Zelda: Breath of the Wild – Game Informer features (#6: Zelda game from the handheld team on Switch?)

As announced the other day, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is on the cover of Game Informer this month, which means the game is getting month-long online coverage on the magazine’s website. There will be various features, covering the following topics:

  • how the game truly re-examines the Zelda formula
  • plenty of details about the new dungeons
  • what’s in store for the future of 2D Zelda games
  • Eiji Aonuma’s favorite Zelda games
  • and more…

For the second feature of the week, Game Informer shared some interesting tidbits from an interview with Eiji Aonuma.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is by far the biggest Zelda game ever created, and the development team was one of the biggest ever set up for a Nintendo game (over 300 developers). Was merging the console and handheld Zelda teams ever considered by Nintendo, in order to speed up development?

Eiji Aonuma begins by explaining that the time it takes to develop a game is not directly related to how many people you have on the development team. What’s more, the Nintendo 3DS and Wii U teams do not share the same approach to game development, so merging them is not something they really considered.

Instead, Eiji Aonuma would rather have each team “think about what they can bring to the Nintendo Switch from their own perspective”. The thing is, despite the Nintendo Switch being a home console you can bring with you on the go, Nintendo is not planning to stop creating “handheld-like” games. Therefore, the handheld development team will not be phased out or merged.

Here’s what he said about that:

The handheld development team will not be phased out because of Nintendo Switch. Switch will allow the users to bring their home console on the go, but this doesn’t mean handheld game development like Nintendo 3DS will be discontinued.

Does that mean that the handheld Zelda could be working on a separate Zelda game for the Nintendo Switch? “Definitely a possibility” according to Eiji Aonuma, who went on to explain that there are “definitely good things about the 2D world and the playstyles of the 2D world”.

What’s more, there’s quite a lot of fans who enjoy traditional 2D Zelda games, and it doesn’t look like Nintendo is planning to give up on them.

There are definitely good things about the 2D world and the playstyles of the 2D world. 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.

Naturally, if Nintendo is indeed working on a 2D Zelda game, it’s highly unlikely it would be announced this year.

Click here for the list of Game Informer online features for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild!

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Wii U, Switch) comes out on March 3rd, worldwide.

Source: Game Informer



Founder and main writer for Perfectly Nintendo. Tried really hard to find something funny and witty to put here, but had to admit defeat. Also known as Maintenance Guy by some.

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