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Who is Rauru in The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom

A mysterious Zonai

An image of Rauru from The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom. He looks like a ghost because you can see through his manifestation a bit. He looks like a tall, anthropomorphized goat. Image: Nintendo EPD/Nintendo via Polygon

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom introduces a new race, a tribe called the Zonai, and a mysterious new character named Rauru. Rauru’s introduction carries larger implications for the series’ lore, connecting back to The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, and marks the inclusion of a new culture for the Zelda franchise.

The Zonai were previously hinted at in Breath of the Wild, but the tribe (and Rauru) play a very important role in the Tears of the Kingdom. Here’s what we know about them and their leader.

Who are the Zonai?

The Zonai are an ancient race that, according to Zelda, were once a prosperous society that lived in the sky and possessed godlike powers. Although Link first encountered ruins of their civilization in Breath of the Wild, we never saw the Zonai or learned more about them until Tears of the Kingdom. In one of the first cutscenes of the sequel, Princess Zelda interprets ancient glyphs that tell a story about how the Zonai descended from the heavens and helped the Hylians establish the early kingdom of Hyrule.

Who is Rauru in The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom?

In the English dub, according to the game’s credits, Rauru is played by voice actor Chris Hackney, who has voiced characters in other popular media franchises like Hunter x Hunter (Illumi Zoldyck), Fire Emblem Engage (Dimitri Alexandre Blaiddy), and Genshin Impact (Kamisato Ayato). Rauru is a Zonai who guides Link early in the game. He looks like a regal anthropomorphized goat.

He is the first Zonai we meet, and we run into him rather abruptly. After a calamitous encounter with a devious being under Hyrule castle who looks like Ganon, Link and Zelda get separated from one another. Link wakes up and gains a mysteriously altered arm that allows him to wield powers, similar to the Runes from Breath of the Wild. After exploring islands in the sky, Link attempts to enter a shrine, but the seal rejects him. Link then turns around and meets the ghost of Rauru, who tells us that Link’s strange arm once belonged to him, and that Link needs to restore its power to open the door. As we explore, Rauru shows Link the potential of the abilities.

Rauru’s name also connects him to previous games. In other Zelda games, the Sage of Light is called Rauru. (The sages have appeared in several Zelda games, and generally speaking, they’ve served the role of sealing away evil and protecting the Triforce.) In Ocarina of Time, a Sage of Light named Rauru takes the form of an owl (his alter ego Kaepora Gaebora) and guides Link along his journey.

[Ed. note: The following contains spoilers for the end of the story in The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom.]

In Tears of the Kingdom, Zelda accidentally travels in time to the distant past of Hyrule. When she arrives, she meets Rauru. As it turns out, Rauru was the King of Hyrule long ago and served alongside a queen named Sonia. Together, the two identify themselves to Zelda as the founding monarchs of Hyrule, and they help Zelda get back to her time. Rauru is one of two Zonai living in Hyrule, and as we see Zelda’s story unfold in the past, we also see Rauru combat the rise of the Gerudo leader Ganondorf.

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