Chain Chomps are recurring enemies and Animals in The Legend of Zelda series. They are dog-like creatures in the shape of an iron ball with fangs, usually attached to a chain to keep them from charging, hence their name. They are directly based on the Chain Chomp enemies of the Mario series.
Chain Chomps are commonly depicted as being chained to a post, limiting their movement when they attempt to lunge at Link. In all of their appearances, they are invincible enemies that have no means of being defeated.
A Link to the Past
In A Link to the Past, Chain Chomps are found as enemies in Turtle Rock, as well as in the Palace of the Four Sword in A Link to the Past & Four Swords. In both dungeons, they are chained to posts and periodically lunge at Link to attack. They are invulnerable to all forms of attack and inflict a substantial amount of damage. In Turtle Rock, there are only two Chain Chomps found in one room, but in the Palace of the Four Sword, numerous Chain Chomps line the entrance hallway, all chained to torches.
In Link's Awakening, Chain Chomps are docile Animals. Three of them are kept as pets by Madam MeowMeow in Mabe Village. Two of her Chain Chomps are small, with one kept indoors and another, named YipYip, inside the doghouse next to her house.
- Main article: BowWow
One of the Chain Chomps, named BowWow, is is much larger than the others and chained in her front yard. Like the Chain Chomps of A Link to the Past, BowWow charges about in the front yard, but is completely harmless to Link. After completing the Tail Cave dungeon, a pair of boys inform Link that BowWow has been kidnapped by a gang of Moblins. Link finds him chained in the Moblin Cave at Tal Tal Heights, where he defeats King Moblin and rescues BowWow. Once rescued, BowWow becomes a temporary "item" as he accompanies Link; he will randomly lunge at enemies and eat them whole - including the otherwise-impenetrable Goponga Flowers blocking the entrance to the second dungeon, Bottle Grotto. If Link brings BowWow back to Madam MeowMeow, she asks him to take her pet on a walk, permitting him to use BowWow to clear the entrance to the Bottle Grotto. Although BowWow can eat most enemies for Link, he cannot be taken into dungeons and will wait outside. While BowWow accompanies Link, he will also inform him where hidden Secret Seashells are buried by pouncing at the spot and telling Link to dig with the Shovel.
After Link clears Bottle Grotto, he must return BowWow to his owner. Madam MeowMeow thanks Link for his assistance and rewards him with a kiss. If Link tries to take BowWow with him further into his quest, he will be stopped by Prince Richard, demanding that BowWow be left outside. If Link takes BowWow with him to see Kiki the monkey, Kiki will become enraged and try to battle BowWow. In Link's Awakening DX, a picture can be taken with BowWow once he is returned. In the photo shoot, BowWow gets angry at Link for standing too close and charges at him just as the photo is taken.
- Main article: YipYip
YipYip can be found in the doghouse next to Madam MeowMeow's house. It is capable of talking. This Chain Chomp has a strong obsession with jewelry and other such accessories, and desires to have more of them. It plays a role in the Trading Quest; if Link gives it the Ribbon, he will receive a can of Dog Food in return.
In Four Swords, a Chain Chomp, known as BowWow in the original version, can occasionally be obtained as an usable item in Vaati's Palace. When used, the Chain Chomp appears tethered to a chain that the Link who has it carries. Like BowWow from Link's Awakening, it lunges at and eats enemies whole within its reach, and is able to attack enemies that the Links otherwise cannot get to. It is, however, also hostile towards the other Links and will attack them as well if nearby. Much like actual enemies, Rupees will spill out each time the other Links are attacked by it. The Chain Chomp can be put away by pressing the item's button again.
In Four Swords Anniversary Edition, a Chain Chomp can be found as one of the items in the Realm of Memories during the Goponga Swamp section of the Link's Awakening area. It is necessary to attack a lone Octorok that is outside of the Links' reach, in order to reveal a chest containing a Key.
Four Swords Adventures
In Four Swords Adventures, a lone Chain Chomp appears in Kakariko Village, north of the settlement in a burning field. As with A Link to the Past, it is an indestructible obstacle that is chained to a post and charges at the Links.
- Main article: Gauntlets § Hyrule Warriors Series
In Hyrule Warriors, a Chain Chomp is used, instead of the Ball and Chain, with the Power Gloves, the Level 3 variant of the Gauntlets Weapon. When Link uses his weapon's Special Attack, the Chain Chomp bites down into the earth.
- Although Chain Chomps would become an enemy in the Super Mario series following its debut in Super Mario Bros. 3, the Chain Chomp was originally created as a Zelda enemy. Takashi Tezuka, who was working on Super Mario games at the time, allegedly decided to put it in A Link to the Past as a joke.
- Although appearing to have iron-like skin, Madam MeowMeow mentions that BowWows have fur coats.
- The Chain Chomp in Four Swords Adventures uses recycled soundbytes from Super Mario 64.
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Link Plays With BowWow, as seen in Link's Awakening DX
Link receiving Dog Food from the small Chain Chomp, as seen in Link's Awakening DX
Green Link obtaining BowWow in Vaati's Palace, as seen in Four Swords
Power Gloves with Chain Chomp from Hyrule Warriors
Link using the Burning Gloves with a red Chain Chomp, as seen in Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition
Chain Chomp as seen in concept artwork of the key artwork for Link's Awakening for Nintendo Switch
- Encyclopedia (Dark Horse Books) pg. 119 (FS)
- "Ho ho ho! I really appreciate what you did for my poor, precious BowWow! You are such a nice boy! How can I ever repay you? I know... SMOOOOOOOCH! You got a reward from Madam MeowMeow... ... ... L-l-lucky!" — Madam MeowMeow (Link's Awakening DX)
- "Hey, that looks great! I'll call it 'Link Plays With BowWow!' Now get closer to BowWow!" — Photographer (Link's Awakening DX)
- "Hey buddy! It's serious! Yeah, really serious!! Yeah, it is! The Moblins came to the village! Yeah, that's right! A whole gang of Moblins! Then... It's for real! They all went to the house... Yeah, that house, and then they did something at Bow Wow's house!! It was a really bad scene, with the M-m-moblins! So, I mean, ahh! ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... It might be faster to find out for yourself what happened!" — Quadruplet (Link's Awakening DX)
- "AIEEEEEEEE! It's terrrrible! My BowWow was dognapped by... Mo-mo-MOBLINS!! OHHH! AHHHH! Please! Somebody help my poor BowWow!!" — Madam MeowMeow (Link's Awakening DX)
- "You must be an assassin sent by Madam MeowMeow to rescue the mutt! You came here to get me, but it is I who will get you!!" — King Moblin (Link's Awakening DX)
- "'BRRING! BRRING! Yes, this is Ulrira. The Indigestible Flowers of Goponga Swamp... Those flowers are BowWow's favorite. Why don't you take him for a walk there? CLICK!'" — Grandpa Ulrira (Link's Awakening DX)
- "Oh thank you! I'm so happy you brought my baby back! Now, would you be a dear and take him for a walk? It would really help me out a lot! You will?! Thanks!" — Madam MeowMeow (Link's Awakening DX)
- "WOOF! Dig! RUFF!" — BowWow (Link's Awakening DX)
- "Ahem! Really, I must insist that you not bring that awful beast in here! Leave that creature outside and then we can talk! Good Bye!" — Prince Richard (Link's Awakening DX)
- "Kiiiki! What?! All right, mutt! Let's battle!!" — Kiki (Link's Awakening DX)
- "Make-up! Jewels! Dresses! I want it all! Sigh... And some new accessories would be nice..." — YipYip (Link's Awakening DX)
- "Make-up! Jewels! Dresses! I want it all! Sigh... And some new accessories would be nice... Oh! That Ribbon! I need it! Will you trade for my dog food?" — YipYip (Link's Awakening DX)
- "You got a Chain Chomp! He eats anything! Beware the mad dog!" — N/A (Four Swords Anniversary Edition)
- "You got BowWow! He eats anything! Beware the mad dog!" — N/A (Four Swords)
- "We’d had concept art for Bow-Wow lying around for awhile. We’d put it aside thinking we might make use of it if we could, but someone discovered it and ended up using it for their own purposes." —Takashi Tezuka (The Men Who Made Zelda – Staff Interview)
- "Originally, Chain Chomp was a character from the Mario universe. But somehow, he made a guest appearance in a 2D Zelda game. I hear it started because Mr. Tezuka, who was working on Mario games back then as well, jokingly put one in a Zelda game." — Hyrule Warriors Direct, YouTube, published August 4, 2014.
- "Ho ho ho! My BowWow is so proud of his fine fur coat!" — Madam MeowMeow (Link's Awakening DX)
- Nintendo Official Guidebook—The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past Vol. 2 (Shogakukan 2) pg. 143
- Nintendo Official Guidebook—The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past & Four Swords (Shogakukan) pg. 29