Ever since Hyrule Historia came out and featured the Zelda timeline, there have been a fair few books released about the series. One of these is Art and Artifacts, which contains sprites and artwork from every game in the franchise. One is a general encyclopedia, containing information on various characters, items and places from across the series.
And one is about the development of the Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild. This book (known as Master Works in Japan and Creating a Champion elsewhere) features hundreds of pieces of concept art and informational titbits about every element of the game’s development, from unused enemy designs to Divine Beasts and cut species of NPCs. It’s an interesting book really, and one that provided us with a lot of material for our earlier unused content article about the game:
Caption: You can find these pictures in our earlier story here.
However, there’s one problem with this book. One not so small issue that holds it back.
Namely, how it actually includes less artwork and development information in the English version compared to the Japanese original.
Yep, Dark Horse’s translation cuts out a good page or two of content compared to the original one. What’s more, they’re not minor cuts either. No, they contain some very interesting concept art of the game. Like this piece:
Which actually shows members of Link’s own family from the game’s backstory. Yeah, that guy behind him is apparently his father, and the girl next to him is his younger sister. It all makes for a neat look at his past, and gives a few hints about what his life may have been like before he became the chosen knight and ended up having to protect Zelda/fight for Hyrule for the next century or two.
But you’ll never know that if you bought the book, since it was randomly omitted from the English localisation. Same with every other piece of artwork found on the same page (since the family photo was only part of a giant collage of sketches).
It’s disappointing really, especially given what it got replaced with. Namely, another copy of the game’s map.
Yep, from what we’ve heard, the English version simply sticks another version of the map there. It’s a weird choice of replacement given said map appears elsewhere in the book too, and it doesn’t make for much of a consolation prize for anyone who bought the English version.
Nor does it give many hints as to why the original page was removed either. Remember, Nintendo most likely owns all the artwork here, so it’s unlikely legal reasons would be the cause. Nor would it be likely that any sort of moral panic or controversy would have had an effect either, since none of the pictures are any different from the rest of the book.
Instead, the only even remotely credible explanation we can think of is that someone at Dark Horse screwed up and forgot to translate it. That wouldn’t be the first time really. Their Mario encyclopaedia book was a bloody disaster, and liberally copied material from Mario Wiki without even bothering to fact check any of it.
So given the situation, it’s plausible someone just messed up and forgot the page existed or something.
Regardless of the reason though, it’s a disappointing change, and one that should never have been made at all. Creating a Champion was meant to celebrate Breath of the Wild’s history and lore, and pictures like this one of Link’s family would only aid in that goal.
To see them cut is a travesty that shows a lack of care and attention towards a product that really should have been checked over a bit more before release.
Let’s hope Nintendo and Dark Horse put it right with future reprints, or provide copies of these pages online for people who missed out them with the book.