Background and personality
Cia was originally the Guardian of Time tasked with watching and keeping the balance of the Triforce; however, she eventually began to harbor romantic feelings for the hero Link. These affections turned into jealousy towards Princess Zelda, a close friend of Link's. As Cia's resentment grew, she became vulnerable to the will of an evil being that was thought to have been sealed away long ago. With the light half of her soul driven from her body, Cia was corrupted by the darkness in her heart. Cia and her two primary comrades, Volga and Wizzro, now stand against Link, setting a war for Hyrule into motion.
Originally a person of morals, Cia has grown provocative and aggressive due to her corruption. She is not afraid to speak openly about her desires and thus has a strong sense of self. She wants to make the world and everything in it hers, especially Link; however, during The Wind Waker storyline, it is heavily implied that she regained at least most of her original personality.
Owing to her nature as the corrupted form of the Guardian of Time, she had a very dark complexion to her skin. She also, owing to her growing lust for Link and possibly indicative of her decreasing sanity, wore a very provocative outfit that also was slightly mismatched, with a feathered heel shoe on her right foot and a standard heel on her left, her skirt being opened to expose her left leg, her having a long flowing sleeve on her right side yet small gold jewelry covering her left arm, and a small breastplate that prominently displayed her cleavage. She also has red tattoo markings. She initially wore a bird-like darkened headdress that obscured all except for her jaw, although this ended up destroyed when Midna attacked her with part of the Fused Shadows. Underneath her headdress, owing to her connection to Lana, she has a face strikingly similar to Lana's, also sharing the same purple/red eyes, only with white hair. After being redeemed, she wore similar attire to Lana and, by extension, that of the Guardian of Time, albeit colored black with a red jewel in contrast with Lana's white outfit with a blue jewel.
After her corruption, Cia gathered a force of monsters to fulfill her new ambitions. Hearing rumors of a powerful warrior in the Eldin Caves, she set out to recruit them, finding and releasing Wizzro on the way. The excursion did not go quite as planned; Volga refused to aid Cia's conquest and sent his forces to drive her army away, while Wizzro attempted to betray the Dark Sorceress and take control of her forces for himself. However, Cia fought off both threats and resorted to brainwashing them with her magic, believing that they would be useful assets if properly "motivated".
With her new generals in tow, Cia used the Gate of Souls to travel between dimensions, finding other powerful villains to recruit. Her search proved fruitful, as she managed to gain the allegiance of Ghirahim and Zant from the Eras of the Sky and Twilight, respectively. At some point, she also found the Triforce of Power (presumably through the influence of the dark being possessing her), which further amplified her strength. With her armies thus bolstered, Cia was finally ready to begin her assault on Hyrule.
Cia's first appearance in the conflict proper comes when the heroes arrive at the Valley of Seers at the advice of the mysterious sorceress Lana. Link and the Hyrulean Forces fight through her armies, including Volga and Manhandla. Upon finally reaching Cia's main base of operations, she ambushes the army's commanders, stealing pieces of the Triforce from Link and Sheik. Combining the pieces with the Triforce of Power in her possession, Cia opens the Gate of Souls, connecting it to three different worlds and freeing fragments of an evil spirit to empower herself.
With her plans in motion, Cia enters the Gate and arrives in the Twilight Realm. She uses her powers to transform Midna into an imp before allying with Zant and launching an attack on the local version of Hyrule. Unfortunately for Cia, Lana pursues her, allying with Midna and Agitha to defeat Zant in the Palace of Twilight. Following Zant's defeat, Cia taunts her foes, only to be struck by Midna, shattering her mask and revealing that she looks remarkably similar to Lana.
Cia eventually learns that her "master" is none other than Ganondorf, who has been using her to free his spirit fragments from their imprisonment. With three fragments freed, the Demon King is able to restore his body and attack Cia, hoping to claim the Triforce and unleash his full might. Cia fights back, however, restoring the Triforces of Courage and Wisdom to their rightful owners before using the Triforce of Power to seal Ganondorf between the dimensions.
Although Ganondorf had been defeated, the revelation that she had been manipulated drives Cia's anger and desperation to new heights. She redoubles her attacks on Hyrule while searching for new means of empowering her army and stopping Zelda's forces from advancing further. Following Wizzro's failure to stop Link from claiming the Master Sword, Cia waits in the Temple of Souls for the Hyrulean Forces, formulating a new plan to stop them in their tracks. When Link confronts her, the dark sorceress draws upon his newfound overconfidence and pride to create a shadowy clone that is able to duplicate and reform itself endlessly. She promptly leaves when Ganondorf attacks the temple, looking to claim the Triforce before his enemies escaped beyond his reach.
When Link manages to overcome his own flaws and help the Hyrulean Forces escape the Temple of Souls, Cia gathers all of her remaining forces in the Valley of Seers. Knowing that her enemies are closing in on her final stronghold, she begins using her own life force to empower her soldiers, heedless of the risk to herself or Lana's growing concern for her safety. Her problems compound when Ganondorf attacks the valley in another bid to claim the Triforce of Power; the strain of battling the Demon King's forces causes Cia to lose her hold over Volga and Wizzro. The former promptly leaves to engage Ganondorf personally, while the latter attempts to curry Ganondorf's favor by destroying Cia's army. Cia summons Dark Links to reinforce her position as she destroys Wizzro, but the constant use of her life force begins to wear on her sanity as well as her body.
Fortunately for Cia, Lana arrives to help her drive Ganondorf away once more, but the Dark Sorceress rebuffs her good counterpart's offer of further assistance. Despite her weakened position, she marshals her armies for a final stand against the Hyrulean Forces, using even more of her life force to both strengthen her army and brainwash Volga once again; however, none of her gambits succeed in stopping the heroes' advance. Already spread thin by her reckless use of dark magic, the final battle takes the last of Cia's energy, causing her to fall at Lana's feet.
In her final moments, Cia wonders how Lana endured the knowledge that their feelings for Link would never be requited. When Lana explains that she simply accepted the fact that Link's destiny would never intertwine with her own, Cia admits that the White Sorceress was always her "better half" before fading away completely, allowing Lana to claim the Triforce of Power.
Hyrule Warriors Legends
Cia returns in Hyrule Warriors Legends, and is revealed to have survived following her defeat. Following the defeat of Ganon, Lana returns to the Valley of Seers to search for Cia, who had vanished following her defeat, only to be attacked by a mysterious shadowy figure who steals the Triforce of Power. When Lana senses a Gate of Souls opening up in Gerudo Desert, she journeys there in the hopes it will lead her to Cia's whereabouts and to close the Gate. There, Lana teams up with Link and Tetra to defeat the Helmaroc King and close the Gate of Souls. The trio are then informed by King Daphnes Nohansen Hyrule that the one who stole the Triforce of Power originated in the Era of the Great Sea, and joins them in searching for Cia in the Temple of Souls. At the Temple of Souls they discover that an evil doppelgänger of Cia known as Dark Cia. They manage to drive her off, and Lana, sensing Cia's soul sealed within the Temple, manages to restore Cia's physical body. Cia reveals that Dark Cia had been absorbing her magic in an attempt to become her. Due to her weakened state, Cia requires Lana, King Daphnes, Tetra, and to her surprise Link to protect her, and is touched by their kindness as well as seeing the irony of being protected by the one whose soul and love she had coveted. The Hyrulean Forces manage to defeat Dark Cia and her Dark Link subordinates, before Cia reveals the true mastermind behind these recent events and the theft of the Triforce of Power: Phantom Ganon. Cia reveals that Phantom Ganon stole the Triforce of Power to warp time and space, summoning the Era of the Great Sea to Hyrule and created Dark Cia to absorb her power. It is also revealed that Cia will eventually die from having most of her power stolen by Phantom Ganon, but despite her condition remains determined to help the Hyrulean Forces defeat Phantom Ganon and joins them in the final battle with the Phantom at the merged Wind and Earth Temples.
Cia, alongside Link, Lana, Tetra, and King Daphnes battle Phantom Ganon, defeating him and restoring balance to the Triforce. Rid of her dark ambitions and saved from dying by the Triforce of Power, Cia joins Lana, Link, and Zelda in using the Triforce to undo the warping of time and space caused by Phantom Ganon.
Afterwards, Lana and Cia bid farewell to Link, Zelda, and Impa before returning to the Valley of Seers, where they take over the role of their former self, becoming the twin Guardians of Time and overseers of the Triforce, sharing the Triforce of Power between themselves.
Cia is a powerful sorceress capable of opening the Gate of Souls to summon monsters from across the ages to do her bidding. She is capable of basic feats such as levitation and the ability to fire blasts or waves of dark energy. Her magic is likely further augmented by the fragment of darkness that created her by expelling the light from her original self.
She is capable of creating magic traps, brainwashing Wizzro and Volga to serve her, and even briefly sealing a partially-revived Ganondorf. She has also shown the ability to use Link's own arrogance and pride to spawn Dark Links from his shadow, though she was only able to do this due to Link's initial overconfidence after obtaining the Master Sword and lost the ability to do this when Link awakened the true power of the Master Sword after being inspired by his friends. Cia has also shown the ability to summon Dark Links and other powerful entities at the cost of her own life force; however, this turns out to be her undoing, as she is left mortally wounded shortly after being defeated by the Hyrulean Forces.
Cia's Scepter can cast magic, but it also acts as a flail to physically attack enemies, with the crystalline head being connected to the rest of the staff by a cable. She can also use it to create Summoning Gates, which spawn Dark Links to briefly attack her enemies.
Moveset and Weapons
- Level 1: Scepter of Time
- Level 2: Guardian's Scepter
- Level 3: Scepter of Souls
- Level 4: Scepter of Souls +
Cia was possibly inspired by the character Veran from The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages, as both are attractive female villains who are being manipulated by a greater evil (Ganondorf and Twinrova respectively) and possess the ability to summon Dark Links. They also have similar titles, as Veran is known as the "Sorceress of Shadows". The difference between the two, however, is that Cia is possessed by Ganondorf for most of the game, and upon being freed from possession, considers Ganon her enemy, while Veran willingly serves Twinrova and by extension Ganon, even being pleased that in her defeat, she still managed to succeed in her mission that allows for the Demon King's revival. In addition, Veran dies unrepentant when defeated by Link, while Cia ends up either dying of regret (in the initial Hyrule Warriors) or otherwise being redeemed (in Hyrule Warriors Legends).