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Nintendo considered over 100 redesigns of Link before settling on his appearance in Zelda: Breath of the Wild, wanted to go with a neutral approach

Nintendo ditched a bunch of traditions and norms from the Zelda series when they created Zelda: Breath of the Wild. One of the most challenging changes came from Link's redesign. While you can get Link's classic tunic/hat in Breath of the Wild, the character starts out looking quite different. In the Zelda: Breath of the Wild art book, various devs on the project explain their new approach to Link.

Eiji Aonuma

“Link is the game’s protagonist, so I’ve always thought we need him to look cool. Yet, if we overdo it, the people playing the game might feel like they’re controlling an already accomplished hero, which I felt could get in the way of the players immersing themselves in the game. For that reason, this time I decided we should make Link a more neutral character in a variety of ways.

We thought that the iconic green tunic and hat had become expected, so we wanted to mix things up and update his look. Interestingly, though, nobody on the team said, ‘Let’s make him blue!’ It just organically ended up that way.”

Satoru Takizawa

“Producer Aonuma-san declared that we would be revising expectations by updating Link for this game. He wanted Link to be a more neutral character that players could see themselves as. You can feel how energized and excited the artists were about this idea from the really interesting modern concepts they drew. There were close to one hundred designs presented within the team for Link, and the number of sketches was too great to count.”

Yoshiyuki Oyama

“The Link of this game was to be a traveler from the frontier who exudes a sense of adventure, which is why there are a lot of designs that feature capes and bags.

At the beginning of development we drew a lot of landscape concepts. Link wearing blue clothes appeared pretty early on because the blue stood out against the backgrounds we were producing.

Did you notice that the Champion’s Tunic that appears on page 60 (see below) has a different pattern on the chest than the one from the start of development? Since the tunic is unique to Link, it ultimately ended up being a symbolic representation of the Master Sword. The story behind the Champion’s Tunic is touched upon in the second DLC, ‘The Champions’ Ballad.'””

Dragon Quest creator laments the series' popularity in the West, praises Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and talks about the series' future

Yuji Horii recently held a keynote speech at the Cedec+Kyushu 2018 event, and he talked about all sorts of things Dragon Quest related. Check out some of the more interesting tidbits below.

- Horii would like the series to be more popular in the West
- he regrets that they didn't release the older games in the series outside Japan sooner
- he believes this resulted in the situation now, where most non-Japanese people are unfamiliar with Dragon Quest
- one of the reasons why the games didn’t release is due to the scripts taking too long to translate
- Dragon Quest games were made in a way so players never think “I don’t know what to do”
- Horii also says letting players do whatever they want can be a good choice as well
- he cited The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild as an example of how going off the game’s rails can be a lot of fun

At the end of the event, Horii was also asked when people can expect to learn about Dragon Quest XII. Here's exactly what Horii said in response.

I already thought up some of the keywords the game will be about, but I can’t reveal anything for now. I know XI is particularly appreciated for its scenario, so for the next game I might include tricks related to the game system instead. People striving to make their dreams come true will probably be one of the themes in the game. But XII is still many years ahead, so, for now, you should play Dragon Quest Builders 2 which is coming out soon.

Nintendo explains why The Legend of Zelda's art style is ever-changing, and how they came to Breath of the Wild's visual style

In the recently released Zelda: Breath of the Wild – Creating a Champion book, art director Satoru Takizawa has talked about a number of topics. In the snippets below, you can see Takizawa talk about why the Zelda series usually changes up its art style with each installment, and how the style for Breath of the Wild was created.

“I imagine there are a lot of people who have wondered why the visuals for The Legend of Zelda change with each new entry in the series. We look for the best way to express the unique spirit of that particular game and create a world that will be exciting for players to jump into and explore. Often, the results come from trial and error.

With Breath of the Wild we spent a lot of time thinking about how to visually represent this massive open world. The theme for this game was “revisiting expectations,” which left me at a loss as to how to express that visually [laughs]. At the same time, I felt that it was an ideal opportunity to establish a style that would become the definitive version of The Legend of Zelda’s art.

After a lot of worrying and going back and forth, we created a painterly art style that combined the realism of the game world with its playability. For example, if you cut down a tree in the game, it immediately creates a firewood. That was an intentional contraction of reality that cuts out portions of the game that the player might find boring or makes short waits more fun with comedy. We wanted to create a world that could accommodate the fantastical elements of Hyrule without sacrificing a more realistic art style, and we went about that by crafting a hybrid of the two that would allow the players to suspend their disbelief when certain things happen. That allowed us to include a broad range of ideas from the designers and enabled us to have some crazy stuff happen. For example, the player is able to toss a bunch of ingredients into a pot and have a dessert pop out. We found that injecting humor into the visual shorthand helps players forgive the break break from reality.”

Thanks to Sligeach_eire for the heads up!

Nintendo explains why Zelda: Breath of the Wild doesn't fit into the Zelda timeline

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – Creating a Champion is now available in English, which means fans can pour through the tome and glean some new info about the latest entry in the Zelda franchise. Tucked inside the book is a comment from Eiji Aonuma on why Breath of the Wild hasn't received an official placement on the Zelda timeline.

“The final thing I’d like to convey to all of our players is that video games, not just Zelda, can go much, much farther! We got a lot of responses from adult players who said they felt the same way playing this game as they did when they used to be hooked on video games when they were younger.

We made this game with the intention of returning to our roots, so the response from players about feeling the same as they had when they were young is promising. Since Nintendo Switch is portable, I hope that they will be able to engage deeply with the game in a fresh, new way too.

In books like the recently released The Legend of Zelda Encyclopedia, we revealed where each Zelda game fell on a timeline and how their stories related, but we didn’t do that for Breath of the Wild. There is a reason for that. With this game, we saw just how many players were playing in their own way and had those reactions I just mentioned.

We realized that people were enjoying imagining the story that emerged from the fragmental imagery we were providing. If we defined a restricted timeline, then there would be a definitive story, and it would eliminate the room for imagination, which wouldn’t be as fun.

We want players to be able to continue having fun imagining this world even after they are finished with the game, so, this time, we decided that we would avoid making clarifications. I hope that everyone can find their own answer, in their own way.”

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild hits 10 million sold on Switch alone

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is such a success story. The game continues to woo new consumers to the Switch, and is still doing insane numbers. In the last quarter alone, the Switch version sold just shy of 1 million units. That now means the Switch version alone has sold over 10 million units, coming in at 10.28. With Wii U figures roughly estimated, the game should be somewhere over 12 million sold.

Fan makes Zelda: Breath of the Wild song using nothing but sound effects and clips from the game

I don't think I could like something more. I love these kind of remix songs, and seeing one with nothing but Breath of the Wild clips really tickles my fancy. I know what I'm listening to on loop all week long!

Zelda: Breath of the Wild glitch sends Link flying off at ridiculous speeds

Yep, another Zelda: Breath of the Wild glitch. It seems like the most recent Lizalfos glitch has gotten players diving back into the game to see what other weird stuff they can find, which has lead to this 'head stomp' glitch picking up steam. With the right timing and a ragdolled enemy, you can send Link hurdling off into Hyrule at breakneck speeds. This one is currently a game-changer for the speedrunning scene, and players are perfecting their methods to travel insane distances in short amounts of time.

Zelda: Breath of the Wild mod adds in Bowsette

While the Bowsette fad is calming down a bit, there's still a lot of activity going on out there. Some of it takes a bit of time to create, like this mod for Breath of the Wild that adds in Bowsette as a playable character. Looks like she's more than capable of filling Link's shoes!

Three particular Lizalfos in Zelda: Breath of the Wild are the key to glitch insanity

One very specific area in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has three Lizalfos that have some glitched-out physics. It seems Nintendo forgot to apply any gravity to them! Messing with these Lizalfos in a particular way can make the entire game go insane, paving the way for all sorts of insanity!


It's likely Nintendo will patch this out now that footage is making the rounds, so get in the game and enjoy this weirdness while you still can!

Thanks to cm30 for the heads up!

Zelda: Breath of the Wild Card & Candy packs hitting Japan


Some new Zelda merch is releasing in Japan today. Fans can head out and purchase The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Card & Candy packs. These packs include a piece of candy and a card featuring an illustration based on The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. There are 26 different pieces of art for the cards, including 2 secret cards.