Aonuma Says Nintendo Will Be “More Careful” Choosing Zelda Art Styles In The Future

link_modelNintendo has given many a thought over which direction to take Zelda’s future art style in, but there’s always been careful consideration. Last month, Zelda producer Eiji Aonuma admitted that he initially kept Wind Waker’s art style hidden from Shigeru Miyamoto, because it was such “a drastic change” for the main series to take. Even A Link Between Worlds changed its artistic direction from when it was first shown at E3, to the Nintendo Direct presentation a couple of months ago.

In an interview with GamesTM magazine, Aonuma spoke about how the art style from the original Wind Waker has affected the company’s future style with the series, and how he hopes a new approach will “break new ground again”.

“We encountered an awful lot of problems from the drastic leap we took with Wind Waker. I think we will be a bit more careful in the future, but if we find a new approach that not just the developers, but also the users would enjoy then I think we will want to break new ground again. But we haven’t found such an approach yet.”


    1. Me too. I think it’s time for a serious look again, though. We have the cel shaded look in HD, now I’ve got a hankerin’ for some TP style graphics in glorious HD

      1. I completely agree. I really want the new Wii U Zelda game they are working on to have the Twilight Princess art style. The more realistic look would be a great contrast since we already have the cel shaded cartoon art style in HD.

  1. I actually liked the cartoon like art style, it was something never really done before. I am sure Aonuma knew what he was doing. He’s being doing the series since OoT.

  2. I think what he’s saying, is not to expect Zelda WiiU to look realistic. :/

    Maybe I’m just reading into it.

    1. It’s Iwata-era Nintendo. They couldn’t make a game with impessive graphics if there lives depended it.

            1. Agreed. But it’s time for a realistic one again. If we get another cel shaded one, then basically that’s the series standard, that’s where it will be forever. I like the idea that they change it with each major title. Keep it fresh

        1. Some people enjoy those games or “interactive movie” but I do agreed that it is in a trend right now. This is a good and bad thing for me. The good news is that the developers spending more time making the game good and cheaper since it is not in trend. The bad news is that a lot of developers switching over to whatever in trend right now, making some of my favourite genres have poor sales, and there are not a lot of new games that are not in trend.

      1. It is depend on the developers and the hardware not the CEO of Nintendo but again CEO can set policy for those developers and the hardware is limited compared to PC, Xbox One, and PS4 spec but that does not mean they will not make impressive graphic.

      2. I think that Pikmin 3 looked incredibly good on the wiiU, better even than some PS4 titles I saw

      3. I kinda disagree… Mario Galaxy games were gorgeous and looked HD, even if Wii games.
        Games can look great on Wii U, it’s a good lil’ system.

  3. I think its good to try different styles, but it needs to be something that shows what the hardware can do. A cell shade style is nice but they need to push it the style so the over all game looks great. Zelda is something I play for its design and gameplay the artstyle is just a bonus

  4. I’d like them to go with something more realistic for the Wii U one. Something that really takes advantage of the power behind the system. Something like the tech demo they’ve shown – Twilight Princess but nicer.

    Or, go completely crazy and have an 8bit style in full 3D, making use of the HD power for excellent shaders and lighting and whatever. Something like 3D Dot Game Heroes but even nicer. And full 3D gameplay rather than a top down style.

    1. 3D Dot GAme Heroes!

      8 bits world in 3D world is kinda insane. Enemies exploding into bits like literally. That’s would be interesting game if it is created.

          1. It would be insane for Nintendo to make a Zelda game in that style.

            But 3D Dot Game Heroes is 100% a Zelda game in everything but name anyway. And it was a fantastic game, so the formula definitely works.

            I just think that if Nintendo did it, they could do it even better.

            1. Yea I told everyone that this game is pretty much like 2D Zelda game. But everyone is more fan of 3D Zelda (or blind Nintendo fanboy) which is why they are not interested.

              1. What I’d like though is a 3D Zelda (Twilight Princess, Skyward Sword, etc) but in that 3D Dot Game Heroes graphical style.

                I think Nintendo could pull it off. But I don’t think they’d do something so radical with the design. Particularly if they’re saying they’ll be “more careful”. Pretty much rules out a 3D 8bit design.

                There is a PC game though, called Cubeworld, which is kind of what I’m talking about.

                1. That is cool style and I think 3D Dot Game Hero style is better fit for Zelda compared to Cube World. Don’t get me wrong but they are both similar but are not the same style.

  5. I think the goal with Zelda’s art direction is to go for something timeless. They want to have something like wind waker that looks great even today

    1. Because lets face it. Games that try to be realistic will become dated, they won’t look as good. look at twilight princess the game doesn’t hold up well. Skyward sword looks like it will hold up in its art style then TP. Zelda doesn’t need to be realistic, it needs the wii u’s power to make the game timeless like most Zelda games. We can all agree on is that Aonuma is giving the game his all from what we have heard from him and i’m sure its a Zelda game we will love

      1. We need a Zelda that’s timeless like windwaker, ground breaking like Oot, trilling as majora’s mask, open like windwaker Oot, and majora and well written like skyward sword and tough as nails like majora.

      2. Twilight holds up great!! D:
        That’s enough twilight bashing you twilight-bashing-bastard!

        I will say, all Wii games look bad on my TV. It’s a large HD, and all non-WiiU games have “Jaggies” along the edges, which annoys the hell out of me.

        8Bit games look ok though…

        1. I haz the gamecube version. I like the game though not my fav Zelda it still good. However most of its artstyle doesn’t hold up. Minda looks like she could hold up rather well ( model wise)

    2. Well it is depend how yo look at it. NES look great even today if you have simple taste. Even SNES look great as well. The one that doesn’t look good are the N64 versions. You got to admitted that its look sharp and blocky compared to nowadays. I think the Twilight Princess look okay in the future if they remaster it.

    1. Those can be key problems to consider though. It’s great when the developers are able to ignore that and just keep on swinging, but some people take the internet too seriously. They should just see the negative comments and chuckle about it

  6. The only games that stood out with its art was windwaker and skyward sword for me. I really dont care what they do as long as the gameplay keeps being amazing.

  7. The least they could do is ensure quality textures. There were times in Skyward Sword where when I was crawling through tunnels and it goes into first person mode and it looked like a screenshot of the first Doom game. Just awful, and yet another part of the game that suffered because they focused on shitty motion controls.

    1. The motion controls worked great in skyward sword, I didn’t have really any issues with them

      1. Well they do work great except majority of us do not like to play Zelda game with an motion controller. I don’t like the battle part. All I feel like doing is to give an “high five”, “on the side”, and “right below” to my friend in order to defeat him.

      2. I had major issues – even when they did “work”, I found them to be lackluster, specifically when swimming and flying. The biggest problem was it constantly brought me out of the game and lowered the immersive experience I usually get with Zelda games, especially when I had to pause the game every 10-15 minutes to center the cursor. That, and the fact that I found the “swipe horizontally/vertically” when facing enemies was gimmicky at best, except during the fights with Ghirahim.

  8. I’ve always liked the various LoZ art styles so I’m always up for something new. That being said, I believe that the series should keep a cartoony feel about it. I don’t want this to become a very gritty franchise. Twilight Princess was actually close and that’s why I didn’t buy the game. (It had blood and was rated T!) I am definitely looking forward to the next one

      1. Sadly not D: Those games sound really awesome, but I only buy retail games. I don’t get anything through PSN, Eshop, or anything that is online. The only exceptions to that have been LoZ Four Swords for 3DS and the original Smash Bros. Beyond that, I only get games when I have the physical copy

  9. My favorite style is wind waker but I also liked the realistic approach in twilight princess. And of course the hybrid in skyward sword. I want a new cel shaded zelda, but darker than wind waker.

  10. It’s a shame they are limiting their creativity just because some fans may not like it, every Zelda game (except the CD-i ones) look beautiful in their own way

  11. The art style never made much difference to me. As long as the games had great play control and a great, in-depth story, that’s all that matters.

    I wish I could have seen Miyamoto’s face the first time Aonuma revealed the art style of Wind Waker to him. ; D

  12. “Be careful” about the most beautiful Zelda game yet? Please don’t. People will devour anything you release. Please don’t be scared to give us the very greatest you have Aonuma.

  13. I personally want a realistic story-driven game. Yes, I want cutscenes, but that doesn’t mean I want a movie-game.

    They just need to make a game that will be eternally great. A game that could be looked back upon with high regards. In twenty years from now, will any of the Call of Duty games stand out to us? Probably not, except for any personal favourites. Will The Wind Waker? You bet. Will Ocarina of Time? Of course. If they can pull of creating a timeless entry, they’ll be back in business.

  14. If you are making a zelda for wii u, just do it like the demo that you guys show on e3! Do not do stupid things

  15. Ocarina of Time had an adventurous, heroic feel.

    Majora’s mask had a darker atmosphere…

    …Wind Waker was incredible adventurous…

    …Then, Twilight Princess took a darker approach…

    Skyward sword: Adventurous again.

    Following this pattern, it looks like we’re due for a bit of a darker 3D Zelda game this time, assuming this alternation continues.

  16. wait what? the other day he said they’d already found their art style for the next zelda and that it would be something new

  17. i really did not care about how games looked, especially zelda games, wind waker had cel-shading that made sense but no, people had to go bat-sh*t crazy about it. look at DBZ budokai (ps2), did anyone get upset about the cel-shading, no (GCN ver had updated graphics with slight cel-shading if i recall and i did at one point had the game). some people are graphic whores who want everything that is hd.

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