Planet GameCube has posted an interesting editorial covering the changes made to Zelda, apparently even before E3 by Shig himself.
Apparently Nintendo wants to keep the firm grasp they have on the preteen set and were worried about parents being turned off and children scared by the life like appearance of the E3 showing.
I personally think the new look is amazing, and while it does look like a cartoon, it looks like a very nice looking cartoon. I can see how some people would be turned off by the change, and I think that Nintendo might have shot themselves in the foot by showing the “rougher” version at E3, but if I know Nintendo, they will make sure that they gameplay makes everyone forget about the toony look.
I am hoping that they do go out on a limb with a few of their titles. While Zelda, Mario, and Pokemon appeal to kids, a lot of parents are turned off by the violence in games like Perfect Dark and Metroid. Hopefully Nintendo will realize this and give those titles enough of an edge to make a few of us older gamers happy.