Zelda director provides explanation as to why Breath of the Wild lacks traditional dungeons

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If you played Breath of the Wild, there is a good chance that you noticed the absence of traditional dungeons (if you don't count the Divine Beasts). If you wondered why the game uses 120 micro dungeons scattered about the landscape instead, the director of the game, Hidemaro Fujibayashi, provided an explanation in the recent Nintendo Power podcast as well as discussed the idea behind the Divine Beasts:

"So in the past Zelda games, one dungeon was very, very long and because this game had a very wide field to explore and one of the themes we had was finding things, we were thinking about what the ratio is for finding Shrines while players are wandering around the field. And when we calculated that, we kind of ended up with 100 or more Shrines. And as for size, we thought about perhaps making long, big dungeons, but that would take long, and players would dedicate their time too long in the dungeons, so we thought perhaps one Shrine is maybe 10 minutes. We’re thinking play would be a good amount.

When we considered that each Shrine would take around 10 minutes, we thought maybe for a Zelda title, it wasn’t enough, it wasn’t meeting that dungeon feel for the game, so we thought maybe for this game, we could incorporate a big dungeon and perhaps one that moves or one that incorporates a gravity movement system and so we considered a big dungeon and that’s how we thought about the Divine Beasts. And so initially when we were thinking about the Divine Beasts, we thought about something that could be seen from afar, and maybe like a humanoid form, but then because these Champions were controlling Divine Beasts, we thought well maybe it would be interesting if the Divine Beasts themselves were a dungeon. And so then that met the requirement of a moving dungeon and also something that could be seen from afar. That’s how we kind of came up with the idea of the Divine Beasts".

With a new Zelda being in development, would you like the game to continue the path of Breath of the Wild or prefer that the game goes back to its roots, so to speak, with traditional dungeons?

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SnAQ

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I love the open-world in BotW, but I'd sure love if they implemented the big dungeons they've always had earlier.

Maybe a mix between, a fair number of smaller shrines and a fair number of proper dungeons.

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it's their first open world game, and a big one, so I understand they thought about scatering many everywhere to prevent empty area to explore, but they could have made less and bigger.
I also didn't like the fact you have all powers right at the start. Open world shouldn't mean all area open right away and the player is free to go and start where he wants.
At least, the world design, size and physics were great.

it's missing a feeling of progression, completing dungeon to get a new power and unlock areas, Open world is not an excuse.
to make it less linear than previous title and more open world free exploration, even dungeons could have things to revisit with new powers (a la mega-man, or SOTN). you can start with any dungeon you want, winning powers to help you unlock area/dungeons/story.


Though, Aonuma said the next zelda will definitely be open world too.
Maybe they will fix/improve their work.
 
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Pandaxclone2

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I also didn't like the fact you have all powers right at the start. Open world shouldn't mean all area open right away and the player is free to go and start where he wants.
At least, the world design, size and physics were great.

it's missing a feeling of progression, completing dungeon to get a new power and unlock areas

For sure you get most of the powers you need to go almost anywhere by the start, but that doesn't mean they give you everything. Clothing is generally necessary for accessing certain areas of the game if you don't want to continue using elixirs, and the abilities given can still be upgraded at Purah's or Robbie's observatories. It could also be argued that the Divine Beasts and Hyrule Castle are the main dungeons (which if you think about it is at least 1 more than what Majora's Mask gives you, yet nobody really complains about that.) Plus, you still have to get the Champion's gifts through completing the Divine Beasts which in itself is accomplishment.
 
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Cyan

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yes, at least there are 4 "big" dungeons.
I didn't really used the champion's gift, except the extra-life. I deactivated the other ones, it was annoying.
I never relied on the potions for all the game, except once (to get the first coat).
I guess I didn't play like others.

clothing was a nice thing, it made it a little RPG-like, getting and improving new buffs, having to choose based on the situation, while previous games it was only upgrades through story.
I never said the game was bad, that's the only game I played this year (still haven't completed it, for 8 months, I liked it a lot. I'm missing 1 shrine, 2 quests. I don't want to look at a guide).
 
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Tom Bombadildo

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Huh, I wasn't aware ~10 minute "dungeons" were considered "big", but sure Nintendo, whatever you say. I wouldn't even count Hyrule Castle as a full time dungeon, cuz you could just do some quick climbing and walk through the front doors to fight Ganon in just a couple minutes...unlike actual dungeons.
 
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Either I'm in a minority opinion here that a lack of traditional dungeons isn't a bad thing, or the staff seems to be a hive mind that disapproves of the large change to the Zelda formula for some reason.

If anything at least BotW was an interesting Hyrule world to explore with some awesome sights.
 

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Nah. The lack of true Dungeons has already been discussed and been part of an "anti-trend".
So they are both an Anti-Trend? An Anti-Trend thats against the Anti-Trend?

I want traditional dungeons in the next game. BOTW is probably a game I won't go back to over and over again like I do with Ocarina.
 
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The dungeons and shrines in BotW weren't challenging. In any regard..

I doubt anyone can truly claim none of the 120 shrines were not challenging at all. Surely there's been one that you were at least stuck on for some time. Plus Naboris would probably be the most challenging Divine Beast.
 

Kioku_Dreams

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I doubt anyone can truly claim none of the 120 shrines were not challenging at all. Surely there's been one that you were at least stuck on for some time. Plus Naboris would probably be the most challenging Divine Beast.
Nope... And nope... Been playing and dealing with too many games I guess. I should reword it..

--------------------- MERGED ---------------------------

So they are both an Anti-Trend? An Anti-Trend thats against the Anti-Trend?

I want traditional dungeons in the next game. BOTW is probably a game I won't go back to over and over again like I do with Ocarina.
I actually enjoy running the first three dungeons in Ocarina and through the 3 pendants and castle in aLttP
 

Tom Bombadildo

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I doubt anyone can truly claim none of the 120 shrines were not challenging at all. Surely there's been one that you were at least stuck on for some time. Plus Naboris would probably be the most challenging Divine Beast.
Maybe if you're bad at puzzles, sure, but of the ~90 or so I've beaten in my various playthroughs I don't think I've come across one that was actually "hard". Ones that have poor design or use garbage gimmicks that don't work half the time, maybe, but nothing actually challenging.
 
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chartube12

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it took me 2-4 hours for these dugeons. It was a nice change of pace. I hate the 6-10 hour long dungeons found on twlight, ocarina and majora's mask. I honey's perfer the 35 min to a hour and a half per dungeon of alttp.
 

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