Controlling the Hero of Time
B – Sprint
Y – Attack
A – Action
X – Jump
R – Shield
L – Item
ZR – Bow
ZL – Target (hold) / Center camera (light)
+ – Inventory
Up – Mask
Down – Item
Right – Sword/bow
Left – Shield/arrow
3 Modes of Left and Right D-Pad
Just as there are 2 modes in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, I have included a third one to help players quickly equip Link in a realistic fashion. In Breath of the Wild, the Left and Right directional buttons are used to change the bow and arrow type in bow & arrow mode. The second mode in the game is when you are both unequipped or equipped with the sword and shield, you can quickly reassign the shield & sword with the same directional buttons.
Now, my take to improving this with The Legend of Zelda: Mask of Time is to basically provide one mode for the unequipped Link and the other for the sword & shield. That is the only difference. Now, I will expand this with the following 3 modes: unequipped, sword & shield and weapon.
Let me specify how these buttons work. By pressing and holding down the directional button, you can quickly assign the item you want to use in the same way as Breath of the Wild.
This mode is a condition when Link has everything in his arsenal unequipped. To better understand this condition, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker only allows Link to crouch with the R button when his sword and shield is put away. That is when the following two directional buttons are available:
Left:Quickly assign and pull out useful tools and powers
- Ocarina of Time
- Farore’s Wind
- Elegy of Emptiness
Right: Quickly assign masks to help Link transform
Note: Like Skyward Sword, unequipped mode can easily be done with a little sprint (B button while moving with the left control stick). Or, just press the A button to put away your gear while standing still. And when I say gear, I mean both the sword & shield mode and the weapon mode.
Sword & Shield Mode
Like The Wind Waker and Twilight Princess, this mode can be activated by simply pressing the Y button to pull out Link’s sword & shield.
Left: Quickly assign shield
- Any spoils from enemies (like Breath of the Wild)
- Hylian Shield
- Wooden Shield
- Mirror Shield
Right: Quickly assign sword
- Any spoils from enemies (like Breath of the Wild)
- Deku stick
- Megaton Hammer
This mode can easily be activated while Link has either or both of his weapons assigned to the L or R button pulled out. Changing from unequipped or sword & shield mode to weapon mode is as easy as pressing L, R, or both L + R.
Left: Quickly modify weapon assigned to the L button
Right: Quickly modify weapon assigned to the R button
Note: Every weapon in The Legend of Zelda: Mask of Time has its own unique modifications. Some weapons that take up both the L and R buttons (like the bow & arrow) have both the Left and Right directional buttons to modify just as it is in Breath of the Wild.
What about the Up and Down Directional Buttons?
I am glad you asked.
The Up button is used to assign weapons to the L and R buttons. However, the only difference is you do not have to hold the button at all like the right and left directional buttons. Like the Gamecube version of Twilight Princess, all you have to do is press it. Then, assign away your two weapons of choice.
The Down button is used to quickly assign miscellaneous equipment to the R button.
Up: Assign weapons to the L or R buttons
- Bow & Arrow
- Deku Nut
- Gale Boomerang
- Rod of Time
- Iron Boots
- Lens of Truth
Note: these 8 weapons are cycled in a circle just like Skyward Sword.
Down: Not yet determined
*Revision advised. While writing this, I just realized it makes more sense to have both the L and R buttons assigned to any of the following 8 weapons listed above. Under weapon mode, the modifications are only based on which weapons are pulled out.
I have been developing this idea for a long time, and decided to comprehensively put it together under the inspiration of my personal favorite gameplay mechanics from previous Zeldas I have played up until the most recent console game, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. This game is going to appeal to core gamers. With each newly released Zelda, I have noticed changes made to keep the franchise fresh by adding new ideas while taking things away that made previous installments so much better than the new ones. Since this game is going to be a sequel to Majora’s Mask, most of its formula will be borrowed from its predecessors. Honestly, I thought the gameplay in Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask had the most perfect controls out of most 3D Zeldas, but future installments took away the little things we used to do that made all the difference like striking with your sword while holding down your shield button. At the same time, new installments came up with brilliant ideas that surpass the old ones like the new stamina and sprint feature introduced in Skyward Sword.
My goal is to not only preserve most of the original formula, but to improve and add additional brilliant ideas from Zelda games that came after. Like Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask, time and the use of masks will make a return on this game. I would also like to imagine that this will be the very first M-rated Zelda game ever. The Legend of Zelda: Hero of Time will explore extremely dark themes that will surpass its sequel (Majora’s Mask), but it will also have a beautiful artistic expression surpassing Shadow of the Colossus and its epic cinematic presentations combined with a very tragic-themed stylized blood equivalent to Tim Burton’s Sweeney Todd. I want to not only make this the most gorgeous “Hero of Time” Zelda ever, but to also present a story just as legendary as Ocarina of Time, explore personal, sad, and bizarre themes that surpass Majora’s Mask, and a gameplay system that stretches its predecessors as Metal Gear Solid 4 did in comparison to the first Metal Gear Solid. All these elements combined will be presented in an artistically open-ended expression that keeps simplification in mind with all the complexities going on, so I am also trying to make things simple yet deep just as Shadow of the Colossus has done.
I mentioned earlier that this is a sequel to Majora’s Mask. Now, what is my reason for doing that? Well, I was always curious about what happened to the Hero of Time after he randomly disappeared to the woods at the end of Majora’s Mask. Plus, 3 time’s the charm! Having the Hero of Time return offers great potential for exploring deeper into one of our favorite and most popular Links in the entire franchise. So, where does this game fit into the official Zelda timeline? That is self-evidently obvious, but I would like to elaborate: the game takes place a few years after Majora’s Mask, but before the execution of Ganondorf (a flashback scene from Twilight Princess). This creates symbolic relevance on the fact that I want this game to have a desert setting from the start of the game, which means exploring lore from the desert area in Twilight Princess like Arbiter’s Grounds. Another symbolic aspect of that scene I will explore (as you continue reading this below) are the distinguished themes of water compared with other elements of the game in order to justify and foreshadow the death of the water sage that Ganondorf successfully killed after the execution failed to eliminate him.
As you can probably tell, I am also taking advice from the most current Wii U Zelda in development at this time, which is trying to break the mold of conventional Zelda games. I am breaking conventions with the following: start our hero at the desert than typically from a forest-themed environment, and slightly change the formulaic order of the dungeons and items. It’s going to throw off the player at first with mainly items, but eventually it’s going to feel rewarding. Not to mention, there’s going to be multi-layered depth and purpose from the items in this game, which helps greatly increase replay value. I can list an endless amount of other new major changes, but I think I will leave most of the explaining below. Alright, I’ll give one more! Ha ha! Do you remember how most Zelda dungeons seem to have one item rewarded to you, and used against the boss and puzzles (with exception to dungeons like Stone Tower Temple, which awarded more than just the light arrows)? Well, in THoT, you will expect more than one item rewarded from each dungeon. How exciting!