Horizon : Zero Dawn (Review)

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Horizon Zero Dawn is developed by Guerrilla Games published by Sony Interactive Entertainment for the Playstation 4, it was developed using Guerrilla’s in house engine Decima and was released on February 28th, 2017.

The game is an open world action RPG set nearly a thousand year in the future, the humans of this world live in tribes and learned to hunt the animal like machines that roam the earth. you play as Aloy an outcast girl who is training with her mentor Rost in the wilderness, you learn to hunt and gather and survive in preparation for a trail that is called “The Proving” an attack happens during the trail and you are send out by the leaders of the tribe to investigate and find the attackers. during the course of 35 hour journey you learn some rather interesting things about the world and Civilization ceased to exist and where did those machines came from and it was a very interesting and satisfying tale that I really enjoyed however I do have some issues about the politics of the game, it is clear that Horizon is a game with a feminist message which is reflected rather greatly in its lead character Aloy but sometimes it stops being welcoming and comes off very pretentious to a point Aloy becomes a Mary Sue character that gave me very little to care about her troubled childhood and uncertain origins, it is too bad that they didn’t find a subtle way to deliver their message and instead did it in a very obvious in your face way. the game was critiqued for its early missions which involves politics and the way the world functions I personally liked it because it is an interesting world that I enjoyed quite a bit and made me care for the world and the way things are in comparison to a game like Final Fantasy XV which was another open world RPG but the world felt bland and empty and lifeless it is really not the case with Horizon.

Technically the game is landmark, now let me take you back a few steps think of every game that really advanced the technical capability of video games like Mario 64, Doom, Metal Gear Solid 2 and Witcher 3, Horizon Zero Dawn is a new landmark for gaming it is currently the most beautiful show case of graphical and artistic vision in any game I have ever seen, the lighting effects are beyond gorgeous and weather effects are awe inspiring I have nothing to say more than praise for a game this big and this deep it is really amazing how much detail Guerrilla put into its world and for that they really did a remarkable job.

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The gameplay is a mix of stealth and arrow shooting and it is satisfying to shoot pieces off a giant machine and break down to scrap, the Melee combat is lacking it has the slow down of Batman Arkham game’s combat with no combos which is too bad I wish they did a better job with that because the melee combat is pretty powerful and useful especially against human enemies which come up pretty often. some aspects of the game is very obviously copied from other games like Skyrim’s navigation from the 3D map to the compass and some of the icons they are carbon copies, also the game has Mass Effect’s conversation wheel and sometimes allows you to make a choice with very little effect on the story outcome, I think only once I was given the choice to kill someone or to spare them but it wasn’t a big deal and personally I was fine with those inspirations because they were done very well and they are good properties to copy from.

Verdict : Horizon is a great game with a lot to offer, it is a magnificent looking game with a fantastic fantasy setting, I didn’t enjoy the very direct feminist plot but the story of the world and the way the future of the franchise is going is something to look forward to. (9.0/10.0)

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Author: Aza Jabar

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