Posted on November 11 2017 by Rod Lloyd
Among several other new features Skyward Sword introduced to the Zelda series, the Wii game is significant in its inclusion of the Stamina Meter. Whereas Links in other games could run, jump, and climb with little restrictions, the Link of Skyloft lost stamina with every strenuous action taken. This mechanic was recently carried over to Breath of the Wild, and we’ve even seen the concept repurposed in other games since Skyward Sword. But should Nintendo continue to expand upon the Stamina Meter, or do you want to see it scaled back?
The introduction of the Stamina Meter was a bit surprising in Skyward Sword, as actions like sprinting, rolling, pushing, pulling, and climbing required stamina to execute. Similar to systems seen in the Action RPG genre, the meter limited the amount of actions our hero could perform in a given time period. If stamina ran out, Link would grow sluggish or stop a certain action as he waited to catch his breath. We therefore saw that movements Link could perform over and over again without restriction in past games were now limited based on a metric of stamina.
The mechanic was recently fleshed out in Breath of the Wild, as the Stamina Meter could now be expanded with Stamina Vessels, much in the same way Heart Containers have worked for years. As well, A Link Between Worlds and Tri Force Heroes made use of a similar concept with their Energy Gauges. Item use was limited to the amount of energy in a gauge, much in the same way actions were limited to the amount of stamina in a Stamina Meter. Based on its presence in all games since Skyward Sword, it would seem that the Zelda series will continue to embrace the Stamina Meter moving forward. But is that a good idea?
Some may feel that the Stamina Meter has been a good addition to the series, as it adds depth to Link’s arsenal and abilities. In addition to health, magic, and item quantities, players must now take Link’s stamina into account. The mechanic seemed to fit well with Breath of Wild‘s open-world sensibilities, so why not continue to expand it? On the other hand, some fans may feel that the Stamina Meter has limited movement options Link can perform, especially compared to older games. Why should actions like rolling, jumping, or spin attacks be restricted in such a way? They worked just fine in past titles. The Stamina Meter may feel like an additional micromanaging concern that should be scaled back.
Where do you stand? Do you want to see the Stamina Meter continue to evolve in future Zelda games? Or do you want to see it scaled back or removed altogether? Let us know what you think in the comments below!