It's been clear for a few days that the update to version 1.1.1 in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has improved performance on the Switch, with various videos showcasing key areas. If you like seeing solid numbers on your framerate, though, Digital Foundry has now jumped into the fray.
The analysis below showcases the level of improvement on Switch, though the impact on Wii U - unfortunately - is less notable.
Have you been enjoying the smoother performance of Breath of the Wild since the update?
Thanks to all that sent this in.
Cool. Most of the framerate dips were rare enough that they didn't bother me too much, but improving performance is never a bad thing. Should make my second hard mode playthrough an even smoother experience!
I haven't noticed if it's any smoother but I'm certainly enjoying the game. Best game in years, possibly ever.
The Wii U version got worse performance. Especially in Eldin. It wasn't this bad prior to the patch.
That explains it. Had a conversation with a colleague who had the Wii U version who says they haven't noticed any improvements. Whereas, for me, playing on my Switch, the difference is staggering. Cool story bro...
i haven't noticed any differences in the performance of the game. but, that's just me enjoying the game on the Nintendo switch.
I've definitely noticed improvements to the Switch version, particularly in one area of the game where the framerate was always terrible. Now there's just occasional framedrops there, which is great.
So, what are the chances that at some point in the future, we might eventually see updates that optimize the game enough to display on the Switch in 1080p, or at least allow for antialiasing?
I thought I'd seen a huge improvement at Zora's Palace on the Wii U, but maybe I just happened to go there when it wasn't raining or something
I've noticed improvements in the Wii U version too. Yeah, not as noticeable as Switch's, but it has improved.
Not a real surprise that the Switch version has seen bigger improvements than the Wii U version, as many people have pointed out... the Wii U is an older console with all of it's power tapped. The Switch is a new console with most of it's power yet to be discovered.
I wouldn't be surprised to see the Switch version pull away more in the future, however... all that matters is the game is FUN whichever format you play it on.
Seeing as this update dropped the day after I finally beat the game, I haven't had a chance to try it out and play "spot the differences". I'm sure I'll revisit BoTW in the future, but for now I'm taking advantage of the release window game drought to catch up on some older titles in my backlog that go as far back as the GameCube.
Love the game, im about 100+ hours in but am starting to get bored with the crappy rewards for quest and garbage treasure chests. Seems they took tons of content out of them and hid it behind amiibo crap.
@Alshain01 That's to widen the gap between the two versions so people buy the Switch haha.
@Nintendoforlife That really wouldn't make sense at this point. The people who bought the Wii U version are unlikely to turn around and buy a Switch now just because of framerate issues. It's likely unintentional, but they definitely screwed it up.
Wouldn't be a surprise if we get further optimisation. They talked about a sequel so may well keep refining the engine.
@Tandoori You most likely won't see anti-aliasing. It's a given for most Nintendo 1st party games.
Frankly, most of team has most likely moved to their next project so chances are we won't see a 1080p patch.
@Tandoori I don't think Breath of the Wild will get any visual upgrades, but I certainly expect the next Zelda game on the Switch to run at 1080p, hopefully with at least some anti-aliasing.
It's weird that none of these videos mention that you can set the Switch to 720p (or even 480p) in the system settings if you really want completely smooth framerate on the big screen.
@EternalDragonX Isn't most of the amiibo stuff just slight variations on the classic "hero's tunic" armor set? It seems pretty safe to ignore the amiibo stuff entirely unless you're just a completely OCD completionist.
@DanElectrode I play mine on a 55 in I still don't see the frame drops people talk about
@Alshain01 Just a little humor xD
You may be right, the "next project" for the BotW Team might just be the Winter DLC though. Depending on what that's gonna be it might absolutely make sense to keep improving the engine... I think it's too early to give up hope for further technical improvements. That said, the game is a blast either way. After 100+ hours it's still such a jaw-dropping experience at points, and I still discover new things all the time.
Nice to see the improvements this way. I did notice some differences but it's hard to tell as I'm always still going to new places. (I finished the story line without even doing some of the main quest items and I'm not sure how I feel about it. I liked that hanging out there as a goal, but ... now I'm looking to get to the finale completely prepared.)
Man, I just want to play this game right now. Love it.
As for breath of the Wild sequels: I vote for a Majora's Mask Style sequel. Something that uses the same basic engines but mixes up the game play and format immensely.
Also, I now want an offshoot of this team to work on the next 3D Metroid game. Bring it back in house Nintendo.
So, there's this year's DLC...
I wonder if Nintendo is contemplating reusing this world for an extensive DLC treatment. Maybe many more stories or another large one. How about a different era in this whole story? ( Spoilery talk next ) 100 years back or maybe further when they were unearthing the stuff and preparing before Link and Zelda's time... or the WAY back 1000 years thing.
You're freaking creeping me out lately
Ah the Wii U. The Switches older, poorer brother. He tries so hard but just can't cut it anymore. Time to take him out to the shed and blow his brains out with a shotgun.
As a Wii u owner...guess i can,t expect much right? we got lucky for still getting the game...
@Slim1999 The size of the screen doesn't really matter, just the resolution it runs at.
But yeah, I've been playing mine at at 1080p also on a 55" TV, and while I have noticed a few choppy bits, the framerate issues haven't really bothered me at all.
I was just pointing out that all these videos keep saying to play in handheld mode if you want to alleviate the framerate issues, but even if the framerate was a big deal to me I'd still rather play on my big TV with the system set to 720p rather than on the 6" screen if I'm at home anyway.
@Neferupitou You paid $60, same as the switch owners. You deserve as much as they do.
You can easily parry the guardian lasers on wii u cause of OBVIOUS reasons so take that Switch! whahaha!
@DanElectrode a variation of the tunic is better than 800 ambers we get 100 rupees for finishing a long quest. And while im at it the game is missing a fishing mechanic which is sorely missed.
Could be placebo, but on Wii U I find the forest to run a little better than before, Karariko as well. Not that they were terrible to begin with, just noticeable. Basically, this update just made the game just a little bit more awesome than it already was
@aaronsullivan Nintendo is usually blamed for milking their franchises. Well, I demand that they milk this particular game (engine) as much as as they can!
@EternalDragonX Unless I'm forgetting one, OoT and TP are the only games in the series that have fishing, so to act like it's an integral part of any Zelda game that BotW is missing seems silly to me.
@DanElectrode Link's Awakening as well, kinda. Not sure about the Oracle games.
@DanElectrode Um... Wind Waker... You literally cannot finish the main storyline in the original GCN version unless you fish up certain items... (Although it's really more like sea treasure hauling, but the concept is similar.)
@Alshain01 I paid $60, but I'll be partaking in the Cemu version too, once it's brought up to snuff. Then the Wii U version will get more than NS owners got...
@DanElectrode Interestingly, the Majora's Mask 3DS port added fishing into that game. I think I just ignored taking part in it, though. Can't remember what you get for doing it.
@DanElectrode Actually, the output resolution of the console is not the rendering resolution. You can easily test this on the Wii U using the screenshot function of the Internet Browser: no matter the output resolution, you always get a 720p screenshot out of Mario Kart 8 gameplay, as an example. And it's not with more jaggies if the console is set to 480p. That's because the game is still rendered at 720p resolution and then downscaled or upscaled according to the resolution set on the console.
Expect the Switch to work in the same way when docked. Nintendo never said that at 720p or 480p Zelda would have had better framerate, after all.
Except that's literally what I'm gonna do.
The Wii U framerate annoyed the hell out of me. And I was gonna get a Switch sooner or later anyway so I've just sold my Wii U copy and gonna get the Switch instead.
Anyone think the Wii U version's framerate will improve in the future? It makes sense that Switch will be improved first given Nintendo's current emphasis on it, but I really hope at some point (maybe in the next couple of months) Nintendo could push out a patch bringing Wii U version framerate to at least 1.1.0 Switch docked levels.
@EternalDragonX If a 'ton of content' to you is like 3 different Link outfits that only offer aesthetic enhancements to gameplay, then yes, they did lock a ton of content behind Amiibo.
Wolf Link is the only substantial thing you need an Amiibo for, but it's still kind of hard to call that 'content'. It's just a neat, albeit slower way of hunting/attacking without having to do anything.
So how big is this patch anyway?
@SLIGEACH_EIRE It's a lot smoother now on Switch, which you'd know if you moved on (buy a Switch!) and stopped flogging a dead console.
@DanElectrode Yeah, I've never really understood "it doesn't have a fishing mini game" as a legitimate complaint. I mean, I liked the fishing bits in those other games. They were a nice, relaxing (though some would say boring) diversion from the hectic action of the main adventure.
But would they be worth uprooting the fish obtaining methods in this game for? Would it be worth making Link unable to grab them in the water? Would it be worth making him unable to snipe them with an arrow, or annihilate them with a remote bomb, or shock them a Thunder Rod, or slice them from afar with a Wind Cleaver?
Most of the above options make a standard fishing rod look a bit tame.
I don't really notice these type of things. But may seen a drop in Rainy areas more. Although I do play in portable mode and not TV mode.
Definitely noticed improvements when I played today. Super glad they're trying to improve performance!
@NewAdvent of course they have
It's a dead, discontinued system
@Julien Did I mention any system? No!
Screw you and your Switch! Dead consoles need moar luve!
Wee you fureverz!
@SLIGEACH_EIRE You constantly tell us how much you love your Wii U and why you're not buying a Switch (yet) so I assumed. Then again, probably best not to ASSUME as makes an ASS out of U and ME.
Anyway, keep the comments coming. Reading your Nintendo Life posts is like watching an episode of Eastenders. Makes me feel more positive about my life.
PS - Thanks for editing your comment to not include the bit about me being dangerous if I had a brain. Very magnanimous of you.
Wii U is pathetic already. The game should have never been released on the Wii U.
@NewAdvent I'm experiencing the same issues with moblins, especially when it's raining. At one point the game froze for so long (about 3 seconds) thought it had crashed.
Maybe this is why BotW doesn't have as many large creatures as Xenoblade Chronicles / Xenoblade Chronicles X, because it can't cope when factoring in both the physics engine and weather effects.
"though the impact on Wii U - unfortunately - is less notable"
May be the case. I still notice framerate-droppings, wich doesn't bother me one bit since the game is great!
Excuuuuuuse me princess! The game is a Wii u game first and foremost! They never should have used it to plug their awful Switch launch line-up (wich stays awful untill Mario arrives)!!
Am I the only one that doesn't obsess over framerate statistics? Maybe it's because I'm old? My wiiu version plays fine and I care more about the game play than if it's 60fps.
@Tandoori when a Switch with better hardware specs gets announced.
@PlywoodStick Haha, yeah, although you never actually catch fish in Wind Waker, so I don't know if that qualifies as "fishing." It's more like one of those crane games where you try to retrieve a plush toy.
Can you imagine ALL the backslash if nintendo cancelled the Wii U version? better think again.
The backlash from less than a million people?
Pissing off less than million poeple isn,t a smart move in any way. Mainly if you wish them to buy your new console.
Supporting a dead console isn't a smart move either. Your point?
Simple, they promised the game for wii u in the first place, it would be just stupid to cancel it. Wii u got his last great game and can now rest in peace. And no i do not wish nintendo to keep bleeding money with the wii u either.
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