Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom will not be getting a “direct sequel” according to Nintendo senior officer Eiji Aonuma.
Developers aimed to create “the final form” of this Zelda series, and it seems they believe TOTK was its climax, according to Aonuma in an interview today with Game Informer. The Nintendo devs believe they’ve “exhausted the possibilities” in Breath of the Wild and TOTK, meaning it’s time to move on. This means the next Zelda title we’ll receive will be independent of the award-winning Switch series.
Keep in mind that this means we will still get a new Zelda series in the coming years, but odds are, it’ll look completely different. Several features that fans have come to know and love might not be making the leap to the next installment. Things like the beloved Ultrahand feature will seemingly end with TOTK. Aonuma drew a line in the sand claiming the next Zelda titles “definitely won’t be including Ultrahand in titles going forward,” and others will likely be left behind too.
It’s hard to argue that TOTK didn’t achieve Nintendo’s goal. Since its release, by using the integral Ultrahand feature, players have created masterful designs for Korok torture and even short films that Michael Bay would be jealous of. One individual crafted an uncanny Godzilla scene where the monster in question emerged from the ocean, destroying tanks and huts without mercy. Each element of this artful scene was made using the Zonai devices mainly meant for designing new ways to explore the map. But TOTK will be the only Zelda-based title with this feature.
There are currently 29 different Zelda titles in the franchise, including ports, remakes, and original games. The Breath of the Wild series garnered nomination after nomination with interspersed awards scattered throughout. While fans might be disappointed that there will be no TOTK sequel, we will receive a whole new story soon. As for when, we’ll just have to wait until Nintendo gives us a release date.