Bill Trinen of Nintendo of America — Who plays a large role in preparing overseas versions of Zelda games — has mentioned before that there is a “Zelda Cycle,” in which fans tend to express hostility toward a newer installment of the game, and then later come to accept it for its exceptionality. It seems the co director of the series, Eiji Aonuma agrees with him as well.
In a recent Iwata Asks interview, Aonuma mentioned that he now believes this “Zelda cycle” to be true.
“Basically, as time progresses, negative opinions about The Legend of Zelda turn into positive ones. At first, I wasn’t sure about that, but seeing the response to The Wind Waker HD, I think it may be right.”
Satoru Iwata also mentioned that this type of attitude is present with other Zelda games as well, and that over time, the release of newer installments helped fans realize what made Wind Waker exceptional.
“To that point, I think a part of the reason that the sentiment for The Wind Waker is increasing is that people have now seen both Twilight Princess and Skyward Sword, and have realized that The Wind Waker did have its own appeal.”
Iwata also noted that Wind Waker came at a time where gamers relished realism, and so it was a bold new direction for not just the Zelda series, but gaming when it released.
“It was a time where making games more realistic and lavish excited a lot of people. Wind Waker was released at a time when the gaming industry wasn’t able to offer an idea that could open up games to a broader base of people.”
What do you think? Do you agree with Zelda’s director that fans take a while to adjust to a new entry in the series? Do you think events like The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses help to increase awareness? Have we already seen that with games like Majora’s Mask?