Eiji Aonuma

There are many more interesting nuggets from Aonuma’s recent Wired interview, from which we reported yesterday on his personal connection with Wind Waker. Firstly, he describes development on the new HD remake as a somewhat “test case” for the upcoming original Wii U title, with controls and ideas for Wind Waker HD translating to Zelda Wii U’s development.

“Wind Waker is kind of a test pattern for the team. In converting Wind Waker, there’s a lot to be learned. We can’t change too much, because in changing one thing you can break something else, which is not something we want to do. But it’s a shared team working on both of those projects, Wind Waker HD and the new Zelda for Wii U. Every day, they’re learning something new. As we develop the controls for Wind Waker, they’re learning how to apply those controls in the Wii U version. There’s a feedback process where when something’s discovered in development for Wind Waker, all that information is fed to the Wii U team. So we’re working on those things, polishing as we go, and all of those things — it’s a learning process, it’s a test case almost, and we’ll apply all of those learnings that we’ve acquired in developing the Wii U game.”

Hit the jump for way more interesting info.

Stepping out of the Wired interview briefly, Aonuma elaborated on this subject in a recent Kotaku interview. He mentioned the Miiverse integration in WWHD being considered as an idea for Zelda Wii U.

“Wind Waker HD is kind of a testing ground for us,” Aonuma said. “With Wind Waker we were able to accomplish, for the first time, to create a seamless experience. You traveled a great sea… also [we are adding] the Miiverse communication of playing with others virtually. So we’re going to take things like this and add to those so the Wii U [new Zelda] experience should be one that is satisfying to players.”

Back to Wired again, he discussed the gaming community as being “very fickle” when it comes to control schemes. With this in mind, he is considering implementing two different play styles for Zelda Wii U.

“The gaming community is — I don’t want to sound rude, or anything — very fickle. You’ve got one group that really likes the possibilities that using two screens affords, and then there’s the other half of the group that just likes the simplicity of one screen, they don’t want to bother with two screens. I’m the same way, I’m very fickle. I totally understand where they’re coming from. As a developer, I need to listen to these things and I need to, maybe, make it possible to do either one, do whatever your preference is. I certainly have my preference, but I shouldn’t limit everyone to my preferences. I need to provide an experience that is flexible, allows for maybe both of those options.”

He also discussed how he struggles with meeting two conflicting demands; delivering Zelda games as quickly as possible, while providing large enough experiences to satisfy fans.

“You said that Nintendo releases Zelda games regularly. We do release them regularly, but we don’t release them that often. Mario games, if you push to get it done, you can finish it in a year. Zelda games take at least three years to complete. At the same time, I’m getting pushed to release them quicker but the users are expecting bigger experiences. And those things don’t match up. So I struggle with that all the time. I have no idea what I’m supposed to do to meet both of those demands.”

And finally, Aonuma talks multiplayer. Again, he touches on incorporating a concept similar to the WWHD’s Tingle Bottle into Zelda Wii U.

“Actually, multi-play has been a high hurdle for me, something that’s plagued me for a long time. We did come out with Four Swords but I don’t think that offered a whole lot of surprises for the user. I still believe there’s one Link; the one-Link philosophy works for Zelda. But there are other ways to incorporate kind of a multiplayer experience. One of those ways is the Tingle bottle that we announced. It uses Miiverse. In Wind Waker there’s this vast kind of sea world that you’re traveling in, and there are lots of Links exploring this space. Through the Tingle bottle, that’s where that communication happens with those other Links. They may not physically appear in that space, but you know of their presence through the messages that they leave. They share their experiences, things that they’ve discovered through their explorations, and so again you can feel their presence without their physically being there. That’s a kind of multiplayer, if you think about it. With the new Wii U Zelda, we’re coming up with new ideas that still allow the one-Link idea but are the same type of multiplayer.

Sources: Wired, Kotaku
  • Fierce Deity

    I love how Aonuma and Nintendo in general thinks about the fans a lot when creating their projects. Having the option to choose between single screen and double screen seems like a smart idea and it sure would work. Might take time on figuring out a nice seamless way of incorporating it.

    Also, him mentioning the group of people that want Zelda games faster and those that want bigger experiences and how those two don't match up… don't rush the man. If games are rushed there's less time to create a nice experience that Zelda games often provide. I'd prefer them to take their time with their games for those wonderful storyline/gameplay/plot and new experiences rather than a rushed Zelda game to meet the demands of impatient fans.

    In other words: Keep doing your thing, Aonuma!

    • Darunia18

      Also, games like The Elder Scrolls series doesn't release games every year, showing that it really is best to take your time and release a quality game instead of rushing them. A big thing that hinders Nintendo a bit is that their development teams are, and have always been, very small, so taking this step into HD and the new generation and AAA games is really adding a lot of pressure on them. I hope they can find a way to make more money, get more and bigger development teams, and be able to make more awesome games as they always do, but still great quality! Oh, and people really need to give Aonuma a break. He has worked nonstop on Zelda for the last 15+ years! I think Nintendo should give another guy the opportunity to help Aonuma run the Zelda series. (Maybe that one guy who wants to make Zelda more awesome but Nintendo keeps preventing him from doing that. I forget his name, but there was an article on here awhile ago about him).

      • LinkBro

        I agree, but Skyrim was full of bugs when it came out, which hurt the game. If you ask me it was released too soon.

      • I agree, they need more people. And Aonuma should keep running the show. They will definitely make there money back with a bigger zelda

    • Triguy123

      Magic Items pleease :' ) (magic meter-whisper pleease even though realize it's non essential stuck in thepast love it- Linkis(icearrow)magicalinmyheart) More than one tunic/outfit pleease-the worst feeling when you find a mod recorded to youtube of Skyward Sword Link in a ninja tunic( Though I realize Skyward Sword's the earliest game, featuring the green hero. But has made me strongly hope that other garbs will be in the new game)

  • morti

    …untill a troll shows up in the bottle you just found. Then, you'll hate the idea.
    As for multiplayer per se, there are a lot of ways it can be done without multiplying Link. A second player could take control of the sidekick. Or something else.
    In an updated version of TP, for example, a player could take control of Midna to do certain tasks, or in OOT you could explore a temple in conjunction with the sage that resides in it. There are a lot of possibilities, and out of them all, the "tingle bottle-like" mechanic is not the smartest IMHO.

    • Darunia18

      What they should do is add a companion, but they don't always need a second person to play them. They can always be there and whenever your friend wants to play with you, they can just connect on the GamePad and use the GamePad screen for their character. This companion could be anyone really! Speaking of companions, something I have always wanted a bit and could blend with this idea well is party members, at least temporary ones, that can help you throughout the whole game or even for just dungeons. Wind Waker did this a bit with Medli and Makar, but they could do more! And maybe those players could be played by a computer or just an AI that follows you around and you can switch between Link and the companion, but if you have a friend, your friend can control the companion. And if you are not in a dungeon, you can always have some type of default companion that can be summoned somehow and can help fight. That's just my thoughts. You could still play Zelda just as you always do, but just adding something unique and a great way to finally be able to play multiplayer! Either this idea, or allow for a playable Zelda companion (but some way, possibly similar to this, to be able to choose when you want a second player).

  • Triguy123

    Well, if a co-operative playthrough option isn't what they're going for here-which is what I keep posting about among other people. I hope we're able to play minigames with other Links. Or at least when you go to play the "rupee shattering archery game" while connected to the internet, scores happening in the same moment are shown. Or sooomething… and then there's battling of whatever style.. called training, SURE. It would be sooo fuuun..