If the latest rumour is to be believed, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild won’t be available in time for the Nintendo Switch launch in March.
The simultaneous launch of both products had always been assumed, partly because they share the same release year, but also because it makes huge sense for Nintendo.
Zelda is a heavy-hitting franchise and Breath of the Wild is one of its most exciting-looking titles of late. Its inclusion in the launch lineup of the Switch was something of a no-brainer, much like Twilight Princess on the Wii.
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However, according to notoriously accurate Nintendo tipster Emily Rogers, the game probably isn’t hitting shelves until mid-2017, missing the March launch of the Switch by several months.
Rogers suggests that the localisation schedule of the game has had to be extended due to Breath of the Wild’s ambitious size. It’s said to be the biggest game Nintendo has ever made.
Localisation will cease, according to reports, in late December, and be followed by 4-6 months of bug testing. This makes April the earliest possible window for the game’s launch.
Rogers continues that the open-world nature of BotW has created unique challenges for Nintendo, and requires a more rigorous bout of testing than previous titles.
Whilst re-reporting the story, Eurogamer said that it had corroborated the information with its own sources.
If Breath of the Wild isn’t available on the launch day of the Switch, it raises huge questions about the platform’s initial lineup.
Most had assumed it would be a cornerstone of Nintendo’s first handful of Switch games; without it, the first few weeks of the new console may suffer. One particular criticism of the Wii U was a lack of strong titles.
We’ll post more information as and when Nintendo chooses to clarify the situation.
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