Eiji Aonuma ‘always wants to work on something new’

By Brenna Hillier
15 July 2011 01:05 GMT

The man behind The Legend of Zelda finds it difficult to escape the juggernaut franchise’s clutches.

“The truth of it is I always want to work on something new,” series producer Eiji Aonuma toldIndustryGamers.

“It just turns out that as I’m coming up with these ideas along the way, I realize, ‘Y’know, this could really work on a Zelda game.’ And it sort filters back into it and in the end, we come back into another Zelda project.

“So in some ways, it’s a bit of a challenge for me personally that Zelda ends up becoming this pool of my ideas and it keeps absorbing the ideas I have and they get integrated back into Zelda games.”

The latest entry in the series, Skyward Sword, takes Motion Plus tech as the “backbone” and a “central point of reference for gameplay”, Aonuma said.

“Skyward Sword takes good advantage of the Wii, but it’s really focused on motion plus functionality using your sword and your shield and the kind of tracking controls that are possible because of motion plus, not just with your sword but with a whole variety of different gameplay options that are all controlled by motion plus.”

Aonuma said this focus on Motion Plus and gameplay opportunities means it doesn’t feel like Wii title Skyward Sword is being built at the end of anything, even with the Wii U on the horizon, and this approach means Zelda releases aren’t tied to hardware cycles.

“With regards to Zelda, the development process is typically around three years and that’s a pretty big timeline obviously,” he said.

“So you’ve got a timeline for a given Zelda game and you’ve also got a timeline for new hardware. So obviously when those two timelines can line up neatly, then, yes we’d love to have something out and available at launch.”

Skyward Sword is due on Wii towards the end of the year. It will playable on the Wii U through backwards compatibility.

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