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Sidequests: Hidden Skills
More Guides for Twilight Princess

Using the Howling Stones

There are seven Hidden Skills within the game of Twilight Princess. Each skill will be taught to you by a ghost known as the Hero’s Shade. Before you can learn the skill, you must find a Howling Stone, howl a song to the Golden Wolf, find the Wolf where he is marked on the map, and learn the skill. For six skills you must find a Howling Stone to learn the skill; the first one is given to you on your way to the Forest Temple. The images listed are each song that you will learn.

In order to howl, you must hold the A button and move the nunchuck stick in the direction of the line (not moving it for the middle section). These are listed in order that you are able to gain the skill. You can, however, find each stone in a different order, but you will learn the skills in this order. This guide is, of course, written for the Wii Version of the game. Gamecube people relate that right is left and east is west.

Ending Blow

Golden Wolf Location: Forest Temple

The first skill you learn in the game will be learned by default. Once you return the Light to the Faron Woods, you will head to the Forest Temple. In front of the path to the Forest Temple, the Golden Wolf will attack you and teach the Ending Blow. The Ending Blow is an attack that will instantly kill a downed enemy if it isn’t already dead. The skill is used by knocking down your enemy, locking on to them and hitting the A button when the screen says “Finish”. If you miss, however, you will be left wide open, as Link takes a second or two to pull the sword from the ground. Best used if you’re facing one or two enemies.

Shield Bash

Howling Stone Location: Death Mountain

Golden Wolf Location: Ordon Spring

The first Howling Stone will be located on your way to Death Mountain in a small patch of land before the valley. Once you howl the song, the Wolf will mark itself in the Ordon Spring where you first encountered Epona and Ilia. The skill you will learn is the Shield Attack, a very good offensive/defensive skill with the shield. On the Wii, you can use the nunchunck, lunge it forward (gently), and deflect certain projectiles. Also, the Shield Bash can be used to knock back enemies, which then can be used in a combo with a later skill.

Back Slice

Howling Stone Location: Zora’s River

Golden Wolf Location: East of Castle Town

The second Howling Stone is located on your trip to Zora’s Domain. When you are sent up river by travel of the Twilight bird, you’ll land in front of Iza’s cabin. The Howling Stone is located on the far side of the cabin on a ledge. The Wolf will be east of Castle Town on a ledge that is easily accessible once you’re Hylian Link again. The skill will be the Back Slice, a very nimble attack with the sword. To use the skill, you must lock on to the enemy, jump sideways twice (the second one will be a roll that will bring you closer to the back of the enemy), and if you swing your sword at the right time, you’ll attack the back of the enemy. This skill is good for enemies that have a lot of armor in the front and vulnerable in the back. You can also do this without the sword in hand, so it’s possible to release a Mortal Draw (another Hidden Skill) a second after you reach behind the enemy. The Back Slice skill is also a good way to make un-armoured Darknuts lose their footing, leaving them open to an attack right after.

Helm Splitter

Howling Stone Location: North Faron Woods

Golden Wolf Location: South of Castle Town

The third Howling Stone is located in the gap between the Faron Woods and Sacred Grove, after you jump a series of gaps with either Midna or the Golden Cucco. After howling the song, the wolf will place itself south of Castle Town on the right side of the stairs leading into the castle. The skill is the Helm Splitter, a combo used with the Shield Bash. Once you knock an enemy back with the Shield Bash, hit the A button when “Helm Splitter” flashes on the screen. Link will then jump over the enemy, striking the enemy’s head in the process. Don’t stop after you land, though. Attack the back of the enemy with your sword for more damage.

Mortal Draw

Howling Stone Location: Lake Hylia

Golden Wolf Location: Gerudo Desert

The fourth Howling Stone is located on a cliff south of the Warp Point in Lake Hylia. The stone is located near the watch tower where you will find Auru. The wolf will land south of the entrance to the enemy stronghold in the Gerudo Desert. The skill you will learn is the Mortal Draw, the most vulnerable attack you will encounter in the game. The skill has you start out with no sword or shield out. It further leaves you vulnerable by not allowing you to Z-target the enemy. Once the enemy gets close enough and you are standing still, hit the A button when it says “Draw” and you will attack with a sword strike that will kill your enemy instantly. It is worth it if you can time the strike right and it can also be used for entering battles quickly, or (usually) finishing one-on-one’s swiftly.

Jump Strike

Howling Stone Location: Snowpeak

Golden Wolf Location: Kakariko Graveyard

The fifth Howling Stone is located on your way to the Snowpeak Ruins; it will be on a cliff early into your trip to the ruins. The wolf will land in the Graveyard of Kakariko Village. The skill you will learn is the Jump Strike, an upgraded version of your normal Jump Strike. Z-target your enemy, hold the A button and wait for the sword to shine/ding, and release to strike. This version of the strike can hit many enemies at once, given they are in a certain area around the one targeted. The attack can be used to initiate a devastating combo if you have the Great Spin attack. The Jump Strike consists of two sword strokes; a horizontal one as soon as Link jumps into the air (supposedly for disabling the opponent’s defense), and a vertical one right after, coupled with a shockwave that does damage (which happens as soon as he lands). Right after landing, a Great Spin can be unleashed, further damaging the enemy.

Great Spin

Howling Stone Location: Hidden Village

Golden Wolf Location: North Castle Town

The last Howling Stone is located in the Hidden Village; it will be hidden on the west side, where you will have to smash a window to find it. The wolf will land in Castle Town, right before the entrance to the Castle itself. The skill will be the Great Spin, an upgraded version of your Spin Attack. The Great Spin will have a longer diameter (therefore, having a greater ‘reach’) than your normal Spin Attack, but will only be available when you are at full health. This is the final Hidden Skill.

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