Today, as part of Game Informer’s month-long coverage of all things Zelda, they bring us a story that we didn’t see coming.
During an interview, Zelda’s producer Eiji Aonuma was asked if at any point he considered bringing together the Zelda teams to hammer out the details on Breath of the Wild and speed up the development process. To which he replied, the two teams (3ds and Wii U-focused) have a very different approach to making games and meshing them together would not guarantee success or necessarily be as smart as it sounds.
He was then asked if the 3ds team was developing a Zelda title for Switch. His response: “Yes, there is definitely a possibility.”
In case you’re unclear what that means, let me explain it. The classic Zelda games, going as far back as the original, had a very familiar way of playing. That classic, top-down view that was made even more famous by A Link to the Past on the SNES, has been the staple formula for handheld games in recent years. Or at least, a very similar style. Nintendo is referring to it as a 2d Zelda game, as opposed to the 3d that developed with Ocarina of Time and has dominated the console marketplace since.
“There are definitely good things about the 2D world and the playstyles of the 2D world,” Aonuma says. “There are a lot of fans who enjoy that style. This Nintendo Switch style, which is the evolved style of gameplay is not necessarily… I want you to think of it more as an evolved style of 2D style. For the 3DS team, I am trying to make them think in a more evolved 2D-style approach.”
Given the throwback approach Nintendo is taking with the Switch, this isn’t a bad thing at all. Let’s just hope that they price it more like a handheld game and keep it around $30. With the multiplayer functionality of the Switch, one shouldn’t be surprised if the game is more along the lines of Four Swords or has a similar gimmick.