For the first time since E3, we’re starting to get a new stream of information about the highly anticipated new PS4 exclusive Horizon: Zero Dawn. In addition to releasing a new gameplay walkthrough, Guerrilla Games has also given a bit of insight into the breadth and focus of their story is a chat with DualShockers.

Senior Producer Mark Norris had this to say about where Horizon will fall on the scale of linear and open world RPGs:

I think you can expect that this is an incredibly rich story. It’s always interesting, that open world games ordinarily fall in one of two camps. We’ve got these really strong narrative-driven, character-driven open world games like The Witcher 3, or an Assassin’s Creed, or even a Watch_Dogs, where there’s a strong central character, and a bunch of story that revolves around the character.

And then you’ve got these other open world games, on the other side of the spectrum, previous to Fallout 4, I would have said a Fallout 3 or a Skyrim, where the story is really the story of the world, and it’s less the story of this main character.

Our game, actually, it has both. The main story revolves around Aloy. She’s one of the reasons why we’re a single player only game. We want to tell the story of Aloy. But we also want to tell the story of the machines, the story of the world, the story of these tribes, and you’ll get those inside of quests, in open world activities, collectibles and other things.

He also commented on the challenge that is finding a balance between mature complexity and wide accessibility with the content of this story:

It’s actually a super interesting question, and this gets into producer versus creator, some times, sort of fights. The creative on the story wants to make a story that’s incredibly mature, incredibly sophisticated, and incredibly deep.

And of course the Producer side of me says, you gotta make a story that’s accessible. I need to sell a certain number of units on the game, and I need to think how I’m gonna get bonuses for the people that worked incredibly hard on the game, and writer, you want a bonus too, I know you do!

So we need to strike a balance, between telling a story that is rich, immersive and very deep, with a story that does have a level of accessibility, but I think we’re gonna find that point. I think right now we’re balancing it.

It you’re hyped up about Horizon: Zero Dawn, don’t forget to check that gameplay walkthrough, and stay tuned for “something big” in 2016.


Andrea Giargiari
Feature Writer, Bachelor of Arts in Communications (Media and Culture) via UMass Amherst

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