'Zelda' Sequel: The Only Way Nintendo Can Top ‘Breath Of The Wild’

zelda breath of the wild botw master sword
You can find the Master Sword in 'The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild' Nintendo

Breath of the Wild is a true system-seller, and one of the best games Nintendo has ever made. Certainly it’s the broadest in scope. It will occupy us for weeks and months to come, and even us reviewers can now enjoy the game at our leisure. And then, eventually, there will be DLC for us to explore. But sooner or later, we’ll move on from Breath of the Wild. But it won’t be the last Legend of Zelda game—even though Breath of the Wild is going to be very hard to top. In fact, there’s only one way Nintendo can exceed one of its best games ever: By giving us more of the same.

The Breath of the Wild Sequel Should Give Us More Of The Same

breath of the wild legend of zelda shield surfing
Breath of the Wild: Link goes for a ride on his shield. Photo: (c) Nintendo

Nintendo totally reinvented the Legend of Zelda wheel for Breath of the Wild, and pretty much everyone agrees that that was the right move. Breath of the Wild feels like a truly modern Zelda—indeed, the game pushes the entire open world genre forward in a way that no one really expected. It’s a tour de (tri)force. And that makes it exceptionally hard for Nintendo to reinvent the wheel yet again—especially considering how much time and money it cost to make Breath of the Wild.

So, for the inevitable Breath of the Wild sequel, Nintendo shouldn’t try to change everything again. Trust us, the Zelda team knows how well the game has been received, and what an incredible game they’ve created. Two Legend of Zelda games in the modern era have, in terms of their reviews, been hailed as perhaps the best game ever made: Ocarina of Time and Breath of the Wild. Think about the sequel to Ocarina. It didn’t reinvent the wheel. Majora’s Mask, a flawed but incredible game, used the same engine and simply gave us another adventure—a distinctly different quest, one that channeled Ocarina and pushed it in a new direction.

The Breath of the Wild sequel should absolutely, without question, use the same engine as Breath of the Wild. Although Breath of the Wild’s scope seems nearly endless, there are other avenues a new game could explore even in the same engine. Think about what Majora’s Mask accomplished: Even with much of the same art assets as Ocarina of Time, it offered an adventure with an entirely different tone, scope and feel, one that’s often considered at least an equal to its esteemed predecessor.

In short, Breath of the Wild 2 should give us a new world in the same engine. That’s the best way for Nintendo to give us a sequel in a reasonable time and at a reasonable cost, and help push the engine forward a little bit farther. And you know what? I wouldn’t complain if that game took us to The Dark World —or even a return to Termina.

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