Last Edited: June 20, 2019 at 1:01 AM

IGN has the tips and tricks, strategies, and secrets you need to succeed in Cadence of Hyrule.

It’s important to note that Cadence of Hyrule is a Crypt of the NecroDancer game first, and a Zelda game second. What this means is that while there are many familiar themes that Zelda fans will appreciate, the game is at its core about the rhythm-based movement and combat.

Because of this, new players – those who have never played Crypt of the NecroDancer – may be confused and frustrated at the sudden difficulty curve of being expected to match their movements to the beat, learn enemy spacing and attack patterns, and find the best ways to attack and defend themselves. With that in mind, see our tips below for information on how you can better understand and master its mechanics.

Understanding The Beat[edit]

As you start your adventure, you’ll find that whenever your in a room with enemies, the music gets more pronounced and a meter appears at the bottom with icons moving to the center triforce. By moving in time with the notes hitting the center triforce, you’ll move in time with the beat – and you can expect monsters to do the same. You have a small bit of buffer to get this correct, as long the icons are inside the triangle it will count as a beat. If you time it so that the icons combine in the center, you’ll see them turn sideways in a flash – which means that you’ll be raising your beat multiplier when successfully attacking enemies.

If you miss the beat, and try to move or don’t perform any action at all before the icons hit the center – it will count as a Missed Beat. This means your multiplier will reset, and enemies will still move and attack even if you did not. This isn’t the end of the world – and sometimes doing nothing can actually benefit you, but you will need to be careful that you don’t panic and leave yourself open.

Attacking to the Beat[edit]

Unlike many games, rhythm combat in Cadence of Hyrule means that in most cases, you and enemies alike will move into each other to attack, as opposed to pressing a dedicated button to attack.

Because this applies to both you and your enemies, you’ll need to understand the attack patterns of your enemy. Jumping head-on into an enemy ready to attack back can get you killed, but being able to position yourself to attack from the sides or back – or learning when an enemy is spending a beat preparing to attack can help you come away unscathed.

For example – all the Lizalfos enemies will charge at you when you enter line of sight. However, they spend a single beat preparing that charge, allowing you to stun them if you collide with them, and then follow up by jumping into them again to damage them. If you try to meet them head-on in a charge, you’ll be on the losing end of that battle.

You also have the option to defend yourself with shields to negate an incoming attack. While this does use up a bit of your stamina meter, it’s worth it to play defensively for a bit as you learn attack patterns until you feel confident in dodging attacks entirely to capitalize on their exposed points.

Fixed Beat Mode[edit]

Possibly the greatest boon to new players, you can turn off the timed beat mode in the gameplay options. This essentially turns Cadence of Hyrule from a rhythm game into a turn-based strategy game.

In Fixed Beat Mode, nobody else moves until you move. One hop from you is one move from every other enemy on the map, and you can stand still and assess the situation for as long as you need to until you feel comfortable moving again.

Because you can move as fast or as slow as you want, you can also slowly practice moving along to the beat without getting penalized for missing a beat to a particular area, and once you feel a bit more confident, you can turn Fixed Beat Mode off and see how close your movements are to the actual beat.

You Can’t Take All Of It With You[edit]

Death in Cadence of Hyrule can be a pain, but there’s a silver lining to be found. Any item with durability will be lost upon death (torches, shovels, boots, etc.), but key items you find will remain with you for the entirety of your playthrough.

Things like weapons, shields, bottles, scrolls, and items like bows and boomerangs cannot break, and will always remain after death.

The good news is that many of the chests you’ll find in your travels contain these temporary items to restock what’s been lost – and once you know the contents of a chest, you’ll find that the chest in question will always have the same thing inside each time you die in that particular playthrough

For example, if you are unable to cross a gap to reach a Piece of Heart and need Hover Boots, and you know that a chest near Link’s House had one, you’ll find it inside the chest again if you die and revisit that area.

The only chests that don’t repopulate are ones that contain key items, Pieces of Heart, or other one-time gets.

Make the Most of The Fates[edit]

Each time you die in Cadence of Hyrule, you’ll be transported to the Fates room, where you can select where you’d like to respawn at the various Sheikah stones.

You can also spend the Diamond currency here to get a few boosts for your next run – but not all items are created equal here. Be on the lookout for permanent boosts hiding among the more mundane things. Items like a Spear and a Piece of Heart will be a permanent addition to your inventory, whereas a torch will be better if you’re already knee-deep in a dungeon and need the extra light but don’t want to waste time looking for one.

As you die and repeat, take the time to understand the enemies in each area – and you’ll soon be amassing more and more Diamonds as you are able to better clear them quickly and efficiently.

Static vs Random[edit]

It may not seem apparent when you first start the game, but each time you make a new save file, the world you enter will be almost completely randomized.
What this means is that depending on who you play as, Link and Zelda’s starting locations will appear in different areas of the map each time you play. This also extends to the regions of Hyrule as well – one save file might have the Lost Woods right above your starting location, another may not.

However, once a game is started, that world stays the same until it’s beaten. The only rooms that are randomized are the rooms you find inside the main dungeons. If you die or quit and leave, they’ll be different the next time you go in – but always have the same mini-bosses that need to be defeated.

Because of this, dying doesn’t mean having to learn everything over again. If you die in a specific part of the map, it will have the exact same enemies when you come back, so you can better learn how to deal with them until you can finally clear that area with ease.

Unlock Your Counterpart[edit]

Depending on which character you pick at the start, you’ll be locked into playing as either Link or Zelda – but it doesn’t have to be that way forever.

Somewhere on the map, usually near the middle sections you can find Kakariko Village. The house at the top will have the character you didn’t pick sleeping away, and you can awaken them if you get the right item. That item lies in the nearby graveyard, but is guarded by some imposing enemies in a mini-dungeon.

Once you complete the area, you can return to awaken the sleeping character, and then swap out whenever you’d like. Link and Zelda each have some items that are unique to them that cannot be used by the other party.

Link is able to wield shields that you can hold down with the shoulder button to negate incoming attacks (better shields can reflect or block bigger attacks) at the cost of stamina, and can also unleash a spin attack after a short delay to damage or push back everything around him.

Meanwhile, Zelda can obtain Nayru’s Love – which can counter or reflect a single blow if timed right, but cannot be held down. She can also get Din’s Fire, which can be charged and moved independently of Zelda before exploding at a distance – but leaves her vulnerable in the meantime.

Sometimes, you’ll find that an encounter may lend itself better to using one of the characters over the other – so the sooner you unlock both, the quicker you’ll be able to swap out as needed.

Get the Spear[edit]

The first time you die, you may notice that the Fates room usually has a weapon for sale. If you are able, try to buy the Spear for 6 Diamonds as soon as you have enough currency. This weapon does not break, and when equipped, lets you attack with an extra square of range. It can be incredibly useful if you find yourself unable to flank enemies and if you keep getting injured going head-to-head with enemies.

With the spear, you can safely poke at almost any enemy long before they get to you, and can even deflect an incoming spear-wielding lizalfos without taking damage yourself. It’s not the only weapon you can use, but it’s a great handicap and will serve you well the entire game, and can also be enchanted at fairy fountains to deal additional damage – which carry over even in death.

Look for Secret Clues[edit]

Many areas in Cadence of Hyrule offer a lot of clues if you know where to look or listen carefully:

  • Cracked walls on a cliff mean you can bomb them to find a cave entrance.
  • If you hear muffled singing, then you’re sure to find a merchant nearby, or in a cave in that area.
  • If you spot a bush with a blue butterfly, that means a cave entrance is hiding under that bush!
  • The Tingle Tuner item has more than one use – it can also point you in the direction of secret items.
  • Certain items are hiding under blocks that can be dug up – especially in dungeons. If you see a long line of loose rock, dig away!

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