Without a doubt, one of the biggest aspects of Zelda that has driven people to and away from the series has been its consistent formula. Some love it; others hate it. The linearity of the franchise has been both criticized and praised by a wide variety of people. However, Nintendo has recently issued a statement that seems to adhere to the criticism. In the statement by Eiji Aonuma, he discusses the mission of Zelda for the Wii U and mentions several specific ‘staples’ that have been a part of the Zelda formula for a long time. Read on to view Nintendo’s commentary.
“Our mission in developing this new Zelda game for Wii U is quite plainly to rethink the conventions of Zelda. I’m referring to things like the expectation that the player is supposed to complete dungeons in a certain order, or that you’re supposed to play by yourself. The things that we’ve come to take for granted recently.
We want to set aside these ‘conventions’, get back to basics and create a newborn Zelda game so that the players today can best enjoy the real essence of the franchise.
We had actually worked on this kind of challenge with Skyward Sword but we weren’t able to put effort into changing the linear-path structure of the game. I hope to be able to talk to you in more detail about how it will change after I see it come together a bit more.”
Granted, before other Zelda games Nintendo has stated to a certain extent that the series formula would be tampered with, but this seems to denote a real commitment to that. Only time will tell however. I will be anxiously awaiting more statements from Nintendo once the project progresses a bit. There are some important questions that needed to be asked though.
Is a change to the ‘Zelda formula’ needed? Will such a change attract more players than it will drive away? Will Nintendo actually stray far from their game play roots?