Horizon: Zero Dawn Lies Somewhere Between Skyrim And Assassin’s Creed
That’s with regards to the RPG elements which I honestly didn’t know it had. Horizon: Zero Dawn was one of those unexpected game reveals during E3 2015. A new IP and a radically interesting IP at that. A Brave-like archer woman in a post-apocalyptic world filled with mecha-dinosaurs. That might sound like it comes from my mad-lib collection/dream journal, but it’s a real thing. While we knew that the game isn’t going to be entirely linear like Guerrilla Games’ previous offerings, it seems it may be more open than we thought.
While we already knew there were going to be RPG elements, we didn’t know the extent of it. Is it like Skyrim where there are massive skill trees, multiple progression paths and a ton of different combat options or is it akin to something like Remember Me or Tomb Raider where there’s only a small selection of skill upgrades that don’t really have any significance on the game?
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GamesRadar recently had an interview with Hermen Hulst, managing director and co-founder of Guerrilla Games, and asked exactly how deep these RPG elements will be, among other things. The answer was ambiguous, but we are given a ballpark to work with:
I guess you’re wondering where we are on that spectrum of, on the one side more action-orientated games like Assassin’s Creed, and on the other hand you have your Elder Scrolls and these kinds of series. I think we’re in-between. We have elements in both directions, and that probably puts us somewhere in between.
Vague as vague comes, but we can conclude some things based on that answer. For one, the RPG elements will be a bit deeper than the watered-down versions of games such as Assassin’s Creed. That’s a positive sign since, at least in my opinion, these RPG elements often add nothing of significance. While they are still there and are a method of progression, they don’t affect the game in any meaningful way. Basically it’s you going into a menu and pushing a few buttons to unlock more stuff to do.
Then there’s the other side of the spectrum with the Skyrim comparison where the RPG aspects make up the majority of the game. Leveling up and skill gaining is an essential component rather than an auxiliary feature. Horizon doesn’t seem to be going that direction either.
A bit of both seems to be an excellent compromise. I actually expected the game to be Tomb Raider-esque when I first witnessed it, but it seems I might be wrong in that regard.
However, all of this will be put to rest when the game is eventually showcased and as Hults said:
It’s really difficult to talk about how deep the role-playing experience is without being able to show it yet
Stay tuned kiddies. Horizon: Zero Dawn will release in 2016 on PS4.