Trace The Legend of Zelda’s Humble Beginnings On Nintendo Designer's Graphing Paper
If you're a fan of the original Legend of Zelda and love the feeling of a nostalgic high, we've got you covered. On its UK website, Nintendo has just posted a number of scans showing us what the classic game featuring Link looked like before those ideas turned digital.
Anyone who's played Legend of Zelda is going to recognize the shot below without hesitation. Some of the map is cut off, but you can still see the section that new players begin out in (the second in on the bottom from the left), and not to mention a slew of secrets (obviously, no fan was ever meant to see this before the game was released!).
For some close-ups of this map, you can peruse the super-quick video below.
What's neat about these sketches is that they appear to have been crafted on normal graphing paper, which was sure to help the developers figure out placements more efficiently (one square equaled one game tile). Another thing that the map shows (as well as any released before this) is just how sporadic the game's environments are, in terms of location. On one screen, you're in the forest; in the next, you could be in regular grassy terrain, and move again, and you could be in a mountainous region.
Many Zelda games (especially the 2D ones) are designed like that (including Link to the Past), but it does show how little we cared about such things back when the game was released (or perhaps even now, for that matter). The game's simple nature, and perhaps a strange map layout, did absolutely nothing to affect the kind if impact the game had on gamers worldwide.