Get ready to discover out 20 Sheik Zelda facts that you never knew and discover everything about the stealthy character.
So you think you know everything there is to know about The Legend of Zelda? You think you know what makes Sheik’s brain tick and just where that harp came from in Ocarina of Time?
One thing is for sure; after reading this article, you’ll know all the Sheik Zelda facts in existence, and that’s definitely something that will earn you points at the next Nintendo gaming night or Comic Con.
**Warning – This post contains spoilers. You’re about to enter spoilerville, I cannot**
stress this enough!!
If you read any further, then you will reveal secrets about Sheik that might spoil your enjoyment in multiple Zelda games. We take no responsibility for sad faces or broken laptops from this point onwards.
Ok, so without further ado, let’s find out everything there is to know about Link’s mysterious ally and how they came to be!
1. Sheik Is Actually Princess Zelda In Disguise
Yes; Sheik is actually Princess Zelda. This first of our Sheik Zelda facts could be the biggest spoiler of them all.
If you’ve never finished or played Ocarina of Time, then the secret is out. During the time after Ganondorf sneaked into the Sacred Realm after Link and ended up using the Triforce of Power to rule Hyrule Zelda disguised herself as Sheik in order to survive.
Zelda holds the Triforce of Wisdom, along with some serious magic and smarts. Rather than just hide and protect herself, she puts her life on the line to help Link destroy Ganondorf once and for all.
Sheik has always been there to get Link out of trouble in both the manga and the game, helping him defeat enemies or teaching him songs of teleportation to key areas.
2. A Hyrule Castle Gossip Stone Knows Sheik’s Secret All Along
The Gossip Stones in Ocarina of Time give secret snippets for players to ponder over while playing the game.
On your way to Hyrule Castle as Young Link, a certain Gossip Stone bears a cryptic message that gives us the answer to Sheik’s Identity all along.
The stone’s message tells us ‘They say that, contrary to her elegant image, Princess Zelda of Hyrule Castle is, in fact, a tomboy!’
Zelda suddenly disappears once link becomes an adult, there’s a new Sheikah when Impa was the only one in the game, and young Zelda was apparently a tomboy.
How did we not work this one out!
3. Sheik Works Alongside Ganondorf In The Ocarina Of Time Manga
This next Zelda Sheik fact might shock a lot of the Zelda fans out there. Sheik was actually working alongside Ganondorf in the Ocarina of Time manga book.
Just let that sink in a minute… Sheik is a baddie!
Ok, not really.
Sheik was only pretending to work for Ganondorf in order to keep tabs on what the King of the Gerudo was up to and helping to throw him off the scent.
Zelda is one sneaky character!
4. Zelda Hides Her Memories From Ganondorf When Becoming Sheik
Zelda uses her magical abilities to hide her memories from the evil Ganondorf while working for him.
Essentially, she transforms entirely, which has a lot of people questioning the point at Number 13 in this list.
More on that in a little while though!
By hiding both her memories and her personality, Zelda could appear loyal to Ganondorf while keeping her true nature a secret.
5. Sheik Isn’t Part Of The Kakariko Village Sheikah Tribe
As Sheik isn’t actually a Sheikah, she isn’t part of the Kakariko Sheikah tribe. This leads to some confusion in a later game when Impa meets Sheik and is confused as to why she doesn’t recognise her.
Though Sheik bares the same Sheikah symbol as the Kakariko residents, both on Impa’s outfit and the clothes of the Sheikah in BotW, she isn’t actually a Sheikah.
Don’t forget, it’s just Zelda in disguise, and Zelda is a member of the Royal Family of Hyrule.
Coincidentally, ‘Sheik’ can be used for a member of a ruling tribe or family, and as Zelda is taking on the persona of a Sheikah and is actually a Royal, the name works pretty well!
6. Sheik’s Harp Appears In Skyward Sword
Next up on our Zelda Sheik facts list is the mystery of the Goddess Harp.
Zelda, the mortal reincarnation of the Goddess Hylia, uses the Goddess Harp in Skyward Sword, the first Zelda title in the Zelda Timeline. Link then uses it to learn songs throughout the game.
Notice the harp that Sheik uses to teach you the songs in Ocarina of Time?
It might have a little grip tape around it, but it’s the exact same harp!
Ocarina of Time might have dropped before Skyward Sword, but if we’re going on the timeline, this means that the harp has passed down through Zelda’s line for generations.
Had we known this before playing Ocarina of Time, Sheik’s little secret would have been incredibly easy to spot!
7. Sheik Designs For Twilight Princess Appear In Hyrule Historia
Sheik’s main appearances have been in Ocarina of Time, Hyrule Warriors, and Super Smash Bros. Still, there was obviously a moment where Nintendo thought Sheik would be a good addition to Twilight Princess.
The Legend of Zelda: Hyrule Historia is one of my favourite Zelda reference books and one of the best gaming books of all time. I was searching through my copy in preparation for this article and stumbled across the design for Sheik in the Twilight Princess art development section.
The image shows what Sheik might look like has Zelda taken on her alter ego in the GameCube/Wii title.
As it happens, Sheik never made an appearance in the game, unless Zelda was so stealthy that we didn’t even notice!
8. Sheik’s Mask Is Available In Breath Of The Wild
How’s this for a Sheik Zelda fact: Sheik’s iconic mask is available to use in Breath of the Wild.
The normal stealth armour has connotations of Sheik’s look (which we’ll get to in a second), but the more snug face covering and chopsticks never featured in Ocarina of Time.
Well, if you want to look even more like Sheik along with the head wrap and hair, then you’ll need the Sheik Amiibo.
The Super Smash Bros Sheik Amiibo gives a small chance that you might find the original headgear in a chest in BotW.
Players can upgrade the mask at a Great Fairy Fountain too, making it a great choice to fit into the main Stealth set instead of the stealth headgear. It can’t be dyed though, not that that makes a massive difference.
The weird thing is that you’d be making Link look like Sheik, who is Zelda, bur you’re Link… not Zelda, or Sheik.
My head hurts!
9. The Stealth Armour In Breath Of The Wild Was Redesigned To Provide Continuity With Ocarina Of Time
The picture on the far right is what Link’s stealth set was originally going to look like in Breath of the Wild.
As you can clearly see, this looks more like the garb that the Sheikah in Kakariko Village wear.
Still, there’s no doubt that the stealth set is there to make Link move and act more like Sheik, the sneakiest of all the Sheikah (even though she wasn’t really a Sheikah, but you get the idea).
The stealth set was redesigned dramatically to look more like Sheik’s outfit in the Ocarina of Time, thus maintaining that link to Link’s slippery ally.
The boots, the arm wrappings, the Sheikah symbol, and trace of a fringe all point towards the original Sheik design and pay homage to an incredible game at the same time.
10. Sheik’s Face Mask Is Called A Sarashi
This is one of those Sheik Zelda facts that you can tell friends at parties. A Sarashi, which translates from Japanese as ‘bleached cotton’ or ‘bleached cloth’ is a long strip of cloth.
The Sarashi is usually seen on warriors, giving it tough connotations. It was also worn by women to make them look slimmer and samurai to protect the skin.
We see a lot of this cloth making up Sheik’s initial outfit, and while Zelda isn’t using the cloth to make her look thinner, she is using it to look more masculine in order to fool everyone into thinking she is a boy.
11. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Gave Sheik A Makeover
After the success of Breath of the Wild, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate gave Sheik a makeover and put her in the stealth armour set.
Sheik’s whole outfit has changed and looks just like Link would if he was wearing Sheik’s mask in BotW, complete with the flowing Sarashi around her neck.
There’s also a little nod to Impa in Skyward Sword too with a long braid hanging from the back of her head, the same hairstyle that we’ve seen in Hyrule Warriors.
12. Sheik Almost Got Her Own Game
A Reddit thread and a search through multiple gaming websites brought us to Shinesparkers and this concept art for a Sheik game that never came to light.
This artwork came from an online collection of works from Sammy Hall, an artist who worked on Donkey Kong Country Returns and Metroid Prime 3, two of the best Nintendo Wii games out there!
The title of the artwork, simply named as ‘cancelled Zelda project’, features a Sheikah symbol that definitely points to this being the abandoned Sheik game we’ve heard so much about but clearly never seen.
The premise, according to Shinesparkers, revolves around the journey of the last Sheik. The Dark Gerudo are in the midst of a 100-year birth of Ganon, and that’s all we know.
Some sources say that Sheik was going to be made male in this game and not actually Princess Zelda in disguise… which brings us to our next point.
13. Some Fan’s Refuse To Believe Sheik Is A Woman
Nintendo has spoken and said unequivocally that Sheik is female. Zelda is female, Zelda is Sheik, therefore Sheik is female.
So where has the confusion come from?
Well, in the Ocarina of Time manga, Impa, Zelda’s protector, seals her consciousness. She tells her to live as a boy, relying on the fact that she will awaken as the Princess when the time is right.
In Ocarina of Time, we’re led to believe that Sheik is a male due to the wrappings used to make Zelda look more masculine, but in other games since, she has had a much more feminine physique akin to Samus Aran in her Zero Suit.
Then there’s the use of the Japanese word ‘seinen’, which translates as young man. Still, this is because we’re led to believe that Sheik is a boy at this time and we don’t want to give the game away.
Listen, it’s 2022, and it doesn’t really matter what gender Zelda identifies as. The official line, however, is that Sheik and Zelda are female, so I guess that’s that!
14. Princess Ruto Doesn’t Even Realise Zelda Is Sheik
When Link speaks to Princess Ruto, yet another Zora who has the hots for him, she describes Sheik as a ‘nice young man’.
Sheik’s disguise is incredibly good, but it also means that Zelda didn’t let slip to anyone about her disguise for fear of Ganondorf finding out.
And, if we follow the line from the Manga that Impa sealed her consciousness, there’s a strong chance that even Zelda didn’t know she was Zelda at that point.
That might go some way as to why Sheik uses the pronoun ‘boku’ in the Japanese version of Ocarina of Time. I guess if your consciousness has been sealed, you can’t accidentally give the game away by using the wrong pronoun when chatting with Ganondorf.
15. Zelda’s Magic And The Triforce Of Wisdom Create The Appearance Of Sheik
Zelda has a lot of magic; that isn’t a secret, and we’ve seen her stepping up to the plate with some phenomenal abilities throughout the series.
The description that accompanies Sheik’s statue in Super Smash Bros. Melee tells us that Zelda used magic to change her appearance when becoming Sheik.
That means she used her magic to change her skin, hair and eye colour to avoid detection.
We see the Triforce of Wisdom shining on the back of Sheik’s hand right before Sheik transforms back into Zelda. It’s this transformation that makes us think the Triforce has a big impact on Sheik’s look and abilities.
Why can Sheik make massive jumps and dives yet Zelda appears unable to escape a ring of fire on the final level of Ocarina of Time?
The general consensus is that Zelda’s magic is channelled in a different way when she is Sheik, and also because it would be pretty hard to jump in a massive dress like the one Nintendo have given her when she’s in princess mode.
16. Impa Doesn’t Trust Sheik In Hyrule Warriors
This next Sheik Zelda fact brings another sneaky twist to the Zelda universe.
In Hyrule Warriors, the characters are all descendants from the original characters. We’re talking about a different Impa and Zelda than from Ocarina of Time here, but obviously the mystery of the Sheik disguise has also passed down through generations, just like the Goddess Harp.
In Hyrule Warriors, Impa becomes suspicious when a new Sheikah named Sheik who she has never met before turns up to fight. Things get weirder when Sheik says that Impa was the leader of her clan too.
I don’t blame Impa for being suspicious; if someone I had never met tried to gaslight me like this, I’d be a little wary too.
The fact that Zelda disappears without saying anything must weigh on Impa’s mind too. Come on Zelda, just keep your mate in the loop, alright?
17. Sheik’s Only Appearance On The GameCube Is Super Smash Bros Melee
Had Sheik appeared on Twilight Princess like the designers had intended, it would have been two games. Still, as it stands, Sheik’s only GameCube appearance is on Super Smash Bros. Melee.
With a swish new move-set and more agile attack patterns, Sheik is undeniably a force to be reckoned with and a great way for Zelda fans to mix up their attack style.
18. Zelda Can Swap Between Her Alter Ego Any Time In Two Smash Bros. Games
Players diving into Super Smash Bros. Melee and Super Smash Bros. Brawl can change from Zelda to Sheik on a whim.
In Melee, players can hold down A while the game level is loading to transform. In both games, players holding B + Down will transform between Sheik and Zelda.
These are the only games where Zelda can switch between her forms. In every other Zelda game, both characters appear separately.
19. Sheik’s Theme Was Written By Koji Kondo
The iconic harp theme whenever Sheik walks into the scene was written by composer Koji Kondo.
If that name sounds familiar, then it means you’re a true Nintendo fan. Koji has made lots of songs for Nintendo over the years and wrote the Super Mario Bros. overworld tune.
He’s made a lot of songs for the Zelda franchise and is responsible for creating the mysterious vibes whenever Sheik is confusing Link’s head with those deep proverbs she comes out with.
20. There’s Actually A ‘Best Sheik Player’ In Japan
The last tasty morsel on this Sheik Zelda facts article is about the best Sheik player in Japan.
I’m of course referring to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, and the player in question at the time of writing is Yumeto Yasui.
With the game name Smasher:Sachi, Yumeto Yasui is widely heralded as the best player when using Sheik on any Smash Bros. level.
So, if you see that name pop up on your screen, prepare for a beating!
Seb Santabarbara has bought every Nintendo console that has ever been released in his 31 years on Planet Earth. His favourite game franchise is Zelda, and he’s patiently waiting for Banjo-Kazooie to come back to the fold. When he’s not playing games, he’s travelling the world in his self-converted camper van.