Zelda: Triforce Heroes Director’s Reason Link Can’t Be a Girl Is as Disappointing as You’d Expect
Clearly, he has never watched the end of Aladdin.
Legend of Zelda: Triforce Heroes is the 3DS Zelda game that has to fill the void until the (maybe) Wii U version surfaces again, and it’s got a whole bunch of multiplayer Link goodness. So with a bunch of different Links running around, there’s no reason there couldn’t be girls, right? WRONG, according to the game’s director.
Yes, despite the fact that there can be several of the character on-screen at a time, letting players choose their gender would just be bananas anarchy. The story was handed down on pre-etched stone tablets at the top of Nintendo mountain and can never be altered. OK, I’m paraphrasing, but that’s not too far off from what game director Hiromasa Shikata told IGN:
There’s this kingdom, an event happens, and the king needs heroes. So, he puts out a call for heroes to gather and one of those is this guy, Link. He sees this audition, basically, “Heroes needed; apply here,” and that’s the start of his adventure.
The story calls for this sort of legend/prophecy where heroes will come together to help solve a problem. And in that, they are male characters. So, because the game is set with that as the story background, you cannot choose a gender; you are a male character.
Because how ridiculous is it to think that a girl might think she could apply to be a hero? Who are we to put such unrealistic ideas into young gamers’ heads? Next they might start thinking of men and women as equal, and society will crumble! Of course the story had to be about boys!
It’s one (sucky) thing not to include a gender option in your game, but to justify it as, “Well that’s the story, so we’re stuck with it!” is so much worse. It’s like the end of Aladdin when the Sultan realizes he can change the rules so everyone can have a happy ending, only if the Sultan had instead said, “I guess you two lovebirds are SOL. If only someone had the power to change things … Well, thanks for saving our asses, Al. See you never.”
But it’s OK, because Shikata has some friends who are women, and they don’t seem to mind!
[J]ust as general information, we do have a lot of female staff members who are playing this game and enjoying it. It doesn’t seem to be a big issue to them. They still are getting emotional investment in this game.
So why even bother trying to give additional options that might attract more players? Women who are Shikata’s employees haven’t called him into question over the lack of gender selection, and they’d have no reason to keep that to themselves, right? Definitely no questionable attitudes to be wary of from someone who tries to justify this decision by saying,
And to be honest, Link isn’t the most masculine of guys in the world, depending on how you want to project yourself into the character.
I feel so reassured.
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