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Years Later and ‘Breath of the Wild’ Still Surprises

Breath of the Wild
Image courtesy of Nintendo

With The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2 fast approaching, fans of the franchise are continuing to play the first Breath of the Wild, even if it was first released for the Nintendo Switch years ago. Widely considered one of the more beautifully designed installments in the Legend of Zelda series, Breath of the Wild offers a world well worth exploring, especially considering the fact that—as one gamer recently discovered—there are still undiscovered secrets hidden within the 2017 game’s coding.    

For most people, the secrets hidden within a game’s coding will go undiscovered and unexplored. Fortunately, there’s a vast community of modders out there intent on mining all of the goodies a game has to offer. One such modder, YouTuber Waikuteru, has taken the modder community’s penchant for debugging hidden facets of a game’s programming and turned it into content other gamers can view, even if they can’t access the hidden code themselves. Waikuteru has focused their efforts on The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and has created mods for a number of hitherto undiscovered game elements.  

Image courtesy of Patreon, Waikuteru

The practice of unearthing content from a games code is often called data mining and can lead modders to discover planned releases for games hidden within system updates or even templates left behind in a game’s coding. As Destructoid.com has previously reported, among Waikuteru’s previous findings in Breath of the Wild is an additional shrine players typically cannot access. In Waikuteru’s video exploration of the shrine, they report that “there are 120 shrines + 16 DLC shrines” in the game and in the game’s code they are listed as “Dungeon000 to Dungeon135.” The ever-diligent Waikuteru found a shrine coded as “Dungeon136” and created a mod to gain access to said shrine. Apparently the “‘template shrine’ that was unused in the full version” is ultimately “just a blessing shrine (one that you walk into and grab a gift from), which isn’t that huge of a deal in terms of missing out on ‘lost content.’” Waikuteru published this discovery on their YouTube channel last month. 

Just last week, however, Waikuteru posted a new video with yet another modded discovery from Breath of the Wild. As covered by an article on ComicBook.com, “Waikuteru has unearthed a debug room, which in turn has revealed some interesting insight into the game’s development.” Part of the reason such secrets go unnoticed by most players is that, since these game elements are left untapped within the game’s programming it takes a lot of effort and know-how to access them. For example: “To recreate the debug room in the game, the modder had to merge together pre-existing code with various mods.” 

This latest discovery may not be playable for most people, but in the week since Waikuteru has posted the video, it’s accrued nearly 70,000 views. The room, which Waikuteru calls “MarioClubTestDungeon,” is an interesting discovery. Fans eagerly awaiting the release of Breath of the Wild 2 are sure to enjoy watching Waikuteru’s exploration of the recreated dungeon, even if they can’t access it themselves. 

Image courtesy of Waikuteru

If nothing else, the continued interest in a game that has been out for years is proof that Legend of Zelda fans are keen for more Hyrule content and interested enough in the game’s development that they’re willing to dig through the very code itself to uncover the game’s secrets. The modders behind such data-mining are continuously demonstrating their skill and passion for the games so many people obviously care about. Not bad for a game series which first debuted back in February of 1986.

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