Nintendo may have captured lightning in a bottle twice with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and its successor, Tears of the Kingdom, but it won’t be repeating the same formula with the latter. According to the gaming giant, there are currently no DLC plans for the critically-acclaimed sequel, marking a departure from the former’s post-release approach, which saw the addition of the Master Trials and The Champions’ Ballad expansion packs.
Series producer Eiji Aonuma and game director Hidemaro Fujibayashi revealed this in an interview with Japanese magazine Famitsu. The vast world of Hyrule featured in Tears of the Kingdom, Aonuma said, has exhausted the possibilities for expanding the current game. Instead, the team are now on the lookout for the “next fun experience”.
This decision, while disappointing for fans hoping for additional content, aligns with the development team’s focus on new adventures. In fact, it might not be the last time players can visit Hyrule. Both Aonuma and Fujibayashi hinted at the potential return to the kingdom in the future, emphasising that whether a direct sequel or a completely new Zelda game, innovation in gameplay mechanics will be the team’s focal point.
This move to a possible new project comes as a logical step for The Legend of Zelda development team, considering the immense scale of Tears of the Kingdom compared to its prequel. Additionally, it aligns with the fact that the current Nintendo Switch console is approaching the end of its lifecycle. With the hybrid device turning seven years old next March and rumours of a successor slated for release in the latter half of 2024, the development team’s shift to a new project appears timely, perhaps hinting at a release with Nintendo’s next console.
The team’s announcement marks a fresh chapter for the franchise and excitement for future gameplay styles to come. But for now, as Hyrule remains as it is in Tears of the Kingdom, players will have to cherish the memories and adventures within the existing world.