E3 2016 – The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Zbotw-titlescreen

Hello readers, I am back after a but of a hiatus.  I decided that I needed to recharge my writing batteries because writing about the destruction of my childhood home really took its toll on me (I am not done, but am trying to find my way back to the project currently.)  the E3 convention is upon us and I love this time of year.  I will be writing willy nilly about games shown at E3, in an effort to get you excited about the buzz.

Of course, with that being said, Nintendo really caught my eye with their new addition to the Zelda series my melding two of my favorite graphical schemes together.  The cell shaded shenanigans of the very cartoonish Wind Waker but with the serious environmental textures and models of Twilight Princess.

Below is a gallery of screenshots I found interesting.  Most of my writing will be in the captions of the images.  I really enjoyed that style with the flooding articles.

ZBotW-skellycliff
If you look above those pretty palm trees near the skyline, a hulking skeleton can be seen lumbering along the cliffside. Wonder if the game has special bosses, or if it’s a case of large baddies for Link to battle all around?
ZBotW-wildlife1
A lot of the scenes shown in the video focus on showing a wide view of the landscape. In this image the ducks are definitely the focus of the image, but all of the scenery is just as important. Even the two mountains in the background are compelling, and just before those mountains is a structure of sorts. The water effects are passable, but this is Nintendo. Their focus is on immersive gameplay, and not high technical specs.
ZBotW-wildlife2
When I saw these deer for the first time I wondered if you could hunt them. Well, later in the video you find out that yes, yes you can hunt them. I think they are going to force link to hunt for materials to create things with, which is a new gameplay mechanic for Zelda.
ZBotW-wildlife3
I thought this canyon was very impressive. Whatever engine Nintendo is using to process these graphics, I am impressed. The birds fluttering around gives the video a bit of flair. These shots were just from a demo, the actual gameplay, while just as beautiful, has things like a HUD and whatnot.
ZBotW-wildlife4
I am not sure Epona will be in the game (Probably will be), but apparently Link can now straight jack wild horses from the plains and ride them around. I want link to have to break them like a bronc rider and if you fall off, you have a chance to break your neck and be a paraplegic or something dark like that. Okay, maybe not.
This drone view of Hyrule castle
This drone view of Hyrule castle is more showing off of the graphics processing. Seems like either Hyrule doesn’t have much in the landscape after all, or the drawing distances are terrible.
ZBotW-rainyboss
Rain and night time looks like we may get some impressive weather and time effects. The big thing on the ground looks like a boss that has been defeated. In fact….
ZBotW-Bossfight
This boss right here. He looks rather menacing, yeah? He reminds me of one of the bosses from “A Link to the Past.” That would be really cool, if they decided to just remake all of their old bosses and put them into this game.
ZBotW-flying
Link never really flies. but he hovers so well that it makes Batman totes jelly. This shot is right after Link sprints and jumps off of a cliff. Very nice view of a forest below. You can see Hyrule Castle in the skyline, but the thing to really take note is the volcano with the clouds over it in the far areas beyond. That must be Death Mountain. Also, looking at this image makes me absolutely hope that there is a fast travel option.
ZBotW-horserider
Probably not Epona, but look at the scale of it all. The bridge looks really long, while the horse and Link are still the primary focus. From what I have seen, the world itself is taking the lead.
ZBotW-climbing1
Link looks to be doing a bit more in terms of Parkour nowadays. I have not played any recent Zelda titles, but seeing all of the climbing, and seeing how big the world is, adding a vertical element to all of that horizon will make adventuring be much more exciting and time consuming.
ZBotW-climbing2
You may need to click on the image, but Link is scaling the cliff to the right. He is so small and far away that you can barely see him. Scenes like this really drive home the idea that this title is bigger than any other!
ZBotW-settingfires
An element I have not seen in this series: Wildfires. These mechanics cause havoc and interesting NPC responses in titles like Farcry. Will it be a central mechanic? Who knows. I hope so, because this is just one more way to make the game more playable.
ZBotW-cooking
Going one step further into that realm of RPG a la Skyrim (Come on, the world is looking huge), it looks like Link has taken up the apron and pan and has started cooking. Will there be a plethora of recipes that power him up? Offer different gameplay mechanics? Any special effects?
ZBotW-sneaking
Sometimes stealth comes into play in Zelda games. Looks like this has improved, with the previous image of him sneaking up on the horses, and now with him distracting baddies and sneaking around their camp. Will it be smart stealth mechanics? Will they be a nightmare? How will the gimmicky Wii-U controls come into play?
ZBotW-fighting1
One of the funner things is bashing bad guys with rocks. In this image, Link has rolled a boulder down onto some unknowing targets. Will there be plenty of opportunities for this to occur?
ZBotW-fighting2
This is a mid-fight shot. What’s that? Link has a spear? A SPEAR!? Apparently, we will get to wield a variety of different weapons throughout the game. Hopefully each weapon type will present us with strengths and weaknesses that translate well into the battle system.
ZBotW-fighting3
Wow, what a huge monster. While this golem steals our focus, I think the bigger surprise is that Link is wearing plate armor. That makes sense, because it used to be that his tunic would just change colors.
ZBotW-darkmountains
Not entirely sure what this location is, but it looks pretty dark and ominous. Death Mountain maybe?
ZBotW-portal
Not really sure what this is. It could be a portal, it could be a dungeon entrance. I do like that to the right I see a pool of some dark, tarry liquid and in the center is an island with a chest. Looks like we will be finding stray treasure! (Of course!)
ZBotW-magic1
This looks like an ice spell of sorts and it seemed like it was placed using the Wii controls in some way. Some things of note: This is where that pool of stuff is with the island with the chest. Also, look at the background. It’s a huge fortress. The landscape always has something of import to see no matter how far or close you are to it.
ZBotW-magic2
Link has telekinesis now. This looks like it is controlled with some sort of motion control, but who knows? The video shows Link dropping a board on the baddies.
ZBotW-mastersword
Of course, I have to end my gallery with the typical Master Sword shot. This image is worthy of being a desktop background.

Want to see the actual videos?

This first video is where I grabbed my images.  It is the prettiest video and focuses solely on the trailer.  Enjoy!

This is a short gameplay video that shows a quick battle and the HUD.

Just as the title implies:  30 minutes of gameplay footage and narration from those playing it with one of the games creators.  This is the world premiere of the game, and it is very compelling.

Product placement!  Not abandoning the Amiibo model, you can have Wolf Link as a pet that helps you out in game.  Very good idea!

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