The Legend of Zelda: Triforce Heroes was just recently released for the 3DS, raising questions about the game's rightful place in the overall timeline of the series.
Talking to GameSpot, Triforce Heroes director Hiromasa Shikata clarified that the game is set a few years after the events of A Link Between Worlds, admitting that might have been the case partially because he was also director for the latter. In Triforce Heroes, Link steps in after the story starts and there's a king looking for hero candidates.
If Link is just entering the picture at that point, does that mean he is not a hero? Shikata said that a portion of him doesn't want players coming into the game and thinking that Link is merely a candidate, reassuring people that the Link in Triforce Heroes is the same one from A Link Between Worlds, meaning he is just as every bit a hero now as he was then. This kind of arrangement may seem unusual for a game in the series, but it does ensure that people are playing with the same hero.
Overall, Triforce Heroes is lighter and more humorous compared to other Zelda games. The idea for the game started with the outfits being the main part of the story. From there, Shikata and the rest of the team drifted into the idea of fashion-loving people, which paved the way for a game about a kingdom full of people. Triforce Heroes may have moved away from a serious theme involving an abducted princess, but a princess is very much a part of the game still, albeit decked in a very unstylish outfit.
Zelda games had generally involved collecting items so the same was true as well for Triforce Heroes. Where a player has to collect train parts in Spirit Tracks, for instance, they now move on to collecting loot to create new costumes.
Published by Nintendo, Legend of Zelda: Triforce Heroes is produced by Eiji Aonuma and developed by Nintendo Entertainment Analysis & Development and Grezzco. Though primarily a multi-player game for three (representing Red, Green and Blue Links), Triforce Heroes also has a single-player option available.