Thursday, September 6, 2012

Bigger and Better Rumors

You've heard the rumors.

Overall it reads exactly as the stuff Nintendo said about Skyward Sword. It was said to be the biggest Zelda game and Nintendo's biggest project yet with a hundred people working on it. It was supposed to be revolutionary with its controls. It got tons of orchestrated music. It even had a Faron Woods dungeon demo, where the entire woods would act as a dungeon. Just take some interviews about Skyward Sword, replace Wii MotionPlus with the new GamePad, add some talk about detailed HD visuals, dodge all specific details and what you get is this pile of rumors above. Everyone can come up with that.

I had an "inside source" once. No one big, but informative. He told me all about the Four Swords Anniversary Edition, before anything was known, primarily because I cared a lot about the game and he wanted to me to know. But I had to promise him not to leak anything (which is why I made some spot on speculation posts instead), because he feared for his job, and he was very specific on how the singleplayer worked and what the new levels offered. So, if you go out and leak some information, why not tell us how they use the Upad in the game exactly? Or what's the hardware feature that they included for Zelda. It just tells you how glorious and large everything will be, but it lacks any details.

And I do not like the idea of focusing on the Wii U Gamepad. Of course it's the new toy and it would look bad, if one of the main titles doesn't use it. But with Skyward Sword they acted like the Wiimote and Nunchuk is THE way to play Zelda. And frankly they were right. The controls felt great, you got sword and shield in your own hands, everything was intuitive. It was the forced way of how you used the controls in the game that no one liked. All those terrible "slice in the right direction"-puzzles. If you use the controls in more natural sword fights, it could be really awesome. Only a few fights in Skyward Sword felt truly natural. I enjoyed battling Demise, but that was the last fight in the game. Most of the other fights just felt wrong, including long time enemies like Stalfos or Deku Babas. Now imagine fighting one of the Darknuts in Twilight Princess with the new controls - that could be fun! But instead of focusing how to make it right, they throw it all away and just focus on the newest gimmicky toy. Actually I would fully believe that! Because that's seems to be the new Nintendo way... sadly. So, I wouldn't wonder, if large parts of these rumors turn out to be true.

But I can't think of any fun or natural way to use the Upad to play Zelda. 2D Zelda maybe, but not a 3D title. Especially if they want you to hold the pad in front of the TV screen all the time. Like in the Zelda Nintendoland minigame, Battle Quest. I can play Skyward Sword all day long only using my wrists. But stiffly holding that pad in front of me? No way.

What I like is the ambitious part. Zelda hasn't been ambitious in a long time. With every new game they have a new main gimmick, some new visual style and that's all "good enough". For example it's always the same number of dungeons, some have more, some has less, but no other Zelda game has surpassed A Link to the Past yet in number and size of dungeons and that was the third of 16 games! What's up with that? But whenever Nintendo tried to increase the scope, it became a problem of emptiness. Hyrule Field in Twilight Princess is large but empty. Which is why they preferred to make more "dense" areas in Skyward Sword. But now they suddenly have the resources to make everything bigger? I sure hope so.


Katrin said...

How I wish all the good news in that article were true, but I guess your thoughts on this rather hit the spot. I can hardly imagine playing Zelda with that gaming pad, either. Totally agree on this. They should stick with the Wiimote, it's perfect for Zelda.

K2L said...

The rumors have been prove false a few days ago, so no worries, TT.

"but no other Zelda game has surpassed A Link to the Past yet in number and size of dungeons and that was the third of 16 games!"

And frankly I want things to continue that way. A game focusing only on dungeons has little replay value. I like more when there's a nice balance between dungeons and sidequests.

PhixZeldaFan said...

Hmm.. I actually have to say I'd disagree. I liked the whole 'your Wiimote+ is your sword and your Nunchuck is your shield' idea, but in application, I found the control to be a bit gimmicky. Not to mention technical problems galore -- not sure if it was just my setup, but I would have to pause and readjust my Wiimote's aim every five minutes or so to ensure I wouldn't shoot an arrow at the ground or end up spinning in circles while I was charging up a Skyward Strike.

In terms of the other stuff, I totally agree with your take on the whole "inside source" topic.. people do tend to exaggerate things. The more things get hyped the more they tend to flop, in my experience... :\ So hopefully that won't be the case with this Zelda (so far Zelda's had good luck with avoiding this problem!).

If anything, for the next Zelda title, I'd like to see some story continuation with one of the older games (for example, Majora's Mask came right after Ocarina of Time and we got to play two stories as /that/ particular Link) to continue one of those stories.

What do you guys think? Would you like to see a brand new Zelda as per usual, or a sequel to another game in the series?

Great blog, by the way!