It’s been 25 years since A Link To The Past arrived on the SNES, but thanks to some sleuthing and translating from Shmuplations, we’ve got a fresh insight into the development of the game. The interview is with Shigeru Miyamoto from around the game’s original release, and but for the game titles, one could be forgiven from thinking it was about Breath of the Wild.
In echoes of some of the Switch rumours we’ve been hearing, Miyamoto describes how A Link To The Past was originally slated to be released alongside Super Mario World for the launch of the Super Famicom before being pushed back. Describing plans for the game to launch with the Super Famicom, Miyamoto said : “We had wanted to make it a launch title for the Super Famicom, too. We had been hoping to release it in March, but it got delayed to the summer vacation, and, in the end, it came out for the Super Famicom’s one year anniversary!” Hopefully we won’t have to wait until March 2018 for Breath of the Wild…
Most interestingly though is some of the gameplay ideas that we know have made it into Link’s latest offering that were apparently being kicked around during development for the SNES classic. The bushfires we’ve seen Link setting with fire arrows and the fire rod, were something the developers were looking to implement in A Link To The Past via Link’s lantern. “One idea was with the lantern: if you used it on a grassy area, it would cause a huge bushfire. If you cut a little circle of grass around you, you could safely stand there in the middle of it” said Miyamoto.
And the comparisons don’t stop there. There was also discussion of creating an ‘open-ended’ game, where players could traverse Hyrule in whatever manner they desired. If confronted with a rock they couldn’t shift for example, there was no need to worry according to Miyamoto, “there was always another way round.”
Memory restrictions and concerns about rendering the plotlines nonsensical ultimately meant plans for this open-ended Zelda were abandoned, but it seems Miyamoto’s vision for A Link To The Past may actually be coming to fruition in the form of Breath of the Wild. Check out the fascinating interview in full at shmuplations‘ site.