What’s Your Wallet Size?
Wallets, pouches, purses, no matter what you call them, the thing you hold money in is an invaluable accessory. This is especially true in video games where often your wallet is tied to your very survival. Need potions? Better armor? Stronger weapons? Need to save your game at an inn? It all costs money. Money that you won’t be able to collect unless you have a wallet.
About that wallet…
A common theme in many of the Legend of Zelda games is the “upgradable wallet.” You initially start off with a wallet that can only hold 99 Rupees. If you complete a certain quest you get a larger wallet that lets you hold 200 Rupees and so on and so forth.
Here’s the thing, why do I need to “upgrade” my wallet? Link obviously has some magic “Bag of Holding” where he keeps his various boots, tunics, grapples, hook-shots, bows, bombs, shields, bottles, musical instruments, giant hammers, boomerangs, wands, etc. So why do I need “special” wallets to hold my Rupees? I mean that Bomb Bag has to be pretty big, couldn’t I stuff a few red Rupees in there? And what’s with the different sized wallets? If the local businesses are so selective that they only accept Rupees stored in wallets approved by the Hyrule Business Bureau, why not just make a single-size, magic wallet to hold as many Rupees as you need? Are all the shop-owners part of a massive conspiracy to keep the poor & middle-class in their place by only giving out tiny “child wallets” to everyone? All the large, “adult” wallets are often locked in some dungeon or behind a massive fetch quest, baring all but the most brave of adventurers from getting them.
But then this begs the question, who made these larger wallets in the first place? They had to be created by someone and someone had to hide them away rather than selling them to the citizens of Hyrule. Is this why everyone keeps their Rupees in pots? Has the Hyrulian government or Shop-Keepers’ Guild made large wallets so rare or illegal that everyone is forced to keeps their money in cumbersome pottery? Are they also in league with the Hyrule Pottery Association? Sell people pots to keep their money that then have to be smashed to release the stored money?
Also, what does Link do with the Rupees he “picks up” but can’t store in his wallet? They seem to just… vanish. How heartbreaking was it the first time you found a silver or gold Rupee, BUT YOUR FREAKIN’ WALLET CAN ONLY HOLD 99 RUPEES!! Is Link actively destroying the money he can’t hold, crushing them under his iron boots? Is he purposely taking money out of circulation, forcing the value of the Rupee up? Is he trying to help Hyrule’s economy or destroy it? Is Link actually a rebel or a Man of the People? Is he trying to break the oppressive Hyrule economy or is he just trying to take all the money for himself and if he can’t hold it, he destroys it?
We may never know the truth behind the Great Hyrule Wallet Conspiracy. But one thing will always be certain: your wallet will never be big enough.