Skyward Sword was the Wii’s swan song and many people praised the game for its unique, developed control scheme. Fans and critics alike criticized the game’s slow start though, which was caused by numerous tutorials that players had to go through at the beginning of the game. This was very different than what was found in the latest installment of the Zelda series, A Link Between Worlds, which put players into the center of the action from the get-go.

In an interview with Kotaku, series producer Eiji Aonuma promised to cut back on tutorials for the upcoming Zelda Wii U, acknowledging that overwhelming players with information at the beginning of the game doesn’t help them understand how to play if they don’t know what to do with the knowledge that they gain.

 So in Skyward Sword, a few years ago, I think that a lot of people loved that game—I enjoyed that game quite a bit—but one of the biggest criticisms or complaints was that it took a very long time to actually jump into the gameplay because there were a lot of tutorials and a lot of introduction and cut-scenes in the beginning. Then Link Between Worlds came along and you just jumped in right away. So I wonder, when planning for future games, are you going to go more towards that Link Between Worlds approach or Skyward Sword, or something in between? How do you feel about intros and tutorials these days?

 Yes. When we created Skyward Sword, I really felt the need to make sure that everyone playing the game understood it. But I also understand now, in hindsight, that when you go out and buy a game, you buy the game because you want to play it, and you don’t want to have any obstacles in the way. And I guess it was received as a bit of an obstacle. In a game, it’s when you get stuck, when you want that help. And I kinda frontloaded all that in Skyward Sword, and it doesn’t really help to get that information when you don’t know what to do with it. So that was a real learning experience for me. So I’m going to be careful not to do that.”

It’s good to see that Aonuma is taking one of Skyword Sword‘s weakest points and is addressing it in Zelda Wii U. Hopefully the upcoming game will present information to players in a more organic, hands-on way that has been missing in the Zelda franchise for quite some time.

  • Ryan Haney

    It kind of made sense, story wise for Z-SS to have tutorials because Link was a student in a knight academy, and player wise, because we were using a new control scheme. In games like Z-ALBW, everybody knows B is sword and A is context action, so you don’t need a tutorial. I loved that cut scene early in SS when Link and Zelda nearly kissed. I just hope they don’t tell me my battery is low, or when I’ve been playing for a while. I know that!

  • Chad

    Fi telling you how to do puzzles was far more annoying though. I like the feeling of spending 30 minutes on an extremely hard puzzle and then being able to figure it out. Best feeling ever! Oot and MM and Alttp were great at that!

    • hcpaki95

      This.

      Puzzle-solving is the main thing I love about Zelda. Fi annoyed me to no end.

  • Rod

    Please don’t call it “Zelda Wii U”, it should be Zelda for Wii U, we have enough with Smash and Mario U.. Zombie U.. it’s a bit annoying to end every game with the U, it’s not necessary… can’t wait to have it!! by the way

    • Anthony Moseley

      Well, since it doesn’t have an official title yet, what you prefer it be called?

      Also, isn’t the new Smash Bros. actually called Super Smash Bros. for Wii U? 😉

    • Ryan Haney

      Zelda games are never called Zelda 64, Super Zelda, or Zelda DS. They always have Subtitles.

      • When the titles aren’t yet revealed, they do oftentimes go by names like that. For example, SS was referred to as “Zelda Wii” and TP was referred to as “Zelda 05” before their titles were revealed.

        • Ryan Haney

          Yes, but then they are given some interesting subtitle name. So, I wouldn’t worry, like Rod, that it will be called “New Zelda Bros U”.

  • Reece Heather

    I always have huge respect for Aonuma because of his honesty. He admits his mistakes and explains how he will learn from them to make fans happy, instead of trying to falsely justify them as many executives in the industry seem to do.

  • Trinosaur

    I really appreciate what Aonuma and pretty much all of Nintendo does. They take feedback to heart and use it to improve. They care about their fans and it shows. I am very happy to know that we’ve been heard. Skyward Sword’s tutorials and “helpful” tips from Fi were almost patronizing at times, and A Link Between Worlds was a huge improvement in that regard.

  • hollander

    Oke, but I didn’t dislike the tutorials
    in SS at all, sometimes it’s even nice.

  • Russ

    Aonuma needs to play Ocarina of Time ALL THE WAY through before finalizing Zelda WiiU.