The director of upcoming co-op 3DS adventure The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes has explained why you can't play with a female avatar in the game.

Speaking to IGN, the game's director Hiromasa Shikata essentially said that due to the game's background story it has to have a male character, and only that.

Shikata explained that, in the game, the king needs heroes after an "event happens" and so he puts out a call for them. One of those who auditions is Link, and so you play as him, and not a woman.

"The story calls for this sort of legend/prophecy where heroes will come together to help solve a problem. And in that, they are male characters," Shikata said.

"So, because the game is set with that as the story background, you cannot choose a gender; you are a male character."

When asked about the Zelda outfit that Link can wear in the game, which is said to be a step closer to appealing to the female audience, Shikata assured IGN that women like the game just fine.

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"I understand what you're saying, and just as general information, we do have a lot of female staff members who are playing this game and enjoying it," Shikata said.

"It doesn't seem to be a big issue to them. They still are getting emotional investment in this game.

"And to be honest, Link isn't the most masculine of guys in the world, depending on how you want to project yourself into the character."
IGN