Breath of the Wild 2 Isn’t the First: Every Mainline Zelda Delay Ever

Far from the first game to have seen delays in the Zelda series.

by Weilong Mao


From the most recent announcement by Nintendo, it is clear that Breath of the Wild 2 is being delayed. Just a day ago, Nintendo released a video on various media platforms featuring the series producer, Eiji Aonuma, who discussed the unfortunate postponement of the game from a 2022 release window to the Spring of 2023. Looking at current traction regarding postponement, it is clear that the hype surrounding the game has not died down since the release of the game’s initial trailer back during the Nintendo Direct of E3 2021, with many people commenting on either side of the equation, voicing their concern or patience.

This is perhaps not at all strange considering the massive success that is the first Breath of the Wild, with the game proven to be one of the strongest title launches in Japan back in 2017. The game’s stellar earnings led to a warriors-style spin-off a few years down the line in the form of Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity, which became the best-selling hack and slash game of its variety. It is fair to suggest that Breath of the Wild 2 had a large anticipating audience ever since the original title, and that anticipation is going to have to hold a little while longer.

However, an astute observer of past Zelda title releases would not consider Breath of the Wild 2 being delayed an occurrence that’s all that rare and surprising. As titles belonging to the series has frequently seen delays or postponement, as Stephen Totilo, Journalist and co-author of Axios Gaming Newsletter points out. Zelda titles have seen delays more often than not, with the exception being Majora’s Mask and Wind Waker.

This may also serve to explain the patience that has been exhibited by members of the Zelda community, as the original Breath of the Wild has also seen delays from 2015 to 2017. Due to that title releasing to critical acclaim and strong sales, players perhaps have confidence in Nintendo that they are indeed postponing the sequel for the betterment of its quality. Though this sentiment doesn’t seem to be shared by the stock market, as Nintendo shares have dropped since the announcement to delay the sequel.

Nevertheless, putting the matter of the Zelda series’ tendencies to delay and postpone into perspective is something that’ll help to keep player anticipation or disappointment in check. Eiji Aonuma hasn’t cited any specific issues related to the game’s development, and let’s hope that it is indeed the case.  Because otherwise, the game’s going to come out even later.

The Breath of the Wild Sequel is set to release in Spring 2023, exclusively on the Nintendo Switch.

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