The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdomsequel to the 2017 hit breath of the wild, drops May 12 for the Switch. Reviews are posted online and, as you’d expect, they’re overwhelmingly glowing, and for good reason. Nintendo designed a sequel that would be even better than its predecessorparticularly because it brings several welcome improvements to quality of life.
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Week in Games: Return to Hyrule
Monday 3:53 p.m.
Learn more: Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom Critics say it’s even better than breath of the wild
A sequel of OTW, TotK picks up shortly after the events of the first game. Link, our gender-fluid Hero of the Wild, has to deal with a rehydrated Ganon and his corrupt army into a much larger kingdom of Hyrule. To do this, you have an arsenal of new abilities, including Fuse And Reminder, to combat the many mobs littered above and below the Grand Plateau. There is also an assortment of tweaks and fixes that TotK redone OTWsome of which solve the annoyances and allow for a simpler experience.
Fast travel is much less restrictive in TotK
One of the best changes TotK is a fast trip. Yeah, that was in OTW, but you’ve been relegated to jumping between specific points of interest, like shrines and towers. The Travel Medallion allows you to quickly travel anywhere in OTWbut you could only acquire it after picking up Master’s tests Downloadable content from Nintendo eShop. Now, however, the Travel Medallion is just part of the main game, allowing you to plant a waypoint anywhere on the map and quickly travel there whenever you want. This makes navigating the large open world less cumbersome, especially if you need to backtrack and there’s no shrine or tower in the immediate vicinity. Cool.
Inventory management is more convenient than OTW
In OTW, each time you approach a chest with a full inventory, you must exit the chest, open your bag, choose what to throw, then open the chest again to add the item to your inventory. That’s a lot of steps whereas most games make this level of bag management easy to do. TotK does exactly that, as you can now drop items from your inventory while standing in front of a chest. You’re no longer stuck watching the opening animation until you’re nauseous.
TotK don’t worry remember the recipes
OTW, for some ungodly reason, forced you to memorize recipes. So if you were going to cook something but couldn’t remember the order of the ingredients, you might end up with some, ahem, inedible abomination that can lead to indigestion. This is not the case in TotK. This time around, every meal and elixir recipe you find in the vast game world is saved to the menu for your perusal. You don’t need to consult a wiki or, IDK, Link’s grandmother – does she have one? (Editor’s note: She would be dead.) – to remember how to cook a certain dish.
Cooking can be done anywhere in Hyrule Realm
In addition to the above quality of life improvements, TotK Now allows Link to collect portable cooking pots so you can cook whenever, wherever. As a survivalist warrior, this is a boon for our enby Hero of the Wild.
The “sanctuary alert” sound isn’t as annoying or loud as it was in breath of the wild
We all love good audio, especially in open-world games where exploration and travel are important gameplay elements. However, in OTW, the shrine alert sound wasn’t particularly good. Of course, it indicated when you approached one of the 120 shrines, but the ping had atrocious audio levels. It was removed in TotK. As Axios journalist and former my city IEC Stephen Totilo demonstrated on Twitterthe new sound effect is much more subtle and blends well with the relaxing vibes present in Link’s latest adventure.
Almost all the TotK the item is disposable
Previously, you could only throw weapons, which caused high damage but also left your gear in a breakable state. In TotK, you can pick up and throw just about anything you find in Hyrule Realm. Apples, jelly, flaming items like fire fruit – anything Link can get his hands on can be thrown at the many enemies you’ll encounter. While you still need to blunt your weapons to take down mobs, you can now use the environment more as a weapon. Good.
Learn more: Zelda: Tears of the KingdomPerformance on Switch feels like a small miracle
This is just a small sample of the known quality of life improvements that Nintendo has made in tears of the kingdom. As people get their hands on the game when it officially launches on May 12, my city included, I’m sure we’ll find out more about how much the sequel changed breath of the wild. Either way, it looks like Nintendo has yet another masterpiece on its hands.