Before The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom players were astonished at the wonderful ways one can torture koroks, use the game’s fusing abilities to erect statuesque mechas, planes, trains, and automobiles, or craft TikTok fan cams of Purah, fans were thirsting after Ganon.
Ganon, the series’ stalwart antagonist, gained the nickname “Rehydrated Ganon” last month after folks got an eye-full of his buff new design in TotK. You see, Ganon (or rather his dessicated corpse?) looked like a scraggly piece of beef jerky in the game’s original trailer, and now, thanks to some meddling from Princess Zelda and Link, Ganon is back and tight in all the right places. TotK Ganon’s studly design is also helped by the fact that he has proper voice acting for the first time, courtesy of none other than Critical Role’s Matt Mercer. Mercer’s voiced some of the studliest men in anime like JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure’s Jotaro Kujo and Attack on Titan’s Levi Ackerman, so Ganon’s online acclaim as the internet’s early contender for sexy video game villain of the year was a forgone conclusion.
In a recent interview with The Verge, The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom director Hidemaro Fujibayashi credited Ganon’s rehydrated attractiveness to a long-time staffer named Satoru Takizawa. Apparently, Takizawa had a “sparkle in his eyes” when he was told he could make Ganon kinda smexy.
One man’s sexy Ganon design is that same man’s treasure
Fujibayashi revealed to Verge reporter Charles Pulliam-Moore that veteran designer Takizawa was able to compose the menace in Ganon’s design while also making him attractive was because Ganondorf held a “special place” in Takizawa’s heart. Apparently, Takizawa has been waiting for around 17 years to release his pent-up artistic skills all over his TotK Ganon design for our viewing pleasure.
“From my perspective, of course there’s the understanding that Ganondorf is, of course, the evil antagonist, but he also plays almost as important a role as the main hero who stand in contrast to each other as part of this legend,” Fujibayashi said. “So my only request I made was that because he’s such an important character at the same level as the protagonist, was to really make him a very cool, very awesome demon king.”
Fujibayashi told The Verge that Ganon’s “if evil why sexy?” design predates TotK. According to Fujibayashi, Takizawa’s first attractive Ganon design was for 2006’s The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess on the Wii and Gamecube.
“But when I made this request to really make Ganon the way he is—because the spotlight is on him this time around, and he really is a crucial, integral character—I vividly remember the sparkle in this person’s eyes as they heard this,” Fujibayashi told The Verge. “Seeing that love, I was really confident that I could just leave it up to them, knowing something great would come out of it.”
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