A current interview with Famitsu reveals that the depths for The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom were “created in a surprisingly short amount of time.”
This comes from director Hidemaro Fujibayashi. The initial development of the area was rapid, although he admitted that “it took a long time and many adjustments for it to take its current form.”
The Depths are one of three areas players can explore in the game. The surface of Hyrule is still there – now with caves – and the sky has also been added.
Here is our translation of the interview excluding Fujibayashi regarding the development of Depth in Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, which also includes words from producer Eiji Aonuma:
Fujibayashi: By the way, for fear of misleading people, the depths were created in a surprisingly short time.
Seriously? Is that true?
Fujibayashi: But if you say something like that, you’ll upset the staff and say, “That wasn’t easy!” Strictly speaking, I mean the basic landforms of the deep that were formed in an extremely short period of time.
The depths and the surface are in an inverse relationship; Areas that are high on the surface are instead low in the depths, and conversely, low places and rivers on the surface become high walls in the depths. When the interface was originally created, the layer designs were separated by flows. So if you were to reverse the terrain, the areas themselves would also be separated by rivers and you would have another level created naturally by the terrain. So I wanted to try to explore this idea, and after conveying some of the conditions we talked about to a programmer, they quickly completed a prototype.
Aonuma: Not only Fujibayashi, but also other employees tried to ask various questions in the process of developing the previous game, such as: “I wonder if we can change something by using the materials from Breath of the Wild?” Meanwhile, we have Programmers implemented this in a short time using an automated approach.
Fujibayashi: Of course, from there it took a long time and a lot of adjustments for it to take its current form, but building the base itself didn’t take long at all.
Aonuma: I’m the first to stop things so they don’t take too much time and effort. When we decided to do something, it was like, “No, surprisingly this won’t take a lot of effort to create,” and then, “Well then, let’s do it.” (laughs)
It is possible to move seamlessly from the sky to the surface and then penetrate into the depths. Isn’t this difficult to achieve technologically?
Fujibayashi: Yes, it is. The programmers were very creative in making various adjustments and optimizations until the end.
Aonuma: In fact, it hadn’t become seamless until the end of development. Among other things, Link stopped during loading and did not crash.
It was really a real challenge, wasn’t it?
Aonuma: The programmers kept saying, “It’s fine,” but this situation continued until the end and we kept asking, “Can we really make it seamless?” But in the end, they made it a reality. (laughs)
Something else Aonuma recently addressed is that Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom will not be receiving DLC - at least for now. Read more about it Here.
Translation provided by Philip Proctor, Simon Griffin and SatsumaFS on behalf of Nintendo Everything.