I'm currently in a very Zelda mood, thanks the announcement of Skyward Sword, so I thought I’d write my theory of how the timeline in Zelda works. It's going to be a long one, so I've broken it into four posts. I know my theory has its flaws, but every theory regarding the Zelda Timeline does. I’ve thought about where the games fall for awhile, and this is what I think happens. I’m going to mention everything that happens between the games too, so I can refer to them while talking about the games. I’ll explain why I put games in the places I do in the final part of my Zelda Timeline series, so look forward to it.
The very first major event to happen after the Goddesses created Hyrule was the war with the interlopers. An evil tribe of sorcerers named the Dark Interlopers tried to take over the Sacred Realm and attempted to steal the Triforce, but failed when then Goddesses ordered the Light Spirits to seal them away. The Interlopers were sealed away in the Mirror of Twilight, hopefully to never be seen again.
A while after that, a new enemy appeared. Demons almost took over the world, but the Picori came down and granted the Light Force and the Picori Blade to a courageous man, now known as the Hero of Men. That man slew the monsters and locked them in a box, with the Picori Blade acting as the lock to the box. The citizens of Hyrule were so grateful to the Hero of Men and the Picori, that they set up an annual festival to celebrate the events, and they called it the Picori Festival.
Thus starts the events of The Minish Cap. Vaati, a former Picori, breaks the Picori Blade into two pieces, and releases all the monsters that were in the box, thinking that the box was where the Hero of Men put the Light Force. He then turns Princess Zelda into stone kidnaps her,and Link goes out and searches for the Picori to mend the broken Picori Blade. He learns that he needs the Four Elements to fully restore the blade to its full power, and goes off in search of them. When he finds them all, the Picori Blade turns into the Four Sword. During these events, both Link and Vaati learn that the Light Force that Vaati’s searching for is actually in Princess Zelda, and Link rushes to her rescue before Vaati can extract it. In the end, Link seals Vaati in the Four Sword, and the day is saved.
Many years after Vaati is first sealed in the Four Sword, the seal on him weakens, and he breaks out and kidnaps Princess Zelda for the second time, although this Zelda is different from the Zelda in The Minish Cap. This causes the events of Four Swords to occur. Link pulls the Four Sword out of its pedestal, and goes to rescue Princess Zelda. He eventually saves her and reseals Vaati in the Four Sword.
Sometime after the events of Four Swords, monsters start to appear again, which starts the events of Four Swords Adventures. Zelda and the six Maidens call Link to the Four Sword Sanctuary to make sure the seal on Vaati is still strong. When Shadow Link attacks, the Maidens and Princess Zelda are kidnapped, forcing Link to pull the Four Sword out of its pedestal, thus releasing Vaati yet again. Through his journey to save the Maidens and Princess Zelda, Link learns of a man named Ganondorf who broke Gerudo law by breaking into the Pyramid that holds the Trident of Power. It’s also revealed that Ganondorf stole the Dark Mirror from the Temple of Darkness in order to summon Shadow Link.
After rescuing the Maidens and Princess Zelda, you finally retrieve the Dark Mirror, and Zelda takes it to a safe place. You go on to kill Vaati once and for all, but learn that monsters are still roaming about, therefore revealing Ganondorf was behind the events of Four Swords Adventures. You eventually battle Ganon, and seal him away in the Four Sword.
Part 2 coming soon.