Hearts, also known as Recovery Hearts, are prevalent objects in The Legend of Zelda series.
Location and Uses
Hearts aid Link by replenishing his life energy by one Heart at a time. They can be found anywhere in Hyrule, Koholint Island, Termina, Labrynna, Holodrum, the Great Sea, the World of the Ocean King, New Hyrule, and Skyloft. Hearts are uncovered in Pots, Jars, tall Grass, defeated enemies, under rocks and, in many instances, they can even be purchased from shops. They appear as small, floating, red Hearts. In Breath of the Wild, Hearts cannot be found in the world; life energy can only be replenished by consuming Food and Elixirs.
The Life Meter is a gauge indicating how much life Link has. Whenever Link takes damage from an enemy attack or hazard, he loses either a full Heart, a quarter of a Heart, or even several Hearts depending on the severity of the attack. Losing all Hearts in the Life Meter causes Link to collapse, resulting in a Game Over. In various The Legend of Zelda games, Link can extend his life energy from three to twenty hearts. In others, the maximum is either 14 or 16. The only game where Link does not have his health represented by Hearts is The Adventure of Link, where it is instead represented by rectangular segments (the game still features Heart Containers to increase the Life Meter, however).
Phantom Hourglass and Spirit Tracks introduces Green Hearts. These replenish the endurance of S.S. Linebeck's Hull in Phantom Hourglass, and the Spirit Train in Spirit Tracks. These Hearts can only be found while traveling on the overworld of their respective games. Initially the vehicle start out with four Hearts, and can obtain more by assembling matching parts of the vehicle. When the vehicle runs out of Green Hearts, it becomes destroyed, resulting in a Game Over.
Breath of the Wild introduces Temporary Hearts, which are yellow in color and temporarily increase Link's total life energy. Temporary Hearts can be gained by consuming cooked Food or Elixirs that have this effect. Once depleted, Temporary Hearts are lost and cannot be recovered, however more can be gained by consuming another item with the effect.
- Main article: Oxygen Gauge
In both Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask, oxygen is measured according to Link's life meter. When he is exposed for too long underwater, or enters a very hot environment, a timer appears. Before it runs out, the young hero must either rise to surface or exit from the hot area, depending on the area; otherwise, he will die. How long the time will be depends on the current life meter (not only the maximum capacity, but also the current amount of Hearts). For every eighth of a Heart Link has, he will have one second on the timer. For example, if he enters Death Mountain Crater with a three-Heart meter unharmed, then he will have 24 seconds to exit from there. The timer remains unaffected by the Enhanced Defense upgrade.
As a Gesture of Gratitude or Love
One humorous moment in Twilight Princess occurs when Link defeats the boss of the Snowpeak Ruins, Blizzeta, who is actually Yeta, the wife of Yeto. After she is restored, Yeto rushes to Yeta's side and the pair share a romantic moment. At this point, forty Hearts burst from the pair, as well as a Heart Container. Similarly in Twilight Princess, after Link beats the STAR Game in Castle Town East, he can gain three Hearts by approaching Kili, Hannah and Misha. More Hearts also appear near Honey and Darling in Majora's Mask, although Link is unable to collect these Hearts.
Another moment occurs in Ocarina of Time: as Link and Zelda reach specific floors in Ganon's Castle, Zelda becomes trapped in a ring of fire and two Stalfos appear. The only way to free Zelda is to defeat both foes; once this occurs, she thanks Link and drops a few Hearts.
|Names in Other Regions|
|Japanese|| ハート (Hāto)
回復のハート (Kaifuku no Hāto) (OoT)
|FrenchCA||Cœur de vie (OoT3D)||Heart of life|
|Italian||Cuore di recupero|
|ChineseSI||恢复之心 (Huīfù zhi Xīn)||Recovery Heart|
- "He's selling hearts. Can you believe that? Hearts! I mean, you can just scoop them off the ground with a net." — Item Seller (A Link Between Worlds)