ==========
Bombs are a staple of The Legend of Zelda, appearing in every canonical Zelda
game with the exception of The Adventure of Link (but then again, not much was
standard Zelda in that game). You can hold at least 10 of these things once you
have a Bomb Bag, but obtaining and upgrading Small Bomb Bags allows you to hold
more. As you can probably guess, you can use bombs to annihilate enemies and
destroy breakable stuff
like cracks in the wall.
New to the series is the ability to roll bombs rather than just throw them.
Rolled bombs usually travel farther than thrown ones, but they clearly cant
roll to a higher ledge. Bombs you pick up from the ground will ignite
instantly, but bombs produced from your Bomb Bag will remain dormant until
thrown or rolled. When youve got a lit bomb, make your decision fast and run
With a bomb in your hands, point the Wii Remote at the screen (or at least not
up or down) to hold it in a neutral position. Pressing A here will set it on
the ground. If you point the Wii Remote up, a curved blue line will appear from
the bomb showing you how it will fly when thrown. Flick the Wii Remote from
here to toss it. Point the Wii Remote down to create a similar blue line
showing you its trajectory when rolled. Flick it towards the screen to roll it.
These basics work for most other objects you can pick up.
Kind of like bowling on Wii Sports, how you tilt the Wii Remote affects how the
bomb will roll. If you tilt it left (like you were turning a doorknob), it will
veer off to the left, and the blue line will change accordingly. Tilt it to the
right and itll veer right.
If youre running low on bombs, you can pick one up from the ground and press B
to put it into your bag, but only if you have a Bomb Bag to use. You can do
this with any bomb in your hands. Do not attempt to add a bomb to your
collection by picking it up using the Beetle - youll just blow yourself up.
- Dont just flick the Wii Remote anytime to throw or roll a bomb. You can
only throw them when the blue line appears to indicate its trajectory. Flicking
without aiming first usually makes you aim WITHOUT throwing. I know you have an
explosive object in your hands, but thats why you shouldnt be hasty. Point
the Wii Remote up or down FIRST to create the blue line, THEN flick the Wii
Remote when youre sure Link is ready.
- If the game isnt responding to your subtle wrist-flicks, exaggerate your
movements a bit more to get your point across.
- The law of gravity is still in effect. Bombs will roll when set on slopes,
and the direction of the slope will influence the direction the bomb will go in.
- Dont get angry and flail the Wii Remote around. Not much good will come of
- If the Wii MotionPlus is acting up for some reason and insists on curving
your rolls, readjust the direction youre facing a little so your bomb winds up
at your target anyway. To my knowledge, this trick can work at any point in the
- There are a lot of little things to keep in mind when throwing or rolling
bombs, so if it's not quite acting the way you want it to, try thinking of bomb
usage in stages rather than as one process, i.e. Select with B, point Wii
Remote up, aim, stop, flick Wii Remote down. Time and experience will condense
all that into one quick series of motions, but treating it like a series of
individual checkpoints may help.
GUST BELLOWS [gstbllws] ==========
The Gust Bellows is a fun item that lets you blow stuff around from a
bottomless jar of air. (It can also create some interesting reactions when you
blow air at people with it.) If you see a pile of dirt covering something, blow
It's also simultaneously the best and worst item in Super Smash Bros. 4, but
that's another game and another debate. If you've been there, you know what I
The Gust Bellows works almost exactly like the Slingshot. Aim it by pointing
with the Wii Remote and hold A to blow air. If you want to center the cursor
back in the middle of the screen, press down on the Control Pad. Thats really
all there is to it.
When youre using the Gust Bellows to blow air onto a fan and the camera zooms
out, you can aim the Wii Remote anywhere you want and Link will still focus on
the fan. Releasing A will still cease the flow of air.
- The Gust Bellows doesnt have a monumental amount of use outside of
dungeons, but it comes in handy every now and then. If an important item is
half-buried in dirt, trying blowing the dirt away.
- The Gust Bellows stuns most enemies while theyre in the airflow, so if you
need a cheap kill
HARP [hrp] ==========
I asked father about it, and he said its called a harp! No, Zelda, I thought
it was a guitar.
If youre having problems with the motion controls in Skyward Sword, chances
are they stem from three items: the sword, the bombs, or the harp. To this day,
the harp still gives me frequent problems, likely due to how precise its use
needs to be in comparison to the other items and actions. Its no coincidence
the harp is so hit-or-miss for people.
Unlike most of your other important items, the harp is assigned to Up on the
Control Pad, not the radial menu brought up from the B button. Press Up on the
Control Pad to bring it out and hold A to prepare for strumming. While holding
A, move the Wii Remote back and forth in a semicircular sweeping motion to
strum - for all intents and purposes, all youre doing is slowly turning your
wrist left and right. If you release A, you wont be able to strum. Press up on
the Control Pad again to put the harp away. The faster you move the Wii Remote,
the faster youll play.
Unfortunately, Links hand sometimes has a tendency to jump all over the harp
strings in certain places, which naturally poses a problem as use of the harp
is centered around consistency. Ill shed advice on how to combat this issue in
the advice section below, but bear in mind its an evil you have to live with.
At some points in the story, a shining, pulsating ring will appear that youre
supposed to play along to. All you have to do here is strum in time with the
rise and fall of the ring. When it expands, strum to the lower-pitched end of
the harp. When it contracts, strum to the higher-pitched end, keeping time with
the ring. Links curious hand-spasms can screw you up here and could get you
stuck for a good while, so prepare yourself.
If you see a group of Blessed Butterflies fluttering around one spot, playing
the harp nearby will usually cause a Gossip Stone to rise. Gossip Stones tell
you interesting rumors about the rest of the world and give you a material the
first time you talk to them. Using various items on them also produces
Inside dungeons, groups of Blessed Butterflies indicate parts of the wall you
can draw on. By playing the harp in front of the wall, youll create a glowing
panel which, when you charge a Skyward Strike in front of, will let you draw on
it and produce various items. More on that is in the Drawing on Walls section.
Interestingly, strumming the harp outside of scripted events strikes different
tunes depending on what part of the background music is playing, so you can
literally play along with the music.
Also, you cant pluck individual strings to hit varying notes like you could
with most previous instruments of the series. You can only strum back and forth.
- If Links hand is skipping around the harp when you play, focus intently on
the rise and fall of the ring. Dont look at the Wii Remote or the harp. Look
at the ring. Now imagine you are one with it. You expand when it expands
contract when it contracts. It sounds goofy, but this immersion usually helps
me bypass Links erratic behavior because Im focusing on the target, not the
- Tilting the Wii Remote like youre turning a doorknob seems to have
differing effects on the way Link plays the harp. If hes being a rebellious
hero, consider tilting the Wii Remote to see if it changes Links playing for
- Bring along a bowl of popcorn or something. You could be stuck at the
ring-parts for a fair bit. Alright, the popcorn part is totally up to you, but
I wish you and your Wii MotionPlus luck.
WHIP [whp] ==========
The whip is used mostly to latch onto things, enabling you to either swing on
it like a rope or manipulate objects. When you have it out, all you have to do
is flick the Wii Remote to lash out with it. The angle you flick from
influences the direction the whip goes in, but not by much, so dont worry
When you have hold of an object that you cant swing from, flick the Wii Remote
in another direction to interact with it. Some objects can only be interacted
with by flicking it a certain direction (giant levers, for instance), so take a
look at the objects surroundings if pulling on the whip doesnt seem to do
anything at first.
In the event you do latch onto something you can swing from, youll
automatically jump off and start swinging. The standard rope swinging and
climbing rules apply there, so see the appropriate section for details.
- As usual, locking onto your target helps greatly with accuracy. Its pretty
much impossible to latch onto certain objects without locking on, so make good
use of it.
- Some Bokoblins use Monster Horns to alert others to your presence and
basically land you in all kinds of crap. If you hit them with the whip,
however, you can steal that Monster Horn and get yourself a nifty material.
CLAWSHOTS [clwshts] ==========
If you've played basically any 3D Zelda game, these should feel pretty familiar
to you. The Hookshot concept actually started in Link's Awakening, but it was
more like a retractable ball-and-chain. Skyward Sword, however, takes off of
Twilight Princess by providing you with TWO Hookshots, or Clawshots as it were,
for you to zip around prehistoric Hyrule shouting "I'm the Keeseman!" at the
top of your lungs. Their functions are a little more elementary in this game,
but you should still get a feel for what they do.
The Clawshots control almost exactly like the bow and Gust Bellows; press B to
pull them out and aim them using the Wii Remote, just like you might aim them
in real life. Press A to fire one of the Clawshots and B to put them away
again. If the fired Clawshot latches onto a target and pulls you to it, the
controls are still the same, but be aware that pressing B to put them away will
result in your plummet to Mother Earth below. The only real exception to this
is when crawling on vines on a wall; Link will automatically put the Clawshots
away and hang onto the vines, so you'll have to press B again to bring them
out. Don't worry, Link will hang onto the vines with one hand. You'll only drop
from the vines if you put your Clawshots away and press A. And as always, you
can center the cursor in the middle of the screen by pressing down on the
Control Pad while aiming.
In addition to pulling yourself to targets, you can also pull some small
objects to you, like hearts or rupees. This may come in handy if you need
health desperately and the only heart in a five mile radius is floating down a
bottomless pit. The Clawshots can also briefly stun enemies and break/mess with
pots and other environmental factors, so you may want to use them and save your
arrows and seeds for later.
To clear up some potential confusion, the Clawshots are not nearly as
all-inclusive as they were in Twilight Princess. You cannot use the Clawshots
in conjunction with any other items like you could with the Iron Boots from
Twilight Princess. You can't raise or lower yourself while hanging from above,
either. To put it simply, the Clawshots in Skyward Sword are used solely to
cross terrain, not to solve puzzles. If you find some past Clawshot function
missing, it's probably because nothing in the game requires it.
You also can't upgrade the Clawshots at all, so what you see is what you get.
For better or worse, you're stuck with the same Clawshots the whole game.
- If you need another cheap kill, you may consider hitting enemies with the
Clawshots to stun them for just a split second before diving in for the
- If the Clawshots keep jumping around the screen or pointing elsewhere when
you aim at a certain area, re-center your cursor and aim slowly so the
MotionPlus might not skip on you and you can gauge where the "bad" areas are
easier. If the problem won't alleviate itself, you may want to try
repositioning Link so he's facing the target at a better angle. And remember,
if your Wii MotionPlus is constantly giving you problems, you've probably got
an environmental or technical error that you may want to right before you
BOW [bw] ==========
It shows up late into the game, but its still a welcome addition to any Zelda
players arsenal. The bow is a projectile weapon that lets you hit targets and
enemies from afar. Aim it by pointing with the Wii Remote. You can fire it
instantly by pressing A, but the shot will be weak and inaccurate. By holding
A, youll charge up a meter similar to how the Scattershot is used. When its
full, youll have a stronger, more accurate shot, and the camera will even zoom
in a bit to accommodate you.
However, you can bypass the loading time by holding C and moving the Nunchuk
sharply backward (not forward as I'd previously said - thank you, Ali, for
pointing out this error). This will instantly charge the shot and zoom in, and
considering its not hard to do, this will be your preferred method of firing
throughout the game.
As always, pressing down on the Control Pad centers the cursor back in the
middle of the screen, so if aiming the bow just isnt feeling right for you,
use it to your advantage. Just be careful not to get careless and summon your
ever-ready servant girl, or youll have to cancel out of a paragraph of text.
Upgrading your bow increases its power and extends its firing range a bit, but
it ultimately doesnt make a huge amount of difference. Most enemies you care
about shooting will die in one hit anyway. Still, its up to you, and upgraded
bows frankly look cooler.
- If holding C and moving the Nunchuk backward isnt charging your shot like
you want it to, it helps to imagine youre holding a real bow. You dont just
flick your bow in real life. You push and pull distinctly with both hands.
Remember, if Skyward Swords motion controls are giving you problems, try
exaggerating. It requires less than you think.
- Just like with bombs, the law of gravity is still in effect. Arrows dont
fly forever, so aim your shots a little above the target if its far away.
- Your quiver starts out extremely small (20 arrows? What madness is this?!).
If this gives you problems, consider buying and upgrading Small Quivers from
Rupin in the Bazaar on Skyloft. With fully-upgraded Small Quivers occupying all
eight possible slots in your Adventure Pouch, you could cart around 140 arrows.
Just a figure for you to ponder.
MOGMA MITTS [mgmmtts] ==========
The Mogma Mitts really arent governed by motion control much, but it is still
used. After acquiring these suckers, standing above a round patch of dirt with
an X on it and pressing A will let you dig into it. The difference between the
Mogma Mitts and Digging Mitts, though, is that some patches are actually
entrances to underground tunnels you cant access using the Digging Mitts. The
Mogma Mitts, on the other hand, will finally grant you entry to these tunnels.
Once underground, you can move Link around using the Control Stick and hold A
to speed up his crawling. Flicking the Wii Remote will cause him to lash out
with the Mogma Mitts, which can perform various maneuvers such as attacking
enemies, breaking rocks, and pushing switches. This is the only
motion-controlled action using the Mogma Mitts, so I cant imagine you having
too many problems with it. If you do, of course, let me know and Ill see what
I can do.
- Link cant turn around while in underground passages. If you want Link to
enter another tunnel with his butt in the opposite direction, crawl into a
perpendicular tunnel, then back out and enter the tunnel you want.
- Rupoors, black rupees that actually subtract from your rupee total, can
occasionally be found underground, so dont touch them!
- Bombs, when hit, will roll forward about one square (the length from one
junction to another) and ignite. If you need it to go further, crawl forward
and hit it again. It wont explode in your face from you scratching it, but
dont be slow and wind up with a face full of ash, either. Link dislikes smoke.
BUG-CATCHING NET [bgnt] ==========
The Bug-Catching Net is entirely optional and can be bought at Beedles Air
Shop in Skyloft for 50 rupees. (You know how to get into Beedles Air Shop,
right? Its the house flying around the Bazaar - keep your Wizard of Oz jokes
to yourself. Hit the bell hanging beneath it with a projectile like a seed or
arrow to get him to stop and lower a rope you can grab onto and ride up.) As
its name implies, this net is used to nab all kinds of little critters you
otherwise cant obtain
Funnily enough, the Bug-Catching Net works very similarly to your sword,
although attempting to spar with it will probably wind up with your face
planted into the dirt. I dont recommend it. By selecting the Bug-Catching Net
from your B-menu, you can whip it out and prepare for critter catching. It
moves almost exactly like your sword, so you should know the drill - point and
angle with your Wii Remote to move the net around. By turning the Wii Remote
like a doorknob, you can change the angle of the net, though this actually
serves little purpose; you can catch most targets regardless of how the net is
Not only can the net catch bugs, but it can also nab small birds, tumbleweeds
from the Lanayru Desert, and minor items like rupees and hearts. The net starts
off rather small, so I highly recommend upgrading it as soon as reasonably
possible. Bugs can be either sold to Strich for money (at night only) or
infused into your potions to enhance their effects, which can be done at
Berties Potion Shop in Skylofts Bazaar. Birds are used entirely for their
feathers, which serve as materials, and blue bird feathers are cited as being
particularly rare. Then again, Skyward Sword seems to have a funny definition
of the term rare, so expect to see quite a few blue birds on your journey.
Tumbleweeds are also used as materials for upgrading your stuff.
- If your Bug-Catching Net is acting up and wont move to certain spots
without jumping around, move the net very slowly and test which areas cause it
to jump, then adjust your catching movements accordingly. If its being
unreasonable, consider recalibrating your Wii MotionPlus. The Bug-Catching Net
shouldnt give you too many problems, and thankfully its optional.
- Your Bug-Catching Net is initially tiny, and distance can be hard to judge.
If this frustrates you, upgrade!
- Remember, the angle the net is tilted at doesnt matter a whole lot. Just so
long as you scoop up the target in a swift motion, the opening can be pretty
- If the lack of depth perception is proving to be an issue, you can choose to
throw subtlety aside and leap in waving the bug net like a madman. Try to sneak
close first to increase your odds of accidentally achieving victory.
- Be careful not to step on the bugs youre trying to catch!
MISC. MOTION CONTROLS [msccntrls] ============================================
This section covers every motion-controlled part of the game that does not
involve weaponry or items. This includes mine carts, swimming, and even
recalibrating the Wii MotionPlus, so if a smaller aspect of the game is
giving you grief, you should probably refer to here.
RECALIBRATING THE WII MOTIONPLUS [rclbrtng] ==========
Skyward Sword has excellent motion controls. It really does. But sometimes your
Wii MotionPlus will just kick up a fuss and refuse to respond to you the way
you want it to. If it gets ridiculous (to the point where even basic combat
becomes iffy), you should recalibrate it, which theoretically resets the Wii
MotionPlus back to zero and allows it to focus. You shouldnt have to do this
too often, but I suspect itll happen sometime.
Your MotionPlus is first calibrated before the Title Screen, and youll go
through a similar ordeal to get it back on track. Press 1 to bring up the
status menu. On the page showing your quest items (Pieces of Heart, songs
learned, state of sword, etc.), there should be a round icon with an image of a
Wii Remote on it. Either point at this or highlight it by moving to it with the
Control Stick and press A to begin another calibration session. Set your Wii
Remote on as flat as surface as you can get it (though total flatness is
usually unnecessary) and wait for the sequence to complete itself.
Unfortunately, I am not the expert on the Wii MotionPlus, so I cant give you
all kinds of cool tips to solve any problem. If you need further details, refer
to the Wii MotionPlus instruction manual or Nintendos official website.
- If pointing is harder than juggling live sea urchins on steroids, remember
that you can use the Control Stick to get around most menus just as well.
- If recalibration still doesnt solve the problem, try disconnecting and
reconnecting the Wii MotionPlus several times, then testing it out. This was
gathered from the Wii MotionPlus instruction manual, so if anything goes wrong
there, it wasnt me!
- Extremely low battery power in the Wii Remote can make the MotionPlus less
accurate. Perhaps all it needs is a charge.
- Apparently, moving the MotionPlus from a cold environment to a warm one can
cause it to be unresponsive, so no more playing Skyward Sword in the
- Another tidbit from Ali (with a prologue from me): The Wii MotionPlus can
respond somewhat differently depending on circumstances and location, so if
you're one of those Skyward Sword owners who just can't get Link to respond
right so often, don't underestimate the power of recalibration. You may want to
do it every hour or so, and considering it only takes about twenty seconds,
it's not that big a deal.
- Yet another useful tidbit from Ali: if Skyward Sword is consistently wonky
for you, you may want to recalibrate your actual Wii's sensor bar, not just the
MotionPlus itself. You can do this through your Wii's home menus, so I won't
get into it too much here, but it's food for thought. Yes, Skyward Sword relies
on the MotionPlus's gyroscope instead of infrared sensors, but recalibrating
the sensor bar could still help.
GENERAL MENUS [gnrlmns] ==========
General menus includes the file select screen, map, status screen, and any
place in the game youre asked to choose between dialogue options. This is
extremely simple (just point around with the Wii Remote), but as a motion
control, it deserves a spot on the list. If you want to put the cursor back in
the center, press down on the Control Pad. This works in any general menu. You
can also use the Control Stick to move between options if pointing with the Wii
Remote is too awkward or too gimmicky (I once chose the wrong retort to Groose
when pointing to select a line of dialogue, so I recommend the Control Stick
- Make sure youre settled on the choice you want when pointing with the Wii
Remote so you dont accidentally skip to the wrong option. Center the cursor by
pressing down on the Control Pad if you think it needs it.
- If pointing is too awkward, use the Control Stick instead.
ITEM MENU [tmmn] ==========
Most major items you get are put into a circular menu you can access by holding
B (just pressing it brings out your currently-selected item). With the menu up,
you can point with the Wii Remote to move the cursor (which is connected to the
center with a straight line) to the item icons gathered in a circle around the
screen. By releasing B while the cursor is resting on a filled item space, you
will select that item and instantly equip it. If you dont want to select a new
item, move the cursor to a blank item space or the center of the screen and
release B. The game still goes on while this menu is up, so dont let your
guard down if youre surrounding by angry Bokoblins.
A similar circular menu is brought up by holding (-). The items in this menu
are smaller, optional tagalongs you can store and retrieve from Peatrice at the
Bazaar in Skyloft. The same rules apply, though not everything from this menu
can be equipped.
- If the Wii Remote is messing up and causing your cursor to bounce somewhere
else when you point into a certain area, point slowly to your wanted item. This
allows the MotionPlus to focus and lets you gauge the safe zones you can
- If this still doesnt fix it, sounds like its time to recalibrate.
LOFTWING [lftwng] ==========
Link's primary method of getting around the sky is via his big red bird, the
Crimson Loftwing. To ride it, you'll have to dash (not walk) off certain
places, like the wooden half-bridges, on Skyloft's main island. On the smaller
islands, running off any ledge of the physical island itself will work. Either
way, Link will enter skydiving mode, and pressing down on the Control Pad will
summon the Loftwing. (Failing to signal in time will result in either
reappearing at your leaping point or face-planting into the dirt. The latter
hurts, but it's funny.)
The Loftwing is almost entirely motion controlled and can give you a little
grief if you're used to previous Zelda mounts like Epona. Move the Wii Remote
up and down (like flapping a wing) to make the Loftwing ascend. You'll need to
do this when you first ride your Loftwing to make it move at all. Pointing the
Wii Remote like you would when controlling the Beetle dictates the direction
the Loftwing will go in. Imagine your Wii Remote is part of the Loftwing's
head. By tilting the Remote, you turn your bird another direction. Tilting the
Remote down increases the Loftwing's speed, and the further down you tilt it,
the faster your boost.
That's essentially it for the Loftwing motion controls, but you'll occasionally
need to press buttons as well. Press down on the Control Pad to dismount your
Loftwing and go skydiving. Hold B to slow your bird down, which, in conjunction
with using Z to look straight below, can be useful in precision skydiving.
Press A to give your Loftwing a sudden boost of speed. Each boost uses a
"feather" (located on the bottom of the screen), of which you have three.
Feathers regenerate fairly quickly, but if you use all three, you obviously
can't boost until they return. This boost turns into an attack later in the
game, but this guide does not cover that.
- Remember, you can't call your Loftwing just anywhere. Running over a wall
and off the edge of a cliff will result in your butt being hauled out of the
skies by a Skyloft Knight. You can only call your Loftwing if you're skydiving,
which, in turn, only happens if you dash off a ledge.
- It may take awhile to get used to the Loftwing's controls. Try subtle turns
and motions with the Wii Remote to help familiarize yourself with the control
scheme. Otherwise you're going to wind up all over the place.
- As with stabbing with the sword, using your A boost can sometimes make you
accidentally do other things with your body, like moving the Wii Remote. If
you're tired of your Spiral Charges missing, make an effort not to move your
body when pressing the A button.
- A note with dismounting around Skyloft's main island - you can't just leap
down and appear wherever you want to. Depending on what part of Skyloft you're
closest to, you'll appear in specially designated areas. This prevents you from
accessing areas you're supposed to get to using certain items.
SKYDIVING [skydvng] ==========
Frequently in the sky and rarely on the surface world, you will skydive to
reach your destination. Skydiving most commonly happens prior to and right
after mounting and dismounting your Loftwing respectively. In other words,
running off designated ledges or dismounting your Loftwing will initiate the
To control your direction, hold the Wii Remote flat, then tilt in in the angle
you want to go in. Imagine a tiny Link is laying on your Wii Remote, and by
tilting it, he slides in that direction. The farther you tilt it, the faster
Link will go in that direction. If you point the Wii Remote to the floor, Link
will shape his body like a missile pointing downward and descend at around
twice the speed. He's obviously harder to control like this, but you'll reach
your target quicker. You can still influence Link's direction by turning the
Wii Remote like an upward-facing doorknob, but the change is small.
Oh yes, the only skydiving button control also bears mentioning. As you draw
near to the ground, pressing B will whip out your Sailcloth, which is like a
miniature parachute. You'll have to hold the button if you want to land safely.
Or you could neglect that nuance and turn yourself into a Link crepe to be
served at the local Skyhop, but it'll cost you health. The skydiving sequence
from the sky to one of the surface lands doesn't require pressing B, despite
what Fi nags you about if you fail to press it the first time.
- Tilting the Wii Remote forward and down makes Link move forward, but tilting
it too far turns him into a human missile. If this is creating problems for
you, you may want to consider turning Link sideways, then moving the Wii Remote
to the side closest to where you want to end up. That way, he actually falls
sideways to your destination without the danger of going nuclear.
- You know Zelda's challenge near the beginning of the game, when she pushes
you off the Statue of the Goddess and tells you a true hero would wait until
the last moment to pull out his Sailcloth? Don't buy it! You can still complete
the ritual by opening the Sailcloth early, and if nobody considers you a hero
after what you go through during the game, you can tell them to go kiss an
SWINGING ON ROPES [swngng] ==========
Throughout the game, you'll come across vines and ropes hanging down that you
can grab onto. Stand directly underneath it and press A to hop on, then use the
Control Stick to climb up or down. You can also leap onto the rope from higher
up, but make sure you aim correctly or the aftermath may not be pleasant. If
you've got the rope swinging, hold B to stop it, allowing you to climb up
and/or change direction with the Control Stick. Press A to hop off, which is
important for reaching new places when you've got a good swing going.
To start swinging, hold the Wii Remote upright and quickly tilt it in the
direction you want to swing in. It's like maneuvering a swing on a playground.
To go forward, you kick your legs forward, right? To swing forward on the rope,
tilt the Wii Remote forward (so that it's almost in its flat, neutral
position). To swing backward, tilt the Wii Remote back. It's a hacksaw kind of
- You can turn while swinging, but your momentum and direction will be all
whacked up until you regain control of your swinging. Don't jump off too
readily while turning, or you may miss your target.
- Speaking of missing targets, make sure you're lined up with the rope before
you jump at it. Using Z to center the camera behind you or C to look around in
first-person makes this job easier.
- Some ropes are connected at two points and need to be severed from one end
before you can swing on them. The Beetle is traditionally (if not always) used
for this role, but bear in mind you can only cut the rope at its very base.
Cutting anywhere in the middle won't work. Similar advice has been laid down in
the Beetle section.
TIGHTROPE WALKING [tghtrp] ==========
Rather than swinging on ropes, you can also walk across the ones that are
stretched out horizontally. These ropes can't be severed, so don't bother. Link
will start walking across a rope when you come into contact with it. Hold the
Wii Remote upright so it's pointing at the ceiling and prepare for a little
balancing action. (According to Ali, you can also point it forward as normal
and swing it back and forth like the harp. This may work better for you in some
instances.) Use the Control Stick to move forward and backward. When Link
starts to lean on one side too much, tilt the Wii Remote in the opposite
direction, like a lever. Link leans right, tilt the Remote left. He leans left,
tilt it right. Your goal is to stay upright and balanced on the tightrope,
leaning left and right as you need to. Lean over too much for too long, and
you'll either hang onto the side of the rope with your hands or plop right off.
Sometimes there's a bottomless pit beneath you. You don't want to be there when
that happens, do you?
If you shake the Wii Remote, you can jostle the rope, which may knock off
enemies or other critters. Just make sure you don't lose your balance and fall
off in the process.
By holding A, you can speed up the process of tightrope walking at the expense
of your stamina and the ease of control. You'll need to lean left and right at
about double the normal speed if you want to avoid falling off when holding A
to move faster across it. Use it at your own risk.
- The best way to quickly cross a tightrope is to waggle the Wii Remote left
and right in a swift but smooth fashion. Link will bob his head in and out with
this method and usually won't start to lose his balance at all. If he does, you
know what to do to fix it.
- In Faron Woods, some tightropes have little sticky bombs on them that will
adhere to you when you touch them. After blinking several times, they'll
probably burst and send you off the rope. Look out for these things before they
get you, and use things like Skyward Strikes, the Beetle, or the Slingshot to
take care of them. (You can also trick Bokoblins to walk into them, if I recall
correctly. I may not, but it wouldn't surprise me if it was true.) When on
solid ground, rolling and using spin attacks will shake the bombs off you, so
you may want to get a bomb, walk back to the starting point, knock it off, and
continue. Shaking the Wii Remote may also jostle it off, but be careful you
don't fall off the rope anyway.
- As I mentioned above, Bokoblins may occasionally join you on the tightrope.
If they get close enough, they'll whack you off. You can shake the Wii Remote
to make them lose their balance and fall off. You can even do this while
hanging onto the side of the rope, so there's still some hope even if you
tumble over yourself. They may step on your fingers, though....
CLIMBING [clmbng] ==========
Climbing is pretty self-explanatory, so I'm not going to spend too much time
here. "Climbing" includes ladders, ivy-covered walls, and hanging onto ledges.
In any case, climbing is initiated by walking into the object in question. In
the case of walls, you can run up them a bit before hanging from them if the
wall is high enough. The Control Stick moves you around, but what you're able
to do differs between the three.
Ladder - Up and down
Ivy-covered wall - 360 degrees
Ledge - Left and right
Press A to drop off. The motion controlled aspect, however, lets you "hop"
around the object to reach your destination faster. Jerk the Wii Remote in the
direction you want to hop in, and Link will perform a small jump to reach it.
As with the Control Stick, you can only hop in directions allowed for by the
object. You can only hop up and down ladders, for instance. Hopping uses small
bursts of stamina, so don't go wild with it. Especially where ivy-covered walls
and ledges are concerned, as they slowly drain your stamina anyway.
- Hopping repeatedly uses more stamina than simply crawling slowly, so
although hopping is faster, you may want to crawl slowly so that you actually
make it to your target.
- Do not attempt to hop across ladders, walls, and ledges in real life. I
don't know how Link pulls it off, but most of us aren't legendary heroes. Don't
try this at home.
DRAWING ON WALLS [drwng] ==========
After you get the harp, you can make shining symbols appear on certain walls by
strumming the harp near them. Blessed Butterflies usually hang around these
spots, so they're easy to find. When it appears, charging up your Skyward
Strike next to it will let you draw on the wall with your sword. Depending on
what you draw, various items will come out.
Heart = 10 hearts
Circle = 3 sets of bombs (15 total)
Hexagon = Lots of rupees (amount varies)
Arrow = 3 sets of arrows (15 total)
Triforce = 3 pink fairies
Anything else = 3 hearts
It should be noted that you have to draw very distinctly, or you'll get the
crappy filler reward of three hearts. Ideally, the "hexagon" would look like
your common rupee, and the Triforce needs to look like the symbol of Hyrule's
divinity and not some random blob.
Hold A to start drawing and point with the Wii Remote to move the tip of the
sword around. When you release A, Link will stop drawing, and you'll get
whatever reward your sketch most resembles. (Except the Triforce. If only
obtaining the Triforce was that easy... Ganondorf would have ruled the world
since his birth.) If you decide against drawing something, pressing B will exit
out of the action. But wouldn't you want something before you go?
- As stated previously, whatever you're drawing has to be clear and distinct
unless you're going for the 3 hearts. Draw very slowly and make sure all angles
are sharp and pointed. Drawing using a gyroscope and not the Wii Remote pointer
is difficult, but it's this or no reward at all.
- To make the game tell what you're drawing easier, draw big. Mistakes blend
in more that way.
SWIMMING [swmmng] ==========
Until you acquire the Water Dragon's Scale about halfway through the game,
swimming requires no motion controls and is pretty simple; move the Control
Stick around to swim. Once you have that coveted piece of Faron, however, you
are able to dive under the waves and swim more freely. While in swimming-level
water, press A to dive under the surface. Holding A will propel you forward,
and the Control Stick no longer has any influence here. Changing direction is
now remarkably similar to controlling the Beetle or your Loftwing. Pretend Link
is connected to the end of your Wii Remote. The direction you aim in is the
direction Link will swim in. Though remember, if you release A, he'll just kind
of hang there suspended in the water.
If you shake the Nunchuk while swimming, you'll burst forward like a spiraling
missile, which damages enemies and destroys or otherwise manipulates certain
objects. It's also a faster way of getting around, which I'm sure will interest
you. Each spin drains a chunk of your oxygen meter, though, and if your oxygen
runs out, you lose one heart every second. The effects on your oxygen and
health are doubled in Hero Mode, so don't go spinning too readily.
And keep your barrel roll jokes to yourself. Link likes to think he's spinning
like a water dragon.
- Remember that the Control Stick doesn't move you while you're underwater. It
can be hard readjusting from on-the-surface control to underwater control. It
sounds a little goofy, but if swimming keeps giving you problems, try to
imagine that YOU'RE the one swimming, not Link. Lean forward and/or stretch
your arms out in front if it helps with the illusion. That way when you want to
turn in real life, you'll turn the Wii Remote the right direction. Nobody says
you have to do this all the time, but it may help get you started.
- If you spin into the surface of the water, you'll leap out like a dolphin.
You can use this to get onto land or replenish your oxygen quickly.
- You can get about six or seven spins before your oxygen runs out and your
health starts depleting. In Hero Mode, you have about half of that. Just like
climbing, it may take longer to get where you're going without spinning, but
you'll have more oxygen to do it with.
MINE CART [mncrt] ==========
"I am Gimli son of Gloin, and this metal device here is mine Cart!" No, that's
not exactly how it goes. At any rate, there is a mine cart track somewhere in
the Lanayru Desert that you'll have to navigate at least once, and it helps to
know what you're doing so you don't go tumbling out. Using it to get from point
A to point B is actually very easy so long as you don't get overzealous, but
the mini-game part of it (accessed from Gortram the Goron after clearing the
Sandship dungeon) is what really requires precision.
Press A while standing beside the mine cart to hop in. If you hold the Wii
Remote flat in its neutral position (like you're pointing at the TV screen) and
tilt it like a doorknob left or right, you'll notice Link leans in the chosen
direction. Tilt left, lean left. Tilt right, lean right. The mine cart goes
fast naturally, and without adjusting your weight, you will eventually be
thrown off the track.
Your goal is to lean into the curve, so if the track starts curving right, lean
right. This gets you a temporary speed boost and, well, keeps you on the rails.
This is basically all that's involved with the mine cart, although you can use
B to slow down. If you're not going for a new record in the Rickety Coaster
mini-game, don't be afraid to brake if it helps you survive. (Then again, maybe
there's a strategic way to brake in Rickety Coaster to make you reach the end
faster. I'm not the expert there.)
The only other thing that bears mentioning is the points where you'll have to
switch from one track to another. If you see the track split into two parts up
ahead, lean into the direction you want to go in. If you want to take the left
track, for instance, lean left. So long as you keep an eye out, you should be
- To make sure you're leaning all the way or in the right direction, consider
putting yourself into Link's boots (kind of like my swimming suggestion) and
actually leaning as he leans. If you pretend you're in the cart with him,
you'll get a greater sense of timing and urgency.
- In addition to the above tip, try holding the butt of the Wii Remote to your
chest to make the leans feel more natural. Don't forget to actually tilt the
Wii Remote along with your body.
- CONSTANT VIGILANCE! Look out for points where the track splits in two. To
help with this, look at the track ahead, not at Link.
- A lot of track splits will have one path that leads to a dead end (and,
consequently, a warp back to the last station). You can usually see those
coming, so as long as you react in time, you'll be fine. If you can't see the
results of either track, one probably just loops back to an earlier point.
- Using B to brake doesn't make you a pansy.
FIRING THE CANNON [frngcnnn] ==========
To navigate the Lanayru Sand Sea, you will need the help of an ancient robot
called Skipper. Skipper will drive you around in a motorboat and help you reach
your targets, and unlike most ancient robots, actually treats you with decency
and respect. I won't really teach you how to operate the boat, but I will show
you how to work the cannon.
Press B to stop the boat and bring the cannon out. Point with the Wii Remote to
adjust the aim (a curving blue line will show you where your shots are
currently lined up). The higher you aim, the farther the shot. The lower you
aim, the closer the shot. Left and right is pretty obvious - it just aims the
cannon left or right. Press A to fire a cannonball. You have an unlimited
number of these things, so don't worry about running out of ammo. When you want
to put the cannon away, press B.
- Cannonball explosions have a pretty good blast radius about them, so when
dealing with multiple land enemies such as Bokoblins, aim for the center of
them and watch them burn.
- Aquatic enemies, on the other hand, tend to be a bit trickier to hit. You
usually have to actually hit them with the cannonball and not just rely on the
explosion to take them out.
- The very end point of the cannonball trajectory is marked by a blue circle.
Use this to help you aim your shots better.
BOSS DOOR SCULPTURES [sclptrs] ==========
These little doohickeys are basically the Boss Keys of Skyward Sword.
Evidently, you either love them or you hate them. I love them. I can't get
enough of them. But your opinion may be different, and the control scheme is
still a little weird.
When you have the little sculpture thingy (you'll know it when you see it), you
can initiate the boss-door-unlocking sequence by standing in front of the
boss's door and pressing A. The image of the sculpture will hover in front of
the grooves on the door's face. It's pretty obvious what you have to do here;
you have to turn the sculpture and find the side that fits into the groove to
unlock the door. As these sculptures get pretty complex later, it may take a
fair bit of searching. Hold A to grab the sculpture and enable yourself to turn
it. Move the Wii Remote to turn it in that direction. It's a lot like spinning
a globe. Holding A is like putting your hand on the globe, and pointing the Wii
Remote produces the same kind of spinning effect (pointing up and right turns
the sculpture in that direction, bringing the bottom-left corner up front). The
sculpture doesn't keep spinning like a globe, though - only as far as you move
the Wii Remote. When you release A, you temporarily relinquish control of the
sculpture, but you can readjust your grip.
When the groove starts glowing, you've got the correct side facing you. Press A
when this happens to insert the sculpture, unlock the door, and automatically
enter inside. If you want to stop fiddling with the sculpture, press B.
- The Control Stick has no effect here, so you'll have to really imagine the
sculpture as globe-like when you turn it. You can also twist and tilt the Wii
Remote to change its angle. However you get there, you can get there
- All in all, these sculptures are a bit like Rubik's Cubes. That means you'll
have to think imaginatively in order to solve these puzzles. Let's say you have
the sculpture in a certain position. You're fairly positive it's technically in
the right position, but it's upside-down and facing left instead of right. To
adjust it the way you want it to end up, you could first twist the Wii Remote
like a doorknob (I know I keep using that analogy) until it's right-side-up,
180 degrees from its starting point. From there, grab it and turn it
globe-style either left two sides or right two sides. It'll end up mirrored
from the position it started in either way. If you guessed right and the
sculpture now fits, you can press A to enter the boss room. If not, you had an
interesting theory, but you need to keep looking. That's just one example of
manipulating the sculpture to make it face a certain side, but I'm sure you can
handle the rest.
FAQ [qstns] ==================================================================
If you have any other questions about this guide or the motion controls in
Skyward Sword, send them to my e-mail listed in the appropriate section. The
answer will then be posted here, so look out for the version number of this
guide to see if it's changed since sending the question. If it has (usually by
a .01 increment), I've probably answered it for you. If your question has no
relevance to this guide, I may answer your question by returning your e-mail
instead of posting it here.
Q: Hey, I love Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, but it really frustrates me (or
is it the Wii, or the WiiMotionPlus?). Okay, when I turn on the Wii, the Motion
Sensor (or the gadget that picks up the infrared signals) is effective and lets
me select the channel or game that I want from the Wii Menu. After that, when I
choose the game, it opens up to the instructions, right? Then I do the
calibration test, and the 'Point at the screen' test comes up. But then, I
can't point at the middle of the screen, so I can't access the game. Here's
something else to think about; I've played the game before. It has worked a
month or two ago, but I can't play it anymore.
A: As I've mentioned before, I am unfortunately not an expert in the department
of the Wii and its components, and it's hard to find a straight answer to your
question online. Before delving into what may or may not work, perhaps I should
relate a similar instance of mine that may put things into perspective. I
normally play on a small personal television, but later decided to move the Wii
downstairs to play Skyward Sword on the much larger family TV. It generally
controlled okay, but periodically the MotionPlus would appear to flip out or
just stop working when I pointed to certain areas. I never had these problems
in the shelter of my room, but they suddenly sprung up when the Wii was moved
to the larger television. Therefore, it would appear location has a lot to do
with the Wii MotionPlus's problems. It's almost certainly not your Wii or the
Wii Remote itself, as you're able to get around the Wii Menu just fine. It's
only when you get to Skyward Sword and the Wii MotionPlus activates, right?
I'll throw out a general list of things that could be going wrong:
- Direct sunlight apparently has a tendency to scramble communication between
the Wii Remote/MotionPlus and the sensor bar, as you're essentially mixing
infrared light with infrared light and creating chaos. Silly as it may sound,
you may want to avoid playing the Wii near a window open to the east or west,
as that's where sunlight can come in directly. Chances are this was my problem
with the MotionPlus.
- If too many things are between the sensor bar and the MotionPlus, it's
conceivable communication would again get waylaid. I doubt you'd play with a
wall in the way, but try clearing the area before starting the game if there
are things in the way.
- Games that use the MotionPlus consume more energy from the Wii Remote than
games that don't and especially not as much as games that don't use motion
controls at all. Perhaps batteries that are low on power or out of
place/incorrectly installed would be enough to throw the MotionPlus out of
whack. Just a hypothesis.
- For another complete hypothesis, perhaps different versions of Wii products
respond differently to one another (i.e. MotionPlus 2.0 doesn't work well with
sensor bar 3.0). I've seen a few people online who played Skyward Sword
specifically with the golden Wii Remote Plus that was bundled with the game and
complained of control issues. Maybe their version of the Wii Remote Plus didn't
work well with their version of the sensor bar or Wii. This is mere guesswork
on my part.
- Obviously, make sure the MotionPlus is plugged in all the way and installed
correctly. Try plugging it and unplugging it multiple times (I'm not sure if
this is meant to be done while the game is running or not - this comes from the
Wii MotionPlus instruction manual), then pointing at the screen again and
pressing a button to make sure the Wii Remote is activated.
- The MotionPlus instruction manual specifically mentions that the Wii Remote
should be laid face down on a flat surface while being calibrated. If you've
been laying it face up, perhaps you should try turning it upside down for
calibration. To wander into the realm of hypotheses again, maybe the
MotionPlus's height and angle to the sensor bar determine how good its
- Finally, it could just be that your MotionPlus broke or otherwise went bad
during the time you stopped playing Skyward Sword. If this is the case, the
most convenient way to reacquire a MotionPlus that works would be to buy a new
one - if you know someone else with a MotionPlus, maybe you should ask to try
theirs so you know it's just your MotionPlus and not one of the other problems
I'm about out of ideas, so I hope I've helped you in some way. Let me know how
it goes, and I wish you the best of luck with your MotionPlus endeavors.
Q: Hello halojutsu,
I really need some clarification on a couple of seemingly simple issues I'm
having with the Wii remote control of Link.
When I push a box, I have the HARDEST time climbing up onto it without
instantly getting the "push" for the "A" button instantly coming up. I don't
want to push the box anymore, I want to climb up on the box.
Other major issues: I have GREAT difficulty with flying my Loftwing, but even
more difficulty with purposeful directional "skydiving". Also controlling and
"fine" tuning a bomb throw or roll. I could be mere centimeters away from my
bomb target and just barely bump the directional control on the nunchuck and
the direction of the bomb flight or roll jumps in a completely different
direction... while the fuse is getting smaller... ugh!!! Also, "bug net"
directional control as well as a depth perception issue that may be just me in
the bug hunting realm of Skyward Sword... but it seems awfully difficult to
gauge how far or near a particular bug is to my net when I swipe at it...
I did figure out pretty much on my own how to tightrope walk by "wiggling" the
remote in a horizontal plane while tilting to the left or right depending on
what is the opposite way Link is leaning... so I'm not completely useless.
Controlling the beetle in flight is really frustrating as well, but like you
said, small movements vise large major swings with the remote seem to be the
best approach, although I seem to find myself (mostly when I'm really
frustrated) wildly swinging the remote at my TV, accidentally pushing map
buttons or help buttons or pulling out my net while fighting a bad guy.
Calmness is an issue I have while playing, but I sure would like to get better
at the controls because it makes the whole experience SO MUCH MORE FUN!
Thanks for your tips halojutsu, I'm hoping you can really help.
P.S. I do have a great "Blue Bird" catching secret if anyone is interested. ;o)
A: Well, there's a lot to take in here, so I'll address each issue individually.
- Pushing and climbing on blocks: To be honest, I think this has given players
fits in pretty much every 3D Zelda game to an extent. In Skyward Sword, I've
found it's helpful to move the control stick in a small circle after pushing
the block where you wanted it, then holding A while moving forward to climb up
the block. This gets Link's body ever so briefly away from the block, combating
his dire urge to push blocks, so deeply ingrained into his psyche since 1986,
and gets him running a bit early. In other words, when Link's facing away from
the block, he doesn't want to push it, so you're getting the momentum necessary
for climbing going without the block being there to tempt Link. If that's still
giving you problems, you can try just running at the block from afar, which
places you far away from that problem to begin with.
- Flying the Loftwing and skydiving: In addition to my list of points in the
Misc. Motion Controls section, basically, practice makes perfect. Stick with
subtle motions to get a good feel for how Link and the Loftwing respond, and
also try to be aware of what both your hands are doing; the Spiral Charge with
the Loftwing later in the game has a tendency to throw off one's flight path
since shaking the left hand inadvertently moves the right hand as well. If
you're trying to travel forward while skydiving, either tip the end of the Wii
Remote VERY slightly downward (you should go faster than you might think) or
angle Link so he's sideways to the target, then moving sideways.
- Throwing and rolling bombs: Think of the whole bomb concept in stages rather
than one long process: Select with B, point Wii Remote up, angle, stop, flick
Wii Remote, for example. Practice and experience will condense all of those
stages into a series of quick motions, but taking it in increments should help.
Take a split second before throwing to stop moving, make sure your left hand
doesn't know what your right is doing (lift your thumb off the Nunchuk if you
need to), and then throw or roll. It can be hard to think with a fiery ball of
death over your head, but again, try not to rush anything.
- Catching bugs with the net: Remember how I kept saying over and over again,
"Don't flail, don't flail"? Well, screw that! Once you sneak close to the
sucker, swing the net like a drunk musketeer with a rapier, bravely charging
forward if you feel the need to. Crying "Freedoooom!" at the top of your lungs
- Controlling the Beetle: Subtle movements and calmness are basically your
prerequisites. If you can, try and turn the Beetle slower and earlier than you
think you need to so you give yourself some room for error. If you need to make
a sharp turn somewhere up ahead, try flying in the opposite direction for a
second or two, then making that turn. Make sure you do it early enough so you
don't still blow past your turn.
- Your Blue Bird strategy: If it involves a shotgun and a stick of dynamite,
I'm all ears. But even if it doesn't, feel free to make a suggestion.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS [thnks] =====================================================
Also known as the Special Thanks section.
Thank you, the reader, for giving this guide your time.
Thanks to GameFAQs for hosting this guide on their site.
Thanks to Kyle Queen for submitting a question regarding motion controls and
calibration - it's the first question to be posted on this guide.
Thanks to dynagirl for pointing out I hadn't created a section for the
Clawshots. How the crap did I miss that?
Thanks to Ali for giving me numerous pointers and additional techniques on how
to do the Fatal Blow, balancing on tightropes (as well as acknowledging a
technical error I had made in the title), recalibrations for both the
MotionPlus and sensor bar, and correcting a statement I'd made regarding the
bow. That really is a lot of help, Ali.
Thanks to Mike K. for his support and inquisitiveness about the game.
Thanks to Nintendo for creating this game. They did pretty darn well.
In a roundabout way, thanks to the people who didn't understand or weren't fond
of Skyward Sword's motion controls, as they inspired this guide to be written.
This document is copyright SuperSmashBro13 and hosted by Neoseeker with permission.