Which is the best Ganondorf?
Image: Nintendo Life

We've all had the weekend to sit and stew over the final pre-launch trailer for The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom (meaning, watching it another 100+ times) and it is fair to say that we are pretty jazzed for this game now.

We're excited to see the changes made to Breath of the Wild's Hyrule, Link's new abilities, just what the heck is going on with the story, but most of all, we're excited to see more of this new take on Ganondorf which, after being officially revealed last week, quickly got the internet a little, erm, hot under the collar.

With the release of Ganondorf's new character art, we decided to float the question of which take on the gorgeous Gerudo is the best. We posed this to you, our lovely readers, and over 6600 votes came in before the cutoff.

Now, the results are in. Below, we have laid out your ranking of the Ganondorfs from worst to best, giving a little information on each villainous version. This was a very close-fought competition, with several of these positions being decided by just a couple of votes.

So, as the man himself orders in the final pre-launch trailer, "Do not look away," as we run through every Ganondorf from worst to best, as ranked by you.

6. Hyrule Warriors Ganondorf

Ganondorf HW
Image: Nintendo Life

Landing in sixth place with 6% of the vote is Hyrule Warriors 'dorf. Looking at the overall vote numbers, it seems that a playable Ganondorf is not at the top of many people's lists when it comes to making a good villain, and we must say that we agree.

The Ganondorf that we see in this game (across its three versions, which we combined into this voting option due to the character's near-identical design) is a pretty standard affair for the series antagonist: Ganondorf is locked away, unable to escape, through some sly manipulation he manages to regain his power and goes after the Triforce, he turns all piggy when finally getting his hands on it, only to be swiftly defeated by Link and locked away once again.

Tale as old as time, right?

5. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Ganondorf

Ganondorf SSBU
Image: Nintendo Life

Playable Ganondorf really isn't the popular option, huh?

It makes a lot of sense in this instance. Yes, the character's Ultimate design is a pretty cool combination of elements from what we saw in Ocarina of Time and Twilight Princess (which defined his Melee and Brawl / Wii U / 3DS appearances respectively), but despite having his fans (7% of them in this poll) he just doesn't have the moves to match.

Ganondorf has some of the worst recovery in the game, he is slow and only produces very small hitboxes with many of his attacks. We don't know many people that are brave enough to main the Gerudo in Ultimate (although some people swear by him) and that's with good reason.

4. Wind Waker Ganondorf

Ganondorf WW
Image: Nintendo Life

Now this has to be the biggest surprise in the ranking if you ask us. Wind Waker's Ganondorf landing in fourth might be down to how some still can't get behind the cel-shaded toon design, or it may simply speak to how strong the top three takes on the character are. Let's be generous and stick with the latter.

Winning 18% of the vote, this might just be the Ganondorf with the most understandable motive. Having been raised in the Gerudo Desert where the wind would lay waste to his people whenever it blew, this version of the villain simply feels jilted by the fact Hyrule had a calm breeze by comparison.

Ok, yes, he attempts to instil a blazing sun which would dry up all the water and place Hyrule under his control, but we said that we were going to be generous, all right?

3. Ocarina of Time Ganondorf

Ganondorf OOT
Image: Nintendo Life

Ah, the one that started it all. Ocarina of Time's Ganondorf was always going to be up near the top of this list simply given how many fond memories most of us have of seeing that mean, green overthrowing machine for the first time.

This was the first appearance of Ganondorf in the series and it did such a fantastic job of showing the character as a scheming man first and a supervillain second. Of course, the cutscene of him riding out of Hyrule Castle with the kidnapped princess always springs to mind as one of the series' most iconic moments, but how about that sequence where he turns his head and looks straight through the window at the gossiping Link and Zelda? Now that's some scary stuff right there.

Both this and the following 'dorf won 19% of the poll, with a mere 10 individual votes separating them...

2. Twilight Princess Ganondorf

Ganondorf TP
Image: Nintendo Life

If it wasn't for Wind Waker's Ganon getting a swift Master Sword to the noggin, this might just be one of the gruesome final boss battles in all of Zelda.

There's a strong sense of mystery as to the true antagonist of Twilight Princess for most of its playtime, and seeing Zant being nothing more than one of Ganondorf's minions always puts a smile on our faces.

While the game's murky visual style might not have worked for everyone with respect to Link and Zelda's redesigns, the muted colour palette and increased realism do go a long way to making this one of the best Ganondorfs that we have seen so far. We particularly like how big this guy is. The final battle feels like a genuine test of strength as you go up against this huge foe who can deal out some massive hits.

1. Tears of the Kingdom Ganondorf

Ganondorf TOTK
Image: Nintendo Life

Yes, Tears of the Kingdom's final pre-launch trailer was a beauty and we imagine that no small amount of that hype will have gone into this version of Ganondorf taking the number-one spot with a whopping 31% of the vote, even given how little we've seen of him so far. That being said, this character design really is something.

Proportionally, he might be more chest than man, but wow, get a look at that hair!

We don't really know what exactly the villain is plotting this time around, but we do know that Matt Mercer is lending his silky tones to the voice acting and there is certainly going to be a fair amount of transforming going on from that crusty corpse of the earlier trailer up to the buff bod that we see now.

Will TOTK Ganondorf still win the popular vote once the game has actually released? That might be something to revisit a couple of months from now. But as of this moment, the people have spoken. You've witnessed a king's revival!

Well, there it is, every version of Ganondorf as ranked by you. Where did your favourite take on the character land in this list? Let us know in the comments.