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One Breath of the Wild fan chimes in on the ‘are video games art?’ question by literally making some out of their Hero’s Path heat map.

You probably saw the news story recently, about fitness tracking app Strava, and some unintended consequences. They released a global heat map of training routes taken by people using their app which, inadvertently, revealed the personnel routes of a number of military installations.

It did make for a very pretty picture, however.

Now a Nintendo fan has done essentially the same thing, using Breath of the Wild’s Hero’s Path feature to map out their entire play through of Link’s latest odyssey.

You’ve probably done something similar, in so far as you’ve looked at the Hero’s Path, marvelled at how far you travelled, and admired the pretty spider’s web of tracks and trails it illustrates.

But imgur user kazoodac went a step further, and blew the image up into a 16×20 inch (51×41 cm) framed image, to lovingly display on their wall.

Breath of the Wild Hero's Path

Printing out the Hero’s Path isn’t that straightforward, however. The Switch’s 720p handheld/1080p docked resolution is either 1280 or 1920 pixels wide respectively, but kazoodac was aiming for a whopping 6000 pixels wide, to achieve a lovely 300 DPI print at their chosen size.

So, they set to work, zooming in – to the second highest zoom level – and taking screenshots of overlapping sections of the map, before stitching over 200 images together to produce the final piece.

It sounds laborious:

Moving the map in regular intervals was especially difficult due to the analog stick, so I ended up taking more screenshots than I probably needed. Even then, I did need to go back once or twice and take screenshots of little gaps that I’d missed. This did come in handy for removing the green cursors in the center of every image though.

And even then, they didn’t quite get the target 6000 pixel width they were looking for:

The end result of the merge was 5842×4868, just shy of the 6000×4800 I needed for a 16×20 print at 300 dpi. Adding the border allowed me to compensate for this without doing any additional scaling which may have lessened quality. Ironically, the framing process cut out the border completely, but oh well!

But in the end? The result is stunning:

Breath of the Wild Hero's Path

All images: kazoodac via imgur.

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