Gloom Hands. Gloom Spawn (as they're officially known). Whatever you want to call them, this creature is one of the most terrifying additions in Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom.
You can run into these foes at any point during your adventure — and if you're still early on, four hearts and Archaic Armour won't do much for you. As much as these might seem unbeatable in the early hours of the game, the Gloom Hands are not invincible. It just takes some courage.
Here's how to defeat Gloom Hands in TOTK.
Zelda: Tears Of The Kingdom: How To Defeat Gloom Hands
What are Gloom Hands?
Gloom Hands are a new enemy in Tears of the Kingdom. They're fast, powerful, and they come in packs of five. Each hand had its own health bar, and to defeat it, you need to destroy all five hands.
These hands deal both ordinary and gloom damage, so if you want to take one on, bring those sunny meals to heal gloom. You'll know if one is near because you'll hear some horrifying shrieking and the sky will start to go red — doesn't matter what time of day it is.
Where to find Gloom Hands?
You'll find Gloom Hands anywhere you find gloom. These puddles of red and black gloop are everywhere in the Depths, but they can also be found on the Surface.
You don't ever have to fight these hands — unless you're looking to heal the Deku Tree and get to Korok Forest. In which case, you will need to take this on as a miniboss.
However, like with all overworld bosses, Gloom Hands will only appear in certain locations, and they'll respawn once the Blood Moon rises. Here are the places we've spotted them on the Surface so far:
- Akkala Citadel Ruins
- North Lomei Labyrinth, Hebra Mountains
- Eastern Abbey, Hyrule Field
- Lindor's Brow Cave, Hyrule Ridge
- Hyrule Castle Docks — when you're trying to get the Hylian Shield, just be careful
- Mount Lanayru — near the peak, close to Mount Lanayru Skyview Tower
How to beat Gloom Hands
Gloom Hands are pretty darn scary, and they're pretty hard to outrun, too. We were rather alarmed to see how fast they could chase us down.
The main aim is to defeat all five hands at roughly the same time. If you pick them off one by one, chances are that by the time you're working on hand four, hand one has already respawned. They will only respawn a handful of times, but getting them all down at the same time is the most efficient way of combating them.
Here are some tips on how to deal with these frightening foes.
Climb up high
Gloom Hands are swift, but they can't climb up very high. So if you're in a spot with a ledge, and there's no slope nearby, then climb up the wall. This will leave the Hands helpless, staring you down, allowing you to attack from a safe distance.
Are they any less scary? Not really. But you can whale away at them with all sorts of long-range attacks now.
Use Bomb Flowers
Bomb Flowers might be scarce in Tears of the Kingdom, but if you have plenty, these are easily the best way of dealing massive area-of-effect damage to Gloom Hands.
The huge explosion and fire-based damage mean that you'll do a nice bit of damage to all five hands at the same time. If you need to stock up, find out how in our Where To Get Bomb Flowers guide.
Chuchu jelly, fruit, elemental previous stones — "magic" is another fantastic way of dealing damage to these creatures.
Ice may be our favourite way of handling the Gloom Hands because you can freeze the individual hands for a shorttime. This is helpful if you're trying to run away from them.
Depths armour set
Gloom resistance will help here. so if you don't have the Depths armour from the Poe Statues, then get it — go and do the A Call from the Depths Side Adventure to unlock all of it. Or some of it, at least. This will help hold off the gloom damage for a bit. Worst case scenario, eat some sunny gloom-healing food.
Why is there a "second phase"?
You'll be delighted to know that some Gloom Hands (not all, silver lining and all) have a second phase, sort of like a boss fight. And it's not just restricted to the fight down the Deku Tree Chasm when you're trying to save Korok Forest.
That second phase is a Phantom Ganon, similar to the boss at Hyrule Castle. As such, the same principles apply here — flurry rush, shield parry, heal gloom. Check out the Phantom Ganon guide if you're struggling. Fortunately, you'll only have to deal with one Phantom Ganon, not three or five.
What do Gloom Hands drop?
Gloom Hands are one of the few enemies to drop Dark Clumps, a vital cooking ingredient that will help you create Warding dishes, food that provides you with gloom resistance depending on how many clumps you use.
If you fight the second-phase ones, there's also a chance you'll get a Gloom Sword, Gloom Club, or a Demon King's Bow. These are three brilliant weapons for the later stages of the game. The Gloom Sword and Gloom Club deal gloom damage over time, but if you're on the Surface and not inside a cave, this will heal back very quickly.
The Demon King's Bow's power is based on your maximum number of hearts, and if you've managed to get every single Shrine in the game, that's going to be a big attack increase to your archery.
Gloom Hands might seem scary at first, but you'll soon be a pro at taking these down — and they're worth it. You can find the other overworld bosses in our Boss List, but if you're looking for other secrets in Hyrule, have a look at our full Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom walkthrough.