The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has one of the most freely explorable open worlds in any video game. But like any other game, it has its limits. This version of Hyrule is basically an island on the southeastern tip of a much larger continent, with bottomless canyons on the northern and western sides and oceans on the southern and eastern borders. Those represent the limits of where the player can go, but Nintendo may be hiding some downloadable content just beyond these barriers.
Never underestimate the patience of gamers, though. Using a debugger, a Redditor found a way to get to the landmasses past the northern and western borders and found some pretty wild unused assets that might just show up in future DLC.
Zelda: Breath of the Wild DLC: Triangle lakes, giant shadows and more
Apologies if you were hoping for the reveal of some kind of vibrant, amazing world beyond the game's boundaries, but even in the state it's in now, it's pretty cool. None of it is solid geometry, meaning the player has to use cheats to paraglide indefinitely over it. As you can see a couple of times in the video, Link will fall helplessly through the ground if he touches it.
If you've ever bugged your way out of game worlds or watched other people do it, this will look familiar to you. The farther you get into the part of the world you were never supposed to see, the more surreal it gets. Textures get blurry, lakes have completely straight coastlines and gigantic shadows from nonexistent structures appear. It's a ton of fun to see, even if none of it ultimately means anything.
The area to the north of Hyrule has terrain that looks somewhat hand-crafted, so it's possible that was intended to be in the game at some point, or it could be the setting of the upcoming expansion content. Since just about every inch of the current game world contains something to do, it's fair to assume the expansion content — which includes an original story and a new dungeon — would take place elsewhere.
It's possible this stuff hints at future content, but it's just as possible this was a dumping ground for unused assets. Games like Shadow of the Colossus still have hidden, unfinished areas hidden within the game's code that players found years its release, for example. Regardless, this just adds to the mystery of Nintendo's greatest world yet.
More Zelda: Breath of the Wild coverage
Find out all there is to know about Zelda: Breath of the Wild, including our running list of all the people of color in Hyrule. Learn how to preserve your items, how to beat bosses like the Stone Talus and Lynel, the best recipes for Link and how to take on the game's shrines. If you're looking to snag a giant horse with little stamina, here's how to do it. You'll also want to find out where all the great fairies are in the game, how to use amiibo with your version of Zelda and what went into making Breath of the Wild.