On Tuesday, March 28, Nintendo published never-before-seen gameplay of the newest The Legend of Zelda installment, Tears of the Kingdom, whose release is less than a month away. With countless additives and a plotline that is not yet revealed, it’s time to dive deep into what makes Tears of the Kingdom one of the most highly anticipated video games of this year.
In the YouTube video, The Legend of Zelda series, producer Eiji Aonuma walks viewers through some of his favorite aspects of the game. Right off the bat, Link sports much different garb than that of Tears of the Kingdom’s predecessor Breath of the Wild. The more shocking revelation, however, is how the land of Hyrule now extends upwards into the sky in Tears of the Kingdom.
Called “sky islands,” these floating land masses provide another opportunity for players to explore the already extremely vast open-world map. One new component of these sky islands is new enemies called “constructs.” Robotic in nature, they look different than any other enemy present in Breath of the Wild, save for the highly mechanical and lethal Guardians.
Nevertheless, Aonuma reveals that there are many unique ways to reach these islands but demonstrates one of Link’s new abilities called “recall,” which rewinds an object’s movement. Breath of the Wild contained many of these abilities—called “runes”—and it’s unclear whether or not the innovative techniques such as “magnesis” and “stasis” are still present in Tears of the Kingdom. Despite this, it appears that there will be countless other tricks for players to experiment with in this game.
Perhaps the most exciting of these new additions is Link’s “fuse” ability, meaning he can now fuse objects together to create new weapons, personal armor, and even transportation machines. This unlocks what seems like an infinite number of possibilities for players, as fusings not only allow the player to experiment with weapon durability and attack potential but also new defense tactics and means of getting around Hyrule.
In the video, Aonuma uses “fuse” to attach logs and abandoned fans together to make a raft, and even demonstrates the new “ultrahand” ability to show how fused items can also be detached and further manipulated. It is then that Aonuma admits that the various vehicles shown in the game’s trailers are not actually available in the game but are instead examples of creations that players can make for themselves using these new abilities.
Yet another of Link’s new abilities shown in the gameplay is that of “ascend.” The title leaves little to the imagination, as this allows Link to rise through ceilings that may be an obstacle to the floor above. Rather than using accumulated stamina to climb buildings and mountains, which is what had to be done in Breath of the Wild, players can now use this trick to get to the top of landscapes fairly quickly.
The gameplay ends with Link returning to the surface of Hyrule, but the hype for the game is truly only getting started. With the little that’s been revealed thus far, and the undoubted more that is to come, it’s clear to see that the sky is not the limit for player creativity.