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Aonuma on A Link Between Worlds – stealth, Ravio, Nabbit comparisons, never considered for Wii U, more

Posted on October 19, 2013 by (@NE_Brian) in 3DS, General Nintendo, News, Podcast Stories

Spike just recently put up an interview with Zelda producer Eiji Aonuma. It’s filled with lots of questions about A Link Between Worlds, such as stealth elements, Ravio’s role, comparisons to New Super Mario Bros. U’s Nabbit, and whether it was ever considered for Wii U (nope). Aside from that, there are also some off-beat topics like localizing Marvelous: Another Treasure (directed by Aonuma many years ago).

You can find some excerpts from the interview below. Spike’s full piece is located here.

On whether there are stealth elements that are built into Link’s ability to transform…

Yes, of course, there are definitely elements like that. There are scenes where you’ll have to use the wall merge ability to get by enemies, but also while you’re fighting with enemies, you can also merge into the wall and their attack will just bounce off the wall, and you won’t take damage. There are quite a few ways to play with it.

On whether there’s a “right” way to play through the game with buying/renting items…

(Laughs) I mean, I think in a sense there are. Most of the items are available right at the start of the game, to be able to rent, or buy them as well. There are certain things in dungeons that you could say would be better to pick up sooner rather than later, because it will make you stronger, and less likely to be defeated by enemies. In that sense, there are things that would be better to get in a certain order, and to get sooner rather than later, but other than that, no.

On whether Ravio plays a bigger role than just the shopkeeper…

(Laughs) I hope you’ll enjoy finding out for yourself in the game.

On whether Aonuma was surprised by Ravio’s comparisons to Nabbit in New Super Mario Bros…

Actually, I wasn’t really aware of that Mario character, Nabbit, which is maybe kind of funny for me to say, but you know, I’m very busy. Obviously, we weren’t thinking of Nabbit when we made that character, but when we put the picture up on Miiverse people started making that comparison, and they had that reaction, and I realized that people are always kind of looking for those sorts of connections. I thought it was really interesting, so I brought it up with Mr. Iwata., and I said, ‘Maybe other people haven’t thought of this, but it’s kind of interesting, so maybe you could put it in the Direct.’ I think the really interesting thing about Miiverse is that I’ll take something and throw it out there, and you don’t know what the reactions are going to be, and they always turn into something you’re not expecting. I think that’s really, really fun, and really, really great.

On encouraging messages on Miiverse…

I think one thing that surprises me is how many encouraging messages I get when I just post something simple. Like, just at E3, I posted that I was really feeling the jet lag, and people were like, ‘oh, no that’s too bad,’ and gave me lots of pat on the back type messages. It made me realize that Zelda fans are just really, really nice. I didn’t realize they were such great people. When I’m at my job, and working on producing The Legend of Zelda titles, and Mr. Miyamoto is getting mad at me and stuff, then I get these encouraging messages it’s almost enough to make you cry, so it’s just really great.

On whether A Link Between Worlds was ever considered for Wii U…

It definitely started out with being able to include the 3D effects as being really key to our whole idea of the game, so we really never thought about it being a Wii U title.

I think that kind of top view game, rather than having it on a big TV, it just feels better to have it in your hands, looking down on it.

On whether Aonuma would want to revisit Marvelous: Another Treasure and possibly bring it outside of Japan…

It would be cool to have it on the Virtual Console, but we’d also have to localize the game, so it might be kind of difficult. And we’d have to do it with superimposed subtitles, because we can’t actually remake the game at this point, and actually get the data.

On whether any staff from Link to the Past worked on Link Between Worlds…

Yes, there is one person. He’s actually been with Zelda even longer than I have, and knows absolutely everything about Zelda. But, yeah there was one person there.

On whether Aonuma prefers making 2D or 3D Zeldas…

I think there’s a lot of differences between the two. This one, where we are making a 2D, top down kind of game, now that we are making it in a modern era, we have to give it that same kind of fresh, fast-paced feeling. We have to keep the frame rate very high, so it has to be at 60 frames per second. So, A Link Between Worlds is 60 frames, which means there’s a lot more memory, a lot more data, all the animations – there’s just a lot more packed in. When you’re making it, that obviously makes it a lot more difficult.

3D games have their own challenges too. We’re usually able to keep those at about 30 frames, because it’s just not as necessary, but you have to have it on this big screen, and you’re showing this dynamic and wide open world. I think there are very different challenges for both, and I want to keep making both.

On why A Link to the Past was chosen for a sequel rather than the original Zelda/Zelda II…

I think the main thing is that if you look at the original A Link to the Past graphics, the idea was to build the game using those original graphics, since the original has a lot of detail in them. It’s kind of a fully realized world, so it made it a good candidate for upgrading. If you take a look at the original Legend of Zelda, if we tried to remaster those graphics, they don’t have a lot of color, and there isn’t a lot of detail in it, so it wouldn’t really have looked very good on the 3DS. I think what they were able to do in A Link Between Worlds, where they were able to create that A Link to the Past world with the same feeling, but it also still really looks good today.

Another reason is that since the 3DS came out, Mr. Miyamoto has always been on me about making A Link To The Past for the 3DS. Just kind of constantly in my ear about that. When I would do it was up to me, but it’s kind of been something that has been on my plate.

Ever since the 3DS existed. He’s always saying, “Why haven’t you made it yet? Why haven’t you made it yet?”

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