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Old 01-22-2018, 09:54 PM
The Lone Ranger's Avatar
The Lone Ranger The Lone Ranger is offline
Jin, Gi, Rei, Ko, Chi, Shin, Tei
Join Date: Jul 2004
Default Re: Video Games - Watcha playin'?

So, I've finished Horizon Zero Dawn. I really enjoyed it, though I wonder how much re-play value it has.

It has an interesting and engaging story, and Aloy is quite an interesting character. Some might find her constant comments on the current situation to become annoying after awhile, but I didn't mind, since she's varied enough in her commentary that you don't keep hearing the same phrase over and over again. It helps that Aloy has an engaging and interesting personality. (As much as I wanted to, I just couldn't get into The Witcher 3, because I didn't care for Geralt's personality -- this isn't a problem for Horizon Zero Dawn.)

You'll probably figure out the "twist" regarding Aloy's origin pretty quickly, but the mystery regarding the Machines' origins and why they've recently become so hostile will keep you guessing 'til nearly the end. Similarly, the mystery of how humanity survived The Great Extinction will keep you guessing 'til the end.

The graphics are superb -- man, I wish that Skyrim SE had graphics that were anywhere near this good! The voice acting is superb as well. Again, Bethesda should take note: this is important when it comes to making compelling characters -- hire really good voice actors!

Combat is fairly simple, but Aloy is no Dragonborn. Even at low levels, there are plenty of Machines that can kill her almost instantly, especially if she lets them get close. She can kill almost anything with her bow, so long as she manages to keep them at a distance, but even the weakest machines will shred her in seconds if they get close enough for hand-to-hand combat.

So, learning each Machine's strengths and weaknesses is a must -- as is learning how to set traps and how to use each weapon most efficiently.

My least-favorite machine? Probably Stalkers. Those suckers will set traps for you. Did I mention that they're fast and agile enough to dodge arrows? Did I mention that they have guns, and if you try to keep far-enough away to pick them off with arrows, they'll be shooting back? Did I mention that they're smart enough to lead you if you try to dodge their fire?

Did I mention that they're absolutely lethal if they get close enough to engage you physically? And did I mention that they can camouflage? So, all too often, the first hint that you get that one's about is when it pounces on you or opens fire. And since the nasty things often travel in groups, while you're dealing with the one that's shooting at you, there's likely another one sneaking up behind you ...

That having been said, a Stalker gave me perhaps my happiest moment in the game. I was about to enter a ruin when I noticed signs that a Stalker might be in the area, so I paused at the entrance to the ruin and laid down some traps. Then I made some noise to hopefully lure it in, so that it would blunder into my trap. Nothing. So, I cautiously entered the ruin, keeping an eye (and ear) open for Stalker activity. Nothing. Eventually, I figured that I must have been mistaken about Stalkers being in the area and forgot about it.

Then, just as I was exiting the ruin, a Stalker appeared. Oh crap. And then the nasty bugger ran right into the traps I'd set up upon entering the ruin and killed itself. Happy times, indeed.

My only complaint about the game is that it seems too short. And because it's so dependent on the story, I worry how enjoyable it would be on a second play-through given that you already know the answers to the mysteries that Aloy is trying to unravel.
“The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be.”
-- Socrates

Last edited by The Lone Ranger; 01-22-2018 at 11:59 PM.
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BrotherMan (01-23-2018), curses (01-22-2018)
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