Skyward Sword and the Customizable Experience

Skyward Sword

Oh, Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. You look like a fairly interesting take on the Zelda universe, complete with a sky diving Link, imaginative monsters and some of that fancy Nintendo art design that has made your series famous. But you seem to have some confusion regarding your control scheme.

I guess it’s kind of rude of me to keep having this conversation with a video game while ignoring my fellow Sushi-ans, so I’ll clue you in. As you guys all know, Skyward Sword is a game slated for release on the Nintendo Wii, and as such, requires playing the game with a Wii-mote. Unfortunately for southpaws, though, there is no left-handed control scheme, despite earlier reports that it would end up in the game.

Now, I’m not going to bash Nintendo for this, even though it seems like a drastic oversight. Plenty of game companies don’t allow for control schemes that work for everyone. In fact, it’s often a big deal now when video games come packaged with options for handicapped players, like what Modern Warfare 3 is doing.

I guess my big question is why more developers aren’t allowing for these kinds of options in games? One of the biggest advantages to PC gaming in my mind is that you can customize your keyboard to play the game however you want to play it, and it doesn’t make any difference to anybody. I get that there needs to be some kind of standardized way to play, but would it hurt games to have a more customizable experience in that regard?

What do you guys think of this? Fair/foul on Nintendo? Should more games allow for changing the controls as you see fit? Go!

Source – Kotaku

Written by

I write about samurai girls and space marines. Writer for Smooth Few Films. Rooster Teeth Freelancer. Author of Red vs. Blue, The Ultimate Fan Guide, out NOW!

6 thoughts on “Skyward Sword and the Customizable Experience”

  1. Splinter Cell: Double Agent comes to mind when I hear about this.
    On the PC, the controls are bare-minimally customizable. You can only really change the controls that aren’t important, and everything else is stuck to their default binds. This is especially annoying if you have a five+ button mouse, but can only use the standard 3.
    Granted, I’m not effected by there being no other control selections for Skyward Sword, but it still should have that choice for the other players that often do play southpaw. (I know my dad will sure be unhappy to hear this.)

  2. Now I’m mixed-handed, in that I do the majority of tasks left-handed(writing, boxing stance, my left arm can lift 20 more pounds) but are still conditioned to do certain things with my right handed(using a mouse on the PC).

    So when I’m using the Wii, when I’m playing like, oh say, Super Mario Galaxy or Twilight Princess, I’ll use the nunchuk in my left hand and the Wiimote in my right.

    But when I’m playing something like an FPS like Red Steel or GoldenEye 2010, I’ll use the WiiMote in my left hand since it’s usually steadier(same reason I use it in my job when I’m drawing blood from a patient.)

    Given that one of the things that really excited me about Skyward Sword was the more one-to-one controls for sword fighting, I’m a little annoyed that I’m going to have to compensate for swinging in the opposite direction.

    It’s not like they can’t mirror animations. Hell, Uncharted 2 did that after the first one didn’t and Gears of War still does it.

    It’s especially egregious considering so many of Nintendo’s characters are left-handed since Shigeru Miyamoto himself prefers using his left hand for tasks.

  3. As a right-hander, I feel that this game should have been made for lefties, as Link is supposed to be one. I’d be able to play it fine either way. But I realize that I am not everyone.

    I was, however, fortunate enough to play it when I was at Comic-Con, and the controls were definitely different from other Zelda games (most notably, Twilight Princess). Link’s mirroring of your Wii-mote motions is pretty precise (and it needs to be for some of the monsters), but I can see how you could easily hold the Wii-mote in the other hand and it would probably work fine. The hardest thing will probably be aiming with the bow, as now when you draw the bow you can stop, draw the arrow (pulling the Wii-mote back) and releasing it with a button push. This way is slower, but more fun and you can still Z-target for speedier shots.

    Also, no more long vine climbs. You can leap up them.

  4. This sucks for those affected by this. 🙁 BOYCOTT!
    One of the things I’m enjoying about my voyage into PC gaming is changing the key-bindings. I played the BF3 beta on PC for a bit and couldn’t get used to Z and X controlling my stance. It’s Ctrl or nothing. I eventually found a happy alternative to my dilema and pretty soon was racking up some decent kills. That AK ain’t half bad! Shank was another one on PC that needed almost a complete re-bind. Awkward as hells that one was.
    Valve have a very nice set-up with their games as pretty much everything is in such a position that even someone like me (ie. a console gamer) can wrap their head around it. I may change the Last-disguise-used button for Spy though as I have a nasty habit of hitting V uselessly! 😛

  5. I think it’s foul on Nintendo’s part. I’m a righty, but I think it sucks that lefties will have a harder time playing. As others have mentioned, PC gaming really hits the mark on customization. I wish more console games allowed for specific bindings.

    If I were to go into the games industry, I’d make customization/accessibility a priority. I mean, just a few extra lines of code and some other tweaks can open up your game to new audiences.

Comments are closed.