The Legend of Zelda for Wii U Will Push System's Limits

The Legend of Zelda's series producer talks about the large world in the Wii U installment, takes aim at the term "open world," and explains navigation.

Expectations couldn't be higher for the latest entry in The Legend of Zelda series. An interview with the producer reveals that it will be another Zelda game that tests the limits of the hardware and talks about navigating the world with the Wii U remote.

Eiji Aonuma explains that the Zelda series has always tested the limits of a console in an interview with Gamereactor Magazine. That's going to be the case with the current project titled The Legend of Zelda for Wii U.

"A huge, seamlessly unfolding world is something that can't be achieved if the hardware isn't advanced enough," he responded when asked how the studio was transitioning to the new world teased in last year's demo. "Ever since we made the very first generation of Legend of Zelda games though, we've had as large a world as can be realised with the hardware, so you could say it was inevitable that we've now done the same with the new Wii U title."

Outside of The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker, the series has always been a graphical powerhouse on Nintendo consoles in their era. That's not a knock on Wind Waker either -- the world was just as massive in cel-shaded form.

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time impressed everyone over 16 years ago on the N64. Followups of Majora's Mask, Twilight Princess, and Skyward Sword all showed the potential of the N64 (with the Expansion Pak), GameCube, and Wii, respectively.

What makes Zelda for Wii U different than other installments?

Players have the ability to travel from one place to the other continuously according to Aonuma. Since moving into the 3D platforming genre, Zelda games are known for its large worlds, but cities and fortresses are separated. Now, there will be the ability to "explore the vast world seamlessly."

Worlds have always been immersive and a staple of the Zelda series. That's why Aonuma didn't understand why people were happy that the game was finally "open world." The landscape is just presented in a different way.

Navigation with the Wii U GamePad

Aonuma also talked about the new ability to navigate with the GamePad's second screen. He compared it to people using their smartphone to navigate around in the real world. In past Zelda adventures, players had to pause the game to pull out a map. Now they can navigate towns and palaces in real-time.

Image credit: Techno Buffalo

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Freelance video game and sports writer. I'm the guy who picks Saints Row over Grand Theft Auto. Mario is my idol.

Published Feb. 18th 2015

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