Skyward Sword introduces an extensive item upgrade system that will change the appearance and abilities of certain items over time.
Knight’s Practice Sword
The practice sword is the first sword obtained in Skyward Sword, and is used only until you find the Goddess Sword. You obtain it after completing knight training in Skyloft near the start of the game.
The practice sword is used to defeat enemies, but does not have any other special skills.
The Goddess Sword is obtained after Zelda falls to the surface. It once belonged to the Goddess who raised Skyloft to the sky when evil threatened the surface. You will be led to the sword in order to continue your journey. You will then meet Fi, the spirit guardian of the sword. Fi will act as your guide throughout the game.
The Goddess Sword allows Link to perform Dowsing; an ability that is used to locate people or items. The sword is also capable of performing a magical attack called a Skyward Strike if it is held up towards the sky briefly. The Goddess Sword is also known previously as eponymous with the game’s title, Skyward Sword.
The Master Sword
Over the course of the game, the Goddess Sword is powered up and transformed until it becomes the Master Sword, the legendary blade seen in other Zelda titles.
Link will begin with a basic Wooden Shield, but will be able to upgrade it into a Banded Shield, Iron Shield, the traditional Hylian Shield, and other new designs as Link progresses through the game by trading in the necessary materials found in the land below Skyloft.
For the first time in Zelda history, shields can be broken after they are used too much, as noted by the Shield Meter displayed under the Link’s life energy. Upgrading your shield will make it more resistant to attack.
The Wooden Shield is the first shield in the game and is the least resilient. Similar to the Deku Shield in Ocarina of Time or the Ordon Shield in Twilight Princess, the Wooden Shield in Skyward Sword is susceptible to fire and fire-based attacks; therefore, it is able to burn and disintegrate when exposed to such element. It is speculated that the symbol emblazoned on the front surface of the Wooden Shield is most likely that of a Loftwing footprint.
The Banded Shield is the result of the first upgrade from the Wooden Shield. For the Bazaar smithy in Skyloft to craft the upgrade, he will need two Amber Relics, one Monster Claw, and one Jelly Blob with a fee of 30 Rupees. It is more durable and may be able to withstand heat better as opposed to its precursor. Other than that, not much is known of this shield and its uses as of yet. Rest assured, an accurate description will be made once it has become known.
Bombs are making a grand return in Skyward Sword. With the use of Wii MotionPlus, players will have the ability to throw, drop and even roll bombs. Their design seems similar to the design that of bombs in Twilight Princess.
Link also has the ability to shoot the bombs with his arrows in order to make them explode sooner or at his command. Whether or not Link will have the ability to combine his arrows and bombs, as in Twilight Princess, is not yet known.
Bow and Arrows
A classic item has also made a return to the new Zelda title. The bow and arrows were shown quite a few times in the Skyward Sword trailer. Again, making use of the Wii MotionPlus, players will have the ability to precisely aim and shoot objects and enemies. It is not yet known whether Link will have the ability to combine arrows and bombs or not. It has been shown to be able to pierce items that now include even hearts.
Link has a brand new item for Skyward Sword! The Beetle resembles a beetle with very large pincers that can pick up, carry and even drop items from a distance. It has wings that, when launched, fly it through the air.
While the Beetle is in flight, its direction and speed can be controlled by tilting the Wii MotionPlus. It is likely that this item can only stay airborne for a short period of time; however, this is purely speculation as most items have some sort of limitation.
Another classic item set to make a return to this console game, the slingshot was shown briefly during the trailer for Skyward Sword. The slingshot was shown as Link killed some keese using the targeting system.
To use the slingshot, the player aims using the MotionPlus and presses A to shoot. We can only hope that Skyward Sword will make more use of the slingshot than Twilight Princess (used only halfway through the first dungeon until boomerang is obtained).
This item has made its jump directly from Spirit Tracks. Its abilities is exactly similar to that of the one in Spirit Tracks, in that it can grapple enemies and items. It is also likely able to grapple hooks, rods, branches, etc. to allow Link to swing across gaps and such. Its design seems to feature a skull on the handle and a magical blue “flame” on the end to grab things.