In a recent interview with PolygonZelda series producer Eiji Aonuma offered some details on the inclusion of voice acting and sci-fi elements in the upcoming entry in the Zelda series, Breath of the Wild.

Aonuma was adamant that the game would not be fully voiced, but expressed a desire to use voice acting to make some scenes more memorable to the player. At the same time, despite breaking many other series conventions, Link will remain silent in Breath of the Wild. He explains that “It’s really difficult to leave an impression on players with just text. It’s not that [he] made everything voiced. But [he has] these moments where [he] wants to leave impressions on users. [He] adds voice there.

“If Link said something the user doesn’t agree with, that relationship between the user and Link would be lost. That’s why I chose not to go with that.”

“If Link said something the user doesn’t agree with, that relationship between the user and Link would be lost.”

At E3 2016, we learned that Breath of the Wild would have a focus on technology instead of (or perhaps in addition to?) the magic that often takes center stage in the series. In the interview, we learned a little more about the decision to focus on technology.

“There is a little bit of a sci-fi element to it. Link basically adventures through a ruined world. I wanted to add technology as the opposite side of that. I thought it would be interesting for Link to use technology to explore through this wild and ruined world. I figured that would add another layer to the game.”

The contrast of technology on a ruined world and voice acting are just an example of the several conventions Aonuma and the rest of his team are looking to break with this new title, and it seems this is a change that will be for the best.

  • Josh

    Wasn’t this technology element explored a bit in Skyward Sword with the ancient robots? And everyone is really excited about the open world aspect of this game. Didn’t we pretty much have that in the Wind Waker? I understand this whole map may be accessible from the start, and it’s supposed to be much bigger….but I think a lot of fans are expecting this to be a completely different Zelda experience. I think it will be ideas expanded from previous concepts we’ve already seen. That’s what Zelda has done from game to game for a while.

    That being said, I’m no less excited about Breath. In my opinion, the last three console Zelda games (WW, TP, and SS) have been the best….and they’re all so different from one another, it’s hard to chose a favorite between them. There’s no reason to think this game won’t be able to continue that trend…at least for me.

    • Danicus

      Well said

    • tremjam

      WW still relied on puzzles having one solution, usually linked to each dungeon’s item, and having to complete dungeons in a set order. There is plenty of evidence already that BOTW puzzles have multiple solutions and that dungeons/shrines can be completed in different orders.

      • Even going back to OoT, the 3D console Zelda’s have all been fairly linear (side quests not withstanding). Sure once you can get to the world map you can go anywhere as long as you have the key/item/tool that will let you pass blocking obstacles. SS was the most linear funneling you through a hallway most of the game.

        For BotW to be a true open ended sandbox game, the puzzles have to have multiple solutions because depending on the order you choose to complete the game, your inventory could be stocked or bear, maybe having one item/tool greatly simplifies a puzzle but can still be solved without it.

        I’m very much excited to play this game, the replay value should be greatly enhanced because of how much/little you decide to do or choose to do things in different orders each time you play.

  • Dan0709

    They make it sound like if Technology just happened to be “cool”, instead of having actual plot reasons to be there, which there are if we look back at SS and the sheikah in general.

    Also how many articles have we had now with aonuma explaining the voice acting with link? XD i already lost count, i feel like i’ve read it a lot of times already, just saying 😛

  • Kaden MacKay

    I hope that Link never talks. That would upset me way too much.