The most hyped selling point of Zelda Wii is the Wii Motion Plus controls. However as to the specific utilization of said controls, we are left in the dark. There are many ways that Nintendo can pull it off, but which approach they’ll take remains to be seen. Would it be better for Zelda Wii to play like the sword fighting mini game in Wii Sports Resort, or Red Steel 2?
If you look at the first part of the first video, and the second video, you will notice that the first one looks a lot more like Zelda. That kind of gameplay is generally accepted idea of how Zelda Wii will play, but it does have some inherent flaws.
Ever notice how stupid Link looks while fishing in Twilight Princess? How his whole body is standing stiff while his right arm is flailing around like it’s possessed by a very thick demon? The only reason all the characters in Wii Sports Resort don’t look like monsters from Silent Hill is because they’re essentially stick figures – their imaginary joints can bend in weird non-existing shapes. But apply that same principle to Link and you got yourself a visit to the orthopedist.
It’s either that, or very restrictive movement to avoid Link’s bones popping out.
If that ends up being the case, we have a big problem: that would mean that all the fancy Wii Motion Plus controls boil down to “Ok, you’re now slicing at a Dodongo AGAIN but this time it looks even fancier!”
And thus, we’ve got ourselves another gimmick.
It’s horrible when games center around gimmicks… It works fine if the gimmick is incorporated into the story (See: Ocarina of Time), but if it’s just there for the sake of having a gimmick, then it can [Move along kids, nothing to see here] off.
The other possibility of course is that Nintendo managed to crawl out of their giant fortress made of money and actually did something original – first person Zelda. First person action adventures, as we know them, of course can never succeed and are just a pointless waste of time.
Putting the sarcasm aside, making Zelda Wii similar to Red Steel 2 would not only revive the franchise, but would possibly make it the best Zelda game ever. The first person would allow for a more flowing combat, more natural feeling controls and an even greater feeling of immersion into the game world as a whole. It’s also worth mentioning that it would add a whole new aspect of challenge to both combat and puzzles.
First person gameplay isn’t really as foreign to the Zelda series as you might think; as with arrow shooting from Epona’s back in Ocarina of Time as an example, nearly every item you use switches you into the first person perspective; the only thing missing is the ability to move in that state.
Another important fact to consider is that Miyamoto originally intended for Ocarina of Time to be played from a first person perspective, and you have Link’s Crossbow Training. But, you might say, ideas come and go and it doesn’t mean they have to return. Even so, this particular idea is now more appeasing than ever due to the Wii Motion Plus system.
However, I’m sure we can all agree that using items for combat in any 3D Zelda game is pretty much out of the question without lock-on. By the time you switch to first person, aim and finally take a shot, the enemy has already devoured you and your entire family.
This of course means that in the unlikely case that Zelda Wii is a first person game, a whole new dimension of combat opens up suddenly without any gimmick whatsoever.
Don’t get me wrong about gimmicks though, the Wii’s control system CAN server to improve the experience. Spirit Tracks had Cragma, a fight in which you essentially just tap the touch screen at places where you want to shoot, and it was one of the most awesome fights in the game. Combining the touch screen with dual screen feature of the DS allowed for the nice scenario where you’re trying to shoot Malladus with a light arrow near the end of the game.
But even that was more hectic due to the dual screen than the way you actually shot the arrow. The inherent issue with control gimmicks is that you get used to them as the game progresses and they cease to be anything special. Unless Miyamoto found an incredible new way to utilize the motion controls.
Last but not least, there’s the option of a combination. While this might sound awesome for those of you who are undecided as to which version you’d like more… Remember how tomatoes and chocolate milk don’t mesh together well even though they’re both good? The same principle might apply here.
Again it is entirely possible to make it work – the footage of Other M released so far shows as much, but with that Nintendo is treading on dangerous ground, which is arguably a good thing.
However, at the end of the day there might be just be a Nintendo employee sitting at his table, sipping coffee, and laughing at this article because I got it all wrong… So whatever Nintendo has decided to go with, I just hope they didn’t forget about the whole game thing in favor of gimmick controls.