Like Metroidvania and Soulslike games, titles inspired by Legend of Zelda such as Tunic are becoming their own gaming genre.
The Legend of Zelda is one of the most expansive and convoluted franchises to come out of the gaming industry. Following the hero Link who’s often on a quest to save Princess Zelda, the games sometimes only have vague ties to one another, and its timeline is still being debated today, 35 years following the release of the very first Legend of Zelda title. Though the franchise has evolved to keep up with modern standards and entice fans, it’s kept true to its roots through its gameplay style, save for Breath of the Wild, which took a bold leap by changing the formula.
The gameplay loop of both traditional Legend of Zelda games and Breath of the Wild has become a source of inspiration, combining dungeon crawling with platforming and puzzles. This style is now especially used in the indie realm, and the upcoming title Tunic is just one example of how, like the Metroid series and the Metroidvania genre, The Legend of Zelda has almost created a new subgenre of titles inspired by the hero brandishing a sword and wearing a green tunic.
Tunic and Other Legend of Zelda-Inspired Titles
Tunic is just one upcoming example of many games that have been inspired by The Legend of Zelda over the years because it served as an iconic part of so many gamers’ childhoods. Unexpectedly, Grand Theft Auto‘s director Dan Houser has noted that the Zelda games on the Nintendo 64 served as an important influence in the development of the series. The Legend of Zelda games have also influenced triple-A games like CD Projekt Red’s Witcher games, The Wind Waker on Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag, and Dark Souls. Hidetaka Miyazaki, who has gone on to say that A Link To The Past is one of his favorite RPGs, rightfully claimed that Legend of Zelda became a “textbook” for many 3D action games. Ironically, Soulslike games are now becoming their own genre.
And now, any time a game trailer releases showcasing scenery even remotely similar to Breath of the Wild‘s, it incurs comparisons between the two. When Genshin Impact was first announced, players were so upset some of them even broke their PS4s, but it’s now proved to be its own title completely with many different mechanics involved. The same can be said about Metroidvania games; though they stem from the Metroid format, they’ve long departed from relation to or direct inspiration from Metroid or Castlevania and instead displaying the same integration between expertly design levels and deep narratives. This is in spite of the fact that Metroid wasn’t even the first game of its kind but rather the game to influence many others following it.
Tunic Proves Itself To Be Its Own Game
Like the previously mentioned Genshin Impact and the many others, Tunic has proved that it’s more than just a game inspired by The Legend of Zelda, even if the protagonist does dress in a green tunic and pick up a sword and shield to start his adventures. The combat is quite different, partially because of its difficulty, but also because the fox has magical abilities, such as using powerful ice blasts. There’s also the presence of advanced technology of guns, showing how Tunic‘s world is a bit more timeless and has its own lore unique from The Legend of Zelda. This is what makes games like Tunic more than just a copycat or an inspiration: they take the original idea and something different with it that can’t be found anywhere else.
Tunic is releasing on March 16, 2022 for PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.
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About The Author
Brittni Finley (881 Articles Published)
After growing up with Pokemon, Kirby, and Animal Crossing, The Elder Scrolls’ fifth installment of Skyrim changed her life and she’s been an avid gamer ever since. If she’s not tending to yet another new farm in Stardew Valley, find her hunting for used 3DS cartridges or looking for the next hit narrative indie game.