Zelda Fan Game Decides To Change Course After Nintendo Issues Takedown

Zelda Fan Game Decides To Change Course After Nintendo Issues Takedown

It was only a matter of time before Breath of the NES caught the eye of Nintendo and got pegged with a take-down notice. According to its creator, however, the game will live on.

Winter Drake, the developer who once sought to bring to life the vision for a top-down version of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild rendered in the style of the original NES game showed off by Nintendo at this year’s GDC, has decided to continue by making the project more original. By stripping it of its connection to material created and copyrighted by Nintendo, Winter hopes to be able to finish the game free from legal worries.

The take-down notice was posted to itch.io, the distribution platform that hosts Winter’s work, earlier today, replacing the game’s page with the notice sent from an attorney representing Nintendo of America that claimed Breath of the Wild was copyright infringement and against the site’s terms of service.

Zelda Fan Game Decides To Change Course After Nintendo Issues Takedown

Nintendo has always been extremely protective of its products and brand, becoming notorious in recent years for hounding YouTubers who try to review Nintendo games, stream let’s plays, or incorporate game footage in their videos in anyway. So it was never much of a question whether the company would bring the hammer down on fan-project that tried to re-create the spirit of Breath of the Wild inside the look and feel of The Legend of Zelda.

But as much as Winter was always prepared for this possibility, telling Kotaku last week that “If Nintendo asks me to stop using their IP, I do plan to continue development with my own original characters,” they still found the notice disappointing. “It stinks that Nintendo treats fan games this way,” Winter said in an email earlier today, while still stressing that Nintendo had every legal right to protect its characters. “It’s unfortunate that this came so soon, as I won’t be able to release the massive update that was planned for this week.”

As for what Breath of the NES‘s spiritual successor will look like, Winter is planning on 32-bit sprites working with musicians to put together a rich soundtrack. Substituting improved gameplay and originality for the 8-bit nostalgia powering the original project won’t be easy though, meaning we probably won’t see a new trailer or playable demo for some time. “Ideally I’d like to make the final game a big cross-platform release on Steam,” Winter said. “I may even start a Kickstarter once I can show off what the new game will have to offer.”


  • not surprising of course.
    But good to know the project is forging ahead 🙂

  • Get ready for the ‘fan patch’ that restores all content to Zelda style :P.

  • As soon as I saw the article about this I knew it would get hit. Why even publicise it?

    • Generally speaking people who make fan games aren’t that concerned. It’s usually just a fun thing they decided to do. It’s almost like cosplay for programmers.

      • I still don’t get it. Here’s the options

        1 – take down – you drop it.
        2 – take down, you ignore it and bad stuff happens
        3 – take down, you have to massively rework it
        4 – don’t copy something and make your own game and it’s all happy

        • Option 5, make what you want then if someone bothers to send you a take down notice then either throw what you’ve made in the bin or change it if people want you to keep going.

          I can only speak for myself but with me it’s just something that happens. There’s no plan to it I just sit down and scribble. Right now I’m playing around with what’s basically a Mega Man Legends clone, and if I hit a point where Capcom told me to stop I would. If more people knew and wanted me to continue, or if I thought I could make some great money off it, I’d probably rebrand it, but I never set out to do any of that.

          Have you ever met a drummer who can’t hold a pencil without tapping it against the desk? Or someone whose school books were packed with drawings? Some people are like that with game development. When I was a kid I couldn’t sit at a computer without making something. That something was usually based on what I was playing or watching.

        • Think he would of got 2 articles on kotaku for his original IP Zelda-like still in development? Exactly.

  • I might be getting a bit too cynical, but this was such an obvious outcome, that I’m inclined to believe that the guy did it only to grab headlines and acquire a pre-made base of fans for a game that ultimately will be a derivative copy.

  • I enjoyed AM2R.

    Fan games have their own spin on them and suggest any Metroid fan to check it out. 🙂

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