Posted on March 27 2023 by Mike Midwood
Since its earliest days, The Legend of Zelda has included a ton of fighting monsters with swords. It’s a ubiquitous aspect of the series, and why wouldn’t it be? It’s a ubiquitous motif of the western fantasy genre that the series occupies. Despite this, that combat has never really been the primary draw of the games. While the series has focused primarily on the other aspects of the adventure to tremendous effect, is there any reason the actual engagement with enemies couldn’t be more demanding? Should future Zelda games develop more complex combat systems?
To be clear, I’m not saying that the Zelda series should become Devil May Cry or Bayonetta, but this feels like a situation where we can have our cake and eat it too. The combat in older Zelda games can be pretty difficult, but there still isn’t much depth to it. Besides Breath of the Wild, combat in 3D Zelda titles is practically a formality, like it exists primarily to remind the player that Link is a hero who fights with a sword. Breath of the Wild expanded the available options in combat, but the actual implementation is still very simplistic. These games already do such a great job of creating fun an interesting worlds to explore. I think it would be even better if I could have some truly heart-pounding encounters in those worlds.
Not to beat a dead horse, but I think the Zelda series would pair very well with the combat in the Souls series. While those games have a reputation for being very difficult, their combat isn’t particularly complicated. It just requires the player to be a bit more thoughtful and deliberate than in a Zelda game. Expanding enemy attack patterns would go a long way toward making memorable fights, especially the bosses. I think the Zelda franchise could benefit from incorporating some of the combat mechanics from those FromSoftware games.
What do you think? Should future Zelda games have more complex combat? What kind of mechanics would you implement? Let us know in the comments below!
Hi, I’m Mike Midwood and I’m a Senior Editor at ZeldaDungeon! Video games and literature are my greatest joys in life. An avid Zelda fan, some of my other favorite games include the Resident Evil and Dark Souls series. I hope you enjoy my content here on ZeldaDungeon!
“The sword has no strength unless the hand that holds it has courage.”