The new “Legend of Zelda” game, “Breath of the Wild,” features an especially lively version of Hyrule. It’s also an especially strange version of Hyrule.
There’s stuff like what you see above all over the place. Which isn’t to say that there are massive, flying, snake-like dragons everywhere, but that there’s mystery around every corner.
The first time you experience a lightning storm in Hyrule, for instance, is especially memorable. Better unequip all the metal you’re carrying as soon as possible, lest you get blasted to pieces by a massive bolt of lightning from the sky!
And, apparently, the world of Hyrule was going to be even stranger:
This concept art image is one of many of the ideas for “Breath of the Wild” that didn’t make it into the final game. The image is one of several featured in a three-part video series digging into the creation of “Breath of the Wild.”
“Some of our younger designers came up with very unique suggestions,” art director Satoru Takizawa says in the video. “Like the idea that UFOs could invade from space and abduct cattle.” What!
The Zelda series has never before featured aliens, or UFOs, and the interesting blend of fantasy world with that of sci-fi would’ve certainly been an entirely new spin on the long-running franchise. There is a storyline in “Majora’s Mask” that fans interpret as an alien invasion, but it’s never explicitly stated.
The concept is part of the greater “break the conventions” theme that the game’s developers adopted while creating “Breath of the Wild.”
And it really comes across in the game: I’ve been playing Zelda games my whole life, since the first one on the NES, and “Breath of the Wild” is the first game in the franchise to truly break with conventions. It’s a completely open-ended adventure that encourages discovery, exploration, and courage. More than just a great Zelda game, it’s a medium-moving game that is sure to influence years of games to come.
And it almost had UFOs and cattle abduction! There’s always next time, Nintendo.