‘Metroid’ developer’s cancelled ‘Zelda’ game was “an experiment gone wrong”

The project featured gameplay that was described as "a simplified version of Whack-A-Mole"

New details have reportedly been revealed regarding the cancelled Zelda Sheik game from developer Retro Studios.

In a new report from IGN, it’s been revealed that the spin-off Zelda title was in various stages of development for three years but was eventually cancelled. An anonymous source close to the project said that the title could never be called “a ‘traditional Zelda‘” game due to its gameplay style.

Back in 2020, early concept art was shared online which suggested that Ocarina Of Time‘s Sheik would be the main playable protagonist and would focus on the character’s dark timeline.

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The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Credit: Nintendo

Ex-Retro Studio programmer Paul Tozour said, “I see people, you know, commenting on that concept art on the internet… and being like, ‘Oh my god, Retro was working on a Zelda game, that would have been so awesome,’ and like, I understand that feeling, but what they have to understand is it was not actually a Zelda game.

“At no point was it really anything like Zelda – it was an experiment gone wrong that happened to be set in the Zelda universe.”

Tozour added that the gameplay was “a simplified version of Whack-A-Mole” and would have featured Sheik travelling across an overworld before being tasked with battling groups of wolves.

“There were four or five wolves, maybe six, and they just be in their idle state waiting to pounce at you, then they’d jump one-by one and you’d go ‘whack,'” the programmer explained. “So that’s literally all it was, just detecting when the player swung the Wii Remote. If so, the wolf dies, and if you don’t do it correctly, you take damage.”

In other news, World Of Warcraft: Classic, players are experiencing long queues as the pre-patch servers go live ahead of Wrath Of The Lich King‘s launch.

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