In a recent interview with Wired, Zelda producer Eiji Aonuma tells gamers that the Wii U’s version of Zelda might end up looking very different from what we saw at E3 this year. The HD version of Link that was battling the giant spider in the final portion of the Wii U demo video that seemed to borrow heavily from the style fans saw in Twilight Princess might turn out to be a colorful cartoon. Eiji goes on to reassure gamers by reminding us that there was a similar case with Wind Waker’s graphics, which had originally been thought to be more realistic before it was announced. Because in spite of its initial criticisms, Wind Waker rose to exceed the expectations of countless fans once they were able to play the game for themselves.
I suppose this was to be expected. After all, Nintendo claims to be the innovator of the gaming industry, and giving us what we enjoyed from the E3 demo just wouldn’t be shocking enough. I think most Zelda fans have learn not to have their expectations set in stone by this point, so this might not come as much of a shock to some of you. However, if you’re like me and you preferred Twilight Princess’s darker and more realistic style over Wind Waker’s cartoony, cell-shaded nonsense, then this news might be seem slightly unnerving. That is, considering you were intent on buying a Wii U in the first place, which I myself am still undecided about. At this point, there are simply too many unknowns.
So once again, sorry Zelda and Wii U fans, but it seems like practically all of the game footage we saw during the E3 demo was either rendered on other systems or simply concept images. There is still hope for the Wii U’s version of Zelda, but its face is once again hidden behind the shadow of early development. For now, all we can do is wait and speculate. I love the Zelda games and truly hope Nintendo doesn’t let us down. I understand the need for change and new appearances, but things like Skyward Sword’s bright Disney Land colors seem like a step in the wrong direction. Maybe kids like it… Whatever your opinion of cel-shaded Link is, you shouldn’t fall too in love with what you saw at E3, because you might not get it.