January 27, 2019 at 11:44 PM #568
Horizon Zero Dawn
Rating: 4.0 – Great
Horizon Zero Dawn Review
With its open world, action role-playing game, Horizon Zero Dawn already receiving high praise from gamers and game critics alike, it is certainly clear that developer Guerrilla Games and publisher Sony Interactive Entertainment have yet another huge hit on their hands. Although Sonyâ€™s first party support clearly has the upper hand on Microsoftâ€™s so far, it has been anything but a blowout victory for the PlayStation Nation. With Microsoft Xbox One trailing closely behind, and Sony wanting to hold its narrow lead, the company is looking to its best developers to ensure that the PS4 holds that ever so precious number one spot in console gaming.
Horizon Zero Dawn is nothing short of spectacular and claiming that it is Sonyâ€™s top first party release of early 2017 would certainly not be an overstatement. This is largely due to Guerrillaâ€™s focus on a story that is both fluid and captivating. The narrative in Horizon Zero Dawn follows the personal self-discovery of a young, outcast, tribal warrior named Aloy understanding who she is as a person, and how she is the key piece to ending the war between humanity and the ancient machines that have become corrupted by an evil entity named Hades. On Aloyâ€™s personal journey, you will help her seek out, and where need be, defeat those who will stop at nothing to prevent her from discovering the secrets of her past. Aloy is a very versatile Hunter and is more than capable of defeating the deadliest of enemies. Along with the knowledge of knowing how to utilize a multiplicity of hunting bows and other weapons, Aloy can also gain a tactical advantage in battle by using a variety of fighting skills which include, stealth, archery, and melee techniques to subdue any foe who stands in her way.
The questing and exploration aspect of Horizon Zero Dawn is indeed long, but it does not overstay its welcome. Each quest challenges you to explore the gameâ€™s open world. Some quests will demand you defy a fear of heights by scaling tall mountaintops to defeat corrupted Glint Hawk machines that have savagely attacked innocent villagers below. Where other more lenient quests will allow the opportunity to voyage across a vast desert or one of several swamp areas to find collectibles that help to progress the narrative, or to unlock items making Aloy a more sufficient Hunter. The open world environment also helps you along the way. You can use the tall grass in the luscious forest to hide from enemy machines that are too much to handle. Ponds and riverbanks can also provide you with cover, as you can swim underwater to avoid being detected by any nearby patrolling machines.
Even though the questing and exploration in Horizon Zero Dawn makes the game alone a satisfying adventure, the unique enemies are what truly makes this adventure a masterpiece. Whether you are fighting against rival tribal bandits, or the evil machines, every type of enemy has their own specific strengths and weaknesses which forces you to modify your tactics to defeat them in battle. Although learning how to approach and defeat enemies can be challenging at first, it is very satisfying when you are successful in battle. Whether you are basking in the glory after defeating a pack of Sawtooths in a difficult Cauldron area or taking out the final tribal bandit to free hostages held captive in a rigorously challenging bandit camp, you are always left with the feeling of accomplishment once overcoming the difficult challenge.
One of Horizon Zero Dawnâ€™s biggest drawbacks is its lack of replayability. Firstly, since the platinum trophy can be obtained in one play through, there is no reason to replace the game a second time unless you have missed one or two trophies. Secondly, trophies are also not restricted by the gameâ€™s difficult settings. So, unless youâ€™re one of those gamers who simply wants the bragging rights of saying that you have completed Horizon Zero Dawn on its hardest difficulty setting, youâ€™ll probably will be perfectly content with playing the game on normal. Lastly, some of the weapons in the game seem unnecessary and useless where others seem to be too powerful making you almost impossible to defeat. However, these nitpicking gripes should not differ you from purchasing this game and treating yourself to this phenomenal action-packed experience. Horizon Zero Dawn is clearly one of Sonyâ€™s biggest home runs so far, this year, and is worth checking out for yourself.
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