Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown

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Hype for The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is at an all-time high, as weeks away from release, Nintendo gives fans a true look at the game with the latest Zelda stream. Eiji Aonuma himself takes players through just over ten minutes of gameplay, and our Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown is picking apart every detail you missed.

Before we paraglide into the rest of this guide, be sure to check our wealth of amazing Zelda content as well. We have articles on Zelda wallpapers, Breath of the Wild wallpapers, the Tears of the Kingdom Zonai explained, Breath of the Wild amiibo, Wind Waker Switch, the best Zelda games, and so much more.

Hey, listen! Then read our Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown. But before we do that, if you haven’t already then make sure to watch the Eiji Aonuma gameplay demonstration below.

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Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: Link fuses a branch to a rock

New abilities

Alright, let’s start with an obvious one, but we now have a firm grasp on Link’s new abilities in Tears of the Kingdom. Recall, fuse, ultrahand, and ascend are everything we’ve seen so far, but we don’t know if any others are waiting. Watch the stream to get an understanding of each of these yourself, but our minds are already racing, thinking about all of the fused weapons both Link and enemies can use.

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: Link paraglides through the sky

Link’s new look

With our first glimpse at actual gameplay, we now have confirmation that Link’s ruined arm and toga look is an outfit that you can equip. While other trailers also show Link in his blue champion’s tunic from Breath of the Wild, we suspect this new look is how Link starts his adventure.

The first trailer shows Link reaching out for a glowing green hand, similar to the energy Link’s gnarled hand uses. So, we have a hunch those events kickstart the game and lead to Link’s new look. We also expect to be able to find and equip new outfits later on, much like in Breath of the Wild.

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: Link picks up a Zonai charge

Zonai confirmed

Do you hear that? It’s the sound of dozens of Zelda-tubers celebrating as one long-standing theory is finally confirmed. This gameplay footage not only confirms that the Zonai are a major part of the story, but also that there are Zonai enemies, weapons, and presumably magic. This tribe could be the key to Link’s new abilities as the similarities between these new enemies, the magic, and Link’s new powers are too strong to be a coincidence.
We dive more into the mysterious tribe in our Zelda Tears of the Kingdom Zonai explained guide, but for now, all you need to know is that they’re an ancient race of magic barbarians that existed alongside the original Shiekah clan. They’re also partly responsible for helping to seal Ganon away, so it’s not a stretch to assume that the green hand holding Ganon down is actually Zonai magic.

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: a close up view shows a minimap with cave icons visible

Are those caves?

We already know that caves are appearing thanks to trailers for Tears of the Kingdom, but now we have a good idea of how they show up in the world and how they’re signposted on the map. An icon is visible for caves, as well as a tick, so it seems that the map marks each cave entrance once Link passes through it, almost like you are completing the challenge within each one.

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: a dragon flies through the sky

Here be dragons

The dragons from Breath of the Wild return, as considering in Tears of the Kingdom, we’re spending a lot more time in the sky, we’re likely to spend a lot more time with them. We get a glimpse of Naydra atop Mount Lanayru, but we also get a peak at a dragon with a colour pattern we don’t quite recognise. As we explore more of the skies, it’s clear we are set to find many more creatures up amongst the clouds.

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: a minimap shows co-ordinates

Co-ordinates ahoy

Speaking of the sky, one neat addition to the HUD in Tears of the Kingdom is coordinates. We now have a clear signifier of latitude, longitude, and altitude, making it easier to see exactly how high up Link is. This is very helpful for finding places and sharing with friends when you make a good discovery. Frankly, it’s also going to be a godsend for guides! We wonder, though, just how high can Link ascend?

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: A tower is viewable in the distance

Tower power

We’ve already seen these tall structures in trailers, but the latest gameplay stream gives us a great look at the new towers. We don’t know exactly how they operate, but on more than one occasion, we see the minimap on the HUD displaying a blank screen. Therefore, it’s likely that towers operate the same way as in BotW, revealing the topography of the area. However, we also see the map change between the ground and the sky islands, so we might have twice the map to uncover this time around!

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: Link approaches some building materials

Link the builder

Link’s new ultrahand ability allows him to stitch items together to create vehicles, weapons, and much more. We’re already aware of makeshift cars, balloons, and other modes of transportation, and now we also see areas that have certain building materials lying around. The end of Breath of the Wild sees Zelda mention rebuilding Hyrule, so much like the Terry Town quest, perhaps this time around, Link is actually helping to rebuild villages and towns for the people of Hyrule.

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: a green spiral of energy comes off a cone like object

Spirals in Hyrule

Another new structure in Hyrule are these rising spirals of green energy surrounding what looks like a cone. We see a marker for these on the map, not dissimilar to the icon used for shrines in Breath of the Wild. Could these cones be our new shrines, laying dormant ordinarily, but later displaying green energy when completed and act as a fast travel point? The Zonai were a warrior race. It isn’t a stretch to assume they might make trials similar to those made by the Shiekah. In fact, we already know they made the labyrinths from BotW.

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: Link overlooks an area with rails, carts, and a large orb

From sail to rail

The new sky islands are the main feature of Tears of the Kingdom, but travelling between them might be difficult. Well, it seems that Nintendo has thought of everything, as we get a glimpse at rails seemingly connecting these islands. One shot even shows a large orb next to these rails, and some carts, so could the orb power the carts on the rails? Getting to cart around the sky islands hundreds of feet above Hyrule sounds like a blast.

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: Link powers a raft with flying engines, while a battery meter runs down

Are those batteries?

We know from the gameplay shown so far that Link can assemble and power several different pieces of technology, but we also see a battery icon appearing when Link powers that technology on. In fact, when using many devices, the battery drains quicker. Key art shown for Tears of the Kingdom shows Link with several green vials attached to his hip, and we think these might be battery charges for the Zonai technology. It certainly sounds fun to slowly add more charge to the vehicles, allowing both cars and air transport more power to ascend into the sky.

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: Link stands in an open area, while in the background a construct made of blocks scans with a red laser eye

Zonai golem

The guardians are the most iconic enemy from Breath of the Wild, so it’s no surprise that Tears of the Kingdom likely has something similar. While previous footage shows the giant cube-based Golem, now we assume this is likely one of the Zonai constructs that act as our primary new enemies. In fact, we even get a quick look at a powered-down Zonai golem scanning the area with laser sight, where we’re sure the giant pops out when disturbed.

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown: Link glides through the sky over red malice holes in the ground

Malice holes

Finally, we already know that caves are a new feature in Tears of the Kingdom, but when skydiving in the new trailer, we get a good look at large holes in the ground surrounded with malice energy. Whatever horrors unleashed when Ganon returns may lay waste to Hyrule and could be the answer to our new-found access to these previously unreachable caves. It’s an exciting idea being able to drop down below the surface of Hyrule, and discover what’s been waiting underneath our feet for years.

Well, that’s all we have for our Zelda Tears of the Kingdom trailer breakdown for now, but if we missed something, then be sure to get in touch with us over at the Pocket Tactics Facebook account. If you need to make sure you bag yourself a copy of Link’s latest escapades, check out our Tears of the Kingdom pre-order guide next.

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