Zelda’s ‘The Champions’ Ballad’ DLC Has a Steep Learning Curve

Alexa Ray Corriea
Nintendo Games
Nintendo Games

If you haven’t booted up the latest DLC for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild — called The Champions’ Ballad — here’s a bit of a warning: right from the get go, there’s a steep learning curve.

Players who tried to be as conflict-avoidant as possible in Breath of the Wild — avoiding enemy camps, for example — or who walked away from the harder shrine puzzles won’t make it far here. The Champions’ Ballad is full of tougher, rougher challenges that will test your gameplay skills, as well as just how comfortable you are with the trial-and-error nature of Breath of the Wild’s world. To put it bluntly: you need to “get gud.”

To play The Champions’ Ballad, you must tame all four Divine Beasts and finish their associated quests. Then Zelda will call you back to the Shrine of Resurrection, where you’ll be issued the first challenge.

The Champions’ Ballad doesn’t waste any time, opening with a challenge that is super difficult if you don’t get creative. You are gifted a weapon that will allow you to fell any enemy in one hit — but in return, Link can also be killed in one hit. Your hearts are emptied, eating won’t restore them, and you can’t unequip the weapon.

Using the One-Hit Obliterator, as it’s called, you must clear several enemy campsites in order to pass the challenge. If you want to start over or give up, you can simply teleport off the Great Plateau.

zelda champion's ballad
The aptly named One-Hit Obliterator

It’s surprisingly difficult to not get hit at all. It took me several tries to clear this challenge because Hyrule was shrouded in darkness and I didn’t see an enemy approach. My recommendation is you use long-range weapons like arrows and bombs to clear away the enemies. Bomb arrows are even better; shooting them into the middle of a group will clear away most if not all of them.

If more than one approaches you at a time, you risk get hitting and then failure. Literally anything hitting you will kill you instantly — including falling objects and bees, so be careful using your rune powers and keep an eye on the trees. Otherwise, you’ll have to start from the beginning.

This already sounds challenging enough to turn most casual Breath of the Wild players away. I’ll admit, the idea of having to power through a skill-based challenge just to get some story content at first frustrated me. But using the above strategy I was able to conquer it. And as for what waits you on the other side victory, I’ll give you a hint: it’s more puzzles.

zelda chamipons' ballad
You know you want this bike.

I’m not very far in The Champions’ Ballad yet, but from other players I’ve heard you can expect between six to nine hours of new stuff to play. In addition to new shrines, you’ll be given task lists to complete in order to unlock the teased new story content. Unfortunately, it seems like the only story bits you’ll get are revealed in flashbacks, showing what the Champions and their lives were like prior to joining Zelda’s army. It’s not a lot of reward — unless you count the new armor pieces, including a saddle and bridle for your horse that allows it to teleport to Link whenever he calls it.

Luckily, we’ve got our eyes on the prize: the amazing Sheikah motorcycle shown in The Champions’ Ballad trailer. Stay tuned to FANDOM for more looks at this DLC — and whether or not we manage to get that bike.

Alexa Ray Corriea
Alexa Ray is Fandom's Senior Editor for Games, with a borderline unhealthy interest in Kingdom Hearts (she literally wrote the book on it) and all JRPGs, with a more healthy affinity for the anime. When she's not gaming, she's obsessing over Star Wars, all things Disney, and Taiwanese glove puppets.
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