Aonuma said:I honestly think we cannot go back to button controls now, so I think that these controls will be used in future Zelda titles, too.
Aonuma said:We will want to use the Wii Motion-Plus controls that we did not use this time in future games, so we cannot tell you now. Please look forward to seeing them in the future.
Skyward Sword has started the Zelda series down an intriguing path toward immersion. The philosophy of this path is "Bring the players into the game by bringing the game out to the players." The first step was to pluck the sword out of the game and place it directly into the hands of the players, thanks to Wii MotionPlus. I say it started with Skyward Sword, even though Twilight Princess also incorporated motion controls. But Twilight Princess's motion controls were just that - controls invoked through motion. Controlling an in-game sword by swinging the controller. In that game, there was no difference between a swing of the Wii Remote and a press of a button. Skyward Sword's one-to-one mapping created a physical proxy for the sword outside the game.
Judging by the quotes above, we'll likely see this again in Zelda Wii U. It will also likely take the next step. With more hardware comes more possibilities.
Aonuma said:With The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, we had the Nunchuck and Wii Remote sort of stand in for the sword and shield that Link carries. But in a game for the Wii U, I can definitely see something like the controller itself becoming the different items that Link is using, allowing you to interact with the game world and with the game items in a very different way.
Now Aonuma taunts us with plucking another item out of the game and laying it into our hands: the Magic Satchel/hammerspace. I think the best example of how this will reflect this new immersion philosophy is that instead of pressing a button to bring up the map in-game, one can simply reach for the tablet which becomes the map, outside of the game. But that would be a low-impact change; what they'd really want to capitalize on is bringing Link's inventory outside the game. Instead of Link pulling his items out of hammerspace into the game, we can pull them out of our own hammerspace into our world, and "interact with the game world and with the game items in a very different way." Now, I don't want to start speculating on what exactly they'll do with the tablet, so I'll leave it at that.
One question that's nagging me as I envision this scenario is whether this immersion is really worth the extra trouble one would have to go through to use both the Wii Remote and the tablet. Link does have to put his sword and shield away before using a different item, but does increasing the immersion of this experience justify forcing us to set down the Wii Remote in order to pick up the tablet?
Another issue to consider with this "Bring the players into the game by bringing the game out to the players" approach is the hardware required to achieve it. Unless they took the Augmented Reality approach - which I don't see the Zelda franchise ever doing - they need to provide a physical proxy for everything they take out of the game. For the sword, this was Wii MotionPlus - an add-on which had to be purchased in order to play the game. For Zelda Wii U this is a nonissue because the tablet comes with the console, but in general, does an increase in immersion justify the cost of extra hardware?
Finally, is bringing the game out to the players the right approach for immersion? Do you think interacting with the tablet will make the game seem more real, or will it seem to lose cohesion?