According to Nintendo, development of a new The Legend of Zelda usually begins immediately after the latest game ships – for instance, series producer Eiji Aonuma has said Zelda: Breath of the Wild was conceived directly after the release of 2011’s Skyward Sword. So, with that in mind, we should already be well into the development of Breath of the Wild’s follow up, right? Not so fast.
Gamereactor interviewed Aonuma while at France’s recent Japan Expo, and the Zelda head honcho revealed he still has no idea what’s coming next.
“We have no plans for a future Zelda. We are still far from that, unfortunately for you. Today, I'm at the stage where I'm trying to gather a number of ideas for a sequel, but I cannot do it alone. It's a lot of work that will have to be done over a long period of time, and we're still far from having planned anything. Leave us a little time.”
According to Aonuma, the Zelda team’s attention is still firmly focused on creating DLC for Breath of the Wild. That said, he did give one concrete example of something he’d like to include in a Nintendo Switch Zelda sequel…
“We have HD Rumble, which is specific to the Switch and allow you to experiment what the character feels when it touches something. For example when you take an object in hand you can feel it thanks to the vibrations. It is a rather interesting approach, it adds more realism too, simply it would have been necessary to develop scenes around that. The real problem that made it impossible to use this technology is not so much a matter of time problem but rather that we were going to have too many differences with the Wii U version and they both had to be identical games. We will be able to use this in the next Zelda.”
Considering how long it takes to make Zelda games (Breath of the Wild took over 4 years), it’s somewhat concerning that Nintendo hasn’t started on the next one yet. That said, Aonuma has indicated the next game in the series will likely take a similar open-world approach to Breath of the Wild, so hopefully Nintendo can reuse their engine and save themselves some time and labor.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild’s first DLC pack, The Master Trials, launched last week. The Champions’ Ballad is scheduled to launch this December. You can check out WWG’s latest Breath of the Wild coverage here.