The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Release Date, Trailer, Story Details, & Latest News

Everything you need to know about The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, including DLC news, release date, trailers, and much more!

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Release Date

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is set to release on March 3, 2017. The game is coming for the Switch and Wii U.

In a statement to IGN, Nintendo outlined the differences between the Switch and Wii U versions of the game:

– Both launch on the same day, March 3.- Both have a frame rate of 30fps.- Both versions of the game offer the same content.- On a TV, the Nintendo Switch version of the game renders in 900p while the Wii U version renders in 720p.- The Nintendo Switch version has higher-quality environmental sounds. As a result, the sound of steps, water, grass, etc. are more realistic and enhance the game’s Open-Air feel.- The physical copy of the Wii U version will require 3GB of available memory on the Wii U system or an external drive.- Some icons, such as onscreen buttons, differ between the two versions.- A Special Edition and Master Edition of the Wii U version are not available.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild DLC

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild will be the first main Zelda game to feature DLC including to the latest update from Nintendo.

When Breath of the Wild releases on March 3rd, players will be able to purchase an “Expansion Pass” for $19.99 that grants them access to two separate content packages that will be released throughout 2017. The content packages contain the following:

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Pack 1 – Summer 2017

– A new Cave of Trials challenge- Hard mode- “A new feature for the in-game map”

Pack 2 – Holiday 2017

– A new dungeon- A new “original story”- Additional challenges

Furthermore, those who purchase the pass will immediately gain access to three in-game items. The first two are only described as “useful” while the third is a Nintendo Switch shirt that Link can wear. You’ve got to love branding.

At present, Nintendo does not plan to offer these content packages separately. Those who wish to access them will need to purchase the Expansion Pass. 

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The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Story

A very determined YouTube named Zeltik has translated The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild‘s special edition world map (called the “Relic of Hyrule: Calamity Ganon Tapestry and Weather-Worn Map,” included in the game’s special and master edition), which is written in the game’s Shiekah language, to reveal some very interesting details about the game’s backstory. Some of this may be considered SPOILER TERRITORY, so continue reading at your own risk.

Zeltik translated the Shiekah first to Japanese and then English and came up with the following message (with “an error margin of only around 4%,” according to Zeltik):

Hylians pass stories of a destined time long past where multiple races lived and worked together in harmony. The Sheikah Tribe’s blue aura breathed through the land and this mutual prosperity continued until a cataclysmic disaster struck. The Hero and the Princess attempted to seal the terror which became known as the Calamity Ganon. Divine beasts awoke from four directions and deployed a mechanical army which made the King and his people fearful. They fractured Ganon’s power and sealed him but the Sheikah were banished from the land ever since.

This would explain why Calamity Ganon is trapped around Hyrule Castle and why there’s a mechanical army terrorizing the land. You can watch the complete video about the process of translating the text here:

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The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Trailer

A new 30-second TV trailer from Japan features some glimpses at the game’s dramatic action sequences. Check it out below:

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is officially coming in March and there’s another trailer to celebrate. And it’s seriously amazing. Check it out below:

Here’s some more footage of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and this time it’s playing on the new Nintendo Switch. We get to see the game playing in both the home console setup and the handheld. The new footage premiered on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. Check it out below:

This railer for Breath of the Wild, titled Life in the Ruins, shows of the open-world games more adventorous side. Sadly, it does not include a release date.

Two more trailers for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild highlight several different aspects of the game, such as the combat system and the dynamic weather system.

First up is a gameplay video:

Next is a video highlighting the combat:

And last is this 4-minute bit of footage that showcases the game’s dynamic weather system:

The next bit of footage features one of the game’s newest mechanics: cooking. You might think it’s a bit silly to devote a whole promo to Link cooking food in the forest, but this mechanic is really quite fun and vital to survival in the wilderness of Hyrule. 

Check out the new video below:

GameXplain has posted a big two-hour video analyzing all of the Breath of the Wild footage that’s out so far. It’s super thorough, and there are parts that are certainly more speculation than fact, but it’s still a lot of fun to watch. Beware: there are spoilers in the video.

Check out the video below:

Here are two more clips from the game. One shows Link’s new cooking skills and the other sees the young hero solving one of the dungeons in the game’s huge world. Check out the clips below:

— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) August 18, 2016

At the start of their E3 Nintendo Treehouse event, Nintendo officially unveiled the title for the upcoming Legend of Zelda game on Wii U and NX. The game will be called The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and you can check out the brand new game trailer just below.

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The Big N also unleashed TONS of gameplay footage during its E3 2016 Nintendo Treehouse stream. You can watch the gameplay below:

Link must adventure into areas in the game called Shrines where he can gain new abilities that will help him traverse the open world and complete quests:

Breath of the Wild‘s main focus definitely seems to be exploration, as Link can travel through the world in pretty much any way and order he chooses. One highlight of this open world approach is Link’s ability to climb mountains and plan his attacks against hordes of enemies:

The Wolf Link amiibo allows Link to summon a wolf companion that will fight alongside him. You can only use the amiibo once every 24 hours, though.

One of the things Nintendo pointed out during the stream was the new game’s connection to the original The Legend of Zelda on the NES:

Here’s a deeper look at the weapons and combat of the game:

There was a big surprise tucked away at the end of the Twilight Princess HD trailer in the Nov. 2015 Nintendo Direct. In the last 20 seconds or so, we’re treated to a shot of Link riding his trusty steed Epona through a dramatic landscape. It’s not much, but hey, we’ll take what we can get at this stage; and it has to be said that Zelda Wii U (as we’re currently calling it) looks quite handsome, particularly when compared to the Twlight Princess HD footage.

Creator Shigeru Miyamoto and Director Eiji Aonuma sat down to show off some of the new gameplay features in next year’s The Legend of Zelda Wii U. 

Here is the gameplay footage:

E3 2014 was the first time we got some actual clips of the long awaited (and as yet unnamed) Zelda Wii U. The swaying grass, the way the clouds pass overhead, shifting the lighting, and then the magic/energy effects? Just glorious. The first footage starts at about 1:27 in the video below:

From this video, we have definitive proof from the horse’s mouth (perhaps we should leave Epona out of this) that Nintendo will be making good on its promise that Zelda Wii U will have an open world, meaning no transitions between locations. While a seemingly minor detail, the effect it has on the verisimilitude of the world in which the player is engaged is significant. There are no boundaries now. Those mountains in the distance aren’t just a bit of background in one section and the main setpiece of another. You can actually walk to them from where you are. They exist in the game, active, wherever you might be standing. That’s pretty damn cool.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Details

Both Zelda series creator Shigeru Miyamoto and producer Eiji Aounma spoke with Kotaku about the delays surrounding The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which was originally set to release in 2015 before it was delayed all the way to March 2017. Aounma says the delays are a direct result of Nintendo’s ambitious approach with every new Zelda project. 

Says Aonuma, “Every time we make a Zelda, we want to make something new,” he explained. “It’s hard to gauge how long that’s going to take. And it’s also hard to gauge at what point whatever we consider to be new is done.”

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“I think there’s different reasons for delays,” Miyamoto added. “One could be that the direction just hasn’t been decided, which is probably the worst kind of delay. And the other is that the direction has been decided but putting that into reality — implementing that — is taking time. So it might have taken us six months to do this much. It’ll take us a year to do that much.”

Miyamoto also said that Breath of the Wild had to be delayed to allow further work on the physics engine, graphics, and the AI. Says Miyamoto: 

We had to make sure that design has enough time to create that. It just dawned on us that we’re not able to do that in this schedule. That’s what we realized about two years ago. In this instance, we never really experienced this, so that’s why we had to delay it. First of all, it would be great if I didn’t have to put a release date out at all. But I have to.

Miyamoto also spoke to IGN about his hesitance to call Breath of the Wild an “open world game.” The Zelda creator said:

I think within the game industry or the tech industry, there’s a tendency to want to name everything. But I think it’s important for what we do that we don’t want to be dependent or swayed by the technology and what’s available now.

We want to use the technology and the techniques that are available to make what we want to make. What’s important is to really express how we use that to make our experience unique. We didn’t want to just make a game where you can do anything, but we wanted to make sure that we make a game where the player is able to do anything, but it’s also a form of entertainment. It’s fun to do all of those things.

That’s why we felt that coming up with a name that we created would be best. The term “Open Air” is a result of that. That’s what Bill [Trinen, Nintendo’s senior product marketing manager] uses a lot.

Trinen explained what he means in terms of “Open Air,” saying: 

From my perspective, I look at a lot of open-world games and the world is a setting for the story the developers want to tell in that space. I look at this game and I see a world that is fully integrated into the exploration and the adventure. It’s not just a world that you’re passing through. It’s sort of a world that you’re a part of. So much of the adventure and exploration is in this outdoor space, and the theme of wilderness collectively seemed like “Open Air” was the right fit for it.

Speaking with Game Informer, Miyamoto revealed that Monolith Soft, the developer behind the Xenoblade series, is aiding Nintendo with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

“Yes, they are involved in this Zelda,” he said. “People from Tokyo and Kyoto are working together on this. There is a team of over 100 [from Monolith Soft] helping work on this project, and their work has really been helpful.” 

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Monolith Soft previously helped Nintendo with development on The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

In other news, series producer Eiji Aonuma told Polygon that it is possible for players to finish the game without experiencing Breath of the Wild‘s story. Players will have the freedom to go face the final boss of the game right after the opening scene. 

“Users may not actually get the full story depending on how they play this game and how they strategize and solve puzzles,” Aonuma said. He also added that players will be “able to go to the very end goal without revealing why Link woke up the way he did and where he did.”

Aonuma did stress that he wouldn’t recommend this method of finishing the game for those players who want the best experience. That said, he mentioned that it is technically possible to beat the final boss as soon as the game starts, and that he could see fans competing against each other to see who could beat the final boss first. 

Aonuma has also claimed in a new interview that it’s “impossible” to 100% complete Breath of the Wild in a week. 

“First of all, it’s going to be impossible for you to 100 percent complete Breath of the Wild!” Aonuma told The Completionist, a YouTuber who tries to complete a game a week.

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Watch the interview below:

Aonuma has previously told IGN that developing a bigger world for the next Zelda game was a big focus at Nintendo. 

“After Skyward Sword we really needed to develop a bigger world, but we’ve actually never done that,” he said. “So a lot of it was trial and error, and we had to feel things out.”

Breath of the Wild will reportedly be 12 times the size of Twilight Princess.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Photos

A bunch of new screenshots have arrived for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wildcourtesy of Game Informer. Included in the new pictures is the reveal that Beedle the Merchant, who first appeared in The Wind Waker, will return for Link’s latest adventure!

Check out the images below:

To ring in the New Year, Nintendo dropped a new piece of Breath of the Wild concept art on Twitter, depicting a scene that’s very reminiscent of the original Legend of Zelda:

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Twitter user Wario64 pointed out how similar the art was to 1986’s The Legend of Zelda:

— Wario64 (@Wario64) January 1, 2017

Nintendo released three other pieces of art from The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild for the holidays. As always, the art is gorgeous and shows off Link will interact with the elements. Check them out below:

Nintendo has dropped a fun update on the Japanese Zelda Twitter account: a beautiful piece of art that shows Link climbing what looks like a giant pumpkin. The account tweeted “Happy Halloween” along with the picture. Check out the art below: