February is right around the corner and many Legend of Zelda fans are hoping Nintendo kick into gear with their marketing for Tears of the Kingdom, meaning a Zelda focused Nintendo Direct. Today I want to go through the top questions we have about Tears of the Kingdom, and hopefully Nintendo will answer some of them with their upcoming video showcase.
Before we get into it today, let me know in the comments your top unanswered question for Tears of the Kingdom? What’s the one thing you’ve been dying to know about the latest Zelda game, and what are your expectations for a Zelda Direct in February?
The release date for Tears of the Kingdom is getting closer now, and we’re close to 100 days from the release of the next major adventure in the Legend of Zelda series. This is the biggest release planned for Nintendo this year, and arguably the biggest release of 2023. The Zelda team have big shoes to fill though, as this is the follow up to one of the best games ever made.
New information from Nintendo has been rare in the build up to Tears of the Kingdom, but that could all be about to change with the next Nintedo Direct, with many fans wanting a good amount of time dedicated to Tears of the Kingdom, more time than the teaser trailers we’ve had so far. The average time of the teaser trailers so far has been roughly 90s, and we’re hoping for a much longer deep dive into Tears of the Kingdom, hopefully it’ll be something in the region of 4-5 mins.
Given we’ve only had teasers, that means we still have plenty of questions for Nintendo. Today I want to focus on those unanswered questions, and we can have a look together at the answers.
Will we have companions?
The Legend of Zelda has a rich history of companion characters, for example Navvi in Ocarina of Time and Fi in Skyward Sword. Breath of the Wild broke the trend in this regards, as with many other Legend of Zelda features. Early on in the game we spoke to King Roam a little bit, and he helped us through the Great Plateau, however, after that Breath of the Wild was pretty much a solo adventure.
Zelda could play this role, perhaps communicating to Link via the yellow energy ball as seen in the delay trailer. The Master Sword looks like it will play a central role in the game, given it appears to be broken. If it is infact broken, then perhaps we will see Fi again? Nintendo could take another route entirely and introduce a new character, although we haven’t had any clues as to who that might be. The Zonai are high on the list of characters fans want to know more about, so perhaps a member of the Zonai tribe could accomany us on our adventures.
How much has Hyrule changed?
In the most recent teaser trailer for Tears of the Kingdom, we got a birds eye view of Hyrule for a few short seconds. Eagle-eyed fans have noted there’s no Towers, no shrines, Death Mountain is looking violent, plus we can see strange etchings on the floor beneath the large winged vehicle Link lands on.
I imagine much of our adventures are going to take place in the sky islands, therefore we may not spend too much time on Hyrule itself. However, if Tears of the Kingdom is going to be as free form as Breath of the Wild, and you have to think they are going to build on that, then I’d like to see more of Hyrule and how its changed. I would love to see Malice spread out and really physically alter the environment. As much as I loved Hyrule from Breath of the Wild, I want to be exploring somewhere new.
Will we have collectibles?
In Breath of the Wild, the hunt for Korok seeds was one activity players could take on during and after they finish the story to keep them entertained. Collectibles are a potentially great part of Tears of the Kingdom, and could offer an extended shelf life for the game, providing players motivation to come back time and time again.
One item we may have to collect are the literal tears of the kingdom. We’ve seen Link with vials on his hip, indicating we have to collect some kind of liquid, and it makes sense we’ve have to travel around Hyrule to collect something to put into these vials.
I am hoping for a lot more collectibles. The korok seeds hunt was good, albeit a little long winded. I’d like shorter treasure hunts, and a little more variation. It’d be good to have armour and skins as a reward, or perhaps unique weapons that are tied thematically to the location of the hunt. For example, an Ice weapon if you have to get collectible in a frozen mountain, or electricity themed gear if you have to go hunting in the clouds… that kind of thing.
Will the Sheikah Slate return?
There’s one thing missing from the trailers so far, and that’s the Sheikah Slate. In Breath of the Wild we got the slate when we first wake up, and we’re introduced to our rune abilities on the Great Plateau, meaning we get all the tools we need very early, then the rest of the game is enhancing them and finding out how to use combinations. What is going to happen in Tears of the Kingdom? Are we still going to use the Sheikah Slate, or are we going to have a whole new set of abiltiies, and if so, how are we going to access them without the Sheikah Slate? Will Link’s arm replace the slate, and provide us with new abilities, like we’ve seen in the development images from Breath of the Wild, the ideas that ultimately never made it into the game.
When in the timeline is Tears of the Kingdom?
Nintendo have been very coy with their timeline placement for Tears of the Kingdom. We know it’s a direct sequel to Breath of the Wild. We’ve seen Link and Zelda, both looking like they are continuing their adventures in Hyrule after the events at the end of Breath of the Wild. We also see Link with long hair and different clothes, and it’s not clear at the moment if this is the same Link at Blue Tunic Link, or if this is a different Link from the past. Are we going to travel back in time to 10,000 years ago and play as the Hero of Time in that age, or is this just an outfit for Link. I am hoping we travel back in time to get more of an understanding about Hyrule back then, plus we could meet the ancient Zonai tribe and find out more about them. This is definitely one of the big questions Nintendo could answer in an upcoming Zelda direct.
Will weapons still break?
Weapon durability is a devicesive topic, you either like it or hate it. Breath of the Wild introduced breakable weapons, which went well with the overall theme of Breath of the Wild, never getting too tied to one weapon, having to try out new ones, beating down an enemy and stealing their weapon. It fit the brief in terms of departing from classic Zelda gameplay mechanics, but some think it went a little far. We haven’t seen anything from Nintendo yet related to weapon durability. We have seen Link weilding a flame thrower, which looks like a new weapon type, but we haven’t seen Link using regular weapons yet. Hopefully Nintendo will shed some light on this one and let us know if we’re still going to be dealing with breakable weapons or not.
Are Dungeons returning?
Ever since that first trailer back in 2019 rumours have been swirling about wheteher dungeons would return to the game. Shrines played a particular role in Breath of the Wild, helping to promote exploration, plus providing health and stamina. The system was really well put together and thought out, but is this going to work again in Tears of the Kingdom? How would you feel going into Tears of the Kingdom with Shrines, and would this make narrative sense? The Divine Beasts were Dungeons of sorts, but many fans felt like they didn’t really live up to the high expectations set by previous dungeons in the Zelda series. Breath of the Wild spent much of it’s time getting away from the old tropes of the Zelda franchise, and many felt this was a good move. However, over time the call for Dungeons to return has grown louder. Will Nintendo stick with their shrines, or will they go back to more traditional dungeons? Hopefully Nintendo will provide some clues next time we see the game.
What’s happened to Zelda?
Some contingents of Zelda fans had been hoping Zelda would be a playable character, however, the trailers appear to suggest otherwise. We saw Princess Zelda in the first trailer, then we saw her fall down a ravine or a hole created by the earthquake set off when the Malice poured from the corpse of Ganondorf. Since then we haven’t seen Zelda at all, unless you follow the theory of the yellow energy, with Zelda potentially communicating with Link via this energy. We see a long haired Link show a broken master sword up in the sky islands at some kind of altar, and perhaps he’s getting it repaired via Princess Zelda and this mysterious yellow energy.
We’ve also seen Princess Zelda depicted in the tapestries in the latest name reveal trailer. At first we see her unconcious, seemingly floating in mid air, then we see her holding hands with a mysterious other character, and we’re yet to find out their identity. What has happened to Princess Zelda Nintendo? Is she alive or dead? Is Hyrule crying tears because we’ve lost the Princess forever? Or do we have to save her? It’s about time we found out what role Princess Zelda has in Tears of the Kingdom.
Let me know in the comments what your top questions are that need answering related to Tears of the Kingdom.