Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2 Seems to disconnect everything, even Master Cycle Zero

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Many questions still surround Nintendo’s The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2, including what new features it will add on top of its predecessor. Early trailers showcase Link taking to the skies above Hyrule as an expansion of the world players are familiar with, and there appears to be more to Ganon’s story following Breath of the Wild. Another observation audiences have made is that it seems Link will be stripped back to basics and starting from fresh for Breath of the Wild 2.

While “resetting” the hero is standard in sequels that reuse the same protagonist, this could have a significant impact on how Breath of the Wild 2 plays. Whether it’s rumored midair combat mechanics or the ability to phase through platforms in trailers, Breath of the Wild 2 looks set to revamp the hero’s skills. Though some fans might want to see the Sheikah Slate and its Runes return, including the Master Cycle Zero, a new take on Breath of the Wild’s mechanics seems inevitable and necessary.

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The likelihood of Link losing some of his previously acquired abilities appears to be high. While him losing access to the Sheikah Slate is debatable – especially since Breath of the Wild’s was originally developed for the Wii U, which the Slate was modeled after – this wouldn’t stop Nintendo from removing it in one way or another for gameplay purposes. For instance, players might see an altered form of the Slate, either through corruption or upgrades, that could remove some old features.

There will be fans who would be disappointed by this, as the versatility of Link’s abilities allowed players to pull off some incredible feats and exploits, but Nintendo seems to be aiming for a darker game with Breath of the Wild 2 in story, tone, and overall gameplay experience. Therefore, the removal of some of these abilities would provide Nintendo with a blank slate while avoiding the added complications of Breath of the Wild’s DLC add-ons.

As fun as it was to be able to see Link tear through the sequel as a biker from the start, this concept proves incongruent to the ethos of The Legend of Zelda. Locking the ability behind DLC as a reward for completing The Champions’ Ballad was acceptable, but justifying its existence in Breath of the Wild 2 might be a stretch for Nintendo. The Master Cycle Zero could come back for the sequel, its existence would just need to be revamped.

Revamping New and Old Mechanics

A lot of functionality would likely be lost if the Slate was removed, so its replacement has big shoes to fill. One theory is that Nintendo could reintroducing a magic system into Breath of the Wild 2, something which was missing in the first game but has been seen throughout the franchise. The evidence behind this is the state of Link’s arm and the abilities he seems to possess in trailer footage.

Attentive viewers noted Link’s arm in Breath of the Wild 2 appears corrupted with some magic similar in style to Sheikah technology. Some have also drawn parallels to Link’s arm and the seal supposedly keeping Ganon contained, with speculation suggesting he might lose abilities like Mipha’s Grace or Revali’s Gale due to Ganon’s influence.

If it is corrupted technology infused with Link’s arm, this might be the Slate’s replacement, granting Link previous Runes such as Stasis or Magnesis while expanding his range to include newer skills like the aforementioned phasing. It would be an organic development of Breath of the Wild’s set-up, forcing Link to relearn old and new abilities while also providing Nintendo with a means of improving the mechanics from the first game. This would reopen the Master Cycle Zero issue, since it too was connected to the Slate.

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A Master Cycle 2.0 Could Appear in Breath of the Wild’s Sequel

One of the many praises Breath of the Wild received came from its free open-world traveling. Skills like Revali’s Gale and items like the Paraglider made “flight” effortless, and since Breath of the Wild 2 will be taking Link to the skies, improved flight mechanics will be needed. While Link rode horses across Hyrule, a flying mount would make sense for the sequel, but unless the Loftwings make a surprise comeback then Nintendo could be short on options. A modified flying Master Cycle Zero could be the perfect answer.

Though a flying Master Cycle Zero is perhaps absurd, it would be no more absurd than a motorcycle in Breath of the Wild. Some of the bike’s limitations could factor into its usage in Breath of the Wild 2. For instance, its fuel supply would mean it could only fly for so long, while limited speed could make other means of travel faster but riskier – like using momentum and stamina while Paragliding. Better yet, Nintendo could polish the movement options with the Master Cycle Zero, allowing Link to seamlessly transition between ground and air travel.

It’s unlikely the Master Cycle Zero will actually return for the base game, and could be another feature Nintendo would save for future DLC for Breath of the Wild 2. But Nintendo should be clearing the board for its sequel in order to give Link the fresh start and provide players with a starting point to rebuild him back up to defeat Ganon again. What shape or form this will take remains to be seen, but the experience is still highly anticipated as fans await official news and a final release date for Breath of the Wild 2.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2 is set to release in early 2023 for Nintendo Switch.

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