With all the speculation and theorizing surrounding not only the upcoming release of A Link Between Worlds, but highly anticipated information concerning Zelda for the Wii U, many sub-topics have arisen for debate. One that Official Nintendo Magazine UK took notice of last week was the topic of a female Link.
Many potential options for a female protagonist to enter the Zelda stage have been presented, both on and off the ONM forums. However, the most popular choices include having Zelda be the playable character, as well as having an option at the beginning of the game to choose between male and female, similar to the format of Pokemon and Harvest Moon. There is also debate on if the switch should be superficial, meaning that the story would be the same as always regardless of gender options, or if the switch to a female Link would demand a change in the dynamics of Link’s character, i.e. more depth, personality, etc. for a totally different kind of hero.
Those players who are pro-female Link say that it is time for Zelda to join the ranks of those fighting gender inequality in the gaming universe and present the enormous fan base with a strong female role model that does more than help out in the final battle. Based on what Nintendo has seen in their forums, I would say that everyone would be satisfied to some degree if, in-game, a lady character was playable from time to time in an expanded version of Kafei from Majora’s Mask. For those who do not know, Kafei becomes briefly playable as he and Link complete puzzles together in an optional side quest.
If, say, Nintendo took advantage of Link’s downtime in scenarios like his seven-year sleep in the Temple of Time and created a story arc for a female lead, that would provide a great deal of diversity for the game and open the door for a more in-depth story without searching for a way to sneak it in. This example would be a perfect opportunity, though it is a long time past. Making Zelda playable after Link enters the Sacred Realm, taking her through her training and education with Impa as her kingdom crumbles would have unveiled so much mystery in Ocarina of Time, and would have been wicked fun to play.
On the flip-side, some players either do not want any playable females, or are strictly against one in particular. We previously published an article about a Facebook group against Zelda being playable. These players are worried that such a change will alter the game too much and take away the “Zelda-ness” that we all love. Whether they would be against a female character in general or an in-game segment with Zelda or another girl remains unclear.
So, what would you prefer? Should we keep boy/teen Link, mix it up a bit with a lady lead or have some combination of the two? Let us know in the comments.