Game(s): The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Super Smash Bros. series
Hello and happy Wednesday! We are here with our next character, Sheik from the Legend of Zelda (and Super Smash Bros.) series! First off, a quick reminder: Character posts are going to be split between Wednesdays and Fridays now, and the first post will be a character overview and skills breakdown, with workouts being posted on Friday. This is the first post for Sheik, so we’re going to talk about her skills here today, and her workout will be up on Friday!
Yes, her. I know there’s some debate among the Zelda community, but we’re going to assume for our purposes that it’s just Zelda there under that cool ninja outfit. If you’d like to think otherwise, that’s okay by me, everything should still apply. I just like the Zelda series having a strong female protagonist. =P
Anyhoo, Sheik is a member of the Sheikah tribe, basically Hylian ninja, and she frequently assists Link in The Ocarina of Time. She also regularly rips people’s faces off in the Smash Bros. series (I was a Sheik main for basically the whole Melee era…). She’s nimble, agile, and lethal – a Rogue Assassin in all respects. We’re going to take a look at some of her attributes from Ocarina of Time as well as Smash Bros. to put together her skill breakdown. Let’s jump in!
Okay, this is the part where I normally recommend learning the character’s martial art of choice. However, with ninja-like characters, this is a difficult option. There’s a LOT of controversy over ninjutsu as an actual historical martial art, and while there’s definitely plenty of schools that teach it, even the oldest organization, bujinkan, has had its historical legitimacy questioned. So, that said, if you’re looking for something ninja-like, a Bujinkan or Quest dojo would probably be your best bet. Barring that, you can check out any other schools that claim to teach ninjutsu, but if they start claiming super ancient lineage or supernatural powers that’s when you want to walk right the heck outta there.
Japanese weapon arts are probably your next best bet, like kenjutsu, kendo, and kobudo-type arts. Aikido could also be a decent choice. Beyond that, Japanese karate and judo will give you a good Japanese combat education. Finally, you have Okinawan karate styles, but you most likely will not be learning any real sword skills, as those were learned mostly by Japanese samurai.
Sheik’s got throwing needles galore in the Smash series, and they’re relatively easy to procure in real life, as well. You could also make some yourself by grabbing a few nails and grinding down the tips (though they probably wouldn’t be as well balanced). Though not terribly practical in a self defense sense, they are LOTS of fun to play around with. Here’s a couple video tutorials to get you started:
Sheik also wields a chain whip in Smash Bros., the real-life analog for which would be the manriki gusari. While a bit shorter than Sheik’s chain, the manriki is a vicious weapon. In addition to being wielded as a spinning whip of doom, it can also be used to entrap opponents hands/weapons, or execute chokes. Like throwing spikes, they are also pretty easy to come by, or make youself Here’s a couple videos to get you started with the manriki gusari:
When practicing, I would definitely recommend using a training manriki to start, made of string and maybe something heavier but soft on the end, and then graduating to working with the real chain. Don’t underestimate the damage you can inflict on yourself with one of these suckers!
**spoiler alert** Sheik is Zelda in disguise. **/spoiler**
Yeah. Sorry I had to break it to you. ANYWAY, disguise is an art in and of itself. It’s fun to mess around with, though you may not get TOO many chances to put it into practice. Here’s some tips:
Change Your Shape
This can be accomplished a variety of ways, and it’s one of the first things to take a look at when you’re developing a disguise. Loose clothes over extra padding can make you look overweight. A tied-up sleeve with an arm tucked into your shirt (need baggy clothes and/or a really slim arm to pull this off) can make you lose a limb. Shoulder pads and tight bindings can make you look more slim, or even help you pull off a different gender. Play around with it!
Change Your Hair
Hair color, hair length, wigs, fake beards, and shaving can all play parts here. Keep in mind, working with your existing hair is going to be cheaper and easier than working with wigs and fakes (you can spot these a mile away). Just keep in mind that hair changes alone are usually not enough to pull off a disguise (you friends don’t forget who you are when you get a hair cut, do they?)
Change Your Mannerisms
You need to really change your habits to pull off a true disguise. Sheik was a believable disguise because she was flipping and jumping all over the place, while Zelda was very much the “proper princess.” Start walking with a cane, change your accent, develop a tick, or a different method of walking. Shake it up!
I’m going cover this more in the workout section, but obviously Sheik is a very agile individual. This, of course, brings us back to our old friend, le parkour. Rather than type up the same post again, I’m going to direct you to The Skills of Faith to start your learnin’. Additionally, we’re going to be going over some cool agility drills in The Sheik Workout on Friday, so look forward to that!
That’s it for today! I’ll see you on Friday with The Sheik Workout. Until then, live boldly, change the world, and continue to be awesome!
Dan “DaRatmastah” Wallace