Nearly three years after the release of the last console Zelda title, Skyward Sword, Nintendo finally unveiled a brand new Zelda game for Wii U at E3. The reveal trailer was very short, but very beautiful and intriguing as well. A theme that was made very prevalent both by the introduction producer Eiji Aonuma gave the game and by the trailer itself is that of a vast, open world.
The world of Zelda for Wii U (technically we’re not even sure it’s Hyrule yet!) is going to be huge and easily traversable, so that players can go virtually anywhere they want from the start of the game. In a segment called Nintendo News on the Japanese Nintendo website, Aonuma recently talked more about this open world.
“I still won’t say so much about this, but we made it a theme of sorts to review the commonplaces of Zelda. In the Wii U version, I feel like I have to say, “the game will take place in a vast world!” For example, “If you go to the other side of that mountain, what will happen?” or “I have seen this from this side, but I wonder what appears from the other side.” You can play like this, but you might not be that free in the game quite yet. At this time in the Wii U version, if you just think you can continue walking freely, beyond the mountains, over the valleys, you will just continue to walk until you’re very far away. So how you will play the new Zelda, well… I look forward to how everyone will do so!” — Eiji Aonuma
It’s hard to tell exactly what Aonuma is getting at (especially as this had to be translated from Japanese), but it sounds like he really wants to hammer in the point that players are free to explore and choose their own path. In the reveal trailer Aonuma made a point to state that you could travel to the mountains at the far back of the map, and here he brings up the topic of players wanting to know what’s on the other side. Aonuma states, ”
You can play like this, but you might not be that free in the game quite yet.” Will the final version let you go beyond the mountains? Unfortunately, we’ll have to wait until next year to find out.
If there’s one point the Zelda team really wants to hammer in for Zelda Wii U it’s that the game is going to feature a huge, wide open overworld where players are free to explore.