The Nintendo Switch is now starting to show its age and a successor is expected to be announced next year. Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom director Hidemaro Fujibayashi spoke with IGN about a number of topics, one of which is hardware. While Mr. Fujibayashi didn’t want to detract from the system, he did talk about what they were able to accomplish with the system. He explained that they doubted that the game’s three different layers (sky, land, and depths) could work so seamlessly together with minimal strain on their earlier systems. He concluded by saying that they have special people working on that aspect of the game.
At what points did you feel like you ran into the technical limitations of the Switch, and how did you overcome them to create this frankly stunning technical achievement on the Nintendo Switch?
Fujibayashi: Well, as you know, one of the key features of th is game is the ability to seamlessly travel between the different layers of the world we’ve made. So from traveling all the way from the sky down to the surface, and then beyond that into the depths below. And this is something that, I mean, that kind of thing, that kind of movement, was something that I had previously envisioned or thought would be really cool to achieve, but I knew it was something on previous hardware that was probably impossible. But when I knew we were going to take it up as a challenge, I thought we could really do it without loading. I mean, there is some loading that happens while you’re doing it, but it’s hidden in the background. And when I saw that we were able to make that seamless journey between the layers of the world, I thought, wow, the team we have working on this is really, really special. We have special people working on this.