Many people often ask through emails and comments about what does and doesn’t count as a hundred percent completion in a Zelda game. I have decided to write on this topic to help answer the question.
You can find a decent 100% Completion page on ZeldaWiki if you are looking for all the individual requirements for each game, so there is no need to put the list here. I have found the list to be mostly correct, so it’s a good resource.
Overall, though, there are many different views on the subject. For the sake of convenience, many people think if they have all the items available in their inventory, they have 100%. This ignores everything else that is possible. There are others that go to extremes, making even the most diehard Zelda fans feel like it would be a waste of their time. I tend to lean towards the middle ground using more logical rules to achieve hundred percent completion.
In my opinion, completion comes through completing every task that creates a permanent change our results in a reward in the game world. This includes:
- Getting all heart containers
- completing all collections
- finding all items
- clearing all achievements
- checking off all checkmarks on saved files
- making the best ending accessible
- unlocking all world rewards
- triggering all dialogue changes
- opening all treasure chests
- destroying all walls and rocks that are bombable
- completing and fully visiting all maps
- acquiring all dungeon items
This list doesn’t apply to every Zelda game. For instance, Majora’s Mask will reset the whole game world, so only your maps and inventory become relevant to achieve completion.
And truly, completion is the word that needs to be kept in mind. It is simply about unlocking things and saving permanently, and doing the tasks that offer a reward, even if that’s simply a hole in the wall or a few Rupees.
Of course, everyone’s goal and playing the game is to find completion. Some of your ideas may differ from mine, but the end goal is to have fun getting there.