The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was an incredible release for the franchise. It was the first Zelda game to be released on the Nintendo Switch and is now the best-selling title in the franchise. For gaming fans it’s easy to see why it was such a success. The gameplay was fantastic and the plethora of shrines to find never got old. Now we have another installment around the corner. Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is the sequel, taking place in the Kingdom of Hyrule. With a May 12th release date we can not wait to get our hands on it. Let’s look at what new things are in store for Link’s newest adventure!
What We Learned About Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom
Floating Sky Islands
Starting with the first trailer, released over 6 months ago, viewers are greeted with Link opening a giant stone door to bright sky and running off the edge of a floating island in the skies of Hyrule. These mysterious Islands seem to play a key role in the games story and add a whole new dynamic to the game play. Being able to fall from such a high vantage point allows Link to view other points of interest and opens more options for moving through, or above, the landscape.
In a video released by Nintendo America the game’s director, Eiji Aonuma, takes viewers all the way up to one of the sky islands showing off some of Link’s new abilities. New abilities that truly unlock the potential for this sprawling open world. Here are some that were showcased by Mr. Aonuma.
Link’s new ability Recall is the perfect way to explore those sky islands above Hyrule. The videos show Link finding a recently fallen object and casting Recall. The object, in this case a rock, is now falling in reverse as Link takes a unique ride up. Next stop, sky islands!
While Recall is straightforward, the ability Fuse seems to have much more experimentation potential. In Zelda: Breath of the Wild, every time Link’s weapon would break he would have to go find a new one or hopefully there was a tree branch close by. In this new installment Link can use Fuse, combining a mighty tree branch with a rock to increase its damage and durability. Link is not the only one who can fuse new weapons, enemies will also have fused weapons, adding a different dynamic to how fights develop. This ability will give Link an exciting new approach to picking fights. For instance, Link can now combine an arrow with a White Chuchu Jelly to craft a freezing arrow. Or combine a Keese Eyeball with an arrow making a homing projectile that can be used for hard to track enemies. Link can also combine materials with his shield to create certain effects when struck by an enemy. Mr. Aonuma demonstrates how the combination of a shield and mushroom creates a smoke screen effect to get behind enemies for a sneak strike!
It is not only Link’s weapons that can be experimented with. The ability Ultrahand allows Link to combine materials to craft new ways to travel around the map. Link can now effortlessly combine fallen logs and conveniently scattered fans to zoom across water obstacles. This ability is great as players from Breath of the Wild know Link’s lack of endurance when it comes to swimming! However, the fun does not stop with just water vehicles. Previous trailers show Link riding land vehicles and even a hot air balloon-like flying machine.
Speaking of flying, Link’s ability Ascend allows for more unique manoeuvres. Ascend allows Link to pass through ceilings and roofs of structures coming out on top for the ultra-height advantage! Ascend has some significant range to this as well. For example, if there is a cave with a snowy mountain environment above it, Link is now able to pass through the ceiling of the cave coming out to the snowy landscape above. This new feature mitigates the need to use stamina in order to climb certain mountain faces. This ability will open up the movement options and might prove to be great if Link gets in a pinch!
Mr. Aonuma and his team have been hard at work adding new landscapes and abilities to the next Zelda installment. No doubt there is much more to discover and we can hardly wait until its release on May 12! Until then stay tuned for more updates!
Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is available on the Nintendo Store for $69.99.
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