E3 is now a week behind us, but that doesn’t stop talk about some of the great titles showcased during the event. We got an in-depth look at Breath of the Wild, the next instalment in The Legend of Zelda series. The game is due for release sometime next year on both the Wii U and Nintendo’s new console, codenamed “NX”.
The game was demoed at E3, and the start progresses much like any other Zelda title with Link waking up. Eiji Aonuma, Series Producer for The Legend of Zelda was a guest during one of the demos presented by Nintendo. He joked that “I’ve talked about breaking the convention with Zeldas, but Link does start by waking up”. Unlike the previous titles in the series, in Breath of the Wild the player is thrown straight into the action with not much backstory, and as soon as you exit the cave in the starting area, you’re presented with a great open plain that goes as far as Link’s eyes can see. During the E3 demo, you see that part of the starting area involves you waving an object called the Sheikah Slate over a control panel to open a door. Eiji said that “in the past series we’ve used words and magic, but this time around we introduced technology”.
As a Zelda fan you may be used to the familiar music themes that play consistently throughout. In this open world game however, environmental sound effects are blended with music cues. For example, you may hear the occasional few piano notes blended with atmospheric effects, which helps create a music experience that is different for every player. The music isn’t the only feature that has taken a side step from the previous games, as the game features more realism too. You can now jump for the first time, weapons break after you’ve used them for a while and you can take enemy weapons. You won’t do any good slicing through grass with your weapon looking for hearts anymore as that’s been changed too – you now eat food to get your energy back. There are improved attack dynamics too, so if you get perfect timing whilst attacking your opponent, time slows down so it’s easier for you to attack them.
“It’s almost like a survival game where you have to collect all these items so you can move on with the game”
If you’ve played Wind Waker before, you’ll know the excitingly familiar fanfare that plays when you open a treasure chest and find some valuable item or Rupees. There will probably be less of the fanfare in this game as you can now find clothing items to wear in treasure chests. I don’t think anyone would be too excited when they find an old shirt inside a treasure chest, however this game is very much about using the items you collect on your travels to help you progress. Eiji said that “It’s almost like a survival game where you have to collect all these items so you can move on with the game”.
Breath of the Wild features many of the creatures we already know and love. Koroks are back and so are Chuchus (even if you hate them, I still love them). I can’t wait to see what the game has in store, so I’ll just go back to playing Wind Waker whilst we wait.