These were fringe contenders, but they never generated enough support to crack our top 25. There are still some cool choices in here, though, and like we usually do, we’re posting some short comments about each of them as we make our way to the legit 25.
51) Deku Leaf/Sailcloth
Chris: Personally, I’m more partial to the sailcloth, even though it does less than the Deku Leaf. You can’t use it to generate wind, after all. Doesn’t matter, though — the important thing is that Zelda made the sailcloth for you, and Skyward Sword Link/Zelda is the best OTP ever. So cute.
Shaun: I like the added utility of the Deku Leaf, specifically in its ability to generate wind. The series oddly has a lot of items that manipulate wind and air, but the Deku Leaf is definitely my favorite.
52) Harp of Ages
Shaun: Easily the best of the two Oracle game items, the Harp of Ages is…okay, so it’s exactly like the Ocarina of Time. But that’s a compliment!
Chris: Here’s a dirty little secret: I’ve never finished Link’s Awakening or the Oracle games. So I’m not really at liberty to discuss this a ton. Harps are neat, though. Music’s cool. Um…did I mention that harps were neat?
Chris: The telescope does exactly what you think it does. But what’s more important is that it’s a birthday gift from your sister. Link doesn’t exactly have a ton of family members very often, so getting something from a top-tier relative like a sister has to be a keeper.
Shaun: I love how the telescope lets you decimate hapless enemies from afar. Wait, it doesn’t do that at all, and you can only use it to see into the distance? Lame.
54) Sail/Swift Sail
Shaun: I probably love the sail more than most, especially once the swift sail introduced faster travel. Then again, I’m one of the few weirdos who actually enjoyed the sailing and open ocean aspect of Wind Waker. All these kids just want to speed around on their mopeds and smartphones, and I just want to stop and smell the roses.
Chris: If we’re talking about the sail as an item, this pick is terrible. But if we’re talking about what it represents, that’s a different story. Wind Waker’s sailing gets a lot of hate, but I enjoyed the open, desolate aspect of the ocean. It was a hell of a lot better than Skyward Sword’s sparsely populated sky area.
55) Regal Necklace
Chris: If you had the power to stop hurricanes, you could be rich. Think about how much money Florida would pay you to stop by a few times a year and protect the coast from danger? Link’s really missing his calling here. He could be swimming in rupees.
Shaun: That’s cool, but it’s a pretty isolated and specific power, which is what kills me about some of the items in the series.
56) Rod of Seasons
Shaun: The Rod of Seasons is the gimmick namesake of Oracle of Seasons, and it’s honestly kind of lame. It’s a little bit cool to change the season from summer to winter at the drop of a hat, sure, but that ecosystem is totally boned, and you can only change the seasons if you find a tree stump and stand on it. Plus, you can’t select the season — each time, you’re forced to cycle through all the seasons to find the one you want. It’s not horrible, it’s just kind of…there.
Chris: Here’s a dirty little secret: I’ve never finished Link’s Awakening or the Oracle games. So I’m not really at liberty to…wait a minute. Anyway, when playing through Seasons, I liked the idea of being able to manipulate the area’s climate in certain ways. But as Shaun said, the execution was lacking.
57) Magical Wand
Chris: Probably my favorite item from the original Legend of Zelda. You could use it up close, or shoot magic at a distance — and further modify it to light up rooms like the candle did. A surprisingly versatile item that doubles as one of the best weapons in the game.
Shaun: I love the idea of wizard Link, and honestly, considering the unique qualities and flexibility, I’m not sure why we haven’t seen this item return.
Shaun: It’s iconic, so I can’t hate it….but it’s also sorta useless. Link is like Batman in the sense that it’s his weapons and tools that really allow him to transcend being a normal dude and fight evil. The lantern…lets him see in the dark. And occasionally lights candles. Meh.
Chris: Still, I think the lantern gets bonus points for its thematic placement in LttP. If you open the chest in Link’s house after your uncle leaves, it’s the item you get — and that’s all you have as you venture out into the stormy weather to help a mysterious girl.
59) Ether Medallion
Chris: I like the concept of the medallions, but in all the times I’ve played Link to the Past, I’ve never really used them (except Bombos in our playthrough). Ether was the exception, though, because I wasn’t smart enough as a kid to turn up my brightness to see those “invisible” floors.
Shaun: More ice powers, except this one nukes the screen with a blast of cold. It’s like the nukes of ice powers and I love it.
60) Deku Mask
Shaun: Vomit. Chris mentioned this earlier when we talked about it, but even if this form wasn’t forced upon you at the beginning of Majora’s Mask, it still wouldn’t be great. The fact that you start the game as a Deku and can’t leave? Terrible.
Chris: Every time I consider playing through Majora’s Mask again, I think about the first three-day cycle, remember how frustrating it is, and don’t even put the game in. It’s an okay form, but its powers pale in comparison to the other two races that Link gets access to in this game.
61) Lost Maiamai
Chris: All right, look. Hear me out. The Maiamais aren’t that different from other Zelda collectibles. Still, I enjoyed the exploration aspect they added to Link Between Worlds, especially with the little noises they made, the helpful map screen saying how many were left, and the item upgrades you got for rounding them up.
Shaun: At the end of the day, they were still just collectibles, but I like Zelda collectibles, and they were adorable. Shut up.
62) Flippers/Zora’s Flippers
Shaun: I mean, basic, sure, but after drowning in rivers, lakes, and small ponds the entire game, the flippers were a welcome relief.
Chris: For all of the strong qualities Link possesses, being unable to swim — or float — without flippers is not one of them. This guy can travel across endless oceans and the fabric of time and the vast skies, but not a puddle? For shame.
63) Spiritual Stones
Chris: While they’re useless for what they can do on their own, the Spiritual Stones are still tied to one of my absolute favorite moments in the entire series: placing them in the Temple of Time to open the door to the Master Sword for the first time. Chills.
Shaun: Yeah, and they just looked cool. Being a young kid at the time, they really appealed to my sense of adventure. Plus, I like how they were built into the lore and culture of the different races in the world.
Shaun: Gimmicky, sure, but actually pretty cool, allowing Link to nab hidden items or even scout dangerous territory ahead of time. Although at first, I confused the item with the salesman, in which case this would have needed to jump up about 63 slots. THANK YOU. BYYYYYE.
Chris: Of all the new items introduced in Skyward Sword, this one was the best. I think its versatility is key — being able to hit distant switches, pick up hard-to-reach items and pester enemies was a fun package.
65) Slingshot/Fairy Slingshot
Chris: The slingshot never really resonated with me. Maybe it’s because I felt like Bart Simpson every time I used it, only a lamer version of him. Maybe it’s because the bow does everything this does better. I dunno.
Shaun: Yup, the bow makes the slingshot obsolete, and there’s something sort of inherently boring about using one. It’s cool that some games let you change up the ammo though?
66) Ice Rod
Shaun: Now we’re getting to the good stuff. I love this thing. I’ve always dug ice powers, and the ice rod (in its multiple iterations) has always been my weapon of choice.
Chris: What’s cooler than being rod? ICE ROD. All right all right all right all right all right all right all right all right all right all right all right all right all right
67) Hover Boots
Chris: I almost put this on my list, but then I remember all those times I tried to move with any precision while I had the Hover Boots on. Never happened. Still a cool concept, though, and part of what makes the Shadow Temple so fun.
Shaun: The IDEA is so cool, but the execution is basically Link putting on permanent ice skates. I wanted these to be so much more awesome than they were, but the ability to levitate in the air for a second is still pretty neat.
68) Magic Potion
Shaun: This just heals you, right? Eh, there are more creative ways to get your health back, but a reliable potion is always good to have.
Chris: It’s also required in Oracle of Ages, but…yeah. Personally, my favorite was always any version that healed both your health and your magic. It makes you feel ridiculously overpowered when you use it. Almost dead, running out of options? NOPE.
Chris: I’m sure some folks dislike this item. It’s a shovel. It does exactly what you think it does. Still, I always enjoyed digging up secrets and rupees and SOME POOR FOOL’S FRONT YARD TAKE THAT SUCKER — sorry, what were we talking about?
Shaun: I’m still waiting for the game where the special ability for the shovel is handing one to an enemy and making him dig his own grave, crying and pleading with Link while your hero looks into the distance and takes another drag at his Hylian cigarette in his mouth. What a good game that would be. But as is, the shovel is okay.
70) Magic Powder
Shaun: A staple of many a Zelda game, the magic powder is always interesting because of its unique abilities that you don’t discover without experimentation. Like killing usually immortal enemies! Or those loathsome chickens!
Chris: I like using the Magic Powder just to mess with enemies. Changing the entire structure of their body has to have some lasting effect, assuming I don’t kill them right after I ruin their lives. Throw in using this to get twice the magic capability in LttP, and I’m sold.
71) Hero’s Charm
Chris: I like this item for two reasons: getting to see an opponent’s health bar is pretty neat (albeit not that useful just because of how long the series has gone without it), and it makes Toon Link look like he’s tripping balls while he wears it. You know, more than usual.
Shaun: If enemy health bars were more diverse (required more hits or ever broke the pattern), this would be way more practical, but as it is, it’s a pretty cool addition. Next I want them to pull a Kingdom Hearts and give old Ganny 15 health bars.
72) Lens of Truth
Shaun: The Lens of Truth had some real potential, but I didn’t feel like enough was programmed into the game to really make it as awesome as it could have been. Still, it was definitely neat, and the few places you could use it (like the “chance” treasure opening game in the town) were pretty satisfying.
Chris: But rigging that treasure game was so fun! I always liked to imagine the shopkeeper watching the surveillance footage as Link makes a beeline for the correct choice each time, and losing his mind. It’s nice that the Lens of Truth got its own dungeon at the bottom of the well, but it did feel a little underutilized.
73) Bombos Medallion
Chris: This turned out to be easily my favorite part of our playthrough of Link to the Past. Got a problem with a room in a dungeon? BOMBOS. Tired of an annoying enemy getting up in your grill? BOMBOS. Feeling lazy on a given day and don’t want to have to work hard? BOMBOS.
Shaun: Yeah, I never truly realized the value of nuking an entire room of enemies until we spammed it. Now that I say it out loud though, I’m not sure how I missed the value of nuking an entire room of enemies…
74) Ball and Chain
Shaun: I want to take out and shoot the person who voted for this abomination. It represents everything I hate about Twilight Princess. Want something that’s less effective than a bomb and dumber looking than a hammer? Ball and Chain is right up your alley.
Chris: The ball and chain, everyone’s first pick for the best item in the best game in the series. Remember that time you used this item and thought “Man, that was satisfying!” Me neither.
75) Bug-Catching Net
Chris: No one cares about this item for its actual purpose (I’m looking at you, Twilight Princess). The reason we love this item is because it puts Agahnim in his place. Ooooo, look at your big scary magic — BAM REFLECTED BACK AT YOU WITH A NET
Shaun: Hate it. Reminds me of the loser bug-catching Pokemon trainers. However, that just means that it’s that much better to insult Agahnim with.
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