Forums - Nintendo Discussion - Toon graphics for (ground-up) Wii U Zelda would be a terrible idea

Since before the Gamecube, gamers have talked wistfully about a semi-realistic looking Zelda game with amazing  graphics.

Nintendo teased a tech demo for the Gamecube before the console's launch, showing Link and Ganondorf in such a style. Many were then hugely disappointed when the system's first Zelda game, Wind Waker, adopted a toon style. This approach scared off the gamers who thought of themselves as "cool" and "hardcore."

Then Twilight Princess was announced, giving these gamers what they'd been longing for; a dark and mature looking Zelda game. The hype and excitement for it was far beyond Wind Waker, and sales followed suit. The only problem was that by the time it launched, the arrival of the PS3 and 360 had left its graphics, pretty as they were, technically outdated.

And so the dream then became of a "HD" Zelda, which would follow Twilight Princess's lead except with more advanced graphics. Once again, this dream seemed to be granted when, at E3 2011, we saw a Wii U Zelda demo showing a semi-realistic style with high-end graphics. 

But the announcement of Wind Waker HD and Nintendo's recent history with the franchise rings alarm bells, warning that history might repeat itself with a cartoonish Wii U Zelda destoying the hopes fired by the tantalising tech demo.

Here's the thing; surely Nintendo must be aware that many, many gamers would run out buy a Wii U immediately for a Zelda game in the style of the tech demo, yet wouldn't touch a toon Zelda, HD or no, with a ten foot pole?

It's the hardcore gamer's wet dream; a dark looking Zelda game with HD graphics. They'll be cutting off a chunk of their potential audience by making it toon, yet they'd lose almost nobody by making it semi-realistic.

It's no coincidence that the two highest selling Zelda games, Twilight Pincess and Ocarina of Time, boast (for their time) sophisticated semi-realisic graphics.

From a business perspective it makes perfect sense to go non-toon, but frankly Nintendo's business decisions often baffle me these days, and I would not be surprised if they let this opportunity to win back a bunch of the core gamers they've lost.

Around the Network
I'm sorry, but naturally evolving the franchise and keeping it in line with player's expectations is incompatible with Aonuma's "genious"


Skyward sword is one of the best looking games of all time
I would rather have highly enhanced Ss style grafix over Tp ones..... anyday

In order to help to see things clearly, do you think The legend of Zelda : Link's awakening is a less appealing opus for veterans than The legend of Zelda : A link to the past ? Are The legend of Zelda : Oracle of season/Age unattractive for them compared to The legend of Zelda : Majora's Mask ? Are The legend of Zelda : Phantom Hourglass, The legend of Zelda : Phantom Hourglass, The legend of Zelda : Spirit Tracks, and The legend of Zelda : Skyward Sword less interesting for them than The legend of Zelda : Twilight Princess ? And what are you thinking about The legend of Zelda : Ocarina of Time which is less dark and less photo-realistic than The legend of Zelda : Twilight Princess ?

All I want is to fight with Ganon again.
And a smooch from Zelda... hehe.

Ask stefl1504 for a sig, even if you don't need one.

Around the Network

I'm not sure how important "semi-realistic" art direction was to sales for Ocarina and Twilight Princess. It probably had a lot to do with the greatness of Ocarina, and several other reasons for Twilight Princess: launch title, novelty of motion controls, huge install base, etc.

On a personal note, I wouldn't mind if Nintendo EAD reused the art style of Wind Waker with a new Zelda game. In my opinion, Wind Waker has the best production design of any game in the series.

Edit: post #1,500!

The style of the E3 tech demo was perfect IMO. If they release a 2nd main Zelda game on the WiiU this gen I'd really like to see what they can do with the SS engine, but PLEASE let the first LoZ on WiiU be like the tech demo^^

Thats the last thing they should do, I want it to look like the 2011 CGI trailer.

Turkish said:
Thats the last thing they should do, I want it to look like the 2011 CGI trailer.

what CG trailer?

    R.I.P Mr Iwata :'(

Around the Network
Turkish said:
Thats the last thing they should do, I want it to look like the 2011 CGI trailer.