By now we’re all familiar with the plethora of ways in which Breath of the Wild tosses out the old tropes of the franchise, and perhaps one of the biggest changes is to Link himself. Or to be more specific, his wardrobe.
Whilst the hero’s traditional green garb is still available to track down in some shape or form if you’ve got some Amiibo handy, the iconic look we’ve all grown accustomed to has been jettisoned in favour of the now-familiar blue Champion’s Tunic. Recently, at GDC, the game’s art director Satoru Takizawa gave us some insight into why this choice was made, and it seems to be the case that the designers thought Link’s old style just wasn’t badass enough. Specifically, his headgear.
Like many character designs that originated in the 8-bit era, function took precedence over form, with Link’s hat helping define his attributes more clearly, but as time and technology has improved, Takizawa has apparently been pushing at the limitations that tradition has imposed. “As the graphic fidelity has increased it becomes more difficult to make that hat look cool. As the game becomes more realistic it’s difficult to present it in a way that’s appealing.”
It’s a testament to the design team that they’ve been able to jettison Link’s traditional get-up with barely any outcry whatsoever from us Zelda fans, and we’re a highly sentimental bunch when it comes to this stuff! How are you all handling Link’s expanded wardrobe? Personally, I think the Hylian Hood is the new hat.