Nintendo is once again in the mainstream media spotlight despite a strong showing of their newest game in the Zelda franchise during E3, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. While the game has taken strong steps into the future with more open world gameplay and a stronger focus on exploration, what Nintendo has seemingly forgotten is an exploration into the customization of the main protagonist, Link. We here at TechRaptor are sensitive to those who identify alternatively and sat down with both sides regarding the latest controversy: the lack of a playable attack helicopter in the new Legend of Zelda.
We sat down with a representative of APACHE, the Acceptance Party of Attack Combat Helicopters for Everyone, to get their opinion about this latest development within the Zelda franchise. The group's President, nicknamed AH1, stated that Nintendo was overlooking not only their group, but the thousands of gamers who have been dying for more progressive behavior out of the company. "We of the otherkin community are furious that we don't have the option of being an attack helicopter in the upcoming Legend of Zelda. The Nintendo team obviously is prejudice against this community, despite making changes for other groups. The inclusion of Linkle in the series allowed for a female link, and the furry community got Wolf Link. When will Nintendo finally answer the call in progressive social commentary that other companies such as SEGA have?" For those unsure, AH1 is referring to the recent admission of SEGA regarding the identification of their main mascot, Sonic the Hedgehog, as an attack helicopter, which was praised by many in the gaming community as being highly progressive.
We asked Nintendo directly about the situation, and a representative indicated that the game is still in development, and that they are listening to all of those out there. "Rest assured, we understand the frustration regarding the lack of choice, and you have to understand that the game is still in development. We are pushing a lot of boundaries regarding gameplay and story telling, and while we haven't been able to crack the writing element of more generic storytelling that isn't specific to the protagonist in question, we are working with the best and brightest minds to get there. We've already taken steps to include mechanics that an attack helicopter would have into gameplay." We were surprised by that and asked the representative to further explain what they meant.
"Of course. Note the aerial attack with Link when he's firing his bow. Note how he hovers off the ground, just how you'd see a helicopter deal with ground forces at that altitude. We've brought experts in before to help us understand how we can adapt Link's swordplay into an aerial format. Link is known for his arsenal, and while some of his weapons are easy to adapt in a helicopter format, some are not. The bow and arrow can become missiles easily, but how do you make the iconic Master Sword a key part of the arsenal? That's something that we still haven't found the answer to, and we are doing are best to figure that out. We are listening, but progress like this does take time. We do have a mockup for those interested of our future ideas regarding the Link character.
"We here at Nintendo don't want to create a sub-par experience for our fans out there, we expect quality. And while we'd love to be accommodating to every group out there, we also don't want to get things wrong and have people suffer because of it."
With the newly poised information in our hands, we returned to AH1 and indicated what we had found when talking to Nintendo, and while we were happy to see the progress that was made, we got a whole different reaction from AH1. "It just proves they are not committed. Nintendo has always been trying to look the part of political correctness and 'making people happy' with their superficial changes regarding clothing and the ages of their protagonist when bringing them over from America. But they don't care about true progress in the otherkin community. If they did, they wouldn't have even released footage of a human link at E3. They would have spent 100% of their focus on making Link an attack helicopter, and that's that." When we pointed out to her that they still have to answer to shareholders, AH1 got extremely agicated: "Shareholders? Suits? They don't care about the otherkin community. Nintendo has an obligation to its fans to produce the game that WE want. For all the years that we've supported them."
Others within the gaming community took an entirely different take on the matter. A fan group of the Zelda franchise, who wanted to go unnamed due to fears of possible aerial assaults, indicated some harsh words regarding the situation. "Since when does the history of Link within the franchise suggest that he could even be an attack helicopter? Why would he need items such as the Deku Leaf in The Wind Waker, when he would be able to fly around? Nintendo has been very accommodating for the otherkin community, by providing enemies such as the Peahat, which were the developer's alternate interpretation of attack helicopters. But to change the titular character when his background does not suggest ... it would not only ruin the established lore of the game but would hurt the possible character development within it. How can you design a plot that has to be so generic because you don't even know if the main character has the ability to pick up a sword or not?
"We're not opposed to seeing Link in an attack helicopter form; in fact, we think it could open up new possibilities in the franchise. We saw in Majora's Mask how the mask gameplay helped bring alternate versions of gameplay to life, and a system like that could easily be adapted to this situation. But the lore is something that needs to be respected, and in that lore, Link is most certainly Hylian at his core. Not an attack helicopter."
Needless to say, we here at TechRaptor don't see this going away any time soon. All three groups involved seem to be very passionate about the situation, and we do believe that there is some central compromise that can be reached. That compromise probably involves Link as a Raptor.