The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is likely shaping up to be the most anticipated game of 2017 for the Nintendo NX and Wii U. However, Eiji Aonuma, a producer at Nintendo, is already looking ahead at the possibilities for the next Zelda game, which might feature a multiplayer component.
I would like to take what I learned from Breath of the Wild and see if we can somehow fuse those learning points into another multiplayer Zelda. For example, with Triforce Heroes, which followed a similar format of Four Swords, there was a multiplayer involved in that game.
The Legend of Zelda: Triforce Heroes came out last year for the Nintendo 3DS. It was a top-down, four-player cooperative game made in similar fashion to the GameCube title Legend of Zelda: Four Swords. Both games were isometric action-RPGs with a hint of competitive play. Ultimately they were cooperative hack-and-slash games with some typical Zelda-style puzzle solving sprinkled throughout.
In this case, it's interesting that Eiji Aonuma is already thinking about what Nintendo can do next with the franchise even though Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild isn't even out yet for the Nintendo Wii U or the Nintendo NX. In fact, the game isn't due to drop until next year.
For those of you wondering why the newest game doesn't support multiplayer, it's all pretty simple: it's an open-world title with a massive map and a lot of physics-based properties. In fact, the physics-based elements is part of what caused the game to get delayed in the first place (and likely Nintendo's move to give the Nintendo NX a worthwhile launch title). Gamers can now utilize objects in Breath of the Wild to create all sorts of interesting scenarios, including being able to crush entire goblin camps by rolling a rock down on them.
Trying to get a fully functional multiplayer mode out of Breath of the Wild would just not be convenient, especially with the Wii U's hardware limitations. It might be possible for them to make it where Amiibo companions could be controlled by another player, but even that's a stretch.
If, however, Nintendo does have plans on including a multiplayer mode to a new Legend of Zelda title that's similar to Breath of the Wild, but made for the NX and without old hardware limiting the possibilities, then that could end up being pretty cool. It definitely makes you wonder how they would setup the multiplayer or what it would be like.
Gamerant also proposes the interesting possibility that a new game in the series might be a spin-off featuring other characters, which could lend itself easier to a cooperative gameplay experience, as opposed to trying to make two Links playable or Link and Zelda playable. Then again, a Link and Sheik combination would be doable.
Anyway, for now the upcoming Breath of the Wild will be a single-player only experience. Gamers will be able to get their hands on it starting next year. There's obviously no time frame on when a new multiplayer-focused Zelda game would be made.