Our exclusive editorials about the 3DS and its games, as well as Nintendo as a whole.
Recently, The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild was released for the Nintendo Switch. An incredible game with a huge explorable worlds and tons of interesting things to do, it received universal acclaim from players and critics alike.
In other words? It became the Ocarina of Time for the Nintendo Switch era.
However, as great as the game is, that still leaves one ‘issue’ for Nintendo. Namely, how do you improve upon near perfection?
Because let’s face it, Ocarina of Time left Nintendo in the same daunting situation. And while their follow ups to it were all great games in their own right, they also all felt like they lacked something or another in general. Like Nintendo had kind of missed the point in regards to what made Zelda popular or beloved.
So to avoid repeating the mistakes of the past, here are my answers to that question. To how Nintendo can in fact improve upon Breath of the Wild with their next few Zelda titles…
1. Focus on a New Central Idea for a Direct Sequel
Or in other words, you’ve got a great engine now. Time to consider the Nintendo Switch equivalent to Majora’s Mask. Aka a game with the same engine and resources but a new main concept completely different to anything found in Breath of the Wild.
Heck, maybe even bring back the parallel universe gimmick. After all, there are lots of NPCs here that you could put into new roles, and plenty of neat twists you could make to the ideas found within the title in general.
So yeah, start with something simple first.
2. Expand upon the dungeons and bosses
But then move onto improving perhaps the only minor ‘downside’ Breath of the Wild has. Namely, that its dungeons aren’t as interesting or unique as those in past games.
Okay, don’t get me wrong here. The Divine Beasts being huge animal shaped mechs is amazing, and the idea of you fighting them in a boss battle before you can get inside is a really neat twist on the formula too.
So those aspects could easily be retained for one or two of the dungeons.
However, what’s less amazing is the actual inside of the dungeons themselves. Basically, they have too little variety in enemies or puzzle setups.
Seriously, look at the dungeons here and tell me what enemies you remember fighting there. I’m pretty sure the answer is ‘just Guardians and Corruption Eyes’.
And that’s a bit disappointing really. One of the best aspects of the older games was how each dungeon used to have a unique mini boss encounter in it, as well as how the dungeons and setups would be themed around the region they’re in. No, that doesn’t require the game to be linear or the dungeons to be bland item puzzle based setups either. Just look at Link Between Worlds if you need proof of that.
So another improvement they could make in a sequel is to bring back the themed dungeons and greater enemy variety inside, and add them to the amazing world presented in Breath of the Wild.
I also think the bosses could be improved here too. Yeah, they are brilliant in Breath of the Wild (especially in a mechanical sense). And I do like the idea of bosses that act more like a physical battle than a glorified item puzzle, where the player can choose how they take them down. That’s really appreciated too.
But the downside here in Breath of the Wild’s bosses is that design wise, they just don’t look very varied. They’re all Ganon Blights, no exceptions. Which in turn makes them all weird Phantom Ganon like ghosts with Guardian weapons attached.
Hence I feel that visual design thing should be improved upon in future Zelda games too. Make the bosses look as unique as they feel, while keeping the same ‘action’ based setup as in Breath of the Wild. Give us a ton of different looking bosses with the same battle strategies and AI skills as the Ganon Blights. Make the bosses in Zelda both visually interesting and difficult at the same time.
3. Reintroduce some Classic Items and Upgrades
Another thing I feel future Zelda games could do is bring back some of the items and upgrades from past games. For example, the Hookshot could be reimagined to let Link instantly shoot to any land or wall he can climb within a reasonable distance. Or to steal items away from enemies like the Grappling Hook in The Wind Waker.
And the same goes for many other items. Not all of them mind (since many have been rightfully replaced by the weapons system or runes), but enough of them to expand upon the formula a bit. You could bring back the Magic Cape and its invisibility effects. The Dominion Rod could be merged with the Command Melody to brainwash enemies (imagine how cool it’d be to turn a Bokoblin or Moblin against its friends!) The Mole Mitts… well, digging underground seems pretty useful in an open wide title like this one.
The list just goes on and on. But that’s not all that could come back either.
Oh no, upgrades could return to. For example, remember the Golden Gauntlets (or slightly weaker Silver ones) in Ocarina of Time?
Yeah, those let you pick up and move large objects. I think those could make for an interesting rune or magic spell in a Breath of the Wild like game too. After all, we can already fling metal objects with Magnesis or catapult heavy ones with Stasis, why not let us literally throw or swing around even bigger ones with this power too?
Similarly, the boots from Ocarina of Time could make a comeback as well. I mean, we’ve already got sand and snow shoes (to walk at full speed on sand and snow respectively). So why not add in Iron, Hover and Magnetic Boots too? These could let us go underwater/brave strong winds, hover in the air for a few seconds or even climb on metal walls/ceilings like in Twilight Princess’ Goron Mines!
Really, there are so many great possibilities here, and I hope Nintendo looks into some of them for the next Zelda title.
4. Allow for new methods of exploration
Finally, I think Nintendo should consider allowing new methods of exploration and new places to explore in the next game.
What do I mean by this?
Well, at the moment we can go anywhere we like on land via climbing. We can swim or sail anywhere we like providing our stamina holds up/we can find a raft. And with Stasis and some neat tricks, we can do a few more creative things there too.
But we cannot quite do everything just yet. We can’t actually go underwater, minus some recently found glitches. Flight is more like gliding, with no way to gain height in mid air. And while anywhere on the surface can be fully explored and enjoyed, going beneath that is limited to a few caves or Shrines.
So that’s the final thing I think Nintendo should work on in future Zelda games. A way to let us not only explore an open world environment on the surface, but to fly around, go underwater or even dig underground to drastically increase the number of possibilities for locations and mechanics. Take what you learned from Ocarina of Time, Minish Cap and Skyward Sword and implement it into the open world environments of Breath of the Wild.
That’s what Nintendo should do to build on Breath of the Wild’s success. Take what worked well, and add in the few things missing from Breath of the Wild to make an amazing new set of Zelda games for future generations.
But hey, what do you think? Do you feel Nintendo should do the above for the Zelda games post Breath of the Wild? Or is there another direction the series should be taken in now?
A couple of days back, it finally happened. The entirety of The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild was leaked online, with hundreds playing it early thanks to ROMs and shared review copies.
And embargoes be damned, this leak just blew the floodgates off. We had the whole soundtrack posted online. Every item icon and costume was data mined from the game within a matter of hours. Either way, anyone looking for information was quickly buried under too many sources at once. The sheer quantity of people playing it early and sharing their thoughts just made it impossible to find out any one thing in particular.
So to clear things up, we’ve decided to write a summary of a lot. A long, detailed article going into every bit of information we know about Breath of the Wild from the leaks, videos and message boards dedicated to it across the internet.
Hence here it is. The definitive overview of everything important you’ll see in The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild.
Just be warned about spoilers okay? Because this articlecovers a crap ton of things Nintendo likely didn’t intend for anyone to know til long after the game was released…
Earlier today, I visited the London Nintendo Switch preview event. Set in the Tanner Warehouse in South London and hosted with 2 hour sessions, the event let Nintendo fans try out various Switch games a week prior to their official release in the region.
And being the dedicated Nintendo fan I am, I decided to attend. So here are my thoughts on the event, the games I played there and what Nintendo Switch I may decide to buy in the foreseeable future!
So first things first, what did I think of the event itself?
Well for the most part, it was pretty good. I mean sure, it wasn’t exactly some big fan fest like at Comic Con or EGX or what not (and no one there was cosplaying as their favourite Nintendo character or anything like that), but the atmosphere was pleasant, the venue was decent enough inside and everyone was generally polite enough that I never had any issues with sore losers or bad sportsmanship.
What I was not such a fan of however was the location. Put simply, it was way too far out of the way for something like this. It was in London, sure. But it was in a part of South London that few people would really visit on a regular basis. This means that even finding the event location was a bit of a hassle for me, and I don’t think I would have been too confident to go there at night either (especially not with Google Maps’ questionable route guidance). So while the event itself was good, I kind of wish Nintendo had located it in a more ‘central’ part of London. Maybe in one of the more tourist focused areas or something.
So the event was good. But what about the games? Did they live up to the hype?
Mario Kart 8
Yes, with my first game of the day (Mario Kart 8 Deluxe) being a prime example. The racing is fun, the new characters are good (I used King Boo in my second race) and new additions like the double item boxes work fine too.
Really, it’s as good as ever. Yet as great as that is, there’s just one problem here. A minor problem, but a problem none the less:
We only get to try out vs races.
That’s really odd for this game. Why? Because the vs races (as fantastic as they are) are not really where Mario Kart 8 Deluxe shines. I mean yes, the new characters and item mechanics are okay. And yes, having all the DLC included by default is a nice touch.
But the best part of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is the revamped battle mode. Where you can fight others on retro arenas like Luigi’s Mansion and SNES Battle Course 1. Or try out a revised version of Bob-omb Blast from Mario Kart: Double Dash.
That’s the big reason to buy the game if you have it on Wii U. The thing that’s most likely going to be what seals the deal for me.
Yet it wasn’t available today. So the bit I was most excited to try out wasn’t present at the event.
Still, can’t complain too much. After all, the game was as good as ever, and it does look like a title I’ll be buying in future. Just wish I could try out a bit more of the game’s new features, that’s all.
The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild
Moving on now, my next game was The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild.
Well okay, kind of. You see when we came into the event, we all got a card like this. It had our ‘demo’ time for Breath of the Wild on it, with the assumption being that anyone who missed their slot would have to try again at the end of the day.
And mine was for 2:50. So while I was technically waiting for another game at the time it was called (ARMS), I wisely decided to rush over to the Zelda demo instead. Cause hey, only a complete moron would go to a Nintendo Switch event and decide not to play the console’s biggest launch title while they were there.
Either way, one quick show of the ticket (to a staff member dressed exactly like Link in Breath of the Wild), and I was off to play the demo. So what was it like? Did it live up to my hype?
Oh yes. The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild (from what I played) was an amazing game.
It started off with the usual introduction at the Shrine of Resurrection. I watched Link wake up from his centuries in extended animation, before quickly grabbing some new clothing and rushing out into the Great Plateau like in the E3 demo.
Moving on from there, it was off to the usual route. Go down the path to the right, encounter the old man (after ‘stealing his apple’), then grab the axe and go enemy hunting. A few Bokoblins down later (which gave me a free club and bow to go with the axe), and that’s pretty much the extent of the demo. Yeah, it wasn’t exactly a huge taste of the game.
But it was enough of a taste to tell me that yes, I do want to buy Breath of the Wild when it’s released. The game looks amazing, the game controls amazing, and well, from what I’ve seen in the trailers and previews for it, the game gets ten times better the minute you leave the Great Plateau as well. A true Nintendo Switch classic all round, and perhaps the most enjoyable game of all at today’s event.
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From the very start, Fur Fun has been a… controversial game. Originally known as Kewpie-Jazzy and accused of ripping off Yooka-Laylee with its Kickstarter campaign, the title’s gained a bit of a reputation for being a less inspired 3D platformer. Like a poor man’s version of Banjo-Kazooie.
And while things have looked up since it’s early access release, it seems controversy is still afoot here. Why? Because as the title suggests, the Fur Fun team has been accused of stealing resources and responding to criticism in all the worst ways possible.
For example, look at this picture showing the game’s sound files. Taken by a member of The Cutting Room Floor wiki, it quite clearly shows things like the Banjo-Kazooie Mad Monster Mansion theme in the game’s resources folder. Or what appears to be one of Kazooie’s voice clips from the same game.
Now admittedly, this doesn’t mean said files are used in the game itself. It could be the case, sure. But a lot of games also have random and somewhat inappropriate content held on the disc/in the files that never sees the light of day. Like say, Mario Kart Arcade GP having photos of the Besian school hostage crisis. Or a certain Datel mini game collection having a Metroid Fusion ROM and emulator on the disc.
So Fur Fun may be in the clear here.
But their potential use of stolen resources is only one of the issues with the game. Another (and more worrying) one is their complete and utter inability to take feedback. For example, lots of reviews were going missing on Steam:
And as OtherEhm (the guy who find the stolen resources) found out, the developers also seemed to like sending copyright takedown notices for critical videos on YouTube too:
That’s a worrying indication that the development team is very thin skinned here. That the people behind this game have no ability to handle negative opinions of their work in a responsible manner and wish to simply take down criticism rather than deal with it.
Yes, it’s not as bad as the Art of Stealth developer (who threatened to sue Jim Sterling) or Digital Homicide (who threatened to sue Jim Sterling, a bunch of Steam users and then Valve themselves in response to negative feedback).
And hey, note the past tense above. Since that time, a previously hit account was restored:
Along with at least one negative review of the game.
So the development team is improving here. They are realising that accepting negative feedback is part and parcel of any decent game development team’s life. They’re trying to listen to critics now.
It’s just that with what happened before, there’s still a worrying history of poor responses to criticism here. Let’s hope the team have learnt their lesson and put their focus on the game rather than their responses to critics!