Nintendo has finally released extensive gameplay of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, with series producer Eiji Aonuma playing it live. He confirmed that development is complete and revealed several new features players could look forward to.
Though set in Hyrule, it’s not the same as before – there are many changes, which Aonuma says would take a while to detail. The most noticeable new addition is the Sky Islands, large land masses floating in the skies. Link can use the new Recall ability, which rewinds an object’s movement. You can rewind a falling rock from a Sky Island and ride it to the top, but there are many other ways to reach them.
On a slightly larger Sky Island, we see Yellow Trees not present on the surface and a new enemy type, a Construct. Weapon durability is still in the game, but Link can use Fuse to combine objects. For example, you can fuse a branch and boulder to create a hammer, which does more damage and has more durability.
Weapons can also be fused, like a long stick and pitchfork for creating a longer pitchfork with more range. You can fuse materials with arrows, like an Ice-based material for a freezing projectile, or a Keese eyeball for a homing arrow. Fuse a Puffshroom to the shield, which creates smoke when hit, causing an enemy to lose sight of Link and letting him attack from behind. Beware, though – enemies can also use fused weapons.
Another new ability is Ultrahand for creating makeshift vehicles, like rafts, with logs and fans that propel it forward when hit. You can detach said materials and modify the vehicle’s shape. The vehicles shown in the last trailer aren’t in the game from the start, but you can freely craft them. Depending on what you craft, there’s a lot you can do.
Ascend is another new ability and allows Link to pass through ceilings to the floor above you. There are some restrictions, but it’s usable anywhere with a ceiling. Use it in a cave and pass through to the mountain area above.
You can descend from the sky to the surface seamlessly, letting you search out different destinations (and maybe even that strange dragon in the distance). It’s possible to descend and dive into water bodies as well.
There’s a lot more, but Aonuma wants players to discover it themselves. The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom releases on May 12th for Nintendo Switch.