How Skyward Sword inspired Breath of the Wild's vast open-world

The scale of Breath of the Wild's expansive map has been a huge talking point among fans, and now game producer Eiji Aonuma has explained why the team decided to open up Hyrule like never before. 

The sheer size of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild's expansive open-world has been a huge talking point among fans, and now game producer Eiji Aonuma has explained why the team decided to pry open Hyrule like never before. 

Speaking to Waypoint, Aonuma said the decision was made after Skyward Sword's approach to world design left some players out in the cold. 

Unlike Breath of the Wild, which features a vast, truly interconnected world, Skyward Sword would only let players drop down from the skies and explore separate, isolated sections of Hyrule. 

As Aonuma explained, those areas were all "self-contained," and ultimately left fans with one burning question: what's happening in the spaces in-between? 

"We listened to a lot of opinions, from people who played Skyward Sword. And a lot of people said to us how they found the game -- not exactly unsatisfying -- but they wished they could have explored the areas between the strongholds," recalled Aonuma. 

"So taking that on board, from the very start of Breath of the Wild, we wanted to, and set out to, create a world that wasn't only vast, but where everything was connected. So you really could freely explore the world, without these barriers or gaps imposed."

You can hear more from the veteran Zelda producer by checking out the full interview over on Waypoint

Latest Jobs

Cryptic Studios

Senior Producer

Anne Arundel Community College

Arnold, MD, USA
Instructor/Assistant Professor, Game Art

Night School Studio

Los Angeles, CA, USA
Level Designer / Scripter, Games Studio
More Jobs   


Explore the
Subscribe to
Follow us

Game Developer Job Board

Game Developer Newsletter


Explore the

Game Developer Job Board

Browse open positions across the game industry or recruit new talent for your studio

Subscribe to

Game Developer Newsletter

Get daily Game Developer top stories every morning straight into your inbox

Follow us


Follow us @gamedevdotcom to stay up-to-date with the latest news & insider information about events & more