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The recently announced Breath of the Wild sequel is partially inspired by Rockstar's work on Red Dead Redemption 2.
Speaking to IGN, Zelda producer Eiji Aonuma revealed the team working on the follow-up to Breath of the Wild have been playing a lot of Red Dead 2, and said the younger staffers in particular have been inspired by the acclaimed open-world Western.
"I did hear that a lot of [the younger staff] were playing Red Dead Redemption 2," said Aonuma, when asked where the team looked for inspiration this time around. He went on to explain that Breath of the Wild game director Hidemaro Fujibayashi sunk a lot of time into Skyrim when working on the original title, perhaps giving us some hint as to how the sequel might evolve.
It's interesting to see Nintendo pulling inspiration from Western releases like Skyrim and Red Dead when developing one of its most cherished franchises, but it's a tactic that delivered the goods in the case of Breath of the Wild.
The open-world title is the best-selling Legend of Zelda game in history, having sold 12.77 million units on the Switch alone as of March 2019. It won plaudits for forgoing franchise staples and giving players all the tools needed to explore a vast, open version of Hyrule from the get-go. It'll be interesting to see how the unnamed follow-up, which seems much darker in tone, expands on that approach.