All Articles: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

The 1-2 punch of Tekken 7 and Injustice 2 sit atop the best-selling games list for June 2017

Fighting game fans have proven, once again, that the genre is alive and well. According to the NPD Group’s recounting of the best-selling games in June, Tekken 7 (#1) and Injustice 2 (#2) took the top two spots. Nintendo’s bizarro take on the genre, Arms, also made a strong debut in the #5 spot.

Speaking of the Switch, Nintendo’s newest console continued to push the game industry to new heights in June, as The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (#6) and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (#7) stayed in the top ten.

Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, NPD Analyst Mat Piscatella said: “The Nintendo Switch has been the catalyst for year-to-date growth. Year-to-date, hardware spending has grown 19% versus 2016 to $1.4 billion.”

However, older titles also performed well in June, including Grand Theft Auto V (#3), Overwatch (#9), and Minecraft (#17). 2015’s Call of Duty: Black Ops III (#12) even managed to outsell 2016’s Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare (#15).

A complete look at the Top 20 for June 2017 can be found after the break. (more…)

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Nintendo’s Eiji Aonuma is “gathering ideas” for next Legend of Zelda game but it will require a “long period” of development

Forgive me for stating the obvious, but The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has been a massive hit for Nintendo. It’s garnered rave reviews from critics and fans alike, and it instantly solidified the Switch as piece of must-have tech for a consolemaker in desperate need of a win. But if you were hoping that Nintendo was secretly working on the next game in franchise, I’ve got some bad news for you.

Franchise Producer Eiji Aonuma recently sat down with Gamereactor, and he confirmed that Nintendo is currently in the “gathering ideas” phase for a new entry in the Zelda series, but he also said that the game is still “far” off and will require a “long period” of development:

Gamereactor: Regarding the next Zelda, is there a schedule settled on yet? Could you give us any exclusive insights into that?

Eiji Aonuma: No, you will not get a scoop! Sorry, my dear friend [laughs]. We have no plans for a future Zelda, we are still far from all this unfortunately for you. Today, I’m at a stage where I’m trying to gather a number of ideas for a sequel, but I cannot do it alone. It’s a lot of work that will have to be done over a long period of time, and we’re still far from having planned anything. Leave us a little time…

For now, it looks like Zelda fans will have to make do with Breath of the Wild’s Expansion Pass. The first add-on, The Master Trials, was released two weeks ago. The second, The Champion’s Ballad, will be available this Fall.

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The Master Trials expansion for Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is now available

The Master Trials, the first expansion for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is now available to download through the Nintendo eShop for the Switch and Wii U.

Players who purchase the Expansion Pass will be able to participate in the “Trial of the Sword” challenge, a wave-based dungeon that will “awaken” the Master Sword when completed. New armor pieces, a more challenging Master Mode, and other additions to the game will also be included in The Master Trials:

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – Expansion Pass: The Master Trials
More adventures await in the Master Trials pack. By completing the Trial of the Sword challenge, Link will prove that he has grown worthy, and the Master Sword will be awakened to always be in its glowing, powered-up state while usable. Master Mode ups the challenge, Hero’s Path mode tracks 200 hours of footsteps on the map, the Travel Medallion creates a warp point, eight new armor items offer unique effects, and the Korok Mask helps locate Koroks.

The Master Trials is available as of Breath of the Wild’s Expansion Pass ($19.99), and cannot be purchased on its own. But players who own it will also receive access to a second downloadable expansion, The Champion’s Ballad, that’ll be available this Fall.

And in case you missed it, the Nintendo Treehouse team recorded an in-depth look at The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – Expansion Pass: The Master Trials during this year’s E3 Expo. You can find the video after the break. (more…)

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Justice was served as Injustice 2 was the best-selling game of May 2017

NetherRealm Studios has done it again… The NPD Group (via GamesIndustry.biz) has revealed that Injustice 2 was the best-selling game in May.

In the midst of Wonder Woman-mania, the one-on-one fighter beat out the Switch’s heaviest hitters (Mario Kart 8 Deluxe at #2 and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild at #4), as well as Prey (#5) and Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadow of Valentia (#7).

Grand Theft Auto V continues to sell well, landing at #3 in the monthly tally. And Blizzard’s Overwatch celebrated its first anniversary by squeaking into the top ten at #10.

A list of May 2017’s top ten best-selling titles can be found after the break. (more…)

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Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild’s Director says it takes place “long after” the rest of the games in the series

With its mixture of high technology and decaying Hylian ruins, it’s obvious that The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild takes place in some kind of post-apocalyptic future, and many fans believe it should replace Zelda II: The Adventure of Link as the chronologically last game in the official timeline. But while Nintendo has previously been mum about where the game sits on the timeline, this theory gained some considerable support earlier this week when Game Rant spoke with Breath of the Wild’s Director, Hidemaro Fujibayashi.

In a short interview, Fujibayashi confirmed that Breath of the Wild does indeed take place “long after” the other games in the franchise:

It takes place in an age long, long after any of the titles released to date. It is the most recent age. And because of this we believe players will be able to easily immerse themselves in the game. Of course, regardless of the time period, the story does unfold in Hyrule so for those who’ve played other titles in the series there will be a lot of recognizable places to enjoy.

Fujibayashi’s comments confirm what many fans already believe, but it’s also important to remember that the franchise’s chronology splits into three distinct branches after the events of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. So while we now know that Breath of the Wild is set “long after” the rest of the games in the series, we still have no idea which branch it sits on.

So we got an answer… but we also got more questions. At this point, I expect nothing less from Nintendo.

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The Switch continues to soar as Mario Kart 8 Deluxe was the best-selling game in April 2017

Nintendo continues to dominate the retail charts with another strong showing in April for their Switch console. According to The NPD Group, Nintendo added another 280,000 Switch consoles to its tally last month, and the newly-launched Mario Kart 8 Deluxe sold more than 459,000 copies (in just two days) to take the top spot on the list of best-selling games. The company’s success also seems to be great for the industry as a whole, as the industry generated $636 million in sales in April 2017, a 10% increase over the year before.

The other big news in April is that Persona 5 pushed the franchise and gave the RPG the #2 spot on the best-seller list, just below Mario Kart 8.

“Persona 5 experienced the strongest debut month for any title in Persona franchise history, with packaged dollar sales five times that of the previous best-selling debut, Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4,” NPD Analyst Mat Piscatella told GamesIndustry.biz.

Additional new releases were thin on the ground in last month’s Top 20, but Lego Undercover‘s re-release on the PC and current-generation consoles helped it secure a spot (#13). And as expected, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild continued to sell well, landing in the #3 position for the month. But the big retail winners in April all came from the backlist, including Grand Theft Auto V (#6), Overwatch (#9), Call of Duty: Black Ops II (#10), and Minecraft (#20).

The NPD Group’s complete list of best-selling games for April 2017 can be found after the break. (more…)

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Nintendo offers up a few details about Zelda: Breath of the Wild’s first DLC expansion

With The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild continuing to burn up sales charts around the world, Nintendo is also hard at work on two downloadable expansions for the massive open world adventure. Late last night, the consolemaker revealed more information about the first of these add-ons, The Master Trials, which will be available this Summer.

The expansion will add a handful of new features to the game, including a horde mode (“Trial of the Sword”), a more challenging Hard Mode, a new map tracker (“Hero’s Path Mode”), costumes and equipment inspired by earlier games in the series (including the snazzy “Tingle’s Outfit” seen above), and more:

New Features in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – The Master Trials
Trial of the Sword: By accessing this location, players can challenge the new Trial of the Sword (previously known as “Cave of Trials Challenge”), where enemies appear one after another. Link starts without any armor or weapons, and if he defeats all of the enemies in the room he can proceed to the next area. Trial of the Sword will include around 45 total rooms for players to complete. When Link clears all of the trials, the true power of the Master Sword will awaken and always be in its glowing powered-up state.

Hard Mode: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is already considered one of the most thrilling games in The Legend of Zelda series, and fans looking for a challenge are in for a treat with the new Hard Mode. In Hard Mode, the “ranks” of enemies in the game are increased (i.e. Red Bokoblins change to Blue), and players might even encounter higher-ranking enemies they wouldn’t find through normal play. Enemies will also slowly recover health in battle, forcing you to defeat them more quickly. They will also more easily spot Link as he approaches them, making these enemies tougher to sneak up on. In addition, floating planks held aloft by balloons will be scattered around Hyrule. By successfully reaching these planks, players can battle enemies and collect treasure.

Hero’s Path Mode: Exploring Hyrule is exciting, but with such a large world it’s sometimes hard for players to remember where they’ve been. To help with tracking progress, the new Hero’s Path Mode will document every step players take, and mark their path in green on the map. The route taken will be tracked for the player’s last 200 hours of play time, with an included slider to track footsteps on a timeline. This even works retroactively, so players that have already put many hours into the game will be able to see where they have traveled. This feature will help in identifying the locations they haven’t visited in this vast world, and may help players find those Shrines they haven’t encountered yet.

Travel Medallion: There will be a new treasure chest somewhere in the game world which contains the Travel Medallion. With the Travel Medallion, players can create a temporary new travel point on the map where they are currently standing. Link can then transport himself to that point at any time. Only one travel point can be registered on the map at a time.

Korok Mask: By finding the new Korok Mask, players will have a much easier time finding Korok locations in the game. When equipped, the mask will shake, indicating that a Korok is hidden somewhere nearby.

New Equipment: Eight new pieces of equipment inspired by previous characters and games in the series will be added to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild after downloading the first DLC pack. Once discovered by the player, they will yield equipment themed after fan-favorite games and characters such as Midna, Tingle, Phantom, and Majora’s Mask.

Nintendo has bundled together both expansions to Breath of the Wild as the Expansion Pass, which is now available through the Nintendo eShop for $19.99 on the Switch and the Wii U. Unfortunately, there’s no way for players to purchase each expansion separately.

We’ll learn more about the untitled second expansion, which will be available this Fall, at a later date.

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Retro-styled Breath of the Wild fangame will remove Zelda characters after takedown notice from Nintendo

As expected, Nintendo has dropped the hammer on The Legend of Zelda: Breath of a NES, a retro-styled reimagining of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. The takedown notice was issued to developer Winter Drake by Nintendo’s lawyers over the weekend, and it’s available for public viewing on Twitter.

Even though this is a huge setback for Winter Drake, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of a NES will continue in an altered form. The developer has vowed to remove every reference to Nintendo’s franchise, and replace them with original characters and designs. Winter Drake even posted this encouraging message on the game’s Itch.io this morning: “Nintendo has asked me to take stop hosting the game. The project will live on, just not with Zelda characters.”

And speaking to Kotaku, Winter Drake revealed that the new vision for Breath of the NES will include “32-bit sprites” and “a rich soundtrack”:

As for what Breath of the NES’s spiritual successor will look like, Winter is planning on 32-bit sprites working with musicians to put together a rich soundtrack. Substituting improved gameplay and originality for the 8-bit nostalgia powering the original project won’t be easy though, meaning we probably won’t see a new trailer or playable demo for some time. “Ideally I’d like to make the final game a big cross-platform release on Steam,” Winter said. “I may even start a Kickstarter once I can show off what the new game will have to offer.”

As before, Winter Drake will be providing additional updates on the progress of Breath of the NES’s successor on Twitter.

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