The Zelda fandom collectively agrees that the final Tears of the Kingdom trailer is one of the best in video games history and we explain what the resurfaced Rehydrated Ganondorf meme is and cover Matthew Mercer’s involvement.

We previously discussed the Zelda fandom’s worry over the accordion player, Kass, and his return to the franchise, since Link’s ally is nowhere to be found in the sequel’s trailers.

Developed and published by Nintendo, the action-adventure game, The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, is a direct sequel to 2017’s Breath of the Wild, flaunting open-world gameplay in the fictional kingdom of Hyrule following protagonist and hero, Link, ally Princess Zelda, and antagonist, Ganondorf.

Tears of the Kingdom final trailer recap

Nintendo really saved the best for last when it comes to promoting Tears of the Kingdom, as Hyrule has never looked better while being stuffed to the sky with new mechanics, characters, and places to explore.

We already know gleeoks and redeads are being welcomed back into the mix, but this trailer also showed the return of Tulin, Riju, and more.

We also got our first good look at the returning antagonist, Ganondorf, in all his red-haired glory and many fans are loving the villain’s new design.

What is the Rehydrated Ganondorf meme?

Rehydrated Ganondorf is a meme that was created after Tears of the Kingdom’s first teaser was released, transforming Ganon’s mummified body into a more handsome version. 

Nintendo released the sequel’s first teaser at E3 2019, showing a mummy-like enemy with glowing eyes, which many perceived as Ganon.

Shortly after the teaser dropped, popular Twitter artist, furanchu, shared artwork of Ganon looking much healthier and more hydrated than his mummified appearance, saying “New hydrated Ganondorf.”

Fans then ran with this idea and began making Ganon into an attractive, god-like being calling him “Rehydrated Ganondorf.”

After Nintendo released new artwork of Ganon in Tears of the Kingdom looking anything but mummified, fans were certain that the publisher had made the meme canon. 

Fans react to Rehydrated Ganon

Upon the release of the official character art of Ganondorf in Tears of the Kingdom, Zelda stans shouted “Rehydrated Ganon” in unison.

Showing Ganon in his buff state, many fans were quick to announce the new design as “hot”, with many becoming flustered (presumable in jest) over the artwork.

One fan even said they were expecting a “dry Ganon” in the new trailer but ended up getting something totally unexpected instead.

Matthew Mercer confirms he is voicing Ganondorf

One day after the final trailer dropped, voice actor and Critical Role DM, Matthew Mercer, took to social media to confirm he would be voicing Ganondorf in Tears of the Kingdom.

This was not a surprise to many, however, as fans quickly identified Mercer’s voice in the previous trailer.

In the VA’s announcement post, Mercer shared a picture of a previous time when he played Ganon for the 2009 Super Smash Bros. fan film series, There Will Be Brawl.

Mercer portrayed a cosplay version of the Zelda antagonist for the independent project helmed by Zach Grafton, and Mercer, which ran for 10 parts spanning one year.

By Jo Craig – [email protected]

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom releases May 12, 2023, on Nintendo Switch.

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