The Anti-Ganon

In a recent interview, veteran Nintendo developer Eiji Aonuma revealed some interesting details about The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, on which he's currently working. If you're not a fan of spoilers stop reading now!

Ganon, Link's adversary since the early days, will not appear in the game. In fact, the odd-looking Lord Ghirahim was created to provide a breath of fresh air and give our hero a more unique foe.

This time around, I thought that if we featured a character similar in presentation to Ganon, it really wouldn’t make that much of a difference and that new character wouldn’t have much impact. I wanted to make to make a character that contrasted what people think about Ganon – someone who is a little bit mysterious and kind of makes people think, “well, I don’t really know what to make of this somewhat terrifying character.” That was sort of my goal in making a character like Ghirahim, and that’s basically why I did that.

He revealed that Ganon's sitting this one out in relation to the Triforce, which operates differently as well here than in times past:

Ganon typically appears in a Zelda game when the story is centered around the Triforce. This time around, the Triforce sort of takes on a different meaning and plays a different role in the story. So because of that, Ganon will not appear.

Aonuma also commented on Ghirahim's androgynous appearance:

One of the things that relates to what I said about contrasting Ganon is that he does have a sort of unisex-like, genderless feel to him.

Additionally, he stated that Skyward Sword would precede Ocarina of Time in the Zelda chronology, that Link starts off as a student at a knight academy and lives in a world above the clouds but must eventually venture below, which is where travel by bird comes into play as well as in racing mini-games. Whereas before, playing an instrument was a simple matter of a button-press, MotionPlus will feature into harp-strumming here. Finally, instead of attaining the Master Sword as in past games, Link will play a part in its creation, around which the story centres to a degree:

As far as the story itself is concerned, one big point that makes it a very different experience is that in most Zelda games, the Master Sword has been something that Link seeks out, finds, and uses to destroy Ganon. This time around, it’s more centred on the creation of the Master Sword – the way it was born, so to speak. Link kind of forges it along the way. It’s more centred on that, which is a different pattern than we have had in a lot of ways.

What new take on the Zelda universe are you most excited about?