With the launch of Nintendo Switch earlier this year the Japanese gaming giant has seen a return to form with the portable console, as worldwide sales continue to be strong even with stock shortages. When it comes to virtual reality (VR) Nintendo has remained coy, with president Tatsumi Kimishima having previously said: “I can’t say that we have no interest in VR because VR offers new ways of playing, but that depends on what kind of software can be played.” One of Nintendo’s biggest IP’s is The Legend of Zelda, with the latest version ‘Breath of the Wild‘ receiving worldwide acclaim. But it seems that currently the company doesn’t see Zelda as being fit for VR.
In a recent interview with GameReactor, producer Eiji Aonuma discussed The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and when asked about a possible adventure with Link in VR had this to say: “Let me tell you something. When we did Twilight Princess, we did first-person trials. And I absolutely did not like it, it did not look like Zelda as I conceived it, nor as you must conceive it yourself as a fan of the saga. And from that point on, we thought we had to be able to see Link, whether it was during the fighting or the exploration.”
“For us, this is the very essence of Zelda. For the moment I have a hard time imagining a Zelda in VR so as you can probably imagine, this is not a priority nor a short-term project. But I’m not closing the door on that for the future,” adds Aonuma.
Third-person videogames do work in VR. Titles such as Lucky’s Tale and Moss, already showcase what can be achieved, and that not everything in VR has to be in first-person view to be immersive. But Nintendo will have a vision for how it wants the Zelda franchise to look and feel and currently its seems as if VR doesn’t quite fit into that idea.
While having a Legend of Zelda title come to VR would certainly be a boon for the industry, at present it seems like that’s a distant dream. Instead VR users will have to make do with adventure titles like Fallout 4 The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VRand when they come out.
As ever, keep reading VRFocus for the latest news and announcements on VR.