With the recent release of the Champions Ballad DLC, the full history of the Divine Beasts has been released. After an appropriate waiting period to avoid people getting spoiled, here we go.

10,000 Years Ago

10,000 years before the events of the game, the four Divine Beasts were created in order to combat Calamity Ganon. Built by the Sheikah clan with their advanced technology, they were instrumental in defeating the Calamity alongside the Guardians, the Princess, and the Hero.

After the Calamity was sealed away, the Beasts were buried in the Hebra region, the Lanayru region, Death Mountain, and the Gerudo Desert.

There they slept for 10,000 years, awaiting their new Champions. When the resurrection of Calamity Ganon was prophesied to the Royal Family, the search and excavation for them began.

Vah Medoh

Medoh was found in the Hebra region of Hyrule, practically next door to its new Champion, Revali of the Rito tribe. Appropriate, seeing as Vah Medoh’s name is a reference to Medli, the Rito sage of Earth from Wind Waker.

When Calamity Ganon awoke, Revali hurried back from the Spring of Wisdom with the other Champions to mount an assault. However, Calamity Ganon sent Windblight Ganon to kill Revali and take control of Medoh. It was corrupted with Ganon’s power, and fell under his control.

For the next 100 years, the corrupted Vah Medoh circled Rito Village and attacked anyone who tried to reclaim it. Just before Link arrived, it managed to injure a Rito named Harth when he and Teba attempted to conquer it. Harth received medical attention, and Teba retired to the Shooting Grounds to train.

After passing Teba’s archery test, Link shot out Medoh’s shield generators and boarded. The fight against Windblight was tough, but ultimately Link defeated the Malice and returned Medoh to Revali’s control. He landed it on the tall perch sticking out the top of the Rito Village and targeted Hyrule Castle with its laser.

Medoh’s small crest and narrow tail make it a dead ringer for the Ornate-Tailed Hawk, although the haunting cry it makes is that of a Red-Tailed Hawk. The cry of the Red-Tailed Hawk is well known – it is often used in movies as an eagle’s cry.

Vah Ruta

Vah Ruta was unearthed in the Lanayru region of Hyrule, a short distance from its new Champion, Mipha of the Zora. This is especially fitting since Vah Ruta is named after Ruto, the Zora princess from Ocarina of Time.

As with Medoh, Ruta was taken over by an aspect of Ganon, Waterblight. For the next 100 years, Ruta sat in the East Reservoir Lake and used its power summon forth an endless stream of water. This deluge pouring from its trunk threatened to burst the dam and flood all of Hyrule, and it sent ice blocks barreling toward any who tried to get close. Shock arrows were the only thing that could subdue Ruta, but Zoras can’t use them.

Any Hylian could have done the job easily, but some of the Zoras blamed the Hylians for Mipha’s death. She was much beloved, and indeed, a statue was erected of her in the square. Link was able to put their doubts to rest by making them realize the depths of Mipha’s love for him. With their blessing and the help of Mipha’s sister, Prince Sidon, he was able to shock Ruta into submission and board.

After the defeat of Waterblight Ganon, Ruta was freed from Ganon’s control and returned to Mipha. She relocates it to the peak of a nearby mountain and targets Hyrule Castle.

The large size of Ruta’s ears and tusks mark it as being modeled after an African elephant. Asian elephants have comparatively smaller ears and tusks in relation to their heads, and instead of the bellowing trumpeting Ruta makes, they only chirp.

Vah Rudania

Vah Rudania was dug up from underneath Death Mountain, home to its future Champion, Daruk. His name along with Rudania’s is a callback to the Goron Darunia from Ocarina of Time, the Fire Sage.

Fireblight Ganon was the aspect sent to kill Daruk and turn Vah Rudania against the Gorons. For the next 100 years, Rudania stomped around on Death Mountain and prompted multiple eruptions, terrorizing the residents. As well, its power over fire and magma made the temperature rise to dangerous levels, forcing travelers to use protective gear or potions to survive.

As if that wasn’t enough, Ganon’s renewed presence prompted monster outposts to crop up dangerously close to the village. Mining operations ceased, and attacks on travelers steadily increased.

Somehow, climbing into the caldera of an active volcano made it easier for Link to board Rudania. Defeating Fireblight Ganon returned control of the Beast to Daruk, who perched it on the lip of Death Mountain and aimed it at Hyrule Castle.

Generally, Rudania most resembles a salamander in appearance. However, some characteristics resemble ancient reptiles; the large plates along its back resemble those of a stegosaurus, and the large club at the end of its tail resembles that of an ankylosaurus. This is a low-key reference to other bosses present in Death Mountain from other games being labelled as dinosaurs.

Vah Naboris

Naboris was buried in the Gerudo Desert, practically right on top of its new Champion, Urbosa. The location, and its name, rather clearly link it to Nabooru the Spirit Sage from Ocarina of Time.

Well, that and Urbosa literally namedropping Nabooru…

Upon Thunderblight Ganon killing Urbosa and taking control of Naboris, it began stampeding through the desert outside Gerudo Town and striking anybody who dared approach it with lightning. The only way to get close, the Thunder Helm, was stolen by the Yiga clan shortly before Link’s arrival.

Thunderblight Ganon’s defeat returned control of Naboris to Urbosa, allowing her to climb it atop a mountain and aim its laser at Hyrule Castle.

Naboris bears characteristics of two species of camel: the two humps on its back come from the Bactrian camels of Asia, and its long, slender legs come from the Dromedary of Africa.