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How Can Reusing the Same Hyrule Feel Fresh?

A Link In Time

To Overcome Harder Challenges
ZD Legend
So we know that Breath of the Wild 2 will use the same Hyrule as the original. And it makes sense. The Zelda team spent years creating the world. But many people have spent 100s of hours exploring that world, so it would feel familiar to them. So how can the experience feel fresh?

The obvious answer is to add some new areas, and I think that will be done. I don't expect too much new, though. Perhaps there will be building some new settlements similar to Tarrey Town in the original after certain conditions are met.

Then there's expanding on all the urban areas that exist in Breath of the Wild. I think this makes the most sense from a story perspective as the world is (theoretically) a more peaceful place now. The extent of expansion would depend on how much time has elapsed between BotW and its sequel.

If Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask are anything to go by, the main collectible will return. But perhaps there will be less Korok seeds this time around and in more designated locations like the skulltula houses in Majora's Mask.

There's the most obvious thing, and one that I don't need to even mention because it will definitely happen, namely new dungeons and shrines. I'm pretty sure Nintendo will keep the shrine concept as it makes sense to add more to do in the massive world. Though it's unknown if other dungeons will be the more traditional labyrinths of old or more moving contraptions like the Divine Beasts.

Lastly, Link will probably have some new powers at his disposal that weren't in the original as evidence by his glowing arm in the trailer. I would be surprised if some of the old runes didn't carry over, but this may be a supplement to them and open more opportunities for new puzzles in the overworld and shrines.


BoDoc Horseman
Nov 24, 2012
Primarily, I hope we see advancements in the world and civilization. BotW ended with Link and Zelda planning on repairing and rebuilding the settlements of Hyrule. I think we should see some of these developments already taken place, such as populating the ruins found throughout Hyrule Field and Castle. Perhaps a few new settlements along routes were likely to go on again (assuming these routes are similar). This is all under the assumption that whatever we saw in the trailer doesn’t drastically change the landscape. We saw some rumbling and Hyrule Castle floating, but I don’t remember if we see any dramatic changes in the landscape after that.


Darkest of all Dark Links
Oct 28, 2012
They don't need to add new areas. They need to make the current areas more distinct. Compare Death Mountain to a snowy mountain. They're exactly the same as far as gameplay goes, the only difference is replacing a fire aesthetic with an ice aesthetic. Re-using content over and over doesn't help.
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Jul 7, 2014
Well, the original quote from Aonuma is still somewhat vague in terms of what it means by "same world/same Hyrule" so for all we know it could take place entirely underground, or someplace else on the same continent.

If they are going to reuse all the overworld assets though, then this is a really ballsy move on Nintendo's part. Essentially what they would have to do pull an OoT time travel motif, or aLttP/aLBW dark world move, or some other type of similar gimmick. Even if they leave the overall layout of the world the same, the environments will have to be drastically changed somehow. In the former case we could potentially see the same Hyrule but in the past before it was ruined (maybe 10,000 years ago during the age of Sheikah tech?). Or in the latter case it could just be a curse that Ganondorf casts over the world (possibly related to Malice) that changes all it's environments (for instance Hebra warming up and losing all it's snow).

Or my other guess is that there's a whole other underground world that rises along with Hyrule Castle and fundamentally alters large swaths of the original landscape while leaving certain areas more or less unscathed. At least that would be a gimmick they haven't done before.
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Mar 9, 2019
I think the divine beast and Guardians will be dead. Because at the end of BotW, They go to the Zora's domain because Vah Ruta broke down.
Apr 3, 2017
Guessing the events in game will take place a few years after Ganon's defeat. Cities, towns, and the castles will start to re-build, and without having to worry about guardians. Hyrule could be flourishing now. Places could now be evolving.

Zelda's research could take us to and through prominent locations we saw in BotW. They could explore the forgotten temple, Zonai, a few other places deep within the castle, or use the temple of time. I'm assuming that what we see in that trailer takes place pretty early in the game. Also given that we see Hyrule castle starting to lift into the air the over-world could see substantial changes.

Question I have is what are they going to do about Link's achievements & tools from BotW? Will he still have Revali's Gale for example? Towers should still dot the landscape, as well as shrines and the slate.

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