Everything we know about Horizon Zero Dawn

Feature article

“In an era where Machines roam the land and mankind is no longer the dominant species, a young hunter named Aloy embarks on a journey to discover her destiny.” – [source]

Aloy from Horizon Zero Dawn

Story

Playing as a hunter who was abandoned by her tribe as a child, Aloy is a lone survivor who exists within a world full of danger and mystery.

The landscape around Aloy is one of threat and ambiguity. The remnants of a crumbling, previous civilisation is scattered around her with little to no clues outlining the specifics of mankind’s demise. With humanity living as a non-dominant, primitive species among a much larger threat; mankind has reverted back to small pockets of hunter/gatherer tribes, trying to survive a harsh, post-apocalyptic world.

Aloy, as the only member of her own tribe, has a much harder task ahead of her. Surviving against a fearsome race of machines from unknown origins as well as surviving against aggressive, rival tribes. Aloy hunts, defends and exists in a lush but deadly world where nature and machines were born out of the ashes of man.

Gameplay

Horizon Zero Dawn is a single-player, third-person Action Role-Playing Game (ARPG). You will explore a vast, open-world that will have a dynamic day/night cycle and dynamic weather, with no loading screens [source]. The game will be your standard, modern ARPG – with combat, looting, and questing to drive the story.

The game’s combat can be performed both up close and from far away. Aloy is a master archer, so utilising her bow skills from a safe distance seems like a no-brainer. The game also features melee combat for when you need to get up close and deal that final blow. Aloy can scan her enemies to find their vulnerabilities and has a plethora of tools and arrows at her disposal to exploit those vulnerabilities. She can also shoot off armour to expose points of weakness and set up traps and tripwires to devastate her foes. Machines can also be ‘hacked’ by Aloy to change their allegiance and get them to fight alongside her and become ride-able. [source].

When an enemy is toppled by Aloy and her hunting prowess, they can be looted for resources. Safe to say, those resources become a commodity and allow Aloy to craft items, armour and weapons. Bringing down giant machines won’t be the only way for Aloy to gather resources though. Tribes will have their own economies and trading systems and quests may grant resource rewards. The game also allows you to ‘create a job’ if your looking for specific materials. This will then generate a quest to help you obtain what you’re seeking [source].

Questing is also a large pillar of Horizon Zero Dawn’s gameplay. The game will have an overarching story, presumably pertaining to the mystery of the old world and the strange rise of the machines. Outside of this, the game will have an open-world side-quest system that will allow Aloy to get a deeper understanding of the surrounding tribes and help people on an individual level. The game will feature Non-Player Characters (NPC’s) and a dialogue wheel as a means of interaction.

One of the enemies from Horizon Zero Dawn

Conclusion

With Horizon Zero Dawn wrapped up in a tidy little bow – it’s safe to say that this game will be very high on my radar until its release. Everything about it looks so fantastic – from the visuals to the story to the gameplay. Each time a video or article is released I’m reminded of how interesting and exciting the game is shaping up to be.

Horizon Zero Dawn will release in Australia on March 1, 2017 – exclusive to the PlayStation 4.