Conventional Changes in Zelda
Posted on 3/21/2013 by Chris Weil
Did Aonuma just say the Zelda team were rethinking the traditional conventions in the Zelda formula? Yep. Well, this article is done, have a nice day... And I've been told I need to write a longer article than that, so let's try to talk about those changes. Aonuma said they were going to rethink the ideas of Zelda always being single player, and also change the linear dungeon design. So what could this mean for the Zelda franchise? Does this mean the next game will be a Zelda 1 crossover with Four Swords? Probably not, although it would be an interesting concept. Basically, over the next few paragraphs, what will be discussed is how I think these changes could be implemented and what might result from them. Be sure to leave a comment about what you think about the changes!
First of all, let's tackle what's probably the lesser interesting of the two. The non-linear dungeon redesign. A lot of you are quite familiar with how to get to the next dungeon, you typically need the item from the previous one to traverse your way there, and also the idea that the enemies are stronger, and therefore you'll need more hearts to get through them. Well, because they want to make things less linear, Aonuma and his team will definitely have to change the fact that the enemies will be stronger, or better yet, be able to program the game so that the game will know how many hearts you have, and change the enemies strength and health based on yours. Secondly, with the whole item idea, we already saw in Skyward Sword that to get to a few dungeons, you really didn't need the previous item. For example, to get to the Earth Temple, what you needed was the bomb flowers scattered through the land. You didn't need the beetle. So the non-linear concept is fairly easy to implement in my opinion, and is honestly a little less groundbreaking than we think, however, it still makes the game feel more open, and less constrained, which is always a nice feeling, and would make the game that much more enjoyable. What are your thoughts on it though? How do you think they could implement these changes?
Next, let's focus on the idea of Zelda no longer being single player. This concept was explored in the two Four Swords games, and there were even the mini-games in Phantom Hourglass and Spirit Tracks that included more than one person. In fact, even Wind Waker had the tingle tuner that your friend was meant to control. So how would the concept be easily implemented? Or non-easily implemented? Well, maybe someone else would control some new Kaepora Gaebora and waste your time for a while. All joking aside, what I expect to see is something similar to the Portal 2 Co-Op, where it's the same style of puzzles from Portal, however you just need an extra person to complete the puzzles. It would be the same style of Zelda puzzles, or even totally new ones, where you would just need an extra sword to hit something at the same time, or to be a strategy with the boss, where one person tries to distract the boss while the other slashes it in the back. Even something as simple as you both have different items that need to be used at the same or different times to complete a puzzle. There's actually a lot of options that they could do with the idea of having it be multi-player without changing the traditional formula too much. What do you think they could do or that you would like to see?
In conclusion, these two ideas could spawn the best Zelda adventure yet. Of course it could be the best experience rather than the best puzzles or dungeon design, but let's face it, if you have a friend with your to play it, you're going to enjoy it more, just because of the feelings you'll attach to it. It'll suddenly be that much better because of the experience you will have with a friend, and because of the fact that the game itself will have less restrictions. I hope that each and every one of you are excited to see how these changes are actually implemented, because personally, I can't wait to play this game. I do think there could be a lot more done to the game to make it one of the best Zelda's ever, however, I want to hear from you. What are your thoughts on what they could do rather than what they are doing? Thanks for reading, and be sure to check out some past articles!