The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2 was arguably the biggest game we heard about during the Nintendo Direct at E3 2021. (Metroid Dread was pretty exciting news as well, but we digress.) While we didn’t learn a ton of new gameplay or story details, we did learn one very important piece of clerical information: Breath of the Wild 2 will come out in 2022.
Information comes from the Nintendo Direct livestream at E3 2021, where the 40-minute show finished off with a bevy of Zelda announcements. We heard about two upcoming DLC packs for Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity, as well as an inventive Zelda Game and Watch system to celebrate the franchise’s 35th anniversary. Last, but not least, we saw a brand-new trailer for BotW2, with the 2022 date stamped right at the end. You can watch it for yourself on YouTube, or embedded below:
As for the rest of the trailer itself, it represents the first substantial look we’ve gotten at gameplay in Breath of the Wild 2.
As in the first game, Link will explore an open-world Hyrule, fighting off enemies large and small as he goes. He’ll also leap high in the air and paraglide from location to location. The graphics look extremely similar to the first Breath of the Wild game, right down to Link’s blue tunic and the soft-focus, watercolor environments.
What’s new this time around is that Link will explore the skies of Hyrule, thanks to a new ability that lets him defy gravity and travel to floating temples. Other Tom’s Guide writers have pointed out that this has a definite The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword vibe. That feels appropriate, considering that The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD will come out next month, giving players a chance to relive Link’s first airborne adventure.
Beyond that, what we know about BotW2 is the same as before. Link and Zelda will explore some kind of eerie red energy that seems to threaten Hyrule, eventually emerging from the ground to engulf Hyrule Castle. The game is a direct sequel to the original Breath of the Wild, which is a relative rarity in the Zelda series; most games are totally standalone.
We’ll have more information about The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2 as it becomes available. In the meantime, at least we now have a 12-month release window.
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