What if… Zelda had Spinoffs?
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There’s probably a good reason why the Zelda series never had spinoffs. (Aside from Link’s Crossbow Training and the upcoming NintendoLand attraction, of course.) The mythology and lore of the game just aren\’t conducive to dumping Link into unfamiliar scenarios, for example, the tennis court or baseball stadium. It makes a lot more sense to use the Mushroom Kingdom and its gregarious family of characters. Mario can go from Dance Dance Revolution to Doctor Mario to Mario Paint, no problem. He’s right at home as long as you don\’t make him do any plumbing- his actual job. For a moment, though, I permitted myself to imagine a different kind of scenario. One in which Nintendo decided to milk the Zelda franchise for as many spinoffs as it could create. Which ones would be the most logical? Or even better, which ones would be the most silly? These are what I came up with:
Zelda Fighter: Dark vs Light
I\’m thinking along the lines of Soul Calibur, where Link has once entered the fray, rather than Super Smash Bros. Nintendo could split the characters into two factions: good guys and bad guys, giving each side their own pros and cons. Some characters on the good side could be:
Link, Chibi Link, Sheik/Zelda/Tetra (transformation), Impa, Midna, Darunia, Biggoron, Rito Chieftain, Old Man Auru, Yeto, Kaepora Gabora, Fierce Deity, Bomber Gang (four kids controlled as one character), Happy Mask Salesman, Tingle.
On the evil side:
Ganon, Ganondorf, Agahnim, Girahim, Zant, Vaati, Dark Link, Skull Kid, Twin Rova, Veran, Onox, Iron Knuckle, Stalfos, Lizalfos.
The series also has so many locations for different stages there are too many to be enumerated from throughout the series. Another feature could be the option to pray to a deity or guardian in mid-game that would allow you their unique type of protection when pulled off correctly. The deities available are the golden goddesses, the four giants, the spiritual sages, or the Great Deku Tree.
Wouldn\’t this be awesome? Zelda games are always trying out new graphic styles so having a paper style would be a lot of fun. But, the biggest draw would be the ability for the game to be all about the characters and story. Interactions with oddball characters would be the main focus. Also, trying out turn-based RPG battles would be a new way to experience a Zelda game. If Skyward Sword showed us something it’s that adding strategy to battles can be a good thing for a Zelda game.
Super Zelda Kart
Nintendo has been trying to find new ways of rejuvenating the Mario Kart series (gliding and diving.) I mean, we\’ve been shooting blue shells for a long time already. It’s time to go somewhere new. Having a Zelda Kart would give a facelift to the franchise. New characters, new items, and new locations.
Items would be a big draw: Throw a well-timed bomb (or get caught in your own blast if you wait too long),Â send off your boomerang in an arc that could potentially hit a few targets or none at all, the hookshot is a great way to catch up to the first place racer in the last second, the power bracelet lets you pick up and throw another kart, the shield will give you a few seconds of protection in the back; collect the dungeon map to remove everyone else’s view of the track map or the compass to mess up their view and place the targets in the wrong places; a fairy speeds you up and a triforce piece makes you temporarily invincible; roc’s cape lets you jump high; and the wind waker creates a strong wind that screws with everyone’s driving.
Locations for tracks (also applicable to the other spinoff games) could include: the moon, Skyloft, Outset island, Subrosia, Twilight Realm, Minish World, Dark World (from Link to the Past), Inside Jabu Jabu’s Belly, Ganon’s Castle (which comes crumbling down on you as you drive), Forsaken Fortress, Dragon Roost, City in the Sky, Goron Mines, and Death Mountain.
Zelda Fishing League
Â How about a Wii-3DS crossover game? It would have to be really deep, not just a tech-demo. Tons of fish to catch, many locations, upgrades, online competition, leaderboards, etc. If you play on the 3DS, it would use augmented reality to simulate an pond in your own living room. But, the main game would be on the Wii and allow for motion controlled gameplay. Hook, line, and sinker.
Zelda Universe (MMORPG)
This is my secret wish. Use all the races of the Zelda series for character customization and use them to populate a massive Hyrule. Of course, Zoras would be better swimmers, Ritos better at flying, Gorons are stronger, and Hylians are the all around soldiers. Use all the different looks from the blocky polygonal look of Ocarina of Time to the really dark Majora’s Mask to the cartoony Wind Waker to the grim realism of Twilight Princess to the Impressionist art of Skyward Sword, in different areas of the continent. Transportation would come in five different forms: running around on foot, riding on your horse (if you can afford one), a one-way ticket on the Spirit Tracks, sailing along on the seas on your boat (cannon included), or flying around on your loftwing. Travel would be quick and easy and one of the highlights of the game — allowing the world to be enormous and expansive without being too tedious to travel. And if you need concept art to give you a feel for the overarching story and characters, how about that epic Zelda poster for a theme to base it on?
Zelda Spinoffs I Would NOT Want to Play
The Legend of Link: Zelda’s Awakening (A Dating Sim with Zelda)
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Future (Sci-fi Zelda)
Mush: Wolf-Link’s Alaskan Race
Wii Sports: Bombchu Bowling (The next evolution in Wii Sports)
Goron Sumo-Wrestling (vs WWE, possibly?)
PETA: Cucco’s Revenge
Anti-PETA: Cucco’s Slaughter
Dance Dance Subrosian Revolution
Chasing Ordonian Goats (worst part of Twilight Princess)
Legend of Zelda: Bug Catcher
Twilight Princess Snowboarding
Wind Waker: Amazing Auction
Link’s Crossbow Training (oops, my bad!)