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There's a lot to do in the new Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild for the Wii U and Nintendo Switch. It's one of the few open world games where there's nearly an endless supply of discovery to be had. Well, you'll never guess what Mr. Miyamoto did once he had a chance to roam the open world.
Kotaku managed to land an interview with Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild director Hidemaro Fujibayashi, who also happens to be the protege of producer Eiji Aonuma. Fujibayashi explained that they built a prototype of Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild to explain their concept of "do anything" in the open-world, and when they presented the playable demo to Aonuma and Miyamoto, they let Miyamoto play the game. So what was the first thing that Miyamoto did? Climb trees.
When we first presented this to Mr. Miyamoto, he spent about an hour just climbing trees. We left little treats like rupees on the trees, but we also left other things in other places we thought he might go. But he just kept climbing trees. Up and down. And so we got to the point where we go, 'Do you want to look at other stuff?' But he just kept on going. Once [he] got out of the Shrine of Resurrection, he spent an hour just within a 25-50 meter radius outside of that cave just climbing trees.
That actually sounds about right.
Shigeru Miyamoto may be a brilliant game designer -- mostly regarded amongst the core community as the best game designer alive today -- but you would think he's just a big kid when you hear him talk about games and see him play games. He's very much a child at heart, and this small anecdote of their design prototype for Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is a perfect example of that.
In fact, many of Miyamoto's designs for Nintendo oftentimes come from his own personal hobbies and pastimes, so it comes as absolutely no surprise that one of the things he would want to do in The Legend of Zelda is climb trees, grab apples and collect rupees.
Miyamoto is the kind of designer and gamer who is perfect for play-testing a game, because he's going to do the very thing that most technical engineers would never think to do. And why is that good thing? Because the average gamer is going to likely do the very same thing that Miyamoto does in the game.
The rest of the team definitely hit it out of the ballpark with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Critics have been giving the game lots of 10s across the board, and not just for being able to climb trees, but also for the puzzles, the story, the physics and the combat. The game is available right now for both the Wii U and the Nintendo Switch.