Of all the new games announced this year, a new Zelda game on the Wii wasn’t technically one of them. However, we know that Nintendo is working on it and keeping everything extremely quiet. Now, I’m an avid supporter of the Legend of Zelda franchise, so any time there is a chance to talk shop I must take it. I’ve heard some things here and there and I’ve been paying attention to the signs, so I figured, who better to make wild accusations than myself? Sit back, relax for a moment, and let me tell you my speculations about the new Zelda title.
So Much With So Little
In total, Nintendo has given up an amazing one piece of concept art for the game. No screenshots, no gameplay footage, nothing about the plot. Just one, single, almost casual image of Link standing back-to-back with a mysterious new character. Who is this new person and what is her connection to Link? I always found it interesting that people were able to make the connection from early pieces of concept art of Twilight Princess between Link and the wolf seen here and there. I heard that he would be turning into this wolf and I thought, “Nah, that’s too simple.” Then we found out he turned into the wolf.
So this time I’ve been listening a bit more carefully and keeping a slightly more open mind. People have being hypothesizing that the character featured with Link is actually the Master Sword or something with a connection to it. You may be thinking two things. The first is, “Huh?” The second is, “Who are these people you’re talking to?” Well, I don’t give my sources unless asked outside of my own make-believe conversations, but they may or may not be random posters on video game forums.
Their reasoning behind this claim comes from two parts of the concept art. First, Link has his typical Hyrulian shield but no sword. He doesn’t even have a sheath for a sword on his back. Why wouldn’t Link be carrying a sword? Secondly, the mysterious person shares many attributes similar to the Master Sword’s design. I still say this is a stretch, but I’m not going through another wolf-related incident, so it is very possible.
I can safely point out here that Link is right-handed yet again. This means the game is definitely going to be on the Wii and use the same control-scheme from Twilight Princess due to the fact that Link was right-handed in the Wii version of TP and no other Zelda title (he’s always a lefty). The reasoning behind this decision to break with tradition came as a result of using the Wiimote to swing Link’s sword. TP’s developers thought it would feel wrong if you swung the Wiimote with your right hand and saw Link swing his left.
Shigeru Miyamoto (the creator of Zelda, Mario, and you know who he is) has stated that you shouldn’t expect anything too radically different with the new Zelda title on the Wii. I’d go and find the article I read this in, but that would require me to site my own sources and that goes against my journalistic integrity of being right from birth. Regardless, someone said at some point in time that if you want to see what the new game will be like, just look to Twilight Princess for the answer.
That is all we know for sure. No release dates, no leaks about the plot, nothing. That means it’s time for me to start leaking things myself, even if they aren’t true. To be clear, the claims I’m about to make are in no way definite or based off of anything other than my own active imagination. Also, you’ll get to see me dressed as Link talking to a tree.
My Moment To Shine
Since the new game is following in the footsteps of Twilight Princess, there’s a good chance it is a direct sequel. Since the other character in the teaser poster is believed to be the Master Sword, there could either be a problem with the Master Sword at some point in the game, or this isn’t a sequel at all, instead being a prequel that finally gives the Master Sword an origin. We have an origin for the Triforce, Ganondorf, Hyrule, Link’s hat, and a number of other things, but nothing for the Master Sword yet. Just mentioning that seems strange to me that I never thought of it before.
Still, I’m pretty certain we’re staying in Hyrule. In going with my Master Sword Origin Theory (patent pending), Link will be present during the birth or creation of the Sword of Evil’s Bane, though this will still be a sequel to Twilight Princess. How? Time travel. They’ve already done time travel in Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask by means of the Ocarina of Time, and also in Oracle of Ages by means of a magical harp, possibly called the Harp of Time. Oh no wait, that’s the Harp of Ages (silly me). The game could involve the Master Sword getting broken and Link returning to its point of origin to repair it and defeat probably Ganondorf again.
If it were up to me, there would be a bunch of fundamental changes to some of the series’ mainstays. For example, Link always gets one new item per dungeon and that idea is always critical for advancing in both the dungeon and the rest of the game, though the most usage it gets is in that one dungeon. I say it’s time to add multiple items per dungeon. Follow me here, because I’m proud of these suggestions.
What I’d Do In a Zelda Game
So in the first dungeon you get the boomerang. Pretty basic, though it’s very sharp and can be deadly to enemies. Well, you would also get the Power Bracelet or a Power Gauntlet or something that increases your strength. This allows you to hurl the boomerang so hard that it can get stuck in walls. Perhaps you use this as an extra step to climb a ledge. Maybe you are trying to shoot a target with an arrow but you don’t have the proper angle until you throw your boomerang into a wall, hoist yourself up, and balance at the new angle while you fire an arrow. There are tons of possibilities here. Later on you can throw your boomerang into the back of a rock enemy and run up to use the boomerang as a handle, throwing the enemy to the ground where it lies stunned.
Here’s another idea: bring back the Pegasus Boots. Have some sections where Link can’t clear a chasm, so he throws on the Pegasus Boots, builds up speed, and launches himself off a ramp to clear the space. Maybe there is a switch on the ceiling that needs to be pulled, but it has no handle. You fire your boomerang into the switch, run up a vertical ramp using your Pegasus Boots, and then once you’re hanging from the switch you change your Pegasus Boots with Iron Boots, activating the switch. I’d just like to see new implementations of old weapons.
A few new weapon ideas: Steel Gloves that Link puts on his hands and uses to attack stronger enemies. You’d use the same sort of controls first seen in Wii Sports Boxing. They also allow you to handle dangerous materials or heated valves or things like that. How about a classic slingshot like David used against Goliath? You can hurl stones and bombs at enemies in an arc so that it can hit things over something else. Dual Wielding Swords for Link is also something I’d like to see. And a variation on the Hookshot, where you don’t instantly retract, allowing you to use it as a means to swing around obstacles or use centrifugal force to launch yourself upwards if you begin swinging and then retract the Hookshot mid-swing. Maybe some magnetic gloves so that you can pull things to you with the Wiimote and push them away with the Nunchuk. Just some ideas I’ve been thinking about when I get a chance to work on a Zelda title someday.
What can be said for sure is that the new Zelda title will be a long time coming. A title this big won’t happen overnight, but we’ll definitely get aspects of the game drip-feeding us for the next year or two. I expect more to be known after E3 2010, so let’s see if I’m at least right in that regard or not.