Horizon Forbidden West is a game developed by Guerrilla Games and published by Sony Interactive Entertainment. It is a sequel to Horizon Zero Dawn. The game is a direct continuation of the story from the first game (see our review) and players will get to explore the next chapter in Aloy’s life as new challenges have emerged in the world in which she lives.
When Horizon Forbidden West was first announced a couple of years ago, it immediately went to the top of my list of most wanted games. The first game, Horizon Zero Dawn was my favourite game on the PS4 and one of the few games I have the platinum trophy for. I loved the game so much, that I did virtually everything that I could do in it. Horizon Forbidden West was a chance to go back into the world, do more quests and see what was going on in that universe.
Gameplay-wise, things aren’t so different to the first game. Everything is still in the third person, you will play as Aloy and have access to her ranged and melee weapons. There will be upgrades for both the ranged and melee weapons as well. This is what I expected to see going in to play the game, but as the game went on and I got further into the story, I was extremely impressed with the amount of detail put into the weapons in the game. There is no shortage of weapons to try, many weapons from the first game such as the Hunter Bow are back in the game but there’s also a huge variety of new weapons such as spears, the bolt blaster and tripcasters. As you complete more quests you’ll unlock more weapons and weapon classes. There’s a great variety of weapons to play with and I never got bored customising them. I felt that the weapon variety and simply the number of available weapons and upgrades to try were a major plus to the gameplay.
Another aspect of Horizon Forbidden West that players can look forward to is the countless challenging enemy types. The game, just like the first one has a wide variety of robotic animals/dinosaurs you have to fight. However, the enemies in this game felt a lot more challenging. There are many points in the game where Aloy can be taken down rather quickly and certain attacks that some enemies can do, seem to almost 1 shot her. You got to be a bit careful and well practised at dodging enemy attacks. You also got to ensure you don’t go into major fights without enough health boosts.
All weapons are upgradable in the game to do more damage and they can be upgraded rather easily by completing simple resource-gathering quests within the open world. Aloy herself can also be upgraded through the levelling-up system in the game. Over time players will unlock new abilities through various skill trees to add extra gameplay or boosts to the character.
The story in the game is excellent. I love exploring this world and the lore is very interesting. I listened to all the audio logs, spoke to every NPC I came across and was extremely immersed in the main storyline. I don’t like to go into plot details because I want my readers to go into the game as fresh as I did, but I just want to say to you all that there’s no shortage of content for the Horizon Forbidden West storyline.
The only downside to the game that I could think of is just how long many of the dialogue trees are as you progress through the game. As you explore the world there are multiple NPCs you can talk to and many of them have large dialogue trees. For myself, I love the story of the game and the lore, but at times the dialogue trees are so long that you kind of just want to skip it, but then you might miss something important so you don’t do it. Depending on how engaged you are with the main story or the side quests you might find these either a great benefit or a huge bore.
The graphics in this game are excellent! It’s definitely one of the best-looking games on the PS5 right now and likely won’t be bested for a long time. Camera angles are always very good, Aloy’s character model and costumes are all high resolution and look great. The world’s environment and textures are all high quality. There’s nothing you can really fault the game on when it comes to graphics. The only annoyance I suppose is that once you are done with it and move on to your next game, it likely won’t look anywhere near as good. I started playing Returnal this week and it’s certainly nowhere near Horizon Forbidden West in graphics/presentation.
The music is okay, there are a few memorable themes and I really do like the main theme the game has. Tunes aren’t all memorable though and oftentimes the game is a bit quiet. Voice acting is a bit mixed as well. Aloy and the rest of the main characters in the game have great voice actors. However, due to the significant amount of NPC dialogue in the game, some of them seem to be a bit monotone at times.
Overall Horizon Forbidden West is an amazing game. I only have some minor gripes about some of the voice acting and long NPC dialogues, but I should stress these are minor faults in an overwhelmingly perfect gaming experience. I can’t stress enough how good this game is. It’s one of the most beautiful games on the PS5 and it is a must-have for any PS5 owner. Just like I did with the first one, I’m planning to get a platinum trophy for this game as well and I’m not bored at all with it. I’ve got about 100 hours in there and I could easily see myself doing many more over the coming months to explore more of what it has to offer.
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Horizon Forbidden West
It's one of the most beautiful games on the PS5 and it is a must have for any PS5 owner. Just like I did with the first one, I'm planning to get a platinum trophy for this game as well and I'm not bored at all with it. I've got about 100 hours in there and I could easily see myself doing many more over the coming months to explore more of what it has to offer.
- Awesome graphics
- Being able to explore this gaming universe for a second time in this sequel
- Excellent gameplay
- NPC dialogue trees are at times very long
- Graphics 0
- Voice Acting 0
- Story 0
- Gameplay 0
- Music 0