If only one word could be used to summarize The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, it would definitely be “creation.” On day one of the game’s release, social media was flooded with clips of players utilizing the game’s new rune, Ultrahand, to create almost anything one could possibly imagine. Given how much of a hit this new mechanic was, a lot of people may find themselves wondering if there could ever be a Zelda game focused entirely around building in a similar vein to the Super Mario Maker series. Unfortunately however, this seems unlikely, as explained by Eiji Aonuma and Hidemaro Fujibayashi during an interview with Polygon.
“When we’re creating games like Tears of the Kingdom, I think it’s important that we don’t make creativity a requirement. Instead, we put things into the game that encourage people to be creative, and give them the opportunity to be creative, without forcing them to,”
Though this may sound disappointing, it’s very clear that the option for creativity is still weighing heavily in the minds of the developers. Fans who enjoy the ability to experiment and play in their own way will certainly still have ways to do so going forward, even if it isn’t the focus of an entire game. The emphasis is on the freedom of choosing how to play, as expressed by Aonuma in the same interview.
“I think everyone delights in the discovery of finding your own way through a game, and that is something we tried to make sure was included in Tears of the Kingdom; there isn’t one right way to play. If you are a creative person, you have the ability to go down that path. But that’s not what you have to do; you’re also able to proceed to the game in many other different ways. And so I don’t think that it would be a good fit for The Legend of Zelda to necessarily require people to build things from scratch and force them to be creative.”
The Super Mario Maker format has already been experimented with before, in the Switch remake of The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening. In that game, players were able to unlock many different rooms and create their own custom dungeons, which could be shared with other players via amiibo. Though far from perfect, it’s very clear that the Zelda team is working hard to give players the option to experiment with game features on their own.
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