The newly anticipated hand-held installment in the Legend of Zelda franchise, Tri-Force Heroes, doesn’t give the player a gender option citing story reasons.
Gender matters in this story
During an interview with the game director, Hiromasa Shikata, it was stated that this team based three-player Zelda game will not support the option of switching genders due to the storyline. IGN posed the question of playing as a woman in Tri-Force Heroes during E3 2015, and Shikata revealed some of the story in his explanation
The game’s story begins in a kingdom in which the ruler calls for heroes to step forth onto a journey, and Link volunteers his efforts. Since Link is prominently a male character within the game, the option of gender switching isn’t given as the story revolves around him.
“The story calls for this sort of legend/prophecy where heroes will come together to help solve a problem,”
“And in that, they are male characters. So, because the game is set with that as the story background, you cannot choose a gender; you are a male character.” – Hiromasa Shikata, E3 2015
This lack of gender options could rattle some feathers within the gaming community. There are, however, some feminine customization options within Tri-Force Heroes, which includes dressing Link in Princess Zelda’s wardrobe.
Shikata defended the new installment by identifying how many of their female employees are fond of the game already.
“I understand what you’re saying, and just as general information, we do have a lot of female staff members who are playing this game and enjoying it,”
“It doesn’t seem to be a big issue to them. They still are getting emotional investment in this game.”
“[These aren’t] the most masculine of guys in the world.” – Hiromasa Shikata, E3 2015
Hopefully when Legend of Zelda: Tri-Force Heroes releases this fall on the Nintendo 3DS, many gamers can identify and also become “emotionally invested” in the game. If you’re more interested in the new game, you can view my earlier article that gives a larger insight to the gameplay and specifics.