Everyone who’s played “The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time” knows about Princess Zelda’s Hyrule Castle. Well, I’m here to remind you that there was another castle in the game, and I think it’s about time to show it the appreciation it deserves. I’m talking about Ganon’s Castle, the fortress of “Ocarina of Time” baddie Ganondorf.
Sure, ol’ Ganny’s place might not show up ‘til the end of the game, and it isn’t exactly the most cheerful looking of abodes, but it is a castle. In what I and my fellow bloggers happen to consider the best “Zelda” game, no less. I think that makes it worthy of a fictional property evaluation. Heck, we’ve been hitting all the big ones here on the Movoto Real Estate blog—Castlevania, Peach’s Castle from “Super Mario 64”, and Stormwind Keep from “World of Warcraft” have gotten the Movoto treatment.
So, I put on my green tunic, grabbed my boomerang, and set off for Death Mountain intent on not returning until I had valued the place. Well, I made it back, and I can report that Ganon’s Castle would be worth $57,752,968 on the current real-world real estate market. That’s less than half what Zelda’s home is worth. No wonder Ganon’s always in such a bad mood.
Why the significant difference in value, then? Keep reading and I’ll explain.
Valuing a Video Game Castle
If you’ve checked out our other evaluations of video game homes, you’ll be familiar with the strategy we employ for doing them. If you’re still a noob, here’s how it works. In order to determine the value of any fictional property, you need three things:
- The size of the property (in this case Ganon’s Castle)
- The location of the property (if it existed in the real world)
- The price per square foot of other comparable properties in that location
Let’s start with the size of Ganon’s crib.
Ganon’s Castle: Mostly an Illusion
Much like the Phantom Ganon that Link fights in the Forest Temple of “Ocarina of Time”, Ganon’s Castle looks more imposing than it really is. I learned this after getting my hands on an excellent map of the fortress that shows its complete layout—and despite the castle’s massive exterior, the interior is only six levels with most of its square footage on the ground floor. How small are we talking in this case? 42,094 square feet. Oh, sure, that’s a pretty immense amount of space, just not compared to how massive the castle appears on the outside.
I arrived at this measurement by first getting a point of reference based on something that doesn’t vary in size—in this case, the adult Link. Since his shoulders are exactly half the width of the standard doorways in Ganon’s Castle, I was able to create a scale based on that. In my estimation, one door’s width would be 34 inches (double an average man’s shoulder width of 18.25 inches, minus 2.5 inches due to Link’s slighter elven build). I then painstakingly measured every bit of floor space on the map.
This included the main chamber and all of the connected rooms where Link must destroy the six evil barriers that protect the castle, plus the hallways and levels leading to the final confrontation with Ganondorf. When I was done, I had a measurement, but I needed a location.
Spoiler Warning: Ganon’s Castle Location Envy
Still here? Let’s do this!
In the game, it turns out that Ganon’s Castle is actually built on top of the ruins of Zelda’s castle. What a jerk, right? So, how’s that possible? Well, it involves time travel, something that fortunately doesn’t have to be considered in fictional real estate evaluation (yet).
This means that determining the location of Ganon’s Castle was really, really simple. That’s because we’ve previously placed Hyrule Castle in the real world, and that location is Tuscany, Italy. I know—it’s not really fair that this turned out to be so easy, so I spent some time coming up with some more “Zelda meets the real world” trivia for you, along the line of what my pal Natalie did for her original evaluation.
She (brilliantly) made the connection in her post between the land of Hyrule and real-world Italy, specifically the Tuscany region. Well, I think I can make another that might just blow your mind, “Zelda” fans.
Did you know that, like Hyrule, Italy also has a Death Mountain? That’s right—the iconic landmark from the “Zelda” games also has a basis in reality. You see, northwest of Tuscany lies the Aosta Valley, on the border of Italy and France. Rising above this area is Mont Blanc, long referred to by mountaineers as “Death Mountain” due to its extremely high fatality rate. How high? Around 100 climbers lose their lives on Mount Blanc every year.
So, if any of your fellow gamers ever ask where Death Mountain is, you can tell them without hesitation that it’s in Italy (and partially in France, to be technical).
Think Ganon’s Castle Is Scary? You Should Price Property in Tuscany
Seeing as the location of Ganon’s Castle is so very similar to Hyrule Castle, I was also able to use our existing cost per square foot of property in the region for my evaluation. That rate is a whopping $1,372 per square foot, based on the cost of an actual castle outside of Florence, Italy.
If Ganondorf had built his castle near Death Mountain, where he resided in the original 8-bit “Legend of Zelda” game for the NES, the property would have been valued at a slightly less ridiculous $1,003 per square foot. But Ganon just had to set up shop right where Hyrule Castle stood.
Ganondorf: Bad Guy or Bad Builder?
With the square footage (42,094) and cost per square foot ($1372) of Ganon’s Castle determined, some simple multiplication gave me a a final listing price of $57,752,968. Of course, that doesn’t include furnishings, having lava pumped in, or the pay for all of Ganondorf’s evil minions. Maybe that’s why he wanted to get his hands on a solid gold Triforce so badly?