Although it follows Phantom Hourglass as yet another semi-direct sequel to The Wind Waker, The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks has one of the most unique settings and premises of any game in the series. After both Wind Waker and Phantom Hourglass see the Hero of Time take to the open sea on a ship, Spirit Tracks introduces a new version of Link who is an aspiring engineer and train conductor. This unique setting gives way to an equally unique cast of foes for Link to fight, with almost all enemies in Spirit Tracks having some connection to the game’s locomotive-centric setting and mechanics.
Still, the gameplay of Spirit Tracks remains largely the same as Phantom Hourglass, with most of the same mechanics and controls from the first DS Zelda game making a return in its sequel. The most significant addition that Spirit Tracks provides is having the spirit of Princess Zelda herself able to possess and control the Phantom enemies, granting players a useful companion that can hold their own weight in combat and even assist with puzzle-solving and dungeon traversal. Surprisingly, there are only a small handful of returning foes from Phantom Hourglass, with Spirit Tracks introducing several new enemies and bringing back returning favorites for the series’ final DS outing.
The Armored Train is an enemy type players will only encounter while traversing across Spirit Tracks‘ overworld map. They are more dangerous and resilient than the standard Dark Train enemies and Link will need to defeat 6 of them with help from the Tears of Light to eventually face off against the Demon Train boss enemy. Aside from the 6 players must defeat as part of the main quest, these foes will most commonly appear in the Ocean and Snow Realms.
Much like their counterparts in Phantom Hourglass, Spirit Tracks‘ Bee enemies won’t bother Link unless he happens to run into a tree containing one of their hives. However, players will want to occasionally disturb these bee hives to obtain Bee Larvae. After disturbing the hive, the bees will relentlessly chase Link until he changes areas or jumps into a body of water.
Big Blin are exclusive enemies to Spirit Tracks that closely resemble the recurring Moblin enemy type despite not sharing their name. Though Big Blin is almost always accompanied by a group of Miniblins, they will blindly swing their giant club and often take out their companions for Link.
Another enemy exclusive to Spirit Tracks, Blastworms are common foes in the Forest Temple dungeon. Players can easily defeat them with a single sword slash, at which point they turn into an explosive spiked ball that Link can use as a makeshift bomb. It is necessary to use the Blastworms in the Forest Temple’s boss arena to defeat Stagnox.
The recurring flying skull enemies from throughout the Zelda series make a return in Spirit Tracks. However, their appearance and behavior are decidedly different from previous appearances. Rather than featuring a protective flame or ice covering, Spirit Tracks‘ Bubbles have a purple cloud that emits from them and only feature during the encounters with Mothula.
The goblin-like Bulbins that make their debut in Twilight Princess appear only as riders in Spirit Tracks. They show up atop their Bullbo mounts and ride alongside Link’s train firing arrows. Link can easily defeat these rank-and-file foes with a shot of the train’s cannon, knocking them off their mounts.
Occasionally the boar-like Bullbo enemies will show up without their riders and roam along the rails in Spirit Tracks‘ overworld. Since Link will take damage if he hits them, he can either sound the train’s whistle to spook them off the tracks or defeat them using the train’s cannon.
Cannon Boats will occasionally show up in Spirit Tracks‘ Ocean Realm to fire cannonballs at Link’s train from afar. Just like in Phantom Hourglass, players can use the train’s cannon to quickly defeat these foes. Additionally, the cannonballs from the Spirit Train can destroy the Cannon Boat’s projectiles in midair.
Much like in their other appearances throughout the series, Spirit Tracks‘ Crow enemies will lie in wait in the treetops until Link gets close. After landing a hit on Link these birds will also steal a small amount of Rupees. Thankfully, they are only encounters within the Forest Realm and will perish after a single sword slash.
Dark Trains are common enemies that show up any time Link rides the Spirit Train along the Spirit Tracks. Rather than have any unique attacks, these kamikaze locomotives speed headlong into Link’s path in an attempt to blow up the Spirit Train. The best way to deal with Dark Trains is to stun them using 5 shots from the cannon, opening up an escape route.
The Ergrtorok are sand-inhabiting creatures that only appear in Spirit Tracks. Like their seafaring counterparts the Octive, Ergtoroks will pop out from beneath the sand to spit rocks in Link’s direction. Since they will burrow back beneath the surface when Link gets close, the only way to defeat them is to use the Sand Wand, stunning them before closing in with standard sword slashes.
Although the Deku Baba are commonly recurring enemies in the series, the Fire Baba variant only appears in Spirit Tracks. Rather than lunging at Link in an attempt to bite him, these pesky plants will shoot fireballs at the hero from afar. The best way to deal with Fire Babas is by separating their heads from their stalks using either the Boomerang or the Whip.
Similar to their other series appearances, Spirit Tracks‘ Fire Keese are standard bat-like creatures with a protective flame covering. They appear within a handful of the game’s dungeons and are only vulnerable to ranged weapons.
Link only encounters the mini version of the Freezard enemy in Spirit Tracks, and even then only in two locations (Snow Temple and Anouki Village). Aiming the Boomerang to hit a torch in its flight path before it hits the Freezard will reveal an Octorok underneath that is vulnerable to sword attacks.
Geozards appear once again in Spirit Tracks after their debut as Zora Warriors in Phantom Hourglass. Thanks to the sword and shield they carry the Geozard are mostly invulnerable to direct attacks, requiring the use of two specific methods to defeat them. Link can either have Phantom Zelda flank them to open them up for attack or use the Whip item to strip their shields away before attacking with the sword.
The Geozard Chiefs are stronger versions of the standard Geozard that appear within the Tower of Spirits. Like their standard counterparts, Link can double up on them with Phantom Zelda or strip their shields away using the Whip before attacking. Though they are initially mini-boss encounters, they eventually become more common enemies.
The Gerunes are an exclusive enemy type to Spirit Tracks that only appear inside the Sand Temple. Like the Ergtorok, Link will need to utilize the Sand Wand to stun Gerune before they become vulnerable to sword attacks. However, using the Sand Wand will cause the Gerune to attempt an escape. The best strategy is to herd them into a corner before stunning them so they can’t get away.
Spinuts are one of the first enemies that players will encounter in Spirit Tracks and the Green Spinut variant is a slightly tougher version of the standard yellow Spinut. These creatures will wander around the screen until catching sight of Link, at which point they will dash toward him. They aren’t great at turning, which means players can easily strafe around them to land successful attacks on their flank.
Link will only encounter Heatoise within Spirit Tracks‘ Fire Temple. These turtle-like enemies will retract into their shells and begin spinning in Link’s direction if he gets too close. Although Link’s only initial defense is to dodge out of the way of the spin attack, they are vulnerable to the Fire Temple’s key item — the Bow and Arrow.
Helmet ChuChus are a unique variant of the recurring series foe that only appear in Spirit Tracks. Link will need to use the Whip to remove their helmets before they are vulnerable to sword slashes.
As their name implies, Ice ChuChus are versions of the standard ChuChu that have a protective ice covering. Attacking the Ice ChuChu head-on will result in Link freezing to the spot. To defeat these foes, players can use the Boomerang to stun them and remove their frozen outer layer before attacking with the sword.
Like the Fire Keese, Ice Keese are standard Keese that have a protective covering of ice. And, similar to other ice-type enemies, Ice Keese will freeze Link if he makes contact with them. The best and only means to defeat Ice Keese in Spirit Tracks is to use ranged weapons.
Key Masters are similar to the Wallmaster and Floormaster enemies of previous Zelda games. They follow Link in Spirit Tracks‘ dungeons once he has the Big Key and try to prevent him from using it to unlock the Boss’ arena. Once Link uses the Big Key the Key Masters will vanish. However, before that time, the Key Masters are indestructible and only vulnerable to stun from a hit to their large eye.
The recurring Keese enemies appear once again in Spirit Tracks and are largely identical to their Phantom Hourglass incarnation. They will deal damage equal to 1/4 of a single Heart Container and are generally weak enemies in terms of both offense and defense.
Since their appearance in the original Legend of Zelda, Like-Likes tend to have the same pattern of behavior across all games they show up in. Spirit Tracks is no different, with the Like-Like once again swallowing Link if he gets too close and eating his shield in the process.
Lobarrier are essentially an enemy type combining a small crab-like creature and a rock formation. To defeat these enemies and remove them from Link’s path, the best method is to hit them from behind using the Boomerang (where they are incapable of blocking it) and then slashing them with the sword while they’re immobile.
Malgyorg are Spirit Tracks‘ sand-dwelling variants of the aquatic Gyorg from Phantom Hourglass, with Link only encountering them within the Sand Realm. When these fish enemies leap from beneath the sand, shooting them with a single shot of the Spirit Train’s cannon will make short work of them.
Metal ChuChu are similar to Yellow ChuChu in that they feature a protective flow of electricity covering their body. However, unlike the Yellow ChuChu, Metal ChuChus will never routinely pause to recharge and are always electrified. As a result, Link needs to rely on attacking them from range using the Boomerang or Bow and Arrow.
Miniblin appear once again in Spirit Tracks though they are far more dangerous than in previous incarnations. In addition to showing up in Tanks and Cannon Boats to attack the train, they will occasionally mount the top of an Armos to relentlessly pursue Link. They appear in greater numbers and are far more organized than their incarnations from Phantom Hourglass.
After previously appearing as a boss enemy in other games, Spirit Tracks‘ version of the iconic Mothula is a regular enemy encounter within the Forest Temple. They will shoot Bubbles at Link that he can direct back at them using Whirlwind and then follow up with a sword slash.
The Mounted Miniblin are a version of the Miniblin riding atop an Armos knight. They only appear in Spirit Tracks and only within the Tower of Spirits. They are beyond reach unless Link stands on top of the Phantom’s shield and uses the additional height to land a successful strike from his sword.
Nocturns only appear in Spirit Tracks and only feature within the Tower of Spirits. They lurk in the shadows but reveal themselves after Link lights a torch. Other than directing the Boomerang through a torch before hitting the Nocturn with it, the easiest way to defeat them is to have Princess Zelda possess a Torch Phantom.
Ocean Octoroks are overworld enemies that will slow down the Spirit Train by emerging from out of the water to shoot ink as it passes. If the train gets hit with ink it will remove the mini-map for a brief period. Despite not being much of a threat, they do take several hits from the cannon to bring them down.
Octive are enemies Link will only encounter within the Snow Temple and are similar to the Ergtorok in many ways. Like their sand-dwelling counterparts, the Octive will occasionally emerge from beneath the surface of the water to shoot rocks at Link. The best way to defeat these enemies is to stun them with the Boomerang and slash using the sword.
Octomine actually pose no threat in Spirit Tracks, only appearing floating on top of the water. That said, they do contain valuable Recovery Hearts and Rupees that Link can destroy them to collect.
Octoroks in Spirit Tracks behave almost identically to previous series incarnations. They are overworld enemies that typically show up in grassy areas and will shoot rocks at Link from range. In addition to being able to deflect the rocks with his shield, Link can also easily rush in and defeat Octoroks using a single sword slash.
Unlike in Phantom Hourglass, the Phantom sentries in Spirit Tracks have utility beyond simply being patrolling enemies of the game’s central dungeon. With Princess Zelda’s spirit separated from her body, Link can call on her to temporarily possess a Phantom after Link stuns it using his sword. However, Link must first fully power up his blade using all available Tears of Light, and even then the Phantoms are only vulnerable in one spot on their back. When Link kills Phantoms in Spirit Tracks they respawn back at their original position.
Phantom Eyes show up once again in Spirit Tracks as the eyes of the Phantom sentries. They first appear on the 13th floor of the Tower of Spirits and will regularly show up afterward to provide the Phantoms with Link’s location. Thankfully, these spies are relatively weak and players can easily defeat them with a single shot from the Bow.
Pirate Ships show up once again in Spirit Tracks but are only part of a handful of story sequences rather than recurring enemies like in Phantom Hourglass. When Link encounters a Pirate Ship it is manned by a crew of Miniblins.
Pirate Tanks are unique to Spirit Tracks and not a returning enemy from Phantom Hourglass, unlike the Pirate Ship. After rescuing Wasatsumi from the Pirate Hideout, Miniblins piloting Pirate Tanks will regularly show up alongside the Spirit Train and attempt to board it. The best way to defeat the Pirate Tanks is to shoot them from range with the train’s cannon.
Spirit Tracks‘ version of the recurring Rat enemy will regularly dart in and out of small holes in the wall, usually tempting Link with Small Keys dangling from around their necks. Their evasive maneuvers require that players block one of the Rat’s exit holes with a block so that they can defeat them with a single sword slash.
The Rocktite is a Spirit Tracks-exclusive enemy and mini-boss encounter that players will tackle a handful of times throughout the game’s adventure. They appear once in the Sand, Snow, and Fire Realms and generally behave the same in each encounter despite offering different rewards each time. Carefully aim the Spirit Train’s cannon to hit the Rocktite in its single eye.
Red ChuChus makes a characteristic return appearance in Spirit Tracks. Accordingly, they behave nearly identical to previous incarnations. They are slow-moving and weak, and Link can easily defeat them with a single sword slash.
Appropriately, Sir Frosty are enemies that Link will only encounter within Spirit Tracks‘ Snow Realm. They are overworld enemies that will actively try to destroy the Spirit Train by throwing their disembodied heads at it. Link can shoot the flying heads in midair using the cannon to prevent taking damage. They take either one or two cannon shots to defeat depending on whether they have or haven’t detached their heads.
Skulltula appear in Spirit Tracks within the Forest Realm and come in standard and larger Red versions. Regardless of whether Link is facing the regular Skulltula or the larger Red Skulltula, he can easily defeat them using one or two shots from the cannon, respectively.
Snappers are Spirit Tracks‘ whip-wielding foes that appear inside the Ocean Temple. Thanks to the range of their whips, attacking Snappers up close is practically impossible, making using the Boomerang a necessity. After stunning the Snapper using the Boomerang, Link can rush in for a successful slash with the sword.
Snurglars roam Spirit Tracks‘ Fire Realm in possession of valuable keys that Link needs to access the Fire Temple. There are three that Link needs to defeat and claim their prize, after which all the area’s Snurglars transform into the standard Snurgle.
Snurgle are the standard version of the flying Snurglar enemies that appear within Spirit Tracks‘ Fire Realm. Unlike their Snurglar counterparts, Snurgle appear throughout the world map and will harass Link in the Spirit Train as he traverses through the overworld. Like Bullbo, Link can either scare them away using the train whistle or eliminate them using the cannon.
The standard yellow Spinut are weaker and much more common than their Green Spinut counterparts, with players able to easily defeat them using just two sword slashes. They are incredibly common foes that are essentially weak rank-and-file enemies for Link to eliminate in hopes of acquiring Rupees or Recovery Hearts.
The skeletal Stalfos appear once again in Spirit Tracks as a fairly common enemy type within dungeons. Like their appearance in Phantom Hourglass, Link can use the Boomerang to stun them and the sword or Bombs to eliminate them.
Stalfos Warriors are more dangerous sword-wielding Stalfos that once again appear in Spirit Tracks. They will actively charge Link while brandishing their weapon rather than use the evasive maneuvers of the standard Stalfos and are vulnerable to both Bombs and Light Arrows.
The commonly occurring arachnid enemies of the Zelda franchise, Tektites make an expected appearance in Spirit Tracks as well. Unlike other versions of the creatures from across the series, Spirit Tracks‘ Tektites only come in one color and are much larger, appearing in the tunnels connecting the sections of the Spirit Tracks and climbing on the walls and ceiling.
Torch Phantoms are useful enemies that Zelda can possess to light torches, attack Nocturns, or light up dark rooms. Other than their red armor and ability to use their torch-sword for illumination, they are very similar to the standard Phantom sentries.
Vengas are enemies players will only encounter within the Forest Temple that emits poisonous gas when killed. Link can use Whirlwind to dispel the gas clouds and avoid receiving damage.
Warp Phantoms are sentries within the Tower of Spirits that Zelda can possess to warp directly to the location of a Phantom Eye. However, this ability works both ways, meaning a Warp Phantom can show up to fight Link instantaneously after being spotted by a Phantom Eye.
Spirit Tracks is the last game in the Zelda series in which the White Wolfos appears, showing up regularly within the Snow Realm. They will pop out of the snow when Link gets close and attempt to charge him to deal damage. To quickly defeat the White Wolfos and avoid incurring damage, simply use the Spin Attack.
Part enemy and part trap, the Winder are electrified creatures that frequently appear in dungeons throughout the Zelda series. In Spirit Tracks they actually go by a different name (Moldola) and are useful when battling Heatoises since they always appear together.
The black armor-wearing Wrecker Phantoms can transform into a living wrecking ball, destroying everything and anything within their path. Thankfully, Link can take advantage of this ability to have Zelda possess one and use it to destroy inactive Armos statues.
Yellow ChuChu are somewhat common enemies in Spirit Tracks that prevent direct attacks from Link thanks to their protective electric covering. If Link slashes a Yellow ChuChu with its electric field active, he will take damage instead of the enemy. However, Yellow ChuChu will occasionally pause to recharge, giving Link a window of opportunity in which to strike.