Link has traditionally been an unspeaking protagonist in The Legend of Zelda series, but Eiji Aonuma seems adamant about shaking up the traditions of the series. In an interview with Jason Schreier, Aonuma talked about what it would mean for true voice acting in a The Legend of Zelda game.
Schreier: You’ve talked a lot about shaking up the series traditions, and kinda changing things for Zelda in some big ways. For either Hyrule Warriors or future Zelda games like the one you just announced, would you ever consider giving Link voice acting and a personality?
Aonuma: Actually the voice issue is a little bit tricky. We could just make him talk, we could just give him a voice and have him speak, but does that add to how fun the game is? Does that add to the experience? It might actually just make it the same as a lot of other games. By not having him talk, it kinda lowers the hurdle for the player to really feel attached to Link, so that’s something that I’m still having to think about.
Schreier: Is it something that you’ve ever actually experimented with, or made a prototype or anything like that?
Aonuma: (laughter) There are actually a series of videos called Nyan Nyan Mario Time, that are only in Japanese. In those videos, Link was talking, and not only was the actions and the voice a little bit strange, but it just felt strange overall.
Schreier: Why did it feel strange?
Aonuma: (laughter) Link doesn’t talk yet, but if he did, he probably wouldn’t sound like this.
Aonuma: But you know, in the same way that I have a strong sense for the way Link should sound, I think everybody has a sense for how their Link sounds. And Tecmo Koei I think they agree with me because they opted not to make Link have a voice in Hyrule Warriors either.
Schreier: Do the other characters? If I play as Zelda will she talk in the game?
Aonuma: They just do the “ahhh” sound. This is actually the first Warriors game where characters don’t talk.
It appears that Link’s voice box won’t be used for much more than screaming and shouting for a while yet. Would you like Link to whisper sweet nothings in your ear, or are you still too haunted by ghosts from the past?