Earlier this week at E3 2016, GameSpot spoke to Nintendo producer Eiji Aonuma about the upcoming Wii U and NX game, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. During the conversation, which was translated by a Nintendo representative, we asked Aonuma if the rumors of having the option to play as a female version of Link are accurate. He said that he’s aware of the conversations happening online, stating: “So yes, there were rumors like that, and we did discuss as a staff as to what would be possible if we took that route.”
However, instead of entertaining the idea of the player being able to choose the hero Link’s gender, Aonuma said his team considered what they deemed to be the simplest option; making princess Zelda the lead character. “We thought about it,” said Aonuma, “and decided that if we’re going to have a female protagonist it’s simpler to have Princess Zelda as the main character.”
This idea was ultimately rejected, because according to Aonuma “…if we have princess Zelda as the main character who fights, then what is Link going to do? Taking into account that, and also the idea of the balance of the Triforce, we thought it best to come back to this [original] makeup.”
Aonuma’s response implies that Zelda can’t be the star of a game if it comes at the cost of Link’s identity or involvement, and that when the “simpler” idea for a female hero didn’t pan out, the concept was abandoned entirely. While he also mentions the balance of the Triforce as a reason behind their decision–it’s not clear how that would negate the possibility of Link being female, rather than male.
How do you feel about Aonuma’s reasoning? Are you disappointed that you won’t be able to play as a female hero in Breath of the Wild? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.