The release of Cadence of Hyrule has suggested that Nintendo might be more open to allowing outside developers to create games based on its first-party franchises, and the creators of Cuphead have made it clear that they want their shot at The Legend of Zelda series.
Nintendo has rarely allowed any third-party developers to touch The Legend of Zelda series, which might have something to do with the existence of the horrible Philips CD-i Zelda titles. Capcom was allowed to make several games in The Legend of Zelda series, but Nintendo rarely budged on allowing another company to touch one of its precious first-party franchises. Nintendo recently allowed Brace Yourself Games to make Cadence of Hyrule, which combined the gameplay from Crypt of the NecroDancer with the characters and setting from The Legend of Zelda series.
Studio MDHR is the development house behind Cuphead, which was recently ported to the Nintendo Switch. Jared Moldenhauer of Studio MDHR spoke to Nintendo Force magazine and talked about the desire of the Cuphead staff to make their own cartoonish Legend of Zelda game.
"...a sprawling Zelda title brought to life in a doting 2D hand-animated style...Think of all the expressiveness and life you could bring to the tribes, people, and enemies of a universe that rich! And much like Cuphead, we would get to test our design mettle coming up with screen-filling bosses of an entirely different nature. Of course, backgrounds would be completely hand-painted with nothing re-used! The list just goes on and on. It would be an absolute dream come true."
The new games in The Legend of Zelda series use 3D graphics, but Cadence of Hyrule went for a retro 2D-style that was reminiscent of The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap. The people at Nintendo might not be interested in creating more 2D Legend of Zelda games, but there are plenty of indie and third-party developers who would leap at the chance, including Studio MDHR.
Nintendo has clearly learned its lesson from the failures of the Wii U and has made sure that the Nintendo Switch has had a jacked roster of games through its run. It's possible that Cadence of Hyrule is a sign that the company is more willing to allow its first-party franchises to be used by other developers in order to ensure that the Nintendo Switch always has upcoming titles. A Legend of Zelda game in the style of Cuphead would likely look incredible and could even prove a match for the upcoming sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild in terms of aesthetics.