It’s been a good year for games. Trying to arrive at a shortlist for the best ones to come out in 2017 is going be tough. But every time I think I’ve finally started to cool on The Legend of Zelda: The Breath of the Wild, it finds a new way to warm my heart. Have you ever stopped and marveled at the game’s horse AI?
A player going by Otonashi Yuzuru recently shared a moment that beautifully conveys the types of magic that continues to crop up during a playthrough of the game. Trying to feed their horse on a bridge Yuzuru unloaded a bunch of apples. It has apparently been nicked by some arrows and they wanted to restore its health. The horse wasn’t having it though.
Yuzuru was able to find it again after visiting a stable, telling another person in a thread about the video, “He was unharmed, just went for a little swim.”
Usually you expect a horse to simply glitch out of existence when it starts behaving weirdly in a video game, but Breath of the Wild has found a way to incorporate the inscrutable mind of Link’s riding companions into the rest of its gameplay. I’ve lost Roach plenty of times in The Witcher 3 and once it fell from view that was it.
There’s a lot of things that make Breath of the Wild such an irresistible game, but the way it manages to make its programmed world feel like it has a life of its own is a big part of what keeps me going back.