Zelda: Breath of the Wild Producer Reveals What Games He Used For Research

by Nathan Birch

(Photo: Nintendo)

The Legend of Zelda series is one of the most influential series of all time, with hundreds, if not thousands, of games having directly ripped off Link's adventures. But where do the makers of Zelda look for inspiration? Shigeru Miyamoto largely drew on his own childhood, but are Zelda's developers ever inspired by other video games?

It turns out Zelda producer Eiji Aonuma definitely is, as he recently rattled off a list of “research material” he played while overseeing The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. According to Aonuma Far Cry 4, The Witcher, and Skyrim were on his playlist, although not Grand Theft Auto V. That one's too violent for him. Aonuma explained to Game Informer how these games enriched Breath of the Wild...

In the past I didn’t play many video games. But then I realized, this isn’t right, I have to. So nowadays, I actually play a lot of overseas titles. While playing those games, I do find some ideas, but it’s not that it connects directly to Zelda to where I would take something and use it in Zelda, but it’s more of something I keep in the back of my head while developing the game.”

While we're on the subject of Aonuma's gaming habits, what was his favorite game of 2016?

I was too busy in 2016, but I did play The Last Guardian. Fumito Ueda and I go back, so when he completed that game he sent a copy to me. It was actually a really busy time so I shouldn’t have been playing the game, but I just couldn’t resist, and it was really good.”

Hey, this Aonuma guy has pretty good taste in games! That said, I'd love it if he threw us all a curve ball in his next interview and claimed he's been playing a lot of Mortal Kombat and Duke Nukem.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild launches alongside the Nintendo Switch on March 3.

[via Game Informer]