While the rumored Breath of the Wild sequel has yet to be officially confirmed, it appears that one previous entry in the beloved franchise is getting an HD remaster. Nintendo has confirmed The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword is coming to the Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Switch Lite in 2021!
Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword on the Wii
The original Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword was a 2011 release on the Nintendo Wii. Set as the earliest iteration of the Legend of Zelda mythology, the game cast players as Link once again to save the genesis of Hyrule. It was the last entry that followed the Legend of Zelda timeline before 2017’s Breath of the Wild.
As with the trend of the time and the special mechanics of the hardware, Skyward Sword featured special motion controls. Using the Wii controller, the player controlling Legend of Zelda’s hero, Link, can swing the Wii remote and nunchuk peripheral as if they were holding the sword itself.
While the novelty was interesting, it also brought with it issues. For one, there was no option for any traditional controls. This means players were stuck using the built-in motion controls for sword swinging. On a lesser note, this is the only game in the famous Legend of Zelda franchise where Link wielded his sword using his right hand.
Traditionally, Link is depicted as a left-handed swordsman. Thus, hardcore fans found Link’s right handedness in Skyward Sword as non-canon. Other than the sword itself, there were gameplay elements and situations that required effective use of the Wii motion controls through the Wii remote + nunchuk combination.
However, as more people are right handed, it is understandable that the choice was made to have Link’s sword swinging to default as right. But without the ability to choose, this led to many frustrated players, especially the naturally left-handed players. This led to the less than favorable perception of Skyward Sword among Legend of Zelda fans.
Nintendo Direct HD Remaster Announcement
As part of the Nintendo Direct for February 2021, Nintendo shared the trailer on Twitter and YouTube presented by Eiji Aonuma. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword has been remasterered in HD.
Take to the skies and discover the origins of Hyrule In The Legend of #Zelda: #SkywardSword HD, reborn on #NintendoSwitch! Draw your sword with Joy-Con controllers or the newly added button-only controls. #NintendoDirect
— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) February 17, 2021
It will be released for both the Nintendo Switch and the Nintendo Switch Lite. The game will still have the motion controls that it initially had for the Wii ported to work with the Joy-Con controls. However, there is now an option for the game to work with traditional buttons and pad controls. This comes as great news for those who missed out on the full experience on the Wii, or for those who gave up on the game due to frustration.
According to Nintendo, the newly added button controls will work perfectly in handheld mode or the Nintendo Switch Lite system. Sword swings will use the right thumbstick on the Joy-Con. But for those who prefer the original motion controls, don’t worry. Nintendo has also made sure the Joy-Cons will work just as well, if not better. Accuracy and precision of hand motions have been improved.
Skyward Sword Special Edition Joy-Con
As an added touch, the Skyward Sword HD remaster for special Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons will be released. These are designed to emulate the trademark Master Sword and Hylian Shield that Link wields in the Zelda games. Although these are not necessary, they certainly look cool!
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD remaster for the Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Switch Lite will be released on July 16, 2021.