A Stone Age hunter in a world overrun by machines. Does she have a chance?
You wouldn’t think so, but after watching the entire 20-minute gameplay video for the new PlayStation exclusive, Horizon Zero Dawn, I think she’s got a shot.
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First and foremost is our heroine Aloy’s archery skills. She easily dispatches several wild beast-like machines. It helps to have some flaming arrows, but her skills are good. Hit them 2-3 times then go in for the kill with the sword. Seems efficient, albeit repetitive.
She must also scavenge items from the defeated or hacked machine-beasts and craft useful items with them. This sometimes involves “killing” the machines, and other times, she’s able to sneak up next to them and override their systems.
Traps are also used. The video shows Aloy setting a trip wire and luring an unsuspecting beast-machine to it where it gets short-circuited.
The machines look and act like animals. They graze in the grass and charge when attacked. Some machines allow interaction. Horse creatures allow riders once “tamed”, for instance. They are also central to missions including killing them and climbing and overriding them.
These creatures are too much like creatures. Why make them machines in the first place if they behave like animals? They look interesting and some unique crafting possibilities are there, but the gameplay is no different than other hunter vs beast action RPGs. Perhaps at some point, the machines will act like machines – more Sci-Fi than fantasy — but the gameplay trailer doesn’t give us much except a little teaser at the end.
The game looks unique and the concept’s interesting, but the gameplay seems suspiciously repetitive and derivative. We’ll see when it’s out end of February 2017.