Next "back-to-basics" Zelda may ditch linear progression

The next Zelda will "get back to basics," series director Eiji Aonuma revealed in today's Nintendo Direct presentation. Aonuma didn't mention specifics about the next Zelda game coming for Wii U, but he did address its driving themes.

"Our mission in developing this new Zelda game for Wii U is quite plainly to rethink the conventions of Zelda," Aonuma said.

"I'm referring to things such as the player is supposed to complete dungeons in a certain order. That you are supposed to play by yourself, the things that we've come to take for granted recently."

That's a lot to take in at once! Every major Zelda title since the series made the jump to SNES has imposed a strict dungeon progression (not counting speedrun tricks), though the first game famously left players to figure out their own path through Hyrule.

"We had actually worked on this kind of challenge with Skyward Sword, but we weren't able to put efforts in changing the linear structure of the game," Aonuma said.

Aonuma may be implying the next Zelda will have multiplayer, or it may just make good use of Miiverse (though the Gamepad could very easily serve as a Tingle Tuner for a second player).

"We want to set aside these 'conventions,' get back to basics to create a newborn Zelda so players today can enjoy the real essence of the franchise."

Don't get your hopes up for too much more news on that front any time soon--Aonuma said the game is pretty far off, though we can look forward to the HD remake of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker until then.


  • RedSoul - February 1, 2013 2:48 p.m.

    The multiplayer I could care less about since LoZ would just be another fantasy multiplayer, but a less linear playthrough (much like the original game for example) would put a nice new spin on the franchises' direction. All in all, this is some good food for thought.
  • TBone4Ever - January 26, 2013 8:35 a.m.

    If he does mean Multiplayer he better make damn well sure he figures out where it would fit in the game. Boss fights come to mind, but they're could be interaction with some levels like helping Link with a heavy object by putting another player to help him, or if someone has an item that Link may not have but the other player does trade the item with him, that sort if thing...
  • Jeff the Fridge - January 23, 2013 10:47 a.m.

    I feel that, as a member of the internet, I have to complain about how the possible multiplayer will be the worst thing to happen to Zelda since the last bad thing to happen (That bit in Skyward Sword when you had to fly into targets for me), but, as a Zelda fan, I appreciate it could be cool, IF done correctly
  • shawksta - January 23, 2013 11:14 a.m.

    Eh, who knows were possibly just looking at a 3D Model version of The 4 swords series in terms of multiplayer, and even then, Nintendo is more on local unless they wanna go with Online this time.
  • MCBadong - January 23, 2013 10:03 a.m.

    I'm all for a fresh new Zelda - just make sure not to add the bunch of trash that a lot of developers call "new features" - stray too far from the Zelda formula and what you'll have is no more different than the many other adventure games already in existence. The same way Zelda revolutionized Z-Targeting, let this new Zelda revolutionize something again.
  • shawksta - January 23, 2013 9:33 a.m.

    Nice to see the drive, its gonna be a while but worth it I'm sure

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