The Awakening Armor is a mysterious bit of gear in The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom. It not only changes Link’s art style entirely, but is linked to a strange bandit who explored Hyrule long ago, hiding their treasure and leaving riddles for people to solve long in the future.
If you want to pay homage to an earlier era of Zelda in Tears of the Kingdom, this guide will walk you through the puzzles left behind by Misko so that you can turn Link into a cheery, big-headed cartoon. It’s fairly involved, and there are some tough fights along the way, so get prepared in advance with plenty of food and perhaps some armor upgrades.
You can find these pieces without picking up the associated quests and the riddles left by Misko; if you’d prefer to skip the busywork, you can skip the first section of this guide. But where’s the fun in that?
Misko’s ‘Treasure of Awakening’ quest
The first thing to do is to head to Goronbi River Cave. However, be aware that this cave has extremely high levels of unbearable heat. Ideally you will need the Flamebreaker Armor to enter. We were able to avoid damage with the Flamebreaker chest piece, the Desert Voe Headband, and a heat resistant meal.
Goronbi River Cave is located in the Eldin region, in a valley southwest of Death Mountain. The coordinates are (1423, 2100, 0286).
Defeat the Horriblin at the entrance. Go inside, hop over the lava directly in front of you, and open the chest for a Ruby. Then turn around and jump towards the lava waterfall. (Don’t touch it, obviously!) There are two ore deposits you can break on the left here.
Continue following the path to the left past the broken up waterfall which has a Fire Like behind it. Wait for or move a platform using Ultrahand/Recall so that you can cross toward the Fire Like. You can also create one with a splash fruit.
Defeat the Fire Like and ride one of the platforms on the right. Get off where the ground slopes down to the lava on the right, and look up to see a cave entrance (there’s a pale piece of debris in front of it which may be easier to spot.
Inside here you’ll find a chest with an Ember Shirt, which raises Link’s attack in hot weather. After opening the chest, the wall on the left will open up. Go through it.
Examine the carved stone here to hear a riddle from the person who first discovered the Tunic of Awakening.
“On the Tabantha Frontier, where Rayne, Piper, and Tanagar meet, ruined pillars stand together. One of those mighty pillars opens the way to my treasure. Solve my riddle, find my treasure, and earn my respect.”
The riddle is signed “The Great Bandit Misko.” This will begin the quest “Misko’s Treasure of Awakening.”
Awakening Armor chest piece location
You’ll find the area “where Rayne, Piper, and Tanagar meet” on the west of the map — specifically, the Rayne Highlands and Piper Ridge are above Tanagar Canyon.
Head to the top of the ridge found at (-3484. 0426, 0278).
If you’re approaching from the west, along the ridge, you’ll have to fight a Flame Gleeok. Like other Gleeoks, this is a challenging fight. Use water-based attacks (Fuse with splash fruit or Chuchu Jelly arrows) to hit its heads, then attack it when it’s stunned.
You can also avoid this fight by scaling the cliff face on the opposite side of the ridge instead, if you have the stamina.
Climb the pillar on the southwest of the ridge. There’s a mossy button on top; stepping on this will trigger a cutscene of the ground opening nearby.
Drop down this new hole to discover the Ancient Columns Cave. The Tunic of Awakening, which has +3 defense and no special effect, is directly ahead of you, in the chest surrounded by an old abandoned structure.
The carved stone here will also give you your next clue:
“In the ruins of Hyrule Field, where warriors once tested themselves in battle, offer your soldier’s claymore to the two sculpted soldiers. The sword will point the way to my treasures.”
This will begin the sidequest “Misko’s Treasure of Awakening II.”
Awakening Armor legs piece location
In the southwest of Hyrule Field, there is a point visible on the map as a large circle. This is the Coliseum Ruins, just east of the Outskirt Stable.
Head over there, to the coordinates (-1147, -1261, 0046). At this spot, you’ll have to fight a Thunder Gleeok.
Bring a lot of arrows, and preferably several non-metallic weapons as there are often thunderstorms in this area. This is a tough fight, and you will need upgraded armor and ideally at least three extra segments in your stamina wheel. It’s also worth bringing some kind of shock resistance, whether that be the Rubber Armor or food.
Use the multiple levels of the arena to get cover from the Thunder Gleeok’s electric attacks, and Ascend to use the bow slowdown time to hit its heads more easily. Our guide on defeating Gleeoks can help you if you’re struggling.
After you defeat the beast, you can complete the puzzle left by Misko. Head to the south of the coliseum where you will find two statues. The one on the left will be holding a Soldier’s Claymore. Find another one to the right of the two statues, and use Ultrahand to bring it close to the unarmed statue. It’ll snap into place and a hole in the floor will open.
Jump down to discover the Coliseum Ruins Cave. You can see the chest in front of you as well as some weapons, but you can also break the boxes on the right to reveal a crawlspace that leads to the Bubbulfrog and lots of ore.
Once you’ve opened the chest in the main room and got the Awakening Trousers — which don’t have a special effect but do grant +3 defense — examine the carved stone.
The riddle here reads: “On Hyrule Ridge, in Ludfo’s land, ruins sleep beneath the towering mushroom trees. Connect the southern column’s midday shadow to the northern. At the shadow’s center, the way to my treasure will open.”
Thus begins “Misko’s Treasure of Awakening III.”
Awakening Armor head piece location
For the final piece of the Awakening Armor, head to the Thundra Plateau on Hyrule Ridge, in the northwest part of the map. The coordinates are -2272, 0866, 0111.
Cut down some of the mushroom trees to make four logs. Attach these together at the ends so that they become one long log. Lean the long log against the southern column. It needs to be midday for the next part, so either wait or start a fire and sit there until noon.
Climb up the southern column and use Ultrahand to lift the log. If you try to place it on top, it will fall, but you can hold it steady just in front of the column to extend the shadow. When the shadow touches the column across from you, the hole in the ground will open.
You’ve discovered the Thundra Plateau Cave. Open the chest for your final reward, the Mask of Awakening. Now you can look totally out of place with the rest of Tears of the Kingdom’s artstyle, while rocking no special effects and gaining +3 defense. You’ll see a final congratulations from Misko here, too.
Once you’ve found all three pieces of the Awakening Armor, consult our list of all armor sets and set bonuses to see what to find next, or check out our recommendations for the best armor.