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General Zelda Your Thoughts on Scarier Settings?


Jul 1, 2012
Now I know generally Zelda is aimed at quite a lot of audiences, including a younger audience and even though Nintendo has generally looking to make Nintendo games a more family experience I don't think this should apply to Zelda games. I mean Nintendo has enough games that are aimed at younger audiences and I think Zelda could be the game to attract more gamers that like a more mature game. The Wii U is definitely looking to attract newer audiences, particularly the so called "hardcore gamer" and in a way I feel a more mature Zelda game could be the perfect way.

Since I tracked off a bit there I want to get back in point, being the idea of a scarier setting. Now I'm not just talking a darker game like Majora's Mask or Twilight Princess but a setting that actually is rather scary. Some could day that the likes of the Twilight Realm and Arbiter's Grounds were scary but I would like to see this expanded on. An area that actually could be seen straight out of a horror genre, a bit out there I know but I think it could be an interesting feature. I mean Zelda's story isn't all happy go lucky, a Princess gets kidnapped by a dark evil and Hyrule is shrouded in darkness, many deaths occur etc. The actual theme in Zelda games isn't really all that light, Majora's Mask and Twilight Princess showed us with more realistic plot lines and consequences that a Zelda game can be considerably be more darker.

So I want to know your opinion on this idea... Do you think it could work or would it go against what a Zelda a game essentially is?


Skeleton Of The Darkness
Feb 5, 2013
Well, the Twilight Realm was a little creepy, but I'd love to see the idea of a darker\scarier setting. The nighttime in Hyrule really lacks this idea. It would be really cool if more Skeletons popped out of the ground and were more in-your-face, kind of like the Redeads from The Wind Waker.


Swag Master General
Aug 1, 2012
The End
Apache Helicopter
When I read the title I thought you meant the whole game being in a scary setting, and turning Zelda into a horror game. :P

I would like it if there were settings in Zelda that were scary. Kind of like the Bottom of the Well and the Shadow Temple in Ocarina of Time, but add a bit more to make it truly scary. I don't know how they could add more because I don't have much knowledge in the horror genre.


Sep 19, 2011
V2 White Male
No way man, A scarier setting would be a lovable welcome from me. I really am A scardy cat when it comes to scary games but I really do like them at heart. I'd love to see Zelda have scarier settings. Haunted mansion ;)
There is a lot of room in Zelda to go dark/violent/scary.... and they'd all work quite well for the series since it is so open ended and Nintendo can put whatever art style they like with said game so that the tonal elements are so much more heightened than they would be in any other franchise.. BUT...

In recent years it has been Zelda that people associate Nintendo with. Mario is still here spamming games be they retreads of an already tired 2D series, party and sports games or desperate looking 3D adventures... but it is Zelda that most nintendo gamers seem to look forward to. Zelda is nintendo's 'event series' a Zelda release has a lot more gravitas than a Mario release, or Metroid or any other franchise nintendo has...
This kind of makes me think that of all the franchises nintendo could make scarier/more violent etc, Zelda would NOT be the one to do it with. Zelda appeals to perhaps the biggest crowd of nintendo gamers and that is based on everything we have of Zelda so far, with nothing overly creepy/scary or violent about it. to continue to maximise its sales nintendo will probably keep the generic-not-too-much-of-any-tone ideology that the franchise currently has. I'd like to see something darker than TP and something scarier than MM, but i doubt it'll ever happen becuase within Zelda's fanbase is nintendo's biggest market, i doubt nintendo would want to risk alienating so many people with a darker/mature Zelda.

A darker/violent/scary Zelda would attract gamers from the Micorsoft/Sony crowds but nintendo know that those gamers aren't the loyal type, any new sales they'd make on that Zelda would not be true for the next based on their fickle natures. Nintendo knows it has the loyal fanbase, perhaps the loyal fanbase is the only reason why nintendo franchises are still going (loyalty and pretension) but it is nintendo fans that nintendo will serve, so a change in Zelda into a realm of horror or violence probably wont occur any time son unless they get truly desperate. and if they get desperate i still wouldnt put my money on a tonal shift but rather an influx of titles, instead of getting one, maybe two Zelda titles on one console we'd get 4-5.

buuuut that's just me.
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Are you serious?!?
Feb 6, 2013
In a bottle
No, thank you. A lot of what I like about LoZ is the fact that it is very comforting--even when I play a new game, the whole experience just makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside because it is so nostalgic of being a kid and playing my first Zelda game. While I don't mind the occasional scary area in the games, I'm not crazy about them. I still don't like the Bottom of the Well or the Shadow Temple and rush through them, even though I know exactly what is coming and what is around every corner, where every Wallmaster will try and whisk me away, it still makes my heart race and jump at loud noises. I just don't like to be scared, it isn't fun for me.

I would like to add, however, that there is a big difference between fear and tension--and tension caused by an eerie setting is completely different, imo. I always found the Spirit Temple in OoT to be unsettling; it is so big and empty, and heading there after the Shadow Temple changes your view of the game so much that you keep expecting things to jump out at you. But it lacks the constant bombardment of explicit facts regarding the bloody history of the temple, and that makes it much less scary. You don't know what is coming, and it could be something horrible, but it might not be. In the Shadow Temple, you know something awful is about to happen and all you can do is wait anxiously to find out what/when.
Mar 15, 2013
Now, what do you mean, scarier or more creepy?

About scarier, I don't think it would work out. Zelda is not a horror game, and shouldnt be. Plus the scare wont last long. Reason being, that even if the game does scare you for the first time, you would expect it the second time, and thus losing the element of suprise. That's the main reason I never had that fun with horror games. It tries too hard to artificially spook me, while I expect it.

Now onto creepy. Yeah it would work, crackling noises in old houses, silhouettes that appear on the walls when the place is lighten by thunder and other generaly spooky stuff would add character to the place. Those small details tell the players that they should not be there, which makes the game more immersive.


The Fierce Deity
Jan 16, 2013
Inside the Moon
We need the scarier setting desperately. The mixture of different extreme settings helped make OoT amazing. The extremity of the Shadow Temple made the game feel mature, but at the same time it was still Zelda. We need to make Zelda darker to keep older kids in. Now I know SS got perfect reviews, but I kept wanting something more serious, and Ghirahim's ridiculous stupidity ruined his dark potential. The dark parts of the Ancient Cistern were too small, and the art style didn't help much. I want the original OoT darkness: a little blood, freaky pervert zombies, guillotines and other instruments of torture, freaky music, and generally freaky stuff. Zelda could really use this. Now I don't think it will win us any Sony fans. I mean nothing will ever please them unless it has a Sony logo on it, but we can make people have more respect for Zelda. OoT balanced kid and adult perfectly, and we could really use that sort of thing to boost sales and quality.
Oct 26, 2012
I love the idea! I am biased, though, because horror is my favorite genre of entertainment. I think it would be really cool to have a dungeon or even a whole province that would provoke the player to jump in fright. It would also add difficulty for the first-time player.


Gwoh hoh hoh!
Now onto creepy. Yeah it would work, crackling noises in old houses, silhouettes that appear on the walls when the place is lighten by thunder and other generaly spooky stuff would add character to the place. Those small details tell the players that they should not be there, which makes the game more immersive.

I fully agree. I would love some kind of really scary/creepy setting, maybe even several. The Shadow Temple is a good example of what I'd like, but it could use a good deal of improvement (in a scary/creepy way). Other dungeons that come to mind aren't really that good; Arbiter's Grounds was just a sand tomb-like dungeon with some redeads, Ancient Cistern (bottom floor) only had these cartoony Cursed Bokoblins and a purple filter applied to the surroundings, and so on. Something more like Shadow Temple from OOT, but in HD and all that, would definitely work.

Also, a haunted mansion would be amazing; we kinda got that in the form of Snowpeak Ruins, but aside from the Freezards (which scared the crap out of me) there wasn't anything scary. (Apart from the boss intro, obviously.) It was essentially an abandoned mansion, covered in snow.
What I would like is a real haunted mansion; I'm not sure how to describe it quickly, but you get the idea. :P

Flinn Rai

The last time I felt legitimate fear in a Zelda game was the Earth Temple, WW, the Redeads. Those red glowing eyes...hideous.

I like the fact that in a few games, Nintendo has been able to invoke a range of emotions in the player. That needs to continue. Comments have already been made about the Shadow Temple from OoT. Imagine that, or even Ikana Canyon, with upgraded graphics (think TP) and the right music, and you've accomplished creepy in my book. As far as expanding Zelda as far as violence goes, I don't feel that's necessary.

I also think that if you put certain things in the game that are naturally creepy, the game will become creepy automatically (OoT had the Graveyard, for example). So we need to put a few more of those types of places or spooky things in Zelda. Any ideas on that directly? Like, creepy places they could use other than just a graveyard? Creepy items they could put in besides just monsters that freeze you when they scream?


Nerdy and Proud
Jul 8, 2012
Behind My Computer Monitor
I think a creepy setting could work, but maybe not scary. We've already seen some creepy in the franchise, so it probably wouldn't scare anyone away if we were to go that route. Scary, on the other hand might attract newer fans, but it could also scare some off. If they do ever try to establish a scarier setting, they'd have to ease it in slowly and not just bombard the fans with a total change in scenery.

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