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Switch vs Wii U: What are the differences between the two versions of Zelda Breath Of The Wild?

Certainly the most anticipated and wanted game to launch alongside the Nintendo Switch on March 3 will be The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild.

The long-awaited next entry in the famed RPG series will launch simultaneously on Switch and Wii U, which raises questions as to the difference between the two versions.


Nintendo has been saying for a while now that the experience will be essentially identical across both platforms … as far as the “core” experience goes.

Series producer, Eiji Aonuma, said as much at E3 2016 during a presentation of the game.

There are, of course, subtle differences that seperate the two versions, and Nintendo has finally lifted the lid on what those differences will be.


Speaking with IGN, Nintendo stated that the base gameplay experience will remain the same, with some expected differences and improvements that help to differentiate between the two versions.

Firstly, the obvious similarity is that both games will launch on March 3. That brings the Wii U launch inline with both the launch of the game on Switch, and the launch of the Switch itself.

Then there’s confirmation that the game will have a frame rate of 3ofps across both platforms, regardless of viewing mode.


When played on a TV on Switch, Breath Of The Wild will render at 900p, while the Wii U version renders in 720p.

Nintendo is also promising “higher-quality environmental sounds” on Switch, meaning the sound of steps, water, grass, and other environmental objects are “more realistic”, and that they will “enhance the game’s open-air feel”.

There will also be some minor differences between icons and on-screen buttons, but these will have more to do with the general functionality and branding of each console.


The physical disc copy of the Wii U version will require 3GB of available memory on the Wii U, or an external drive, something the Switch’s game cartridge won’t demand.

Finally — and disappointingly for Wii U owners — the Special Edition and Master Edition of Breath Of The Wild will not be available on Wii U.

So there you have it: all of the confirmed differences between Breath Of The Wild versions. What are your thoughts? Sound off in the comments below!

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