Nintendo is working on hardware that is a few years behind PS4 and XB1 (both of which are over 7 years old now) in terms of power. Majora's Mask came out a year and a half after OoT. A 2.5 year development cycle for Majora's Mask likely would have given us 4 to 5 days. A winter 2020 launch date would have given BotW2 a 2.5 to 3.5 year dev cycle, depending on how much effort was put into BotW's DLC batches.
Nintendo seems to be taking forever with BotW2, and unlike most, I don't see that as a good sign. Remember when we had to wait 5 years for Skyward Sword, only for it to be regarded as one of the worst 3D Zeldas? All I want out of BotW2 is a quick and dirty sequel that uses all of the ideas that were left on the cutting room table for the first game. Just look at Super Mario Galaxy 2 for a perfect example of this.
But anyway, I just want three more quality games from Nintendo's 1st party this year. Mario Golf's speed golf mode looks awesome, and I might pick that up too. So as long as Mario Golf pans out, they just need two more great games IMO. And no, lame remakes of D/P made by a mobile developer don't do anything for me. If Nintendo walks away from E3 with nothing more than remakes/remasters/ports and Mario Golf as their 1st party lineup for the 2nd half of 2021, I'm going to be pissed. IMO Nintendo can deliver more than that. Considering that they are making money hand over fist, they should be able to deliver more than that. My fingers are crossed that their E3 Direct will be amazing.
You're comparing apples to oranges here concerning Majora's mask and BotW2.
- Back in the day, developing a new AAA game took 2-3 years, concept to release. Nowadays it's twice as long.
- BotW had several DLC being developed first, not in parallel to the successor, which cuts the development cycle significantly. Right now there has been 2.5 years of development on BotW 2 at best. BotW2 after all only came to be after the developers had too many ideas to put into DLC and it got decided to make a successor instead.
- Majora's Mask was already fully conceptualized when OoT came out, meaning they could immediately start developing everything. But while they had too many ideas for DLC, filling up an entire game is another matter, especially a game world of the size of BotW. That takes a lot of time to get the ideas fully developed.
- Super Mario Galaxy 2 and MM were basically just mods from their predecessors, so they could be done quickly. Depending on what BotW 2 will offer, that might not be the case (though chances are it will be).
- Development got slowed down considerably due to Covid. I'm certain about the equivalent of a couple months to half a year of development has been lost due to the pandemic.
1. That's true for PS4 and XB1 games, but Switch is a lot less powerful than those two systems, so the graphical demands should lessen the workload considerably.
2. Wait so development on BotW2 didn't start until May of 2018? Didn't the last batch of BotW DLC come out winter 2017? Are you telling me they did nothing for six months?
3. What's your source for the claim that Majora's Mask was already fully planned out by the time OoT launched?
4. Yeah, I agree with this point completely. As far as I'm concerned BotW2 had better be revolutionary after all the time waiting for it. I would have preferred a quick and dirty mod like Galaxy 2 or MM though.
5. It's kind of strange how Sony really never slowed down due to Covid. GoT, and TLoU2 both ended the PS4's life cycle. Then Demon's Souls, Returnal, and Ratchet kept the games coming. Also keep in mind that Horizon 2 is due out this year when Horizon 1 also launched in 2017. Sure, two of those games are 2nd party, but for a launch year lineup two in house games is great. I agree that Covid slowed Nintendo down, but I bet that's a result of them failing to adapt. The same way that Nintendo has poor online, Nintendo couldn't manage work from home effectively.
I'm sure we could argue back and forth on this all day, but I'll wait to respond further until Nintendo's E3 has been shown. No sense in having a BotW2 debate if Nintendo suddenly drops a 2021 release date or mindblowing gameplay footage on us.