That’s a bummer.
When the Nintendo Switch was unveiled last month, the exciting first look trailer showcased The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild being played on both the home console and portable tablet. We had seen some awesome gameplay on the Wii U before, but watching Link roam around the beautiful open landscape of Hyrule on the Switch was something else. Breath of the Wild looks incredible. I mean, it’s an open world Zelda game. How could things possibly go wrong? Well, not launching with the Switch is one way.
Trusted Nintendo insider Emily Rogers reported recently that BotW will not be released in March 2017 when the Switch comes out. It seems that the game’s localization is taking much longer than anticipated. Rogers said that multiple sources have told her that localization for the game won’t be complete until December. Once localization is complete, BotW will require months (maybe six or more) of thorough testing prior to launch. That amount of testing seems fair. This game is probably the biggest Nintendo has ever taken on, and they’re going to make sure they do it right. Releasing the game with as few bugs as possible could be worth the wait. (Bethesda… take note.)
Knowing I won’t get to play BotW as soon as I have my hands on the Switch is a bummer, but this news begs the question: What games will be launched in March? The new 3D Mario game the Switch trailer showed is a big possibility. It’s the only brand new Switch game we know of so far (besides BotW, but we’ve been over that debacle already), so it would make sense for Nintendo to release it with their new console. Mario Kart 8, Smash Bros, and Splatoon have been all but officially confirmed for Switch ports, but it’s anyone’s guess how close to March they’ll be available.
Summer 2017 sounds like an appropriate time frame to expect The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild to hit shelves. By then, Switch players will have a good feel for the Switch’s controls, so we should be able to dive headfirst into an open-world Hyrule and never look back.