The lights are on
Legendary game creator Eiji Aonuma has been producing and directing Zelda ever since the N64 classic Ocarina of Time. Despite this pedigree, would you believe that he never much cared for the game that kicked off the whole series? It's true.
I spoke to Aonuma extensively for the Skyward Sword cover story in our upcoming October issue. Luckily, I was able to devote some of that time to looking back on older Zelda titles, but I got an answer I wasn't expecting when I asked Aonuma for his thoughts on the original Legend of Zelda on NES.
"I’ve never actually finished it," Aonuma told me. He elaborated:
"I almost feel like there’s still no game more difficult than it. Every time I try to play it I end up getting 'Game Over' a few too many times and giving up partway through. Certainly after playing the original Zelda for the first time, I didn’t ever think that I wanted to make a game like that."
If the thought of a world without Aonuma-directed Zelda games sounds frightening to you, you owe your thanks to A Link to the Past, the Zelda iteration released for Super Nintendo. "That sense of exploration of the world itself was really where I latched on to the series," Aonuma explained. A Link to the Past was a strong influence on Marvelous, the first game that Aonuma directed. That title got him noticed by Miyamoto, which led to Aonuma joining the Zelda team.
Keep your eyes peeled to our Zelda hub page for more Skyward Sword and Zelda 25th anniversary features throughout the month.