2014 has been a whirlwind year for Nintendo fans. While sales of the company's Wii U have still managed to miss the mark, blockbuster titles like Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros. have proven that the house of Mario still knows how to make fantastic games on its hardware. While many fans have been busy digging into the contents of both aforementioned games, fans are still waiting for a brand new entry in The Legend of Zelda franchise to arrive on the platform.
Nintendo finally pulled the curtain back on its next big foray into the world of Zelda during E3 2014, but fans were treated to a simple trailer rather than actual gameplay. During the first ever The Game Awards, however, the Big N finally showed off the immense open-world that awaits Link and his fellow adventurers in the impending Wii U installment.
During the brief hands-on session, series creator Shigeru Miyamoto and franchise producer Eiji Aonuma demonstrated just how massive the world featured within the new game is. Utilizing the Wii U GamePad to showcase the map, it was quickly made apparent that fans are in for one of the biggest worlds ever featured within a Zelda title.
Given the scale of the game itself, Aonuma has added a number of new additions to keep fans engaged. Enemies, wildlife, fruit trees, mountains and more are scattered about the path that separates players from their next dungeon, and the new ability to set beacons will help casual and veteran users get to their intended destination with little interruption. Heck, even Epona is programmed to completely avoid trees – a fact that Nintendo really wanted to drive home during the brief pre-recorded trailer.
The visuals for the game itself look very promising (and familiar to those that have already played through Skyward Sword), but it's the vastness of the in-game world that easily has the most appeal. Admittedly, the ability to launch from Epona and utilize Link's bow and arrow in midair is also a tantalizing maneuver, but it'll be interesting to see if Nintendo plans on limiting that attack's use so as to avoid spamming and overuse.
There are still a great number of details that Ninty has yet to confirm about the new Legend of Zelda for Wii U, but details should be arriving in the new year. For now, however, there is still the recently announced The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D to look forward to in the first half of 2015 and apparently a new Star Fox title on the Wii U shortly after that.
How do you think the new The Legend of Zelda game is looking? Are you looking forward to vaulting off the back of Epona in a slow-mo, bow-happy fit of joy? Get at us in the comments!
The Legend of Zelda is set to arrive on the Nintendo Wii U in 2015.
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