The Nintendo Treehouse Event stream finally revealed the much-anticipated new Legend of Zelda, showing off an impressive amount of gameplay and revealing the complete name: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.
Breath of the Wild looks to radically change everything you know about the “Zelda formula.” Different from any other Zelda, players will be able to explore a seamless world, seemingly without boundaries. New to Breath of the Wild, Link will be able to jump and climb on almost any surface, depending on how long his stamina lasts, in a style similar to Monster Hunter 4.
Players will also be able to pick up items found within the world. Items, like sticks, can be used as weapons, while local flora and fauna can be gathered and consumed to regain health. Link will no longer be limited to a single outfit/weapon as players can mix and match clothing/armor as well as a variety of weapons, found within the world or picked up off fallen enemies, to create the Zelda experience they prefer.
Judging by what was shown in the gameplay demo, this version of Hyrule looks to be the biggest in the history of the franchise, showcasing only one, relatively small region of the world, that still appeared epic in scale and beautifully designed. Borrowing an art style similar to The Wind Waker, Breath of the Wild has a beautiful cell-shaded aesthetic that, coupled with high definition and dynamic lighting, creates a world that feels full of life.
The game’s world will also capture the sense of wildness, as the title suggest. Players must pay attention to changes in climate, as a shift in weather or temperature can affect the environment and their ability to survive in it. A sudden downpour might douse a roaring campfire or a lightning storm might be attracted to Link’s metallic weapons. Players might need to bundle up with warmer clothes or change into something better suited to the desert heat.
More than 100 Shrines of Trials dot the landscape, waiting for players to discover and explore them in any order they want. As players work their way through the traps and puzzles inside, they’ll earn special items and other rewards that will help them on their adventure. Puzzles in the game often have multiple answers, and supposedly, secrets can be found everywhere.
Of course, there will be Amiibo support. Breath of the Wild will release with three beautifully crafted Amiibos, included the first one with moving parts. Players can also connect the “Wolf Link” Amiibo from Twilight Princess HD to summon a wolf partner within Spirit of the Wild.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild looks exactly like what Nintendo needs right now: a rejuvenation of their existing franchises with bigger and bolder ideas. Here’s hoping it will exceed all expectations and set a new precedent for the franchise.