Over the last few years there have been dozens of suggestions as to how Nintendo could change their approach to the next Legend of Zelda game to help keep things “fresh.” And while many of the suggestions have been radical in terms of innovation, one seems to stand out above all else.
We speak, of course, about taking The Legend of Zelda‘s traditionally linear approach to level progression and widening it to support a more freeform gameplay experience, an open world experience if you will. It’s something that fans seem to be receptive to, and now Nintendo is sharing that response as well.
In an interview with Official Nintendo Magazine, Zelda Producer Eiji Aonuma reveals that he has begun to warm up to the idea of an open world Zelda. He admits that Nintendo originally thought that was something fans wouldn’t be in to, but the overwhelmingly positive reception to The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds has helped him change his line of thinking.
“The recent Zelda games have been rather linear, as I thought players didn’t like getting lost, wondering what to do, or where to go. However, I’ve come to question this ‘traditional’ approach as I felt that we couldn’t gain the sense of wonder that existed in the original Legend of Zelda, in which you made unexpected encounters and where what used to be impossible would suddenly become possible.”
As it stands right now we know very little about Nintendo’s next Zelda game, only that it is coming to the Wii U and will boast, for the first time, HD graphics. There has certainly been talk of making the title open world before, but thus far that idea has only been floated in a hypothetical sense.
It would be interesting to see Nintendo shake things up a bit. Purists might scoff at the idea, but even allowing players to choose the order with which they approach the various temples and dungeons might go a long way towards helping reinvigorate the franchise. It certainly worked for A Link Between Worlds (read our review).
Chances are we will likely see much more of this next Zelda game at E3 2014, or at least we hope we do. Nintendo has been teasing this game for several years now, and our anticipation has only become more ravenous as time wears on. But simply the existence of Zelda on a new console might not do it anymore; perhaps it is time for Nintendo introduce some new changes into the franchise.
Would you like to see The Legend of Zelda feature an open world gameplay style? Where else would you like to see Nintendo make changes to the franchise’s core formula?