Free-Running Lock On System

April 6, 2010

That´s a really old idea I had for a previous “dream Zelda-game”. Ocarina of Time introduced the revolutionary lock on-system, which became an industry standard. Press a shoulder button and your character focuses on a single, certain enemy foe.

By using the FRL-system, you´d have two different lock on-mechanics, depending on what you intend to do. There are several ways to integrate it into the existing controller layout. One would be like that: Once you have an enemy within range, you press the Z-button on the nunchuck-controller. It is now locked onto, like usually. Now, press the C-button on the nunchuck while being in lock on-mode. The game changes into Free-Running lock on. Now you can run around freely as if no lock on was active, but the enemy is still the center of your focus. In all existing Zelda-games, once you have an enemy within lock on, Link would change his movements to a direct, frontal stance, only walking slowly. So you either had to choose between fast movement without knowing where the enemy was, or you could lock on, but would have to give up dynamic movements.

That FRL-system would certainly work better with the GameCube´s shoulder-buttons. Press them slightly to get into FRL, press them to the end and you´re into hard lock on. But the C-button isn´t use in lock on-mode anyway, so why not use it like that? For what is worth, the option of choosing the kind of locking onto an enemy would further increase the series´ gameplay freedom and allow for more interesting fights.

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