I think you all should know one thing. I hate the Lanayru Desert. I really do hate it. Another thing that I hate is the Silent Realm. When the Godess in Skyward Sword told me to go to Lanayru Desert and complete the trial of Nayru’s Wisdom, I decided to procrastinate (only, like, a month…) and not go down to that Godess-forsaken dessert. Of course, after getting to the Sandship, I can say that it might have all been worth it.
Of course, then again, we’re talking about running through a terribly creepy land with terribly unnerving music whilst attempting to collect 15 tears of light. You also have to avoid Lantern Guardians. If you come into their circle of light, (or if they bring the light to you), The Walking and Flying Guardians wake up and chase you until either you find another tear, or until your stamina meter runs out, and then you fail the trial after one hit. You also have to avoid Waking Water, which does exactly what it sounds like. Don’t you think that’s enough? But, no, it apparently isn’t. You also have a timer that wakes the Guardians every 90 seconds. One tear will reset that.
But anyway, when you get to the Sand Sea, you get to sail around on a boat with a Timeshift Stone on it. This maintains a circle of water all around you as you explore the Sand Sea and look for the Sandship. You have to go to the Skipper’s Hideaway, then to the Pirate’s Base, then dowse for the Sandship, and shoot at it with your cannon until it stays visible. Yes, before you ask, it was invisible before.
The dungeon itself is four floors, though each floor is relatively small. As a plus on it’s own, this is the dungeon where you get the Hero’s Bow. You got the bow pretty early on in Twilight Princess, my first Zelda game, but this is pretty late in Skyward Sword, dungeon-wise. Anyway, I did like the way it was controlled, and the choice you had in the means of controlling it, but the dungeon itself was very tedious. I normally knew where to go, but I didn’t know how to get there.
Even so, the Timeshift Stones were really the shining star of the dungeon. There was one Timeshift Stone located on the mast, that covered the entire ship. You could see it through various ports and vents, and depending on what you were doing inside the dungeon, you needed to hit it often.
The Mini-Boss where you got the Hero’s Bow was pretty cool. You were in a one-on-one sword fight with Scervo, the pirate captain. It was done on a plank like surface, so there wasn’t much maneuvering room. The goal was, ultimately, not to land as much damage on him as you could, but to push him back and off the plank. I thought that it was a cool Mini-Boss fight, with an even cooler item after it, and I think that Scervo is most likely my favorite Mini-Boss in the game, so far.
Alright, there were things that I liked and disliked about the Final Boss, Tentalus.
- Very uncreative looking
- Very uncreative in reality
- I didn’t know that I was supposed to use Skyward Strikes, so I just ended up throwing bombs around everywhere
- The Sandship deserves better
- The part leading up the the fight: I loved running for my life through the ship, while it was being torn apart by Tentalus
- Despite being uncreative, I can’t deny that I had a lot of fun fighting Tentalus
- The whole fight was very action packed. I was dodging tentacles and barrels, while shooting and stabbing Tentalus in the eye (yes, the eye again), and running through the sinking ship
- The ambiance was very nice as well, considering the bright and sunny Sand Sea had been transformed into a dark and rainy storm, complete with it’s very own Sanship wreckage and lightning
Overall, the Sandship is one of my favorite Zelda dungeons. I did enjoy the action in the boss fight, if not the boss itself, though I did enjoy the mini-boss, as well as the item that you were rewarded with afterwards. This was, so far, the best use of the Timeshift Stones, and though being a bit tedious, the Sandship is well worth braving the Silent Realm.