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Mike Salbato
E3 2011: Nintendo Reveals Zelda Anniversary Plans, Skyward Sword Release Date
Also new handheld Zelda releases, a special Wii Remote and more.
06.07.11 - 2:58 PM

Nintendo has stated in the past it intended to celebrate the series' 25th anniversary this year, and it sounds like they're ready to deliver on that promise, with a multitude of Zelda-related announcements at their E3 press conference this morning.

The Nintendo 3DS eShop launched yesterday with the likes of a 3D Pokédex and Excitebike, and the next Game Boy Color title for the service will be The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX, which is either available now, or "soon" depending on which page on Nintendo's website you believe.

In September, DSiWare users will be able to download The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords (the GameCube/GBA edition) later this summer for free. No word yet on if this will remain free or if it will be for a limited time.

The series' next console release, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword was shown again, after a year of media silence. They reinforced the game's use of Wii MotionPlus controls and the layer of strategy this will add to battle and puzzle-solving. It seems Skyward Sword will borrow a page from Metroid in that players will be revisiting earlier areas and even dungeons later in the game once they acquire new equipment. The game's selection of items, upgrades and rewards is described as "massive," with some equipment being upgraded as you progress through the game. We learned before that Skyward Sword's adventure will be divided between a world in the sky and on the ground, but now we know that in the 'sky' world Link will be able to get around on the back of a giant bird.

Keeping in line with the 25th anniversary, Nintendo will also be releasing a gold, Triforce-emblazoned Wii Remote to commemorate Skyward Sword's release, which will be sometime this holiday season (read: November or December).

Finally, there will be a worldwide Legend of Zelda orchestra concert tour, though no dates or venues have been announced as of yet.

Look for more coverage, media, impressions and more as the week progresses!


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