Zelda can’t go back to traditional sin after Kingdom Tears – that’s bittersweet

It is not difficult to define traditional zelda Game. Essentially, Link must solve a specific order of dungeons, earning puzzle-solving items along the way that allow him to explore a semi-open world in his quest to defeat Ganondorf. Throw in some good tunes, and you’ll have one of the greatest game series ever.

Until 2013 The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Realmseveryone zelda The games more or less follow this structure, with a slight deviation here and there. You can clear the soul temple before the shadow temple in Ocarina of time, for example, and there are plenty of optional areas to explore in each title. However, beyond the original title, these games had a somewhat linear path to follow, not much more than 2011. Sword toward the sky. Option to complete 2013 A link between the two worldsDungeons in any order was our first experience of player freedom in the series. It was like appetizers before Breath of the Wild It came in 2017 as a full meal with monster cake for dessert.

Now, after the release of Kingdom Tearsobviously we will never get “traditional” zelda Again, this is bittersweet.

as a sequel that expands on it Breath of the Wild in all due respect, Kingdom Tears Promote a new era of zelda Centered around Shrines, and a handful of new abilities, Hyrule is vast to explore with Korok finding the top of every mountain and under almost every rock. There’s always an opportunity to get a smaller top-down perspective zelda A game, but in this case, I expect you to borrow from it A link between the two worlds More than something on rails (literal) like soul paths. There’s likely to be a remake or remake or two for a Nintendo Switch successor in the works as you read this too, but as for the main entries, the nostalgic and linear era zelda Games are clearly over.

Don’t get me wrong: I don’t want another traditional zelda, but they have been part of almost the entire history of gaming. I was practically raised by franchising, and I remember what point in my life I was at—a third grader playing Ocarina of timepreparing for high school graduation with Twilight princess, etc. – for each version. Link’s adventures have touched so many that it has become a cultural touchstone for the entire industry; Without them, we wouldn’t have had so many other great games that followed on the way zelda paved.

But their time is over. Sword toward the sky It was a breaking point for many, myself included, that burdened players with lengthy lessons and explanations, and didn’t trust them to explore Hyrule above and below the clouds on their own, while delivering one of the most straightforward adventures yet. Although I gained a new appreciation for it with the HD remaster for Switch, it still stands as my favorite console. zelda Game.

On the contrary, the Great Plateau’s tutorial Breath of the Wild It came like an inventive (sorry) breath of fresh air. Exploring this little slice of open-world Hyrule without any hands to hold is just not one of my favorites zelda moments, but also one of my favorite gaming experiences, period.

The Legend of Zelda can't return to the traditional, linear franchise series after Kingdom Tears - Bittersweet/Breath of the Wild

like the previous one, Kingdom Tears He will face the “Game of the Year” challenge. It is, by almost every measure, a massive success. I’ve barely scratched the surface of the game, but as I keep playing, I’m wary of how many Zonai I find. I can’t believe how vast the depths are, and other than finding a few treasure chests, I haven’t experienced much of what the islands in the sky have to offer. Shrine after Shrine has impressed me with the creativity required to clear it, so much so that it’s hard to believe how Aonuma and his team at Nintendo could top this one.

It’s a little early to look so far into the future, but in the future big A Zelda game, somewhere between five to 10 years from now, will somehow have to innovate over the pure creative freedom that Kingdom Tears Offers. Otherwise, many – both fans and critics alike – would see it as a step backwards. The merits of introducing a new structure or continuing the existing system (do any of us really want to collect a few more hundred Koroks?) Will certainly become a topic of discussion in the coming years. Regardless, Aonuma has clearly proven that it can innovate both a genre and a franchise, so I have no doubts that’s next zelda Game (Zonai’s revenge?) will meet expectations. I’m pretty sure Nintendo will never go back zelda to its classic linearity, however. It may be bittersweet, but it’s a classic era zelda Games over.

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