Breath of the Wild still has everyone’s attention, with discussions continuing online, and Nintendo (FIIIIINALLY) releasing the occasional little video showing off a new mechanic or weapon that we can expect to use in the game. The open world, new combat, item customization, and other crazy leaps from the usual Zelda staples is certainly daunting, but that is not always a good thing, especially for seasoned Zelda fans. The general lack of info and swaths of changed mechanics is worrying at times, so the ZD staff has taken the time to express some of their personal concerns with what has been revealed so far.
As usual, make sure to hit up the comments and let us know your own thoughts on the matter. What rubs you the wrong way about what we’ve seen of the game so far?
Jon Lett – View Profile
I must say, there are some parts of this game I am a small bit nervous about, but only because I am not entirely used to open world games, especially not in Zelda. That being said, I am optimistic, and I have a lot of faith in the Zelda development team’s ability to surprise us with new mechanics. Still, if I had to choose a specific downside, I am somewhat worried about the deteriorating weapons. I have no interest in being half way through a dungeon, only to lose a key weapon like a strong sword or a bow, and ultimately have to backtrack to find a new one. Deteriorating weapons bring up a number of potential issues, and while we will, thankfully, be able to upgrade and repair them, these weapons better not prove cumbersome to deal with, or people will be upset.
Thomas Jacobs – View Profile
Thus far I’m still a bit concerned as to how the game is going to address the pitfalls that come with being an open world game of this type. World size VS density is an issue, one we’ve seen games like Twilight Princess struggle with in its overworld. When you make your world really big you need to fill it up with all sorts of things like enemies to fight, treasure to find, secrets to uncover and resources to harvest. The difficulty is to make every single locale interesting this way without making the player go “Eh, I’ll explore this place later”. Every location has to bring excitement and wonder, lest it just gets skipped over. Another is the resources gathering angle. When done improperly, it becomes gathering for the sake of gathering without the resources meaning anything. On the other hand, it must not be a chore or a barrier, with you thinking “Oh, I need at least seven more sticks, three apples and a pair of rocks before I can continue” because it artificially lengthens the ame and throws up annoying barriers. Finally there is item decay. This creates situations where you will consider certain items too awesome to use and you stick with wooden shields and clubs while the good gear is taunting you with the knowledge that if you use them you will lose them, which undermines the entire reason of finding awesome gear that upgrades your current stuff. Sure, finding a Burning Sword of Bokoblin Slaying +5 is awesome, but if you can kill only a dozen or so Bokoblins before it breaks you might as well not have used it.
Kira Koneko – View Profile
I too have similar apprehensions to the open world aspect of Breath of the Wild with one exception, I am very familiar with several open world games. But this is exactly where my uncertainty lies, although several of these titles have done a pretty good job in maintaining a somewhat consistent plot and storyline. One of my favorites would be Skyrim, but even this title has some issues, I feel sometimes the story gets lost in the tasks and actions of the game. One of the things that has kept me playing the Zelda series for so long is the immense amount of lore and story that exists within the world and this is what is the cause of concern for me. I am excited to experience all that what has been shown to us so far, with the addition of a great story and action blended together. I just don’t want it to become an incessant grind of gear and item gathering instead of being this epic tale of adventure, sorrow, and excitement that I have come to expect and crave from my Zelda titles. I too have faith that our wait will be rewarded in the end, let’s hope I’m not wrong!
Brandon Schmitz – View Profile
Based on what I played at E3, Breath of the Wild’s open-world approach looks to usher in a welcome change of pace for Zelda. As much as I love the mainline games as they are, this latest entry feels as if it’ll be that next major step forward. At its best, the Zelda series — even some of the comparatively linear entries — has provided an unbridled sense of adventure; and Breath of the Wild seems to be taking that concept to the Nth degree. However, I’m still a bit worried that this emphasis on exploration will come at the cost of the game’s story. Although, on its own, I like the option to try to fight Ganon early on in the adventure, the larger implications have me somewhat nervous. Just how loose will the game’s plot progression be? It seems as if discovery will be one of the story’s major themes, especially in regards to Link’s identity. That said, I hope its free spirited nature extends mostly to the order in which Link tackles dungeons, rather than the order of major story beats.
Alasyn Eletha – View Profile
One thing I’m a bit apprehensive about is the seemingly short lifespan of weapons and shields. Granted, I understand that we’ve only seen the bare minimum of what is most likely going to be a massive collection of achievable weaponry, but so far it seems as if you have a very small limit to how much you can use your weapon before it’s badly damaged or breaks. I’m hoping to see more enhancement capabilities when it comes to the weapons. Upgrades that won’t cost an arm and a leg to keep a sword or a shield longer. Or perhaps as we move along in the game, the further we go, the more durable weapons we’ll be able to acquire. For now, this was my biggest concern. I’ve lost years of playing games like Wind Waker and Skyward Sword because I hadn’t been too excited about all the innovative changes put into those games. Now that I’ve given them a chance, they crack my top 5 favorite Zelda games. I’m not going to skip a beat with Breath of the Wild just because there are some changes and new actions that I don’t care for. Who knows, ten years from now, I might actually come to love having to force myself to be more creative when finding and rationing my weapon usage in Breath of the Wild.