Chapter 8: Dodongo’s Cavern
This place is filled with lava, fire-breathing dinosaurs, and mechanical monsters that want to kill you! Use Bomb Flowers to help you get deeper into the cave and watch out for all the beasts crawling around. Hopefully this’ll be worth it…
- Press the switch to open the west door.
- Head to the upper floor.
- Grab the Bomb Bag.
- Open the giant dead Dodongo’s skull.
- Defeat King Dodongo to eliminate the Dodongo infestation.
Immediately upon entering you’ll run into a bombable wall - fortunately there are Bomb Flowers off to the side that you can use to blow it down. Once the fake wall is out of the way, you’ll reveal a wide chamber filled with lava pits and a giant Dodongo skull on the far side of the room. If you’ve got a Hylian Shield, equip it now - touching those lava pits with your Deku Shield equipped will cause it to burn up and you won’t be able to use it anymore.
Head straight and leap across the rising and sinking pillar to reach the central pedestal. In the center sits a Beamos, a one-eyed statue that will shoot you if you fall within its line of sight. Avoid its stare and leap over to the east side of the room. Pluck the nearby Bomb Flower and toss it at the Beamos guarding the fake wall to the south, then grab another one and use it on the bombable wall to reveal a passage leading east.
As you make your way through this corridor, Baby Dodongos will burrow out from under the ground and attack you. If you can get one to explode nearby the bombable wall close to the end of the passage you can get into a secret room containing Skulltula Token 19. If not, just keep following the passage until you reach a barred door flanked by stone statues on either side.
Note the blue floor switch nearby - if you step on it, the door will unseal, but it has to be held down continuously in order for you to be able to make it through. Approach one of the statues as if they were blocks and push one of them onto the switch. Now you can make sure it’s held in place and make a break for the unbarred door.
Follow the short hallway into the next room, which has lava flowing into it from the upper floor. You can leap between a series of platforms to get to the door on the other side of the room, but it’s sealed shut due to the Lizalfos warriors prowling around the room. Deal with them one at a time to open the door.
There’s a fake wall along the next corridor, but it doesn’t hold anything of importance - only a Business Scrub ready to peddle its wares. The real challenge is in the blue room at the end of the hall. Here you’ll find adolescent Dodongos. They’re much more dangerous than their infant counterparts, so deal with them with caution.
Once you’ve cleared the room of Dodongos, make note of the unlit torches lining the center of the room. Return to the entrance, where you’ll find one still burning - you know what to do: use a Deku Stick to bring its light to the other torches to open the way forward. You’ll emerge on a ledge back in the central chamber - step on the switch ahead to unseal the west passage.
Jump back across the central platform, running past the Beamos, and to the west side of the room. There’s a fake wall that you can blast with a Bomb Flower to reveal a chest containing the Dungeon Map, as well as a Business Scrub who will sell you a Deku Shield if yours has burned up, but the real attraction is the door that opened up when you pressed that switch earlier.
Through the next corridor is a room with a giant monolith in the center that’s surrounded by Bomb Flowers. You’ll deal with them in a second, but first blow open the fake wall on the south end of the room and proceed through the door beyond. Here you’ll see a treasure chest surrounded by stone statues - one of which will come to life and attack you when you touch it! This is an Armos, and if you defeat it, you’ll be able to safely grab the Compass from the chest.
Return to the previous room and look for a gap in the chain of Bomb Flowers lining the monolith. If you place a Bomb Flower right in the center of this gap, it will cause a chain reaction that will detonate all of the others. This will result in the monolith dropping down in stages, creating a staircase to the upper floor!
Climb up the stairs, grab Skulltula Token 20 from the vines on the upper level, then proceed through the door. Through the next hallway is a room containing four stone statues surrounding a central platform with a switch on top. Three of the statues are Armos, while one is just an ordinary statue - fortunately, the safe one is the one in front of the ladder you can climb to get to the switch. Push it out of the way and press the switch to open the door.
You’ll emerge on the upper floor of the large central chamber. Narrow wooden bridges span the gaps between the two sides of the room. There’s a gap in the center of this one, so tread with caution. Fire Keese will try to dive bomb you from above - if they hit you you’ll be set ablaze and possibly knocked off the bridge! More than likely you can just ignore them and run straight across the room, but just in case…
The next room is maze-like, and blade traps sweep across as you pass. Take care as you drop down into the room to avoid the first trap, and use your L-targeting to look around corners so as to keep track of the others. Once you make it past the traps, pull the stone block out from the wall to line it up with the ladder, then climb up onto it to reach the nearby ledge.
If you toss the Bomb Flower here with the right timing, you can blast through the fake wall blocking the passage forward. The best way to time it is to watch the red countdown cycle and toss it a couple short seconds before it’s ready to go off. If you fail the first try, the Bomb Flower will respawn and you can try again - just be careful not to wait too long to make your throw so it doesn’t explode in your hands and you’ll get it after a few attempts.
Through the passage is a room blocked by a veil of fire. As it turns out, if you fire your Slingshot at the eye switch directly across from you, you’ll extinguish the flames for a short time. Proceed down the hall to the next chamber, where you’ll battle another pair of Lizalfos. This room actually overlooks the one where you fought the last duo - be careful not to fall down to the lower level if you take the fight to the bridge at the edge of the chamber.
Once you’ve dealt with them, move on to the next room. This one has yet another veil of flame blocking the way - two of them in fact. Shoot the eye switch across the room just like last time to lower the first flame barrier, then hop over to the ledge and turn to the left to find another switch hidden in an alcove in the wall that will get rid of the second ring of fire.
The next room is actually just the upper level of the north end of the room with the blade traps. Leap across to the opposite ledge and grab the Bomb Bag from the big chest there.
Through the next hallway you’ll find yourself back in the central chamber. Step on the nearby switch to cause one of the pillars on the bottom floor to rise all the way up to the top, giving you a shortcut back up here in case you fall down. Don’t head down to the ground floor just yet - trek over to the north bridge that overlooks the giant Dodongo skull.
Peer down through the first gap in the bridge at the empty eye socket. If you drop a Bomb off the edge of the bridge into the socket, it’ll glow red. Repeat the procedure for the other eye and the skull’s mouth will open, revealing the way to the deepest part of the cavern.
Take a leap down to the first floor and enter the Dodongo skull. Once you’re inside, make note of the switch in the center of the room. You’ll need to hold it down with a block in order to open the door on your left and proceed to the boss’s chamber. For now, head through the door to the east and run through the maze-like corridor ahead.
At the far side of the room, the chamber opens up and you can climb into an alcove in the wall to find a bombable wall behind which rests Skulltula Token 21. Once you’ve nabbed it, return to the large winding chamber and use the movable blocks that you can reach as stepping stones to get up on top of the winding maze walls. From there, head along the top of the wall to the west and proceed through the corridor there.
You’ll emerge back in the chamber with the floor switch. Push the stone block here down to the lower level of the room and move it onto the switch to open the west door. Head inside and bomb the discolored floor in the middle of the next room to open up a pit that you can fall into to reach the boss of the caverns: King Dodongo.
King Dodongo will begin the fight by rolling towards you. You can’t block this attack, so try to hug the inside of the path along the perimeter of the room - yes, this means getting a bit too close to the lava for comfort. After he’s finished rolling, he’ll turn to face you and then prepare to send a burst of flame your way. While his mouth is open and he’s sucking in hot air, ready a Bomb and toss it into his maw. He’ll swallow it and it’ll explode in his stomach, stunning him. That’s your cue to go in with your sword.
That’s really all there is to this fight. There are Bomb Flowers in the corners of the room in case you run out of Bombs, but really, this battle is so simple that I doubt you’ll need them. Hit him two more times with Bombs and your sword and he’ll go down, leaving behind a Heart Container and a warp out of the dungeon in his wake.
Once you’re back outside, Darunia will reward you with the Spiritual Stone of Fire: the Goron’s Ruby! That’s two out of three!
Ocarina of Time screenshots courtesy of AceofSuns. Screenshots will eventually be replaced with 3DS version images, which are not presently available for hopefully obvious reasons.