That is the ship containing Nayru's Flame. There is a 90% chance that the synthetic life-forms assembled here are the crew.
This image would indicate that the ship's captain spent many happy days among his many crew members.
Fi, at Skipper's Reach
Thanks for everything, zrrt!
Yours, the Crew, vrrrrrm.
Letter found at Skipper's Reach
I'm embarrassed to say I started writing this uh... about a month ago. Or so. And then got distracted by Christmas and then further distracted by 3DS shininess (and spent the last week cruising through Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask). And then I kept thinking of things to add to this post. Um. Anyway, better late than never, right?
Another song, another trial, and this time it's back in Lanayru Desert. At least in the Silent Realm there are no electric enemies... just the Guardians which will one-shot you if you let them hit you. And they're fast blighters.
While Farore's trial could be done reasonably easily with no preparation or planning, Nayru's one does need a bit of thought. Which actually makes some sense as Farore is Courage, the courage to charge straight into the unknown. Nayru on the other hand is Wisdom, the wisdom to pick the right path. In this case the right path is to head down the left-hand side of the map first (with the map orientated normally). This is because there's a Sacred Tear right in the bottom-left corner by the path to Lanayru Mine, and you can only reach it from the left-hand side of that wall. Try to collect it directly from the mine entrance, and you'll have to head a long way round dodging a whole phalanx of Watchers before you can get to it.
My actual route was to start with the central tower and plot out where some of the Tears are, then make my way round the map anti-clockwise as you can jump down to the mine entrance from the left-hand side of the wall. I managed it in a single attempt, unlike on my first playthrough where I didn't plan ahead and got nabbed by a Guardian while running for that last Tear.
Anyway, Nayru's reward is... a pair of hookshots! Ninja time! Fi points out a passageway to the west, but first a quick detour to the north-east to play with the hookshots and grab a goddess cube (at the end of a sweeping canyon with conveniently-placed hookshot targets). Fi's passageway takes me to a set of crossroads with a Goron busily excavating away. Interestingly, if you sit on the stool next to him he'll ask for 10 rupees to finance his archaeology. I wonder what that will get me?
Onwards from the crossroads leads to another desert, this time a former ocean that over time has evaporated and turned into a sea of sand. Fortunately, while the port has decayed away there is a small boat complete with a Timeshift stone and Skipper (who I still claim is a cute version of the giant laser-shooting robots in Laputa: Castle in the Sky), captain of the ship that protects Nayru's Flame. Or at least he was until pirates boarded his ship and took over.
Speaking of Skipper, the two quotes at the top are from his house, which you visit in order to find a map. They're a prime example of why this game rewards you for slowing down and looking around - I stumbled across the first quote completely by accident, by C-looking at the painting of a ship to get a better view of it. If I hadn't done that Fi would never have said anything. Combined with the simple yet relaxing music, it's quite a moving moment.
I keep going on about it, but I do find it improves games when they have things that encourage you to explore - not in search of the hundredth Gold Skulltula or Stray Bead, but in search of finding out more about the world.
Where was I? Ah yes, exploring the sea of sand in search of an invisible ship. Unfortunately the map doesn't help much and so next is to look in the shipyard for clues. Which apparently has a rollercoaster for transporting stuff around, with a friendly Goron now running it as a mini-game in "Scary" and "Heart Stopping!" difficulties. That's a nice touch, rather than the usual easy/medium/hard. Anyway, instead of clues I find another giant armoured scorpion monster thing (a repeat of the boss from temple 3) which tries to eat me... and is actually rather easy to defeat if you keep your distance and launch Skyward Strikes at it. Another random snippet is if that you spend enough time digging in the room with the Moldarach, Fi will appear and gently snark at you for searching for clues that don't exist.
Fortunately Skipper now has another idea for where to look - a pirate stronghold, which apparently ate the ship or something? I'm not quite clear on that, but the exterior certainly looks like some giant leviathan complete with plenty of teeth, and the result of solving the dungeon (by carrying a miniature always-active Timeshift stone around, leading to puzzles where you can't take it through a certain door because the door still exists in the past) is opening its mouth to reveal some bits of the ship. Curiously there's a lot of stamina fruit around the entrance, but the expected escape-from-the-collapsing-fortress didn't happen. I wonder if there was more planned originally?
In any case, I can now finally dowse for the ship and so find this invisible, moving ship... and blast it until the cloaking shield fails. It does seem a little odd that I'm trying to destroy the thing that's protecting one of the Sacred Flames...