The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and TThe Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. It is considered a masterpiece, a revolution and arguably one of the greatest games of recent times. The latter has received a lot more mixed feedback, with some aspects fondly remembered, but not the full package that the Zelda series is known for to consistently deliver.
That said, these two titles seem to be more closely related than many originally thought. The latest trailer for Breath of the Wild 2, shown during the E3 2021 Nintendo Direct pretty much confirms that the game will build on the legacy established in Skyward Sword.
From the mechanics and characters to the locations and narrative, both Skyward Sword and Breath of the Wild 2 share a surprising amount of similarities. Many Zelda fans recognize the importance of Skyward Sword to the entire lore of the series, which is at the very beginning of the timeline.
So it becomes clear why Nintendo would choose to remaster Skyward Sword instead of just porting the Twilight Princess HD and Wind Waker HD from the Wii U to the Switch. And not just because 2021 is Skyward Sword’s 10th anniversary.
Thematic elements and mechanics introduced in Skyward Sword were eventually expanded upon in Breath of the Wild six years later, and this appears to be the case in the long-awaited sequel to Breath of the Wild as well. Here’s how it all fits together and why Skyward Sword HD is worth your time.
Warning: Spoilers for Skyward Sword and Breath of the Wild ahead
Let’s start with the floating city of Skyloft (or, as it’s also called, the island of the goddess), which first appeared in Skyward Sword (or, if you want to get technical, the opening sequence of A Link to the Past). These floating islands high above the clouds are home to the earliest incarnations of Link and Princess Zelda. Here we see how the two live their everyday lives and how their friendships blossom, resulting in one of the most well-rounded depictions of the characters to date.
Knowing everything about Skyloft and its surroundings will only help players better understand (and possibly improve) what actually happens in Breath of the Wild 2, with floating islands and cities in the sky returning in the latest trailer. There are also links to lovable rival Groose, a character you absolutely must know. We love Groose so much that we hope he has an equal character in the Switch sequel. If Beedle did, then why can’t Groose?
Skyward Sword left so Breath of the Wild could run. This is something that can definitely be applied to the game mechanics. Be it the endurance meter, climbing walls, sprinting, dismantling weapons or the canvas that essentially became a paraglider. It all started with the critically divisive Skyward Sword.
It’s a really cool experience to go back to see these mechanics evolve and how they are used. Not to mention, Breath of the Wild 2 sets even more apart from Skyward Sword by bringing back skydiving. We might even see a loft wing at this point.
Fi and the master sword
With the HD remaster of Skyward Sword, Nintendo will tone down Sidekick Fi’s presence in more optional ways. A good move that hopefully prevents the character from pausing gameplay every five minutes to make us aware that our batteries are running low.
While Fi ranks at the bottom of the Zelda series companionship list, the humanoid spirit is essential to lore, plays an important role in the creation of the master sword, and has several heartwarming moments. Let’s face it: It’s hard not to be moved by Fi losing consciousness and leaving Link in the Master Sword forever after more than 35 hours of play.
Therefore, when Zelda refers to a voice in the Master Sword in Breath of the Wild, it is much harder to know the adventures that you had together. There is also a nice cameo in the form of a sound effect as soon as Link has finished examining the sword. How much role Fi will play in the sequel is still unknown, but a cameo or two are more likely than not at this point.
Since the first Breath of the Wild 2 trailer debuted at E3 2019, there has been a lot of speculation about Demise’s return, to the point that you might be wondering who he is. Demise the Demon King is the main antagonist in Skyward Sword and the embodiment of the evil that ever threatened Hyrule. This was the first introduction of the Eternal Being, but apparently not the last.
At the end of Skyward Sword, Demise vows that his hatred (or malice as it is known in BOTW) will be reincarnated over and over again, only to relentlessly follow the hero and princess.
“Those who share the blood of the goddess and the spirit of the hero … They are forever bound by this curse. An incarnation of my hatred will always follow your kind and make them wander forever through a blood-soaked sea of darkness, “reads the full quote.
We get a quick look at the shadow of a character in the original BOTW 2 trailer, the outline of which is much more like Demise than any of the Ganon or Ganondorf incarnations over the years. While this in no way confirms Demise is in the game, again you have to wonder if Nintendo re-mastered Skyward Sword to introduce the character to as many people as possible before the sequel comes out.
The hero 10,000 years ago
Once you visit Impa in Breath of the Wild, she will pamper you with events 10,000 years ago. This tells of an evil one who was repeatedly rejected by a warrior with the soul of a hero and a princess who bears the blood of the goddess.
The most interesting thing here is that the tapestry the information was passed on shows the hero with the master sword and a green tunic, but not Link’s signature blonde hair. That famous blonde hair, which first appeared (chronologically) in Skyward Sword, has been an iconic backbone of the entire timeline. But this particular hero has red hair – which leads many to believe that the original hero was actually Ganondorf 10,000 years ago.
Think about it. Ganondorf has been known as the incarnation of Demise’s Hatred since Skyward Sword, but what if, in the Breath of the Wild timeline, he was simply the Gerudo king who went to war alongside the princess to kill the beast stop only to be consumed by hatred (malice). This would tie the (no pun intended) downfall directly to Ganondorf, fill in a large blank space on the Zelda timeline, and provide an almighty twist to the narrative we’ve been expecting for 35 years. As such, Breath of the Wild 2 could drop some really overwhelming lore bombs – and all thanks to Skyward Sword.