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Nintendo Treehouse Blog Highlights Aonuma’s Goal Of Including Cooking In Zelda: Breath Of The Wild

Love it or hate it; cooking in Zelda: Breath Of The Wild is very nearly an absolute necessity to survive. Unless, of course, you’re stacked up to your eyeballs with elixirs that you’ve acquired from one of the many NPC’s in the game. Bill Trinen from Nintendo has very recently posted an insight to the Nintendo Treehouse blog in which he explains more about the cooking in Zelda: Breath Of The Wild and how Eiji Aonuma expressed his interest for cooking mechanics way before development:

Back in 2004, Eiji Aonuma gave a presentation called “The Evolution of a Franchise: The Legend of Zelda” (You can hear it here). Today it serves as an interesting look into the series’ transition at a point in time just before the Legend of Zelda™: Twilight Princess game for the Wii was first announced. I interpreted for him for both the presentation as well as a number of interviews he did afterwards, and one of the themes he mentioned in both the interviews and the presentations was cooking. He talked about making a Zelda game as being similar to cooking stew: both are long processes, both require the combination of multiple different ingredients and seasonings, and when cooked together those ingredients combine to complete the overall flavor, which is enhanced. And he noted then that he was interested in making a game about cooking.

The very first time I played through the Great Plateau, I came across apples and mushrooms fairly early on in my wanderings. Of course, I collected them (I do love mushrooms!), and to a certain degree it seemed fairly straightforward that they would serve as food. But soon I was collecting acorns, herbs, raw meat, and spicy peppers, and when I found the old man at his cabin and started combining ingredients, I remembered Aonuma-san’s presentation and realized he finally achieved his goal of making a game about cooking.

You can read the rest of the post here.

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16 comments

  1. Cooking is by far my most favourite thing in the game. I just love combining different ingredients and trying to recreate some favourite dishes from real life ^___^

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  2. King Kalas X3 {Greatness Awaits. This use to be something that awaited those for all consoles. It's sad it's mostly just a PS4 slogan these days. Maybe Nintendo will get back to that greatness with the Switch. Only time will tell.} says:

    Too bad like many other game mechanics you learn on the Great Plateau, there isn’t any wide use for them once you leave that place. As the article said, you can easily get meals/elixirs from the plethora of NPCs you can save. Oh & Beedle gives you some, too, in exchange for one of the 3 beetle types you can catch. It would have been better if the NPCs gave you rupees or ingredients instead of actual cooked food when you save them.

    But I guess that’s also the beauty of Breath of the Wild: you can play the game however the hell you want. Of course, it’s a double edged sword, too. *shrug*

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    1. I actually use cooking to create meals that heal most if not all hearts plus extend hearts beyond what Link has (+8 in many cases). These were really used for fighting all the bosses or when I make stupid mistakes.

      Most of the elixirs and meals you can get from NPCs are not even close to that. I focused mostly on maxing out my stamina vs. hearts which is why this was important to me.

      But like you said, the nice thing is that you can play any way you want. It’s just nice that it’s something available that can be taken advantage of is the player is so inclined.

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    2. What mechanics do you mean? I don’t think there’s anything learned from the Plateau that I don’t use. As for cooking, there’s no way I could survive just from what NPCs give. Perhaps later, when I have enough hearts; but for now I find cooking essential.

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      1. King Kalas X3 {Greatness Awaits. This use to be something that awaited those for all consoles. It's sad it's mostly just a PS4 slogan these days. Maybe Nintendo will get back to that greatness with the Switch. Only time will tell.} says:

        The biggest one would be cutting down a tree to create a bridge across a cliff. I haven’t come across any other instance of being able to do that beyond that one little part. Shame, really, since it was hyped up awhile back.

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      2. I actually never did that. I completely forgot about it from the trailer. You’re right though. It would’ve been an interesting feature throughout the game, but any need for a makeshift bridge was killed by the glider.

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  3. One big mistake I think they made with cooking is the dishes that give you extra hearts (and to a lesser extent extra stamina). Since they restore you to full health, every other healt-restoring recipe becomes obsolete after a certain point in the game. They should’ve made those dishes less powerful to make sure you had to keep going for more complex recipes in order to stay healthy.

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  4. I wish they were more creative with the effect meals can have. There are no surprises (not that I know). Nothing weird happens (like dizzyness, or your skin color changes, or you shrink/grow/get fat, or you stink and the monsters flee or get attracted). I thought I did something wrong when baking monster cake. I was baffled when I googled and found that it does absolutely nothing. This is one of the many things I miss about a true Zelda game!

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