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How Zelda Wind Waker could be improved on Wii U

How will Nintendo tune up the gameplay?

Nintendo Direct gave us some pretty awesome announcements last month. Eiji Aonuma told us that the new Zelda Wii U game would rethink conventions...but then we all kinda knew that right? It was an amazing surprise though to find out that we would be getting a HD remake of the Gamecube classic The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker!

For those unfamiliar with Wind Waker, it's quite special as this was the first time Zelda fans were introduced to Toon Link. This style initially divided opinion but after experiencing the game for myself, I was quick to accept this new Link and very pleased to be going on a new adventure across the high seas.

Wind Waker is a beautiful looking game bursting with bright colours with its bright blue sea, and luscious greenery that transport you to a world far away from its darker predecessors Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask.

From what we were shown during Nintendo Direct, it does look gorgeous and just when I I though this game could look any more magical, I saw Outset Island in HD. Just imagine how amazing the scene with the Master Sword will look.

Having said that, it's exciting to hear that Nintendo aren't just giving Wind Waker's graphics a facelift. It's great that you'll be able to play off the TV on the Wii U GamePad and Satoru Iwata also mentioned that Nintendow ould be tuning up the game experience. What does that mean?

I don't know but I've got someideas for how Wind Waker could be improved on Wii U.

New controls

Click to view larger image
A particularly memorable part of Wind Waker was using the Deku Leaf to float though the air. This could be enhanced for Wii U as players could use the Wii Remote and simply tilt it to guide Link exactly where they needed him to go. Perhaps the GamePad could provide a bird's eye view at the same time?.

It would also make perfect sense to use the Wii Remote for controlling the Wind Waker Baton. It'd definitely make conducting those important songs all that more engaging.

Also, going back to original Wind Waker, did anybody use the Tingle Tuner? How about that Picto Box? The Tingle Tuner was a feature that allowed a second player to play as Tingle via a GBA and link cable. Imagine being able to use this feature again but with the GamePad or maybe even a 3DS console!

Also, the Picto Box allowed Link to take snapshots throughout his adventure. The GamePad could be used to take awesome photos of our new HD environment, a bit like the 360 scanner in ZombiU except this time it's a camera and a lot less terrifying. Fans could then share these on the Miiverse.

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  1. Mew3 Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 09:34

    Please God, don't put Tingle in hd. Skyward Sword was good because it didn't feature tingle. Phantom Hourglass was good because it didn't feature tingle. All the other games i've played (except this one) didn't feature tingle. He's an insane man who thinks he's a fairy for crying out loud! :shock:

  2. vtheyoshi Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 09:46

    Chances are that they're going to shoe-horn in uneccassary motion controls. For aiming, fine, put it in if you want, but please keep the sword fighting to the b and a button.

  3. shy guy 64 Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 10:31

    it'll be interesting to see what they do

  4. abovethewell Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 10:41

    I actually quite enjoyed the Triforce Hunt- if you played the game properly, exploring everywhere you can, and paying the fish for sea charts, you will have heard in numerous places people referring to 'triumph forks'- once you figure it out, it's quite satisfying going back to those places and finally solving the riddle. One improvement they definitely need is t put Jabun's temple back in the game!

  5. 9 Times Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 11:16

    All of these ideas I would happily add to the game if I were to re-make it myself, so well done!
    Except the motion controlled Deku Leaf. Bleh.

  6. Shinnos Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 11:47

    My one real wish for this game is that they are able to include the two(?) dungeons that were scrapped from the original game because of time restraints and get rid of the Triforce Hunt section which was fairly tedious. As someone that has already played Wind Waker on Gamecube, this would be the real test of whether I end up buying this again or not.

  7. MartinIsAwesome Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 12:21

    Please God, don't put Tingle in hd. Skyward Sword was good because it didn't feature tingle. Phantom Hourglass was good because it didn't feature tingle. All the other games i've played (except this one) didn't feature tingle. He's an insane man who thinks he's a fairy for crying out loud! :shock:


    But that's all a part of his charm! I for one was rather sad that Tingle has been reduced to just cameo appearances recently. He's unhinged and despite his cheery facade there's a creepiness to him that makes him so memorable. How many other video game characters do you know that force his brothers and some random dude to dress up like him and use them as his slaves?

  8. Pwuz_Here Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 13:12

    So to make sailing better, I think the Ballad of Gales needs to be obtainable far sooner in the game, and you should have more options of islands it warps you to.

    Perhaps make Mother and Child Islands surrounded by a huge storm so that you can't reach them till later, thus limiting your access to their power ups which are restricted to the end of the game.

  9. olrodlegacy Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 13:36

    For me the Tingle Tuner was the deciding factor in making Wind Waker the greatest game ever. I have fond memories of playing it with my younger brother, with Link controlled by him and me giving him hints and assistance using the Tingle Tuner. Keep the Triforce hunt is - it was a brilliant large-scale puzzle. If anything, add more islands and add more secrets to the Reefs littered across the map.

  10. tempmuse Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 13:50

    Without being rude,
    I just wanted to say that there is no Outlook Island.

    You probably meant Outset Island, but the Island on the screens is Windfall Island..

    Just saying...

  11. Rufan Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 13:57

    As Odd as Tingle is I think he's should come back some how, I do kind or miss bumping into the creepy guy

  12. Machi Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 16:09

    I really hope they record an orchestrated soundtrack. The Wind Waker movement on the CD that came with Skyward Sword was glorious. It would really add to the game as a whole, I suppose, as the music is there all the time and not just one part of it.

  13. Redfish20 Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 16:56

    I can't remember any occasion where you'd use the song of winds (whatever it was called) to make the wind blow in any direction other than the one you were facing, so I'd make that song work where playing it once kept the wind coming from behind you all the time until you played it again or went inside.

  14. KH81314 Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 17:14

    I think that they should improve the Tingle Triforce Hunt by removing Tingle and put the Triforce Pieces with special bosses.

  15. TheSlenderman Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 17:45

    As I have said before, the main control method should be the wii remote( like skyward sword), with the option to use the gamepad or pro controller should you wish.

  16. lagiasyd Sunday 3rd Feb 2013 at 18:23

    Skyward sword's inventory selection should be included. It was so slick and easy to equip items in real time that i don't think i could ever go back to having to pause the gameplay to select items. An orchestrated soundtrack and a refined motion plus control system wouldn't hurt either, as skyward sword's motion-controlled sword swinging didn't live up to the accuracy demonstrated by wii sports resort.

  17. AiDeNintendude Monday 4th Feb 2013 at 12:34

    Chances are that they're going to shoe-horn in uneccassary motion controls. For aiming, fine, put it in if you want, but please keep the sword fighting to the b and a button.

    Miyamoto has said that it will be playable on just the gamepad alone, which also says that the game won't use compulsory wii remote motion control. It may be included as an option, and maybe the gamepad's motion control will be used very slightly, but it's obvious that swordplay won't be mandatory, if included at all.

  18. Mmmyeah Monday 4th Feb 2013 at 21:13

    I actually quite enjoyed the Triforce Hunt- if you played the game properly, exploring everywhere you can, and paying the fish for sea charts, you will have heard in numerous places people referring to 'triumph forks'- once you figure it out, it's quite satisfying going back to those places and finally solving the riddle. One improvement they definitely need is t put Jabun's temple back in the game!

    Yeah, I thought it was quite cool figuring out what those 'triumph forks' are, although I would still say it is the weakest part of the game.

    One thing I don't understand is that many people complain about Ocarina of Time's water temple boot-switching problems, but for some reason they appear to overlook Wind Waker's constant wind altering when sailing. It made it really annoying to go back in the direction you came from if you ever had to, and was one of the main problems that caused the sailing to become tedious. I think the remake could strealine this in a similar way to how the boot-switching in Ocarina of Time was streamlined.

  19. liveswired Monday 4th Feb 2013 at 23:59

    My one real wish for this game is that they are able to include the two(?) dungeons that were scrapped from the original game because of time restraints and get rid of the Triforce Hunt section which was fairly tedious. As someone that has already played Wind Waker on Gamecube, this would be the real test of whether I end up buying this again or not.


    It would be great, but I'd imagine there is little chance of that happening.

    Ocarina of Time 3D featured no new content (the unfinished beta quests or 64DD expansion didn't even make the cut), bar improved graphics in a handful of areas - it was very 'haphazard'. Some areas such as the dungeons and Market town were stunningly redone but the game engine itself was largely untouched with only the new models swapped in and out. I look to Hyrule field - it is unchanged bar the backdrop which was a vast disappointment - it just begged to be utilized and filled with life - but no it remained barren and deprived - of all areas it received the least attention!

    I reckon this will be a similar update - a few new touchscreen features, a handful of graphical improvements and that's it.

  20. S0raBuzz Tuesday 5th Feb 2013 at 00:51

    Didn't Nintendo say they were either making Majora's Mask or A Link to the Past but they would be on 3DS? So it's not like we're definitely not getting one of those just not yet. Iwata said they were having a Nintendo Direct for the 3DS in the near future so with any look it'll get announced then. I'd prefer LttP so we could have a 3D version since Majora's Mask is already 3D. Any back on topic I can't wait for this game and the idea of a 3DS Tingle Tuner is awesome.

  21. Jameseyey Tuesday 5th Feb 2013 at 04:28

    Sorry but Wii remote floating is not a very good idea I would not want to have to switch to a wii remote and then tilt it to fly the deku leaf... Also it was Windfall island we saw not Outset island.

  22. sonicka Tuesday 5th Feb 2013 at 10:31

    Chances are that they're going to shoe-horn in uneccassary motion controls. For aiming, fine, put it in if you want, but please keep the sword fighting to the b and a button.


    Actually, Skyward Swords wonderful motion controls would be an excellent inclusion (it won't/shouldn't be be mandatory of course), but it would be a lovely extra. Sword Motion Controls are the way forward for Zelda games now, playing Twilight Princess again after Skyward Sword just felt so incredibly clunky for the most part (on Wii I mean, the Gamecube version remains as excellent as ever - but then the motion controls were tacked on after all on Wii).

  23. scouserfuller9 Tuesday 5th Feb 2013 at 12:03

    I can still remember seeing the visuals for the first time all those years ago and thinking "What are Nintendo doing here!?" Once seeing a video though I fell in love with the style and find it much better than any others we've seen! The only thing I feel let the game down was the length and difficulty. Nintendo released this game just two years after Majora's Mask. Ocarina Of Time was released six years after A Link To The Past and Skyward Sword was released five years after Twilight Princess which gave Nintendo plenty of time to make these, which I believe are the two best Zelda games to date! More time working on Windwaker could have made this the best!

    I also think this was the biggest ever risk that was taken with a Zelda game. Millions of copies of the two N64 games and then we see a video of Link battling Ganon when the GC first showed its visuals and they decide to come out with this. Well done Nintendo for taking such a huge gamble and as always, succeeding!

  24. CraigEmberson Tuesday 5th Feb 2013 at 16:20

    My one real wish for this game is that they are able to include the two(?) dungeons that were scrapped from the original game because of time restraints and get rid of the Triforce Hunt section which was fairly tedious. As someone that has already played Wind Waker on Gamecube, this would be the real test of whether I end up buying this again or not.


    It would be great, but I'd imagine there is little chance of that happening.

    Ocarina of Time 3D featured no new content (the unfinished beta quests or 64DD expansion didn't even make the cut), bar improved graphics in a handful of areas - it was very 'haphazard'. Some areas such as the dungeons and Market town were stunningly redone but the game engine itself was largely untouched with only the new models swapped in and out. I look to Hyrule field - it is unchanged bar the backdrop which was a vast disappointment - it just begged to be utilized and filled with life - but no it remained barren and deprived - of all areas it received the least attention!

    I reckon this will be a similar update - a few new touchscreen features, a handful of graphical improvements and that's it.

    You do realise that Ocarina of Time 3D wasn't ported AT ALL right? It was remade from the ground up, so you're wrong there. All textures were redrawn, though some were rendered erroneously (this has also happened to me in Kid Icarus: Uprising, which blurred them or pixelated them (e.g. Sheik's chest cloth, Gerudo blocks). Nintendo confirmed it was fully remade, including the music which was digitally remixed in Surround Sound and the coding.

  25. BeedleZ Tuesday 5th Feb 2013 at 22:41

    Why is the A and B flipped on the image of the Tingle Tuner? :O

  26. toffeeman30 Wednesday 6th Feb 2013 at 13:12

    amazon have listed zelda windwaker hd for $59.99

  27. MartinIsAwesome Wednesday 6th Feb 2013 at 14:21

    Why is the A and B flipped on the image of the Tingle Tuner? :O


    That's just how they were manufactured, to further differentiate from the Game Boy Advance. Didn't sell very well if I recall.

  28. longjohndevine Monday 18th Feb 2013 at 11:01

    They will simply port the game to HD.
    That is it.

    Great article once again.

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