The new Zelda and Loftwing amiibo for Skyward Sword HD adds an important updated feature to the game that players shouldn’t have to pay for.
After a lot of speculation, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD was officially unveiled earlier this year. The game is set to release on the Nintendo Switch in July, and it will come with a number of improvements from the original Wii title. However, with the announcement of the new Zelda and Loftwing amiibo, Nintendo is now locking out improved features. It’s a bad move that could have some serious repercussions in the future.
When Skyward Sword HD was announced, the reveal trailer showed many improvements from the original. Besides graphical updates, the motion controls that were mandatory on the Wii are now optional in the Switch version. This is arguably the biggest improvement between Skyward Sword HD and the Wii original. Now, however, a nice traversal improvement has also been announced – but it’s locked behind an upcoming amiibo.
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The new Zelda and Loftwing amiibo is the only figure announced for Skyward Sword HD so far. It features the game’s version of Princess Zelda alongside a blue Loftwing. Overall, it’s the kind of amiibo many fans and collectors would like to have – but it’s the features the amiibo will add to Skyward Sword that make it controversial. Scanning the amiibo on the surface of the world (even inside a dungeon) will allow players to leave that area. They can then return to that area (again, even inside a dungeon) from the skies.
Skyward Sword HD’s Improvements Shouldn’t Cost More Money
This means, of course, that players can zip out of a dungeon in Skyward Sword HD, stock up on items at the Skyloft Bazaar, and then instantly warp back inside of a dungeon without any repercussions. It’s the kind of traversal mechanic that would have made the original even better, and it’s a feature that shouldn’t cost players extra money.
This is especially true when considering how quickly amiibo sell out and are resold by scalpers for high prices – costing fans even more money in the process. It’s also a dangerous precedence for Nintendo, already fresh off its controversial handling of Super Mario 3D All-Stars‘ limited-time release, to lock important improvements behind paywalls like amiibo.
This sets up some serious ramifications for the future. If this is a success, then Nintendo will likely continue handling game improvements and amiibo in a similar way. It also makes amiibo more valuable, theoretically increasing the likelihood of scalping and price gouging. It’s a shame, since the Zelda and Loftwing amiibo for Skyward Sword HD look really nice. Still, it’s a bad move to lock features like improved traversal mechanics behind premium figures.
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