February 16, 2018
This is just a theory, but not a MatPat Game Theory. Breath of the Wild is truly an amazing game. It brings back what the first one had towards the open world and it incorporates an amazing story without telling too many words, but the main aspect of this game many fans have wondered is “where it fits on the timeline?” and the answer could be on none of them, albeit we can see this game as a singularity in which it re-tells the lore of the Triforce, the Hero, The Princess and the Villain.
It wouldn’t be strange to consider this game a retelling of the final outcome of the other games due to the incorporation of items that can be seen through DLC or recollection of shrines or dungeons, and locations such as the Arbiter’s Grounds and Kakariko Village; which we can interpret that at the end the timelines merged into one and it gave a new world with a shared story. We can imagine an event similar to the Crisis on Infinite Earths or Steel Ball Run in Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure as the Triforce has the power to concede any wish to anyone who gathers the fragment, which could be the most organized explanation on why suddenly all the main races appear in one game and the Gerudo play a pivotal role in the storyline.
If the commentaries of Eiji Anouma offer a clue towards the game’s timeline placement, then it wouldn’t be a timeline placement but rather a historical placement towards the different incarnations of Link and how many times the Kingdom of Hyrule has been rebuilt and fallen in the hands of the different calamities.
It could also give a hint towards how Link’s abilities pass to one and the other, and they seem to act not as mystic forces but rather to the blood that runs in the person who is linked to the first Link. Talking about the first Link, we have an idea that roams during the gameplay as well the introduction that 10,000 years, around the Era of the Goddess Hylia.
This Link was there. He was the first one the Goddess tried to protect and the same one she renounced to her immortality and sent the surviving few of her followers to the sky. This Link didn’t succeed on fully defeating the Calamity 10,000 years prior to the main storyline but it was the one who opened the path to the chaos that would continue for different generations.
In this unified timeline, the Divine Beasts were already in existence. Let’s say that if the events of Ocarina of Time happened also, it means that these mechanical contractions were already there and were dormant while Link and Zelda were traveling through time but as well through the sky; it could be interpreted, that the Calamity that was sealed in the era before the events was already being imprisoned below the castle grounds and it manifested as an extension through the form of Demise on the events of Skywards until it found a way to reincarnate as a living being instead of some form of a demon by being Ganon itself; but always repeating the same cycle every 100 years until the end of Breath of the Wild in which he renounces to his cycle of reincarnations and tries to unleash his full force to the land that for more than a millennia he has been trying to conquer it, knowing that he would be defeated after 10,000 years of misery.
When Ganon is defeated in Breath of the Wild, that is the end of all the three timelines who ended up converging into one. There is no more Ganon, no more cycle of reincarnation as the curse was broken when he decided to lift it up and finally give his full strength to one last battle with the last reincarnation of Link, bringing all the events to a foreclosure and finally bringing some peace until the new force of evil will strike on the timeline that merged.
That’s why, before the end we see the beginning of the myths. We see the war and rise of the Divine Beasts. We see it through Kass and his prose; and the introduction screen of the game, we see how the chapter with Ganon ends, but it also opens the possibility to bring a new evil to Hyrule and develop a new story.