Saturday, May 5, 2018

Initial Thoughts: Horizon Zero Dawn (Playstation 4)

My two daughters love to read and my family takes frequent trips to the public library for them to restock on books. Not too long ago my wife informed me that the library started to carry video games for modern consoles (Nintendo Switch, Playstation 4, Xbox One). My first trip to see what they had wasn't all that successful, ended up w/ Street Fighter II for the Switch. However last weekend I was pleased with the larger selection. They had several games for the Switch that interested me (Disgaea 5 on the Switch), one of the Forza racing games for the Xbox One and something else on the PS4 that I can't quite put my finger on at this time. I went home with Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite for the Xbox One and Horizon Zero Dawn for the PS4. I'm not a huge fighting game fan, but the Marvel vs. games usually are good. Horizon Zero Dawn was just one of those games that I've heard a little about, but never looked too much into it. Unfortunately for me it was a full week later before I had time to sit down to play. Good thing I get to keep both games for 2 weeks!

This weekend I finally had a chance to jump into Horizon Zero Dawn. I knew of the game, but really hadn't looked into the game. I watched a Facebook friend livestream some gameplay, but that's about it. When I first started the game, I really didn't know what to expect. I was a little surprised to find out I started playing the game as a young Aloy. I knew the game would be a big budget cinematic story and the story itself had to be set up. However I thought it was a little on the sluggish side starting out. Now that I've played a good 12-15 hours I now see why the beginning was necessary as it helps advance the story that much better. I was expecting combat right out the gate, but instead I was given a lot of story and a little exploration.

I knew that I needed to give this game time and I'm glad that I was patience as I am marveled by everything about the game. Of course the visuals are absolutely stunning and pleasing to the eye, but the musical score also fits the atmosphere as well. The voice acting for the most part is top notch and the story is something I actually like.

I've leveled up my character to level 16 thus far and have enjoyed every hour. I'm still getting used to the combat, but part of that is I'm not as familiar w/ a Playstation controller as I am other controllers. For the most part the controls and combat are very intuitive, however I don't like the jumping/scaling/climbing system. That's a very small complaint as overall the game is magnificent. I kinda hated I didn't pay this game any attention until now it's so good. I will most likely purchase the new version of the game that contains the DLC pack as I hate that I have to return the game to the library next weekend.

I haven't played many AAA PS4 titles, but I can see why this game has sold so well. I look forward to advancing the story and eventually getting to the aforementioned DLC as well. If you are a fan of open world style games with a action RPG element, then this game is for you. Then again, I'm sure most of you reading this have already discovered what I'm just discovering for myself.

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