Miyamoto Talks About the Development of A Link to the Past

DjinnDecember 10th, 2011 by Djinn

The folks at Siliconera have gotten their hands on a discussion with Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto and Dragon Quest creator Yuji Horii from 1989. Recently translated from a Japanese Website that cataloges various interviews with video game developers. In this interview they talk about the various details in the development of Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past and Dragon Quest IV. Jump inside to see what they had to say.

M: Basically, I intend to make a return to Zelda 1′s style. This is something I’ve had in mind since even before we began making Zelda II: The Adventure of Link.

H: That’s awesome.

M: Ever since I started making the first game in the series, I’ve been saying that the third Zelda will feature a party, one that consists of the protagonist, who’s a mix between an elf and a fighter, a magic user, and a girl. The fairy that appeared in Adventure of Link was actually a party member designed for Zelda 3.

A girl who looked a little like a fairy and whose role consisted of reconnaissance. Like the characters in action games that don’t engage enemies in combat but rather go and scout out the surroundings and return to you safely. It’s also fun when action adventure games lets you choose who to send out. That’s the sort of thing I’m thinking I’d like to put in Zelda 3.

M: I see what you mean. The Zelda games use disks, meaning players have always been able to save their progress. The Legend of Zelda and Dragon Quest hit the market around the same time. It’s too bad that you had to resort to using a password back then.

You can read the rest of the interview here

This is interesting, getting into some of the development of games for the SNES era. I think it was interesting to see that they had actually intended to make a party for A Link to the Past instead of Link by himself. I actually wish they would implement this in a future game sometime. I know I have seen it suggested on a few random message boards before. I have even talked about it myself. Although I can see how the supportive fairy character eventually evolved into Navi later on.

So what do you think? Do you learn anything new from this? Wish they kept the party system in ALTTP? Let us know in the comments below.

Source: Siliconera

Related: Skyward Sword

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  • Wcaton25

    Seems like it turned out a bit different than planned, still one of the best.

  • Raider

    It's always cool to find out new things about older Zelda games

    • gAmer_Matt

      and this is definitely one of the strangest, or at least really different ideas I've heard than what it actually became (disregarding other ones because this one was talked about, not actually shown off). I guess this is why they don't talk about their ideas out in the public, because then it can seem like a new idea that we would'nt have already heard. Not like they did a Zelda game with a party, although the idea might make you think of Spirit Tracks with Link and Zelda.

  • Link and Cuccos

    Wow, I didn't think they would consider making it a party system in a Zelda game. That's really interesting. I wonder if Zelda herself would've been part of the party.

    Could be interesting. But since Link is silent, if they were to go with a party system, would everyone in your party also be silent and have no speaking parts like Link?

    I'm curious to see what made them change their minds about the party system. But I'm glad they went with just Link as the playable character. He's very much the iconic hero we have grown attached to, so I'm fine with playing as him the whole time. I love ALttP — my childhood is deeply attached to that game. Very nice to see this interview from the past.

    • Reaca

      I would imagine that it would have had a party system similar to Chrono Trigger. With the silent main character, and others who talk and have a full personality.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=193310055 Nathan Parkinson

    Link to the Past is the Zelda game that I grew up with and it is one of my favorites. I think it would have been interesting to have a party, but I am glad they did it the way it turned out. I think it would have turned out too much of a final fantasy style especially since this came out right after Zelda II: Adventures of Link (I mean with the experience). Experience + a traveling party does not sound that good to me, but if a future Zelda came out like this I would be open to it because I am very much so a Zelda fan. I want to be able to know all of the games inside and out.

  • hero of winds2

    Interesting. that was back when there was no "Zelda formula." Frankly, I wouldn't seeing new ideas like that find its way into future Zelda titles. Nintendo knows what they're doing and would make it fun.

  • TheGreenTingle

    I think it would be cool if there would be a party syetem in a Zelda game (preferably a handheld one.)


    I really would like to see a coop Zelda experience in the future.

  • AwesomeTingle

    As Horii (H) said, "That's awesome." It really was, and still is.

  • Tektite

    I don't know if a party team would have really worked in A Link To The Past, it would have just felt like the FFII and FFIII but without the battle screen and a different plot.
    A Link To The Past along with Wind Waker are my two favorite Zelda games so far so I'm really happy with the way that A Link To The Past turned out. :)

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  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Thareous Thareous

    And so the real formula of Zelda began. I love how much this game impacted the series.

  • ALttP

    I would have not liked this, because Zelda 1 is the bone structure of the Zelda seires, while ALttP is the flesh. So think if they changed it to much that the Zelda seires would be different today.

  • Supportedcoffe

    I have never played a link to the past. Thinking about buying it on the wii virtual console.

    • Roth

      Do it! =)

  • http:///http://www.zeldadungeon.net/ awsomeMrlink

    I wonder why they decided not to do that………

  • TwilightKing

    Meh, I don't think the party would have been a good idea for the game.

  • kram1032

    So basically, Navi was planned to be included in aLttP as a party member but then she got moved to OoT as a(n) sidekick/informant/annoyance, heh…

  • Roth

    I wonder what this says about the magical items like the canes and cape.

    I really like LttP as it is, but we definitely have room for a prequel (or more) involving the origins of the game's artifacts and such. Might as well bring in the party system and have a story involving the line of Hylian knights, the fading of the magi, and . . . something involving fairies . . . and have some backstory to the locations and inhabitants of LttP that haven't been meshed with OoT or TP. I love the variety of nonessential details in the game, from the palaces to the dark dwellings of those outcast or lost in the Golden Land, the characters and creatures both helpful and hostile . . . what happened in the war against Ganondorf's thieves, and its aftermath? Why is there a flying cucco in the weathervane of Kakariko? What beast was sealed over the entrance to Turtle Rock? How about Blind's history? The Tower of Hera's purpose? The Fairy Queen's rule?
    (There are those fairies again…)

    It may be fangame time, if Miyamoto/Aonuma doesn't pick this up. Now I'm all excited, either way! Wonder if it'll happen…

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