Given the circumstances, it was only a matter of time for Guerrilla to end up playing a third-person game again. Shellsock: Nam’67, was a discreet TPS that the Dutch studio developed for Eidos and that saw the light in 2004 for compatible, PS2 and XBox. It was not until a couple of months later when his first FPS came on, and this was commissioned by Sony, exclusively for PS2: Killzone. A generation later, PS3 needed a “only on” shooter in the generation of shooters, and Guerrilla picked up the bases of the remarkable original game that were marked in the previous system to make of its sequel, already like first party of Sony and in spite of His controversial presentation, the technical reference of his time and an excellent rifleman, dark, and marked personality for the genuineness of his control.
After 5 Killzone, with the beginning of the development of Horizon: Zero Dawn (back in 2011) marked a new stone age in the calendar of Hermen Hulst and Mathijs de Jonge. Nevertheless, they have been able to cross it with absolute freedom, enormous resources and tools of last generation. The result is an outstanding adventure in an immense and open world, which, although close to it, never becomes a role-playing game, which condenses mechanics of various genres in their playability, combines elements of prehistory and the future in their designs and Ambiance, and that traps by its beauty, its argument and by its freshness, mainly in relation to the action.
The game is set in the future, around the year 3000, in a wild land that has been prey to devastation. Humans live in tribes of hunters, gatherers, craftsmen, mercenaries and worshipers of the ancient and the sun. The world is dominated by nature and animaloid machines, almost always hostile, corrupted by some kind of software. Between holograms and stones, cables and sand, electricity and sticks, metal and fire and arrows and robots, we take control of Alloy. A heroine that for the Spanish version of the game features the wonderful dubbing of Michelle Jenner. Hat Marginalized in its beginnings and with a childhood marked by pain, she slowly discovers the world in which she lives with her own eyes and the world that collapsed centuries ago through research and exploration. The plot is one of the great attractions of Horizon: Zero Dawn. A story not too complex but engaging and at times even fascinates.
Horizon plays a lot of sticks. Drinks a lot of the role. His menu, skills and progression system, within what are the adventures, are correct, but compared to those of an RPG are discreet, and tiptoe over platforms and puzzles. Alloy is made for action, stealth and exploration. The juxtaposition of rustic and futuristic elements is the basis of Horizon. Its map is, with all the sense of the world, somewhat devoid of life, but it houses 25 types of machines that constitute the true attraction and challenge of the game: to eliminate bows, slings and ropes with mechanical fodder of the future. Some of them huge, all vulnerable at some point or for some particular type of ammunition.
Alloy also uses the spear to combat in short, either to face humans or to top up machines. However, it is undoubtedly the weakest aspect of the game: it is not well resolved and its depth is almost nil. But machines are the soul of Horizon. All, over time, domesticable, and some of them, mountable. Horizon bets on an ingenious and tactical combat system in which the weapons at a distance and the ability to use them as raw traps over melee combat. And the result is magnificent. It contains the notorious and rebellious genre of Killzone 2: overflowing with good work and much freshness without being able to speak of revolution either.
The freedom to travel the world of Horizon is absolute. The hunting and gathering of elements with which to configure bombs, healing potions or ammunition is a constant. It also has room for a system of dialogues without influence on the plot, but they all contain information. The secondary characters have a lot of weight, and any NPC knows some relevant fact of a story that always invites us to try to discover the details. The duration of the title goes from 30 to 100 hours, depending on secondary, collectibles and the desire to explore it, which will probably seldom be few. Because scrutinizing every hole in your locations is always a delight for the senses.
And that could be written many lines talking about their graphics. And although a little less, also its sound. Its design, the engine Decima, the lighting, its textures, vegetation, passion for detail and true love of the studio to fill every visual plane and every corner. But to summarize the subject, simply suffice to point out that at the graphic level it becomes the absolute referent. The best graphics console game ever made. Today. Perhaps even Horizon 2. However, its main virtue resides in that it might seem that its packaging is eating resources of the purely playable, but as its development advances, that sensation is completely destroyed by the arc and charisma of Alloy.
Horizon enters through the eyes, traps by his argument and shakes by the personality of his action. Melee clashes are not up to par, but it is also true that a consummate goalkeeper has to do worse. Nevertheless, the machines and the combats against them are the best thing of the game of Guerrilla, that shows that they are good doing what they ask them. But if there is something they make clear is that the more freedom they have, the more they shine. At this point it is impossible to create an adventure that in one way or another does not drink of any title, but honor to whom honor deserves. And the spurs as an adventure are won, and by much, for having dared to be a new IP that bursts like a crush on the ecosystem PlayStation, to come watered with a unique atmosphere, a huge technical power and a unique identity. Naughty Dog did not make his first Uncharted better than this Horizon: Zero Dawn, and the change from Jack to Drake was not as drastic as that of Templar to Alloy. I look forward to playing his continuation.