During E3, Shigeru Miyamoto and Eiji Aonuma explained the reason why Breath of the Wild was delayed was because of the physics engine, and while that is still true, Aonuma has recently confessed that the fault also partly his fault as well and we have the full statement here:
Aonuma on Delays:
“We have these milestones during development. I play the game, then give staff my comments, my advice on what direction they should be heading in. At one of the milestones, the game was fantastic. There were so many great elements. But at the next milestone, that was all gone.
I’d made a lot of comments about what they needed to add, but I never told them what I thought was good about the game at that milestone. So they added stuff that I’d recommended, but they also added some other elements they thought would work well – and that ended up breaking all the good parts of the previous build. I learned that, when it’s good, I have to say so. If I’d managed that we’ll, maybe development wouldn’t have extended quite so much.”
This comes from his recent interview with EDGE, where as well as Aonuma’s role in the delay was discussed, various other things pertaining to the game were also brought up, such as elaborating on the change in direction, puzzles with multiple solutions and Zelda’s uniqueness and you can find Aonuma’s full statements on all of that below:
Aonuma on Zelda Uniqueness:
“Whenever I ask Mr Miyamoto what Zelda is, he says, ‘Well, Zelda’s greatness is that it’s unique’. So we focus on what we weren’t able to do in other games. Of course we play a lot of games. Especially the staff – they play whatever they like. When someone says, ‘hey, I’d really like to put this feature in the game’, someone else may say, ‘no, actually, that’s already been done in another game’. We try not to focus too much on whether it’s already been done. We think, ok, it’s been done before, but how can we implement it in our game and make it our own, unique experience?”
Aonuma on Multiple Solutions & Strategy:
“In the past titles, if a player found a different solution to the on we’d intended, we’d call it a bug. But for this title we created puzzles with multiple solutions. Even battles against enemies have a puzzle element: you can push a rock off a cliff and defeat them that way, or have bees chase them away so you can sneak up and take their weapons. Even if it’s a strong enemy, there are a lot of strategies, and it’s not just about battling.”
Aonuma on a Change of Direction:
“There’s a form of Japanese theatre called kabuki. A kabuki master would say ‘in order to break the mould, you have to know the mould’. Often, when I speak to Mr Miyamoto about a problem, that’s the feedback he’ll give me: ‘You don’t understand the mould here. That’s why it’s no good’.
We got a lot of feedback from the people that played Skyward Sword. There were these pockets of worlds that players were able to dive into, but they really wanted to see what was in between those worlds – all the hidden elements they weren’t able to see. I thought that was really natural for Zelda fans, who like to explore, to uncover little secrets. We realised that we needed to make this free, open-air world.”
Normally at this point, we would provide a link to the source article so that you could read all of the above details and more, but with the article being in print, it’s a little hard to link to it, so instead all we can suggest is you pick up a copy of EDGE (#296) and read it all for yourself if you want to.