Nintendo, for better or worse, always marches to the beat of their own drum. It has led them to great success like the Switch and the Wii, along with great missteps like the Virtual Boy and Wii U. That said, with any success or failure, Nintendo is always learning things that they can apply to their work in the future.

As Nintendo loves to do their own thing, you won’t ever find them chasing the success of titles from other companies. While there are a ton of developers out there who take inspiration from hit games to try and build something similar, Nintendo’s devs would much rather come up with their own ideas. This is especially true of the Zelda team.

In an interview with RTL Nieuws, Zelda director Hidemaro Fujibayashi and producer Eiji Aonuma opened up about their constant desire to do their own thing and not copy the success that other games and companies see. (h/t Nintendo Everything)

Fujibayashi: Sorry, but we didn’t really have the chance to play the game. We were too occupied with the development of Tears of the Kingdom, which resulted in us not really being able to play games. We did hear about it, though.

Even if we had the time to play games, we wouldn’t reuse ideas from them. When we make a game, we come up with a general concept to come up with new ideas based on that.

That is pretty interesting, because with many games from other studios, designers often talk about their inspiration from other titles. Is Zelda being made in more of a bubble?

Aonuma: Of course there are situations where you make something that’s similar to an existing game, but I would never try to put the ideas of others in my game. I’m too proud for that. I’m always looking for original ideas.

[director Hidemaro Fujibayashi and producer Eiji Aonuma ]

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11M ago

For clarity's sake, they are talking about not having the time for Elden Ring. Which is interesting. Elden Ring is obviously Souls of the wild and From Software even acknowledged it. I really was under the impression that TotK was inspired to some extent by Elden Ring. The depths in particular. But apparently it's not. So that means they saw fit to add this part of the map by themselves and not because they wanted to copy Elden Ring. If they are to be believed, they saw the depths as a logical continuation of what was proposed in BotW. And that's interssting since I really thought that it was precisely what was missing from the first game : interior spaces and giant caves and networks of caverns. That and, you know, proper dungeons which apparently where left out for the next open world zelda unfortunately.