With only about 10 years left before he plans to be finished at Nintendo, The Legend of Zelda director Eiji Aonuma has said he wants to work on something other than the iconic role-playing game series.
In the latest issue of Edge, Aonuma explained he wants to try new things "before it's too late."
"I'm 50 now, so I only have about ten more years to make games at Nintendo. I want to try all sorts of new things before it's too late," he said. "I don't want to get to the end of my career and only have worked on Zelda."
Moving away from the Zelda franchise has proven difficult for Aonuma, he said, because his new ideas are often wrapped into a new Zelda title instead of an all-new franchise.
"But every time I come up with some good new ideas, they end up being used in a Zelda game," he said. "I need a six-month break to get away from the Zelda cycle and focus on something new [laughs]. But I'd probably end up making a game that's similar to Zelda; after all, A Link to the Past was my biggest influence."
This sentiment falls in line with that of Nintendo director of product marketing Bill Trinen. He said in April that in many cases, once a compelling new idea is conceived, it makes sense to pair that with an established character--like Mario or Zelda--so that the game can appeal to a wide range of people.
Aonuma is not the only longtime Zelda designer contemplating retirement. Series creator Shigeru Miyamoto explained in March that now that he is over 60, it would be "strange" not to think about retirement, though he has no immediate plans to do so.
Aonuma is currently working on The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past 2 for the 3DS. He confirmed that this game will run at 60 frames per second and teased that it kicks off with a "big surprise" that will "shock" players.