The critically acclaimed Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild announced a sequel in the works during the Nintendo E3 presentation. Being the rare Zelda follow-up game, the teaser showcased a much darker Hyrule and story, but nothing beyond that. It’s now 2020 and Nintendo has remained tight-lipped on the Hyrule Champion’s next adventure.
What We Know so Far
Nintendo has been careful to not let any information regarding the tentatively titled Breath of the Wild 2 leak. Its silence has led it to be compared alongside Metroid Prime 4 and Pikmin 4, because they are all highly anticipated sequels with barely any information readily available.
Though, Breath of the Wild 2 also deviates from these games by being the only title to feature any sort of game footage and details. All Pikmin 4 has is hearsay from developers and Metroid Prime 4 has been nothing but a glowing logo for three years—as well as a project restart video.
The lack of any statements from developers regarding its development and progress may be due in part to Nintendo’s PR department clamping down on unfettered statements by Nintendo heads, like they did with Miyamoto and Pikmin 4.
Still, to say fans are without ANY information would be inaccurate.
In an interview with Kotaku, series producer Eiji Aonuma revealed why the studio elected to create a sequel to Breath of the Wild, a rarity among Zelda titles.
Aonuma said when the development team was coming up with DLC ideas for Breath of the Wild, there were “too many ideas.”. Not wanting such potential to go to waste, Aonuma stated the team decided to create a sequel to capitalize on the ideas that were shared.
“When we released the DLC for Breath of the Wild, we realized that this is a great way to add more elements to the same world. But when it comes down to technical things, DLC is pretty much data–you’re adding data to a preexisting title,” Aonuma added. “And so when we wanted to add bigger changes, DLC is not enough, and that’s why we thought maybe a sequel would be a good fit.”
Thus, Breath of the Wild 2 was born.
Aonuma also stated the development team’s inspiration for the sequel was Red Dead Redemption 2, another critically acclaimed open world game. He went on to add that inspiration for the first game came from Skyrim (because that was what Director Hidemaro Fujibayashi was playing at the time). How this inspiration will impact the final product has yet to be seen. The world of Hyrule and the Wild West contrast much more than the fantastical world of the Elder Scrolls, after all.
These statements weren’t the only concrete piece of news fans received.
On Nintendo’s official recruitment page, two job listings were posted for contract employees to work on a Zelda sequel. One was for a 3DCG designer and the other was for a level/dungeon designer, both to be based in Kyoto, Nintendo’s head office.
The 3DCG designer was to be in charge of working on and polishing the game’s terrain and dungeons while the level designer would focus on planning and implementing game events, dungeons, etc.
Applications for these positions were accepted until September 30, 2019.
With that in mind, it’s safe to assume that Breath of the Wild 2 won’t be seeing the light of day anytime soon.
Thanks to the video teaser, fans and theorists have something to gnaw on until more information about the game is revealed. As far as Breath of the Wild goes, the teaser was much darker in tone than its predecessor. Fans have drawn comparisons of the teaser with Majora’s Mask and Twilight Princess.
Aonuma shared with IGN during E3 2019 that while this game was “not necessarily related or inspired by Majora’s Mask,” what was shown was to be “darker” in nature.
Though gameplay elements weren’t teased, plenty of interesting story tidbits were shown instead, allowing for theories to flourish.
Among them, a theory by Reddit user JaySpike has gained traction with Zelda conspiracy theorists.
The full theory will be linked in the article.
Here is a condensed summary: The corpse shown in the trailer is the mummified remains of series antagonist Ganondorf. The glowing arm that is holding him down could possibly be a collection of souls of Hyrule and souls of yore that are constantly fighting to keep Ganondorf sealed. This is alluded to by the presence of Luminous stones and one of Kass’ songs from Breath of the Wild.
In the trailer, the glowing arm releases its grip on Ganondorf to save Link, meaning the seal holding back Ganondorf has been broken, commencing the dark lord’s return.
How Hyrule’s Champion will save the day is up in the air, but the footage briefly showed Link wielding the glowing arm’s power, implying that new, otherworldly abilities may be at his disposal, learned in the same vein as the powers of the Sheikah Slate.
It is only a matter of time until the game—and its real name—is unveiled to the world.