Sunday, June 19, 2016

Breath of the Wild: Let's Have Gravity Arrows!

Probably one of my favorite games of all time is Trine 2 and it shares quite some things in common with the new Zelda game, Breath of the Wild. There is a big focus on physics puzzles in the game and usually there are multiple solutions for the same puzzle. Depending on what skills you have unlocked, there are easier ways and harder ways. And the way I understood it with Breath of the Wild, Nintendo wants to try a very similar approach, where you can go for the Sheikah Slate Runes or try to use things from the environment to do whatever you want to do.

Trine also took quite some things from the Zelda series and one of my favorite features are easily the different arrow types: Fire Arrows, Ice Arrows and especially the powerful Bomb Arrows. But there's also one type that hasn't been seen in Zelda yet: Gravity Arrows!

Wherever they hit, they will leave a gravity field and everything inside moves in slow motion. You can use it to slow down enemies and to place boxes midair, which will only sink slowly inside the field, in which you can jump much further due to the reduced gravity.

(image sourge: Months Behind Reviews)

There are so many possibilities with it, it's easily one of the most fun features in the game. And that's something I would like to see in Breath of the Wild as well, at least for the later game. Imagine you have a metal plank, but it's too short for the gap. In that case you would place the gravity field on one end, place the plank inside the gravity field and then quickly walk across it.

Such a gravity manipulating feature would probably be realized by the Sheikah Runes, but there seem to be weapon alternatives to some of the runes already, e.g. Ice Arrows and the Cryo Rune or Bomb Arrows and the Bomb Rune, so an arrow that places a gravity field in a larger distance might also become a thing.

Overall the Bow seems to be one of three action item pillars in the game (the others being melee weapons and the Sheikah Runes) and I suspect that there will be quite some different arrow types in the game and not just the ones that we already know. There could be Grapple Arrows for example that attach a rope somewhere. Or Sound Arrows that lure and distract enemies (kind of like a replacement for the Scent Seeds). Poison Arrows to damage your enemies over time. Or actual Light Arrows that brightly illuminate the area.

In the past (around the N64 era) I also imagined Darkness Arrows, which would create a black hole that sucks in enemies and objects in the proximity. And much like having an axe or spear this old wish of mine may come true as well. You could gather enemies in one spot and then finish them off with a Bomb Arrow. Yes, that's something you can do in other games, like Overwatch, but that doesn't seem like a knock-out criterion anymore.

There are quite some possibilities with the bow here, whether it's new ideas or ideas from other games, and Link may as well become the most versatile archer in video game history.

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