E3 2010: Zelda: Skyward Sword Preview

E3 2010: Zelda: Skyward Sword Preview

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Few things elicit squeals of glee as successfully as mention of a "new Zelda" game. Thus, simply by showing off a few scenes and announcing a title for the game, Nintendo managed to score a success from their appearance at E3 2010, above and beyond announcing a new DS, a new Metroid and scores of other exciting games.

Skyward Sword, the new Zelda title, is a return to the taller, darker and handsomer Link from Twilight Princess, but this time the game has been designed for the ground up to use the Wii; specifically, the Wii Motion Plus.

Twilight Princess, if you'll recall, had begun development prior to the announcement of the Wii, and was originally intended as a Gamecube title. The Wii version of the game, while very good, was little more than a port. Movement controls existed, but weren't fantastic and at times detracted form what was a wonderfully original game experience.

With Skyward Sword, Nintendo has set out to correct these problems. Utilizing the enhanced motion control of the Wii Motion Plus, Skyward Sword allows players to control not only when Link swings his sword, but in what direction. You can even hold the Wii Remote in front of you, as it if were a sword, and Link will do the same.

Every motion of the Wii Remote is translated into a motion of the sword, allowing for various types and strengths of attacks. If an enemy is guarding his sides, swing the Wii Remote downward, and Link will attack in the same manner, bypassing the enemy's defenses. If he's defending his head, swing the Wii Remote from side-to-side, and Link will slash across the enemy's body. You can also jab, and Link will do the same.

As with most of Nintendo's hardware or software enhancements, this seems at first like a minor improvement, but when taken in context of the branching list of possibilities the motion control presents, is enormous. In addition to the new sword moves, Link can now, using the same motion control, throw, place or roll bombs, depending on how you move the Wii Remote. His special attacks are also triggered, not by button presses, but by meaningful gestures. Considering Link's usual compliment of weapons and gadgets, one can easily imagine the gameplay possibilities.

Aside from the new controls, Nintendo didn't reveal much about Skyward Sword in their E3 demo. The demo was created using a unique art style the Nintendo rep called "a watercolor effect," which to me just looked like unfinished art. If it was intentional, though, assuming it gets some more love between now and when the game is released, it could present yet another new look for the series, which, considering its current home on the graphics-poor Wii, could definitely use it.

Story-wise, we have absolutely no news. I can't even tell you what "skyward sword" refers to, other than the obvious reference to the enhanced motion controls. Internet rumors suggest that this new installment features a Link born in a land above the clouds, but let's hold off getting all woody over that until the official release.

What we do know is that the gameplay is going to be fun. And that there will probably be a princess to save, Triforces to collect and a boss enemy named Ganon. And that it will be one of the few must-have titles for the Wii when it's released, some time next year.

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As soon as i can im Pre-ordering it.

I think it looks great!
And the idea of Using your Bombs as Bowling Balls!?
Awesome.

Plus Light Brown Hair Link is cooler than Blond Hair Link.
IMHO.
:P

Well, when you heard some more news please tell us.

Ah, now I can perfect my 7-10 Moblin Split.

Twilight Princess is one of the few games where I will never understand why people like it.

I mean, I don't like FO3 either, but I see the appeal and why others love it so.

Check out thisa interview for some more details from Miyamoto and other Nintendo higher ups
http://www.videogamer.com/wii/the_legend_of_zelda_skyward_sword/preview-2425.html

Looking like they are gonna be adding a fair few fun little features in. Looking forward to playing it myself

Super Mario Galaxy (and 2) looked so damn good that even in standard definition it looked better than many 360 and PS3 games. It didn't need some crazy cel-shaded or watercolor art style to disguise the system's weaknesses, it worked around them and used the machine's strong points to create a truly incredible visual experience. I expect the same from Zelda: Skyward Sword.

P.S. Thanks

To those of you complaining about the cel-shading and cartoony style - when was Zelda ever a realistic-looking game?
Ocarina of Time still features plenty of bright colours.

I think Skyward Sword should be excellent. I need to finish Twilight Princess first though.

Nintendo could leave a dump on my doorstep and put a slip of paper on it that says "The Legend of Zelda: Porchside Poop" and I'd probably love it. So I'll probably end up loving this as well.

tomtom94:
To those of you complaining about the cel-shading and cartoony style - when was Zelda ever a realistic-looking game?
Ocarina of Time still features plenty of bright colours.

I think Skyward Sword should be excellent. I need to finish Twilight Princess first though.

There a difference between Zelda looking cartoony like wind waker and zelda have stylized realism aka Ocarina of Time or Twilight Princess.

This game looks like the former and it disappoints me greatly.

/start flame

Why is Link right-handed again :(

Andothul:

tomtom94:
To those of you complaining about the cel-shading and cartoony style - when was Zelda ever a realistic-looking game?
Ocarina of Time still features plenty of bright colours.

I think Skyward Sword should be excellent. I need to finish Twilight Princess first though.

There a difference between Zelda looking cartoony like wind waker and zelda have stylized realism aka Ocarina of Time or Twilight Princess.

This game looks like the former and it disappoints me greatly.

/start flame

I get quite irritated by this, so I apologise if it seems I'm ranting and starting a flame war.

Right, now this I don't understand.
Why does the graphical style matter so much? Zelda has always been popular for its gameplay and as long as that is sound- what's the problem?
Was there this sort of outcry with Red Steel 2? (there probably was, actually)
Wind Waker was a gorgeous game in my opinion. The world sucked me in far better than Ocarina of Time and Twilight Princess ever did. (they looked good - they just didn't immerse and absorb me as Wind Waker did)
I'm sorry but if you can't look past the graphics to the gameplay - the core of Zelda - then that's your problem. Don't make it anyone els'es.

VGFreak1225:
Nintendo could leave a dump on my doorstep and put a slip of paper on it that says "The Legend of Zelda: Porchside Poop" and I'd probably love it. So I'll probably end up loving this as well.

Nintendo already did that to me, except they called it "Phantom Hourglass." And I hated it.

Skyward Sword, on the other hand, looks pretty awesome. I was disappointed to see that they brought back that "thrust the nunchuck forward to thrust your shield" mechanic from Twilight Princess, though. If you saw Miyamoto trying to do it at the press conference and failing miserable a few times before getting it to work, well, that was me trying to do it in Twilight Princess. Hopefully they can fine-tune it before the game releases though.

The whole Wii motion plus attacks will take some getting used to, but I'll manage.

But does this mean that we can commit suicide by pointing it at ourselves?

SEPPUKU!! =D

So, is the game playable with a REAL controller and not just the spazmatic jerking of your arms?

Also, Link is right-handed because 90% of the populace is right-handed and the other 10% are freakish mutations.

Russ Pitts:
Story-wise, we have absolutely no news. I can't even tell you what "skyward sword" refers to, other than the obvious reference to the enhanced motion controls. Internet rumors suggest that this new installment features a Link born in a land above the clouds, but let's hold off getting all woody over that until the official release.

One thing they mentioned in the actual demonstration of the game on-stage was that your sword charges when you point it upwards/skywards, and by slashing with your sword you will "shoot sword winds/beams". That seems like a pretty cheap element that doesn't really deserve to name the sequel, I actually dislike the title very much and isn't as exited as I probably should be.

tomtom94:

Andothul:

tomtom94:
To those of you complaining about the cel-shading and cartoony style - when was Zelda ever a realistic-looking game?
Ocarina of Time still features plenty of bright colours.

I think Skyward Sword should be excellent. I need to finish Twilight Princess first though.

There a difference between Zelda looking cartoony like wind waker and zelda have stylized realism aka Ocarina of Time or Twilight Princess.

This game looks like the former and it disappoints me greatly.

/start flame

I get quite irritated by this, so I apologise if it seems I'm ranting and starting a flame war.

Right, now this I don't understand.
Why does the graphical style matter so much? Zelda has always been popular for its gameplay and as long as that is sound- what's the problem?
Was there this sort of outcry with Red Steel 2? (there probably was, actually)
Wind Waker was a gorgeous game in my opinion. The world sucked me in far better than Ocarina of Time and Twilight Princess ever did. (they looked good - they just didn't immerse and absorb me as Wind Waker did)
I'm sorry but if you can't look past the graphics to the gameplay - the core of Zelda - then that's your problem. Don't make it anyone els'es.

I'm with your side. I never understood why the art style was so hated either.
It didn't detract from the gameplay at all. Wind Waker was still really, really fun.

OT: Glad to hear that the controls actually work. Because I was a little worried after the initial demo shown on stage.

Yes, to put it lightly, I'm enthused.

I saw the demonstration of the game with miyamoto himself doing it, the controls were rather unresponsive, the motion he wanted to do, the game would do the opposite, took him several tries to just kill one monster. I was seriously not impressed and couldn't even watch the whole thing without facepalming. I have loved Zelda more than any other game series for the last 10 years of my life and spirit tracks, along with this one's demo I feel uninterested in. I admit to finishing Phourglass, but the end left me with no happy feelings of winning, it killed my interest in ST. I don't want to feel like I'm forced to play it with just motion controls, I hate the controls, it's a waste of battery power and I don't want to look like I'm swatting a fly as I'm playing my game. Plus, requiring motion plus is just their way to make people buy it.

This is why I enjoyed Twilight Princess among other things, I didn't need to use my crappy gimmick wiimote but my faithful GC controller. This is just my opinion, if you feel the control of the sword like that is fun and interesting then fine, you enjoy that, but I don't, at all. If I can use my classic controller with this game then I'll change my mind.

Irridium:

tomtom94:

Andothul:

tomtom94:
To those of you complaining about the cel-shading and cartoony style - when was Zelda ever a realistic-looking game?
Ocarina of Time still features plenty of bright colours.

I think Skyward Sword should be excellent. I need to finish Twilight Princess first though.

There a difference between Zelda looking cartoony like wind waker and zelda have stylized realism aka Ocarina of Time or Twilight Princess.

This game looks like the former and it disappoints me greatly.

/start flame

I get quite irritated by this, so I apologise if it seems I'm ranting and starting a flame war.

Right, now this I don't understand.
Why does the graphical style matter so much? Zelda has always been popular for its gameplay and as long as that is sound- what's the problem?
Was there this sort of outcry with Red Steel 2? (there probably was, actually)
Wind Waker was a gorgeous game in my opinion. The world sucked me in far better than Ocarina of Time and Twilight Princess ever did. (they looked good - they just didn't immerse and absorb me as Wind Waker did)
I'm sorry but if you can't look past the graphics to the gameplay - the core of Zelda - then that's your problem. Don't make it anyone els'es.

I'm with your side. I never understood why the art style was so hated either.
It didn't detract from the gameplay at all. Wind Waker was still really, really fun.

OT: Glad to hear that the controls actually work. Because I was a little worried after the initial demo shown on stage.

I'd make a guess that some people are at that delicate age where anything that looks to cartoony brings into question their masculinity and/or maturity?

As for the new controls, from what it sounds like I've been waiting for something like this ever since I mastered the Die By the Sword VSIM mouse controls over 10 years ago. I doubt I'll be able to severe limbs, let alone pick them up and beat poor limbless saps with them, and I also doubt Link will be shouting colourful taunts in a British accent, but I'm praying to God Buddah Muhammed and Xenu that the gameplay delivers!

Andothul:

tomtom94:
To those of you complaining about the cel-shading and cartoony style - when was Zelda ever a realistic-looking game?
Ocarina of Time still features plenty of bright colours.

I think Skyward Sword should be excellent. I need to finish Twilight Princess first though.

There a difference between Zelda looking cartoony like wind waker and zelda have stylized realism aka Ocarina of Time or Twilight Princess.

This game looks like the former and it disappoints me greatly.

/start flame

I thought that it was being done in this style as a kind of combination of the two styles, which I think if done correctly could look a lot nicer. Personally though I like both styles, and Wind Waker is my favourite Zelda at the moment :)

OT: I hope the controls work as promised and that they keep the dungeons as interesting and fun as ever; and this is a game I will definitely be getting.

JaredXE:
So, is the game playable with a REAL controller and not just the spazmatic jerking of your arms?

Also, Link is right-handed because 90% of the populace is right-handed and the other 10% are freakish mutations.

what a great way to make friends, by insulting people for being different, freakish mutations that happen to house some of the worlds greatest minds. I'm hoping there will be a lefty setting for those of us that are southpawed like Link!

They've stated that the sword will become the Master Sword, so that's the significance of the title. So I have to assume that on any timeline, this would have to come first, as well.

I like the graphical style because, like in Wind Waker, it makes the game more playable. It's really easy to see what's going on, which wasn't always the case in Twilight Princess, or lots of other games, for that matter. I prefer that, especially given how often Zelda games tend to get me to stare at a TV for 10 hours straight, rarely blinking, eyes drying out and vision blurring...

Covarr:
Super Mario Galaxy (and 2) looked so damn good that even in standard definition it looked better than many 360 and PS3 games. It didn't need some crazy cel-shaded or watercolor art style to disguise the system's weaknesses, it worked around them and used the machine's strong points to create a truly incredible visual experience. I expect the same from Zelda: Skyward Sword.

P.S. Thanks

It didn't need a crazy art style because it's essentially a cartoon to start with. That makes a pretty big difference -- not a single thing in that game world is meant to look like a real-world item.

About 7 days late... but ok.....

OT: I'm liking it so far. I mean, he jumps off a freaking cliff!

Skyward Sword's graphics aren't "downgrading", they're just more colorful and bright. Although Twilight Princess boasted more realistic graphics, it had such an extreme bloom lighting effect that could make everything onscreen glow, and sometimes hard to see. It's a huge relief that LoZ is returning to the calmer cel-shaded style.

royohz:

Russ Pitts:
Story-wise, we have absolutely no news. I can't even tell you what "skyward sword" refers to, other than the obvious reference to the enhanced motion controls. Internet rumors suggest that this new installment features a Link born in a land above the clouds, but let's hold off getting all woody over that until the official release.

One thing they mentioned in the actual demonstration of the game on-stage was that your sword charges when you point it upwards/skywards, and by slashing with your sword you will "shoot sword winds/beams". That seems like a pretty cheap element that doesn't really deserve to name the sequel, I actually dislike the title very much and isn't as exited as I probably should be.

Did you forget the swordbeams from the days of NES and SNES? I thought the return of the swordbeam was a nice shoutout to the Zelda games of old, even if the mechanics for shooting beams out my sword are a little different than remaining at full HP.

I will still play this because I love the series (and will most likely love the game) but I have to say this.

Traditional control option, please? Also, Link is left handed Nintendo. Keep it that way.

tomtom94:
To those of you complaining about the cel-shading and cartoony style - when was Zelda ever a realistic-looking game?
Ocarina of Time still features plenty of bright colours.

It's more that when Wind Waker was announced people were a little put off by the cel-shaded graphics because it was following in Ocarina and Marjora's wake. People wanted to see Link rendered in next generation graphics and when Nintendo heard the criticism they designed Twilight Princess with that in mind.

Going back to cel-shading at this point is like if BMW for arguments sake decided to remove a series of new safety features that were introduced in an earlier car model from their newest one because they think it looks better that way, despite the praise the new features received in the first place.

Adzma:
Going back to cel-shading at this point is like if BMW for arguments sake decided to remove a series of new safety features that were introduced in an earlier car model from their newest one because they think it looks better that way, despite the praise the new features received in the first place.

It's mind-boggling to me how many people simply ignore all the people, like myself, who appreciated the cel shading. They plug their ears and act as if the game was widely hated for the art style. A lot of people did hate it, sure, but what I've seen indicates that those people are not in the majority. At least not within the group of people who actually played the game.

I personally like the art style of this new game. I don't want everything to look all realistic. I live in reality, I play games to escape from that.

xyrafhoan:

royohz:

Russ Pitts:
Story-wise, we have absolutely no news. I can't even tell you what "skyward sword" refers to, other than the obvious reference to the enhanced motion controls. Internet rumors suggest that this new installment features a Link born in a land above the clouds, but let's hold off getting all woody over that until the official release.

One thing they mentioned in the actual demonstration of the game on-stage was that your sword charges when you point it upwards/skywards, and by slashing with your sword you will "shoot sword winds/beams". That seems like a pretty cheap element that doesn't really deserve to name the sequel, I actually dislike the title very much and isn't as exited as I probably should be.

Did you forget the swordbeams from the days of NES and SNES? I thought the return of the swordbeam was a nice shoutout to the Zelda games of old, even if the mechanics for shooting beams out my sword are a little different than remaining at full HP.

No, of course I didn't forget about the old NES and SNES games, it's a nice touch, I admit that, but still, if that is the low limit of what titles can be made out of, then why not The Legend of Zelda: Rise Of The Deku Nut.

 

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