In a recent interview, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild producer Eiji Aonuma and game director Hidemaro Fujibayashi discussed a major feature of the game: the open world component and how it resulted in speed runs of the game. Considering players can approach Calamity Ganon from the start of the game and complete shrines with simple physics, the open world affected Breath of the Wild in unforeseeable ways.
However, Fujibayashi revealed, “That’s totally all according to plan.” He even continued further, revealing he enjoyed watching the speed runs of the game. The open world inspired unpredictable ways to play the game that pleasantly surprised the director, none of which would be possible without the new designs to the series. Hopefully, this innovation carries over into the next Legend of Zelda currently in development.
Concerning the “open-air” design of Breath of the Wild, Aonuma made a few comments concerning the future of the series. While it’s no secret he favors the open world design of the game, Aunoma revealed why:
“You know, I can’t speak to what other people, other companies will do in their own games, but I think for me, especially just in terms of the Zelda series, the incredible freedom that this game offers you and how well that’s been received…to me, it means that freedom, that level of freedom is something that needs to be maintained in Zelda games going forward. My eyes have been opened to how important that is.”
Moreover, he discusses this level of freedom as far as game mechanics. He states, “if there was like ‘you can’t do this because you don’t have the right tools’… players are going to not want to do that anymore.” It is an interesting stance considering Breath of the Wild does not have a hookshot, even if it wasn’t in the form of a travel system like Spider-Man.
As the next Legend of Zelda continues in development, it will be interesting to see how this freedom continues forward in the series. While it could be years before anything is revealed about this game, players may reasonably expect an open world in the next game, which may result in speed runs and interesting ways to play the game.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is available now on the Nintendo Switch and Wii U.