Zelda: Breath of the Wild’s NPCs Were Just “Advanced Miis” All Along

Nathan Birch
Zelda Breath of the Wild

One of the fun things about The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is the game’s colorful cast of NPCs, which tend to be more varied and interesting than your typical copy-and-pasted open-world characters. So, how did Nintendo come up with that cast of quirky faces? Simple, they just whipped them up in the Mii Maker. Fans have long joked this is how Nintendo made BOTW’s NPCs, but it seems as though it’s actually the case.

According to Twitter user and self-professed “Mii expert” HeyImHeroic, BOTW’s code refers to the game’s NPCs as UMiis, and in fact, with a bit of wrangling, Mii files can be injected into BOTW by a modder and transformed into Zelda characters. In other words, it does seem like Nintendo was using an advanced version of the Wii U’s Mii Studio to make these characters – most of the options and parameters are the same, although a few hairstyles aren’t available (if one isn’t supported, BOTW will use the hairstyle closest to it instead). Our Mii expert tweeted a few examples.

Related StoryNathan Birch
Infinity Nikki is the Latest Eye-Catching Chinese Adventure, Zelda: BOTW Designer Producing

HeyImHeroic has even offered to do commissions for people who are interested in having their Mii modded into the game…

Not world-changing information or anything (It’s a slow news day!), but still, a neat little look into how one of the most acclaimed games of the past decade was made.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is available now on Wii U and Nintendo Switch.

Share this story