Analysis | The new Zelda game is unlike anything we’ve seen before

Analysis |  The new Zelda game is unlike anything we've seen before

NEW YORK Nintendos The Legend of Zelda series has been on the edge of gameplay innovation since the 1980s. In 2023, Tears of the Kingdom will likely continue this storied history.

I played 70 minutes of the game during a highly curated, in-person demo event hosted by Nintendo in Chelsea, Manhattan. Journalists in attendance were the first outside of Nintendo’s inner sanctum to get a hands-on experience with the year’s most anticipated title, which launches on May 12. Those minutes washed away any concerns that this was just an update of the 2017 critical and commercial hit Breath of the Wild, which sold more than 29 million copies and was often bought together with the Nintendo Switch console. Tears will bring many features that you haven’t seen before in the series.

Zelda games have set the agenda in the industry in the past. 1998’s Ocarina of Time is often referred to as the Citizen Kane of video games, in part because it dictated how games would present combat in 3D space, an influence that continues to this day, as in the upcoming big-budget Final Fantasy XVI, Breath of the Wild, the prequel to Tears broke open-world game design, relying on player curiosity to determine game events rather than any script. This inspiration can be felt in many games, including the Chinese online game Genshin Impact and the latest surprise blockbuster Elden Ring from FromSoftware and George RR Martin.

The demo gave us access to the Ultra Hand feature, which allows the hero Link to build machines from parts found all over the land of Hyrule. The Ultra Hand is named after a 1966 toy that functioned as spring-loaded pliers, a holdover from Nintendo’s history as a toy maker. It’s an apt title, as Tears promotes play and invention as core principles of the experience. This is a fantasy adventure that asks players to invent their own paths, be it building rocket ships or robots.

This is not a new concept for Nintendo games, especially those created or inspired by Mario and Zelda creator Shigeru Miyamoto. In a 1996 interview about Super Mario 64, which laid the foundation for all subsequent 3D interactive entertainment, he said his eternal theme for game design is about letting the player create their own vision.

I don’t want to just give players a finished experience, here you go, play this stage we’ve created, solve this puzzle, Miyamoto said. Rather, I want a game that allows players to try and come up with their own solutions and playstyles and test them out on the spot.

During my Tears session, I unlocked the sky dungeon entrance by timing my jumps 50,000 feet in the air while moving the floating platforms with the Ultra Hand. The Nintendo reps overseeing my game said they hadn’t seen anyone else solve the puzzle the way I did. I looked at my neighbors who were using ventilators, planes and floating platforms to get to their destination. It’s the kind of experience Miyamoto advocated, even as he craved handed over the reins of Nintendos flagship series to Eiji Aonuma.

There are two other main functions, called recall and fuse. Recall allows players to essentially rewind time for a specific object. The enemies decided to roll a spiked iron ball down the ramp to prevent me from entering the fortress, so I pressed summon and sent the ball back in time, down the ramp and over my attackers. Fuse allows players to stick a random item to one of their tools, such as a rocket, onto a shield to create a makeshift rocket pack. It is a way to increase the damage and resistance of weapons when attacking.

Thanks to the addition of underground and sky areas, there seem to be a lot more areas to explore than were available in the equally gargantuan Elden Ring, a game that seemed to get bigger the more you played it, thanks to the addition of underground and sky areas. areas. Tears includes underground cave networks not only on land, but also in the Sky Islands.

Tears seems to be a combination of a traditional Zelda adventure and the DIY recipe system of the 2020 viral hit, Animal Crossing. In this life simulator game, players collect materials to discover different recipes to create different items such as bug nets, shelves and even buildings. Zelda draws from a bottomless well of possibilities by allowing materials of all kinds to be smelted.

The 2017 Zelda game already allowed players to experiment so much with physics and elemental systems, such as burning grass creating a gust of wind. Six years later, players are still finding new tricks to navigate the world and defeat enemies, especially those in Japan. Tears further leans into this ethos and will likely be played in a similar fashion for years to come.

Even if you fail, the game can reward your ability to improvise. I built a plane that took off from the ground in an attempt to reach the heavenly sanctuary. I didn’t have enough fuel to land on the top of the island, but I had enough to fly near the bottom. When my plane exploded out of fuel, I somersaulted to the underside of the island and climbed to the finish line. It was dirty, but it worked.

With all these features, Link is also significantly more difficult to control. The game requires player skill he uses each shoulder button next to the directional pad, and each button has multiple uses depending on what mode Link is in, be it fuse or Ultra Hand. I kept forgetting there was a recall feature. Rotating objects captured by Ultra Hand can be confusing, especially if you’ve just been in fuse mode. Even 70 minutes wasn’t enough warm-up to make all the buttons feel natural. It will probably take a few hours for the tasks to feel like second nature.

There are story details (as well as gameplay features) that Nintendo didn’t want us to see or talk about. Towards the end of the demonstration, when I reached the entrance to the aforementioned sky dungeon, the representatives asked me not to enter. But I tried skydiving or flying to other parts of the map, above and below ground. A huge large square was just hovering on the horizon, the mysterious temple from the 2017 game now looming ominously.

His mysteries of when, how and why Hyrule changed, along with why the villainous Ganondorf returned, electrified the Zelda fan community. Players were trying to figure out where the big events were happening basically dox character placement by exploring the exciting four-minute trailer released earlier this month and using the game’s 2017 map. YouTube creator Ed Zeltik King, with over 693,000 subscribers, created an hour-long analysis video based on the four minutes, including game translations of the Zonai created language. The video has over a million views.

King, 26, who has been making Zelda videos from his home since 2015 in England, said that while Zelda trailers are densely packed, Tears is especially so. Nintendo knows what it’s doing with them, deliberately giving us the puzzle piece by piece. A lot of the things we see in the trailer we weren’t supposed to understand yet.

South Florida YouTube creator HMK said he expects Tears to continue Zelda’s tradition of inspiring other games, leading to the most commercially successful title in the now 20-part series.

They’ve added verticality and a fluid world where you can go from the top of a mountain down into a crevasse where there’s even more to explore, said HMK, whose first name is Gio but uses his username in the game world for privacy. reasons. Added by: Breath of the Wild was just a plan. But with Tears, it will be the ultimate Zelda for a while.

King is one of the few influencers who has had a hands-on demo with the game. He feels that Tears of the Kingdom will not only excite fans of Breath of the Wild, but also players who disliked the game’s elements such as the infamous weapon durability.

With the Tears, they didn’t do a simple thing like solve the weapon’s durability with a fuse system instead of a simple blacksmith, King said. They reinvented the wheel and came up with crazy new mechanics and features that no one expected, no one had seen before.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *