The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom Soars Onto the Nintendo Switch


Celine Gharapetian

The title screen of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom.

After six long years of waiting, the sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Nintendo’s hit game on the Nintendo Switch, has been released under the title of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom.  

With their first open world Legend of Zelda game selling 10 million copies in 3 days it became an immediate success. After witnessing this success, director Eiji Aonuma and the rest of the team working on the Zelda games started work on a direct sequel to add even more new game mechanics and challenges. Tears of the Kingdom expands the world of Breath of the Wild immensely, allowing it to feel like a completely different experience, even though it still mostly takes place in the same world of Breath of the Wild.

The sequel went out of its way in open world exploration with its addition of entirely new sky and underground areas to explore along with its already huge mainland that took players hours upon hours to explore in Breath of the Wild. Aside from the two new expansive areas to explore, there are new game mechanics that have been introduced specifically for Tears of the Kingdom

With abilities allowing players to create anything they can think of with whatever materials are available to them and being able to fuse different materials to weapons, the possibilities have become endless. The new “Ultrahand” ability allows players to have the freedom of creating their own makeshift bridges and vehicles, which adds an entirely new level of freedom that was not present in Breath of the Wild. The introduction of “Fuse” gives players even more creativity in combat since they can create any type of weapon they want to give themselves the advantage in the fight. 

The addition of new types of monsters and different variations of older monsters from the previous game also contribute to making Tears of the Kingdom stand out as its own title instead of a game with a few new additions. The difficulty level with many of these monsters has increased as well, causing players to stay alert and experience different types of combat. 

The most iconic and memorable portions in any Legend of Zelda game are its dungeons, where players have to solve countless puzzles and fight many enemies to reach the main fight inside. In contrast to the monotonous dungeons that were in Breath of the Wild, dungeons in Tears of the Kingdom have much more character and there is more built up tension in the events leading up to the player entering them. 

Even though some aspects of Breath of the Wild have changed for Tears of the Kingdom, Nintendo has carried on some of the same features that worked well. Just like its predecessor, Tears of the Kingdom starts the player off with an incomplete map that progressively starts to fill up the more the player explores and finds key points of interest. This is a great feature for players since it allows them to explore the world at their own pace without the game forcing them in certain directions.

As the next Legend of Zelda game in the franchise, Tears of the Kingdom has definitely already earned its place as one of the best Zelda games. Its improvement on mechanics that worked well in Breath of the Wild and its new additions to the game’s world has solidified it as its own stand alone title that makes Breath of the Wild feel as if it was unfinished.