As soon as Breath of the Wild NES began making its rounds on gaming news sites earlier this week, the project's days were numbered. The 2D fan remake of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has officially received its takedown notice from Nintendo, but the project's creator doesn't see this as the end of the road.
Winter Drake, the developer behind the remake, was inspired by the top-down prototype version of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild that was presented by Nintendo at this year's GDC. The prototype was designed to look and feel like the original NES game, with a few improvements, and Drake wanted to see the full game rendered in the same fashion.
Footage of the original prototype can still be seen in the three-part 'making of' documentary series released by Nintendo a few months back.
The takedown notice was posted to Drake's page on itch.io, the site that hosts his work. The letter from the attorney representing Nintendo replaces the space originally meant for the game. He also posted the notice to his Twitter account with a caption suggesting Nintendo didn't like what it saw.
Now that the project is halted, Drake hopes that by removing all references and connections to the source material (i.e. anything that might trigger Nintendo's lawyers) he can finish the game with no more snags.
(1/2)I'm no longer legally able to distribute Breath of the NES. But any donations you made will be spent working on the game!— winterdrake_ (@winterdrake_) April 30, 2017
(2/2) The game isn't dead, I just won't be using the Zelda characters. It will live on! 😀— winterdrake_ (@winterdrake_) April 30, 2017
These kind of legal actions aren't at all out of character for Nintendo, as the company has become notorious for being overprotective of its intellectual properties and brand. A few years ago, Nintendo was issuing copyright notices left and right to video makers that used footage from the company's games, but later attempted to compromise with an affiliate program that would share the videos ad revenue.
Breath of the Wild NES isn't the first fan project to be shut down by Nintendo, either. One fan created a high-definition remake of the first level of Super Mario 64, but got slapped with a legal notice and the project was unfortunately removed.
Those who are interested in the Breath of the Wild NES project should keep tabs on Winter Drake, as he appears fully committed to seeing this through to completion. What he put together before the notice was impressive, so it will be interesting to see how the game evolves.