Shigeru Miyamoto, creator of the Legend of the Zelda series, disliked the original version of The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, according to its designers, likening it to a 20-year old game.
"We were thinking about a Zelda game with the theme of communication," Hiromasa Shikata said in the latest Iwata Asks, explaining that the game wasn't A Link to the Past sequel at that stage, nor did it include the idea of Link entering walls. "When we presented it, Miyamoto-san said, 'This sounds like an idea that's 20 years old.'"
"As soon as we started the presentation, I could clearly see Miyamoto-san's facial expression rapidly darkening," Shiro Mouri said. "I thought, 'This is bad...' And then at the end he said, 'This sounds like an idea that's 20 years old,' that was the killing blow. We were down on the floor."
Shikata shared how the team decided to start the game's design from scratch. "One day when the three of us were having a meeting, I suddenly said, 'What about having Link enter into walls?' Mouri-san and the other programmer were like 'That's great!' and got into it. But even though I had brought it up, it didn't quite make sense to me.
The team rebuilt the prototype with 2D mechanic and showed it to Miymoto, who responded positively and greenlit it. Two weeks later in October 2010, two years before the Wii U's launch, the team was disbanded to work on the console's launch titles.
"So at the time I lost hope," Shikata said. "I had hardly ever heard of a project starting, disbanding, and then starting up again later."
The project and core team was revived a year later to meet the wishes of fans, from "overseas in particular," who were calling for a new 3DS Zelda game to come out by the end of 2013.
"We released The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D for the Nintendo 3DS, but that was a remake of a Nintendo 64 game," Eiji Aonuma said. "So when I heard people asking if we would come out with a whole new game, I really wanted to satisfy those expectations."
The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds is slated to launch in North America on Nov. 22 for the Nintendo 3DS. For more about the game's development, check out Iwata Asks in ful.