The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom – Release date, plot, trailers, more

The Legend of Zelda Tears of the Kingdom key art

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is gearing up for its release and Nintendo fans are eager to get their hands on it. Here’s the official release date along with plot details, new mechanics, and more.

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is the sequel to Breath of the Wild, so it’s no surprise that Tears of the Kingdom is one of the most anticipated video game releases of 2023.

The Zelda franchise is Nintendo’s crown jewel and everyone who owns a Nintendo Switch is looking forward to going back to Hyrule, exploring the mysterious islands, and fighting new foes. We’re breaking down all of the details for you before the game’s release.

Here’s what you need to know about Tears of the Kingdom, including the release date, plot details, and gameplay mechanics.

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom release date

Nintendo confirmed that the release date for The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is May 12, 2023.

At E3 2021, Nintendo revealed a 2022 release date, which was eventually pushed back to 2023, giving us the launch date of May 12. Thankfully, there haven’t been any setbacks since then and the game is set to release on the above-mentioned date exclusively on Nintendo Switch.

Article continues after ad
Link in Sky Islands in Tears of the KingdomNintendo
Tears of the Kingdom will allow players to explore floating islands above Hyrule.

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom plot details

As a direct sequel to Breath of the Wild, players can expect some of the core gameplay mechanics and plot details to carry over to Tears of the Kingdom.

At E3 2019, Nintendo revealed the first look at the next sequel meaning fans got a glimpse of Link and Zelda traveling through a dark cave before approaching Ganon’s corpse.

For two years there was nothing and then during E3 2021, we got another look at the Tears of the Kingdom which revealed a bit of gameplay along with the vast world of Hyrule. This time, our hero’s adventures would take him to the sky islands above. Fans also caught Hyrule Castle being plucked out of the ground towards the end of the trailer which was enough to cause further excitement and anticipation for Tears of the Kingdom.

The Nintendo Direct Stream revealed another trailer on February 8, 2023, that showcased new and old enemies, and mysteries, along with the flight system.

On April 13, 2023, fans saw the final trailer for the Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom. The latest trailer gave fans the first official look at Ganondorf who will be voiced by Matthew Mercer. While players saw the iconic Ganon, new enemies, locations, and a ton of gameplay mechanics have also been added to this sequel.

Article continues after ad

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom new gameplay mechanics

Tears of the Kingdom players can expect the same open-world freedom and in-depth exploration that debuted in Breath of the Wild. However, Producer Eiji Aonuma revealed that players won’t encounter the exact same world they explored before. He encouraged players to find the differences and new areas Hyrule has to offer in Tears of the Kingdom.

One of the new mechanics is Link’s glowing arm, which grants him access to new abilities, similar to the Sheikah Slate. This time our hero will have four new abilities that will help him explore the map in very interesting ways: Recall, Fuse, Ascend, and Ultrahand.

The Fuse ability will let players combine two objects to create a new one with seemingly endless possibilities. The official video shows Link creating a new hammer-like weapon from a tree branch and a rock, among other examples. This seems to help with weapon durability, a controversial feature that will be back for this sequel.

Link can attach a wide variety of materials to weapons, shields, and other objects for different effects.

Vehicles featured in the trailers aren’t actually in the game but are the product of a new crafting ability called Ultrahand. Players can craft many different structures to help explore the map of Hyrule and its floating islands.

The Recall ability rewinds objects’ movements and will help players get to the Sky Islands. Lastly, the Ascend ability is ideal for players that hated climbing mountains in Breath of the Wild.

Article continues after ad

Additionally, a new free-falling mechanic has been added to the game which will help Link perform stunts and attacks mid-air. Along with this, the three trailers reveal a ton of weapons including swords, shields, and axes that will help Link defeat returning enemies and some new ones, like the Constructs.

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom trailers

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom trailer seen above arrived on September 13, 2022. It gave Zelda fans their first in-depth look at gameplay for the upcoming Nintendo Switch experience.

The second official trailer was released on February 8, 2023, and gave fans a new glimpse at enemies, landmarks, puzzles, and Link’s special arm. Instead of answering lingering questions, it triggered more theories about Tears of the Kingdom’s plot.

On March 28, 2023, Nintendo revealed an in-depth look at Tears of the Kingdom’s gameplay, featuring the Sky Islands and new abilities for Link’s arm. It was also revealed that development on the game was finished just over a month before its official release.

The third official trailer was released on April 13, less than a month away from launch. This trailer centers around the main storyline and features new and returning characters, including the first official look at Ganondorf.

For more, check out our articles for other upcoming games:

Article continues after ad

How to pre-order The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom | How long is The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom? Expected time to beat  | Who is Ganondorf in The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom? Classic villain explained | Will there be DLC for The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom | What are “tears” in Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom?

Image Credit: Nintendo