Zelda Tears of the Kingdom: How to get the Earthquake magic ability by invading Yiga Hideouts
There’s not quite magic in the series traditional sense in The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, but players after a special skill they can trigger that rather resembles some of the magic skills from past magic games now have a viable alternative: the Earthquake technique, a skill you can obtain and use instead of weapons in combat.
The Earthquake technique is so like some of the magic in past Zelda games I’m sort of loath not to outright refer to it as a ‘spell’. With it, you can charge up an attack without a weapon in your hands - and then unleash a burst of energy from the ground, a mini-earthquake, to knock foes off their feet even from medium range.
You’ll see this technique deployed against Link when he fights some of the more senior members of the Yiga Clan - and it’s a quest about the clan that you’ll need to undertake in order to unlock the Earthquake ability. On this page, we tell you how.
Finding the Yiga Branches to get the Yiga Armor Set
Here’s the deal: in order to obtain the Earthquake ability, you’ll need to infiltrate the Yiga Clan’s hideout near the Gerudo Desert. To do that, however, you’ll need to get your hands on the Yiga Mask, Yiga Armor, and Yiga Tights - which collectively make the weak but Stealth-boosting Yiga Set.
Those armor items are spread across the land of Hyrule in Yiga Branches, hidden outposts that are mini bases of operations for the clan’s activities. All are on the surface, and all are in locations that players of BOTW will likely remember to some degree.
In natural circumstances, visiting the main Yiga Hideout will see an NPC give a hint that one Branch is in Akkala, and there you can find a map that reveals the location of the others. Since you’re on this page, however, we can show you that map right away:
As the screenshot above shows, there are four Yiga Hideouts spread throughout Hyrule. They are as follows:
- Akkala Ancient Tech Lab. In the top north-east corner of the main Hyrule Landmass, up the path from the East Akkala Stable.
- The Woodcutter/Old Man’s Hut on the Great Plateau. One of the first locations you visit in BOTW, this is directly south of the Temple of Time on the South-Western edge of the Plateau.
- Aldor Foothills, West of Great Hyrule Forest. The Forest has a moat-like body of water that surrounds it. West of that, slightly south-west of Mekar Island, there’s the Aldor Foothills - sandwiched between Elma Knolls to its south and Mount Drena to its North. Look out for the Yiga Frog Statues, as the entrance to the hideout is cut into the side of the hills and can be easy to miss.
- The Main Yiga Clan Hideout. If you battled Master Kohga back in BOTW, you’ll know where this is - in the Gerudo Highlands, just east of the Gerudo Highlands Skyview Tower in TOTK. You don’t need to visit this until after you’ve visited all three, really. Also, this is the only one of the hideouts that gets marked as a landmark on your map once discovered.
Each of the top three hideouts contains a piece of the Yiga Set, which is obtained by defeating enemies and then heading inside the hideout to free a fashion-focused tailor who has been abducted to make the clan’s uniforms.
Two of these hideouts are simple enough - just roll up, fight, and free the tailor. The third, in the Aldor Foothills, is easily missed - so here’s the exact location on the in-game map:
Once inside here, you’ll need to locate a secret room to free the tailor and get the outfit piece. A tip: it’s above you. Look up for a hole in the ceiling, then ascend nearby in order to stage your daring rescue.
With all three pieces of the Yiga Set in your inventory, you can now head to the main hideout…
Infiltrating the Yiga Clan Hideout for the Earthquake technique
All you need to do in order to get into the hideout is go to the main entrance while wearing the full Yiga Armor Set. This is a weak armor set, so be on your guard unless you have it refined and improved by a Great Fairy.
Also, be aware that if you turn up to the hideout entrance without the outfit on, the Yiga will attack. You’ll then have to leave the area and return later, as they won’t open the door even to people in the right outfit when they’ve been under threat.
Once inside the hideout, you’ll find a few shops, some NPCs, and so on. Keep that disguise on! The shops are actually a great place to buy arrows if you’re short - they tend to have more here than in other stores throughout Hyrule.
One path leads deeper into the hideout. Through here, there are Yiga Clan members who’ll offer to sell you vehicles - though these are expensive and really nothing you couldn’t make with Ultrahand yourself, so I’d advise passing.
Deep in the lair, you’ll find a large room with a few taller towers, an NPC in the back guarding a door, and atop one of the previously-mentioned towers, a Yiga Blademaster who hosts a classic: a Zelda mini-game with unlockable rewards!
The mini-game is quite simple. You pay 100 Rupees, and you have one minute to beat as many Yiga Grunts as you can. There’s three tiers of the mini-game, with three different rewards:
- Yiga Fabric: Beat 3 Yiga
- Earthquake Technique scroll: Beat 6 Yiga
- Lightning Helm: Beat 9 Yiga
This guide is about that sick Earthquake technique, of course, but the Lightning Helm is also well-worth having, as it makes you resistant to Lightning when worn. The Yiga Fabric can be applied to your Paraglider at the dye shop in Hateno Village.
You have to complete each stage of this challenge sequentially - which means to get all three rewards, you’ll need to play 3 rounds, at a total cost of 300 Rupees.
The Yiga goons are quite weak, but if you’re worried about beating enough in time, use Fuse to create some hot new weapons and consider downing a meal that raises attack damage before starting the mini-game - any buffs carry over.
With that done, you’ve completed one of several quest lines involving the Yiga Clan in Tears of the Kingdom. For more Yiga antics, you’ll want to head into the depths… but at least when you do, you’ll have access to the Earthquake ability.