If you are playing Breath of the Wild, simple fact is you are going to have to get used to your weapons breaking. There have been numerous articles, posts, and complaints about how annoying it is when weapons break. Many are united in the opinion that the system is a bit harsh as you have no way of repairing items. I thought I’d add to the discussion and share my recent experience during my play through last night.
I had come upon 2 shrines near the coast of Hateno Village. The 2 shrines for those who already don’t know are far from hidden away, so I don’t think this should be spoiling anything, but each offer a combat trial, one being way more difficult than the first.
Upon starting the first one, I noted the enemies HP was absurdly high. In any case, I began wailing away at my for chipping away at their HP ever so slowly. By the end of the fight, I was victorious, but at a huge cost. I had spent a couple of fairies from the crippling attacks of the guardian, and I only had a handful of weapons left. I had my thunder blade (which was worn out in this fight), a dragon bone moblin club, a torch, and a wood cutters axe.
I had burned through a few weapons taking him down, but it was worth it, as I reaped 2 great rewards in the form of an ancient battle axe and ancient bow, both with ultra high damage, so I felt I more than made up for my losses. Well I was eager to take on the next shrine just over the cliff. Upon my arrival, I picked up a Korok leaf that was outside and headed in.
Well turns out this one was also a combat trial but this time the enemy had double the HP… At this point I’m freaking out because the last fight had me burn through quite a few weapons. But thinking about what I had in my arsenal, and given the damage output of each weapon, I assumed each would not only deal enough damage to take down my foe quickly, but hopefully have more durability than anything I’ve used before and last the fight.
I was sadly mistaken, first to go down was my thunder blade, again as this was not 100% from my last fight, this was expected, but man, this was a cool weapon as it would stun the guardian each time I hit leaving him open for more attacks while he was unable to guard, so losing this hurt. Okay, onto the next, I pulled out my trusty dragon bone moblin club. This weapon was great, it was dealing tons of damage. It had a nice weighted feel and even though it took some time to swing, the damage output was well worth it. Chipping away at the enemies HP, this weapon sadly became quite damaged and eventually took the plunge. So now the only real melee weapon I had at this point was my ancient battle axe. I thought this would be it, this weapon would get me through the rest, it has got to, because after this, all I have is my korok leaf, torch and woodcuters axe. I did have bows but only a handful of arrows. So my options are quickly becoming quite limited, and the guardian still had tons of HP to cut through.
I felt good about my ancient battle axe, it was the reward I received from the first combat trial, so I assumed since it’s ancient, from a guardian and glows blue, this thing has got to last. Well, I was wrong, the axe dealt good damage but broke quite quickly. Reading the descriptions of this item after the fact reveals why.
Ancient Battle AxeA weapon used by Guardian Scouts. Its unique blade was forged using ancient technology. Although powerful, its unusual shape causes it to break easily.“
Well I’ll be damned… I didn’t think there was anything unusual with it’s shape, this thing should’ve lasted way longer! I mean it glows blue for crying out loud!
Regardless of it glowing blue, it was a fun weapon to use, but it was gone and I quickly had to come to terms with this. Believe it or not, I tried a couple of swings with the torch… not happening. Needed another plan. Tried using my bow, I had a variety of arrows in limited quantities, I tried my bomb and electric arrows. Although these dealt decent damage, I really didn’t want to keep burning through these, and eventually, the guardian charges up it’s laser. When firing my arrow while it charged it’s laser, it didn’t seem to do much damage or none at all. There is a glowing thing around it while it charges, maybe it’s a protective shield, I don’t know. Either way, I needed another idea.
At this point, the guardian is down to around 1000 HP. Still ways to go, but I’ve taken down 2/3rds of it’s health. I could have easily re-loaded my game, stocked up on weapons and come back at another time, but the prospect of getting a spirit orb was too tempting, and I am the Hero of Time after all, I can’t just run from this fight. So what is there left to do? BOMB THE MOTHER F*CKER TO OBLIVION!
Well I’d be damned, this strategy although time consuming, worked. I would throw one of my bomb types at the guardian, detonate it, switch to the other bomb (since they have separate cooldowns), detonate that one as well, and rinse and repeat until it was dead. Man, it took some time, but it worked! I was able to preserve the rest of my inventory. After that battle, I reaped the awesome rewards from this Shrine, received my Spirit Orb and completed the trial.
This brings me to one of the things I really love about this game, and I’ve eluded to it a bit in my first impressions article, but the game does not gate you at all from taking on any challenge you desire. I probably was not technically qualified to take this guardian on given the weapons I had, yet I did it anyways. Despite me losing all my key weapons, the game does give me several other options for defeating the guardian still. As annoying as this could be, I didn’t find it annoying as it happened. If it was annoying I would’ve probably reloaded my game and moved on, but I didn’t oddly enough. I somehow enjoyed this odd battle of me bombing away at my foe.
What’s key here is I didn’t feel that the game punished me for this. It was my choice to keep fighting, and in other games I’ve played where I’ve come across similar situations, it’s easy to feel like the game is being too hard on your or being unfair. But in Breath of the Wild, I’m not sure how, but I didn’t get this feeling. I felt rewarded, not only because of the loot I received, but I felt a good sense of accomplishment because this was not an easy fight, and I was able to overcome this trial through another strategy.
After I surfaced, I spent the next hour exploring the surrounding areas and literally bombing the sh*t out of every enemy in sight, as I needed to replenish my weapons and preserve what I salvaged, boat oars included. Again, I really enjoyed this approach. I found it hilarious that not only all I was doing was bombing stuff, but that it was working and I was killing enemies quickly and getting even more loot.
What’s your thoughts on the weapon durability in Breath of the Wild? Are you annoyed by it or do you think it’s justified given all the tools the game gives you to work with? Share any stories you may have during your adventures in the comments!