Inspired by the book The Tracks Go On and On
, which director Eiji Aonuma
read with his son; The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks (Zelda no Densetsu: Taichi no Kiteki
in the Japanese) brings a steam-punk
theme to the formerly medieval-themed Legend of Zelda
"My son loved this book. When he was four or five, this was the book he'd bring me every night before bed. 'Read it, dad, read it!' That's the story, it's a very simple one, but the pioneering spirit, the kids building the railroad... Something about it seemed as though it would fit with Zelda. But I didn't tell the staff about this book." -Eiji Aonuma
As the first continuous sequel to a Zelda
game on the same console since Majora's Mask
thought of this game in the same way as that game, creating a brand new game and story while using the same assets made for it's predecessor, in the same way Majora's
used from Ocarina of Time
. Spirit Tracks
took two years to make, as opposed to Majora's Mask
, which was developed for only one year.
As it is tradition to make a direct Zelda
sequel to have gameplay elements completely different from their previous title, the team decided to use the Phantom enemy from Phantom Hourglass
as a second playable character that can be controlled simultaneously with Link using the touch screen to add a new mechanic to solve puzzles, as well as for story purposes.
Sometime after the events of Phantom Hourglass
, and their crew discovered a huge new land mass that they could colonize and call Hyrule
. The descendant of Tetra went on to become the new Princess Zelda
, while the descendant of Link went on to become a train
conductor for the Royal Railroads. The land was populated by the descendants of the inhabitants of the Great Sea
Link learns from Zelda that train tracks have started to disappear from the railroad, which, apart from being used for transportation, were responsible an ancient evil force sealed. They head out to investigate these disappearances, only to be ambushed by Chancellor Cole, a man who seeks to revive this ancient evil by stealing Zelda's body to use as a vessel for said force.
This leaves Zelda's spirit wondering around aimlessly, unseen by all whom she passes. Well, except for Link, anyway. Upon discovering this, Zelda enlists the help of the young engineer to help her regain her body, stop the mad schemes of Chancellor Cole.
In a departure from the previous two games in this thread of the Zelda
universe, Link now gets around Hyrule
via train instead of a boat.
Link's train, much like his predecessor's boat, sports a cannon
to fend off any hostile creatures that get too close. Like any Zelda
game, Spirit Tracks
will include dungeons full of environment based puzzles
, giant bosses
, and all new items and weapons to help the player throughout the game.
New to this game is a player controllable Phantom Knight that can be used to safely traverse hostile terrain. Link can ride on this Phantom Knight to cross lakes of lava or use it to block fire in Link's path.
For the first time in a canon Zelda
game, Zelda is a playable character aiding Link with her ability to control the Phantom Knights in certain dungeons. Like its predecessor, Spirit Tracks
uses the touch screen for all of Link's actions. Movement is done by placing the stylus on the touch screen in the direction you wish to move in, thereby causing Link to start running (or walking if you place to the stylus close enough to Link's current position) in that direction.
For combat, you simply make a quick swipe across the screen to use Link's sword. You can also just tap an enemy to attack them as well. Other actions, such as picking up and moving an object (like pots, bombs
, or whatever else you can grab) simply require you to tap on that object to pick it up, and tap again where you wish to put or throw said object.
The game uses the DS microphone frequently, specifically for the Spirit Flute and the Whirlwind.
- Princess Zelda - The descendant of Tetra and ruler of Hyrule.
- Link - The protagonist of the game whose latest incarnation sees him as a train conductor.
- Niko - A surviving member of the original pirates, he is now over 100 years old and narrates the game's prologue.
- Alfonzo - Link's mentor in the Royal Railway. He is a great swordsman and train engineer. A descendant of the original pirates.
- The Postman - A traveling postman in charge of delivering letters across the kingdom.
- Chancellor Cole - Zelda's suspicious chancellor whose interests may lie outside of the royal family.
- Byrne - A very powerful minion of Chancellor Cole. He is a conflicted individual, unsure if what he does is right.
- Anjean - A member of the Lokomo tribe, and the guardian of the Tower of Spirits.
- Gage - The Lokomo of the Forest Realm.
- Steem - The Lokomo of the Snow Realm.
- Carben - The Lokomo of the Ocean Realm.
- Embrose - The Lokomo of the Fire Realm.
- Rael - The Lokomo of the Sand Realm.
- Stagnox - The Armored Stag Beetle of the Forest Temple.
- Fraaz - Master of Icy Fire of the Snow Temple.
- Phytops - Barbed Menace of the Ocean Temple.
- Cragma - Lava Lord of the Fire Temple.
- Bryne - Chancellor Cole's minion.
- Skeldritch - Ancient Demon of the Sand Temple.
- Demon Train - The Demon King's diabolical train.
- Chancellor Cole - Zelda's chancellor who seeks to summon the Demon King.
- Malladus - The Demon King.
- Aboda Village
- Hyrule Castle Town
- Trading Station
- Rabbitland Rescue
- Forest Sanctuary
- Forest Temple
- Snow Sanctuary
- Snow Temple
- Anouki Village
- Wellspring Station
- Bridge Builder's House
- Slippery Station
- Snowdrift Station
- Ocean Sanctuary
- Ocean Temple
- Papuchia Village
- Pirate Hideout
- Lost at Sea Station
- Fire Sanctuary
- Fire Temple
- Goron Village
- Goron Target Range
- Ends of the Earth Station
- Disorientation Station
- Dark Ore Mine
- Sand Sanctuary
- Sand Temple
- Tower of Spirits
- Beedle's Air Shop
Like its predecessor, Spirit Tracks
features a multiplayer mode that similar to Pac-Man
where up to four players can compete to collect as many force gems as possible, while avoiding Phantom Knights, before time runs out. The mode features six maps, each with their own traps and hazards, which are somewhat based on the various temples from the story.
The mode does not support online, but does support download play