The tiniest, most mundane aspect of Age of Calamity took half its dev time to complete

Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity grass half development cycle to complete Koei Tecmo difficult Masaki Furusawa Ryouta Matsushita Yousuke Hayashi Yuu Oohashi

Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity is a great Musou take on The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, even if it plays fast and loose with canon and chronology. However, one tiny aspect of its development took Koei Tecmo and Omega Force much longer to perfect than anyone could have expected. In an issue of Japanese magazine Nintendo DreamHyrule Warriors:Age of Calamity development producer Masaki Furusawa, director Ryouta Matsushita, producer Yousuke Hayashi, and art director Yuu Oohashi revealed that, of all things, grass took “about half of development time” to get right.

Nintendo Everything has provided a translation of the relevant excerpt, which discussed the challenges of faithfully recreating Hyrule Field in Age of Calamity. Oohashi explained that the team “really struggled” to recreate the same atmosphere it had in Breath of the Wild, and the grass was a major part of that. However, since Hyrule Field appealed at the beginning of Age of Calamity, it was extra important to the development team that the grass looked just right:

Furusawa: We asked the Zelda team at Nintendo how they made the grass in BotW and even though they shared everything down to the finer details of their methods, there was still uncertainty about whether we could reproduce it. The game has a lot of grass, so we also considered if there were other methods available to us.

Oohoshi: We experimented with a bunch of different options to make the grass stand out as one of the strong points of the game.

Matsushita: The whole company got dragged into the grass mess, didn’t they?

Oohoshi: How many hundreds of people was it? (laughs)

Matsushita: It’s no exaggeration to say we were in talks with development staff, CG departments, background and technical support the whole time.

So next time you play Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity (such as the DLC from last October), make sure to really bask in the authenticity of that grass — a lot of people nearly killed themselves to make it look that nice.


John Friscia
Head Copy Editor for Enthusiast Gaming, Managing Editor at The Escapist. I'm a writer who loves Super Nintendo and Japanese role-playing games to an impractical degree. I really miss living in South Korea. And I'm developing the game Boss Saga!