Horizon Forbidden West is PlayStation exclusive action game with role-playing elements and the sequel to the popular 2017 title Horizon Zero Dawn a game that quickly became the poster child for all things PlayStation.
Set 6 months after the first game in a post-apocalyptic version of the western United States. You play as ALOY who sets out to find a cure for a blight that is spreading like cancer and killing plant and animal life.
There’s no doubt about it that the bright and vibrant colours of the game lure you in and the environments are just stunning, from the valleys to the deserts, snowy mountains and beautiful beaches.
Even right down to the flow in the crystal clear water, it’s a real testament to how far graphics have come in the last few years and makes this a great game to show off the hardware capabilities of your PS5 if you are lucky enough to be playing on the next generation of consoles.
The game mostly plays like the first one and does enough tutorial at the beginning plus a stack of recap that new players will be able to jump straight in and be caught up on everything you need to know.
The introduction of a grappling hook device was met with mixed reviews. At the end of the day, it’s not too dissimilar to similar devices in games like Zelda Breath of the Wild and enhances the game significantly as you find new ways to work through some puzzling areas.
One of the stand out achievements in the title isn’t what you see so much as what you hear. The audio environments are rich and if you close your eyes for a second you can get lost in the detail. The voice acting in the game is superb at bringing the characters to life.
There are small tweaks to the combat to make it more exciting and you can see real growth from the developers who obviously learnt a lot from the first game and went into this taking on fan feedback to improve it overall.
Improving on a game that scored so highly must have been an epic task but one they have achieved in spades.
Having said that I’m sure the leaps forward would have been hindered by the fact that the game needed to be available on both PlayStation 4 as well as PlayStation 5 so it will be interesting to see what the team do when they are unbound from the shackles of a previous generation machine and let loose to develop exclusively for the new hardware when an inevitable Horizon 3 is released.
Horizon Forbidden West is a strong console exclusive for Sony’s PlayStation and one that would be hard to look over especially if you want to see what your PS5 is capable of. It’s probably one of the last great games you’ll get on your PS4 as well.
The story is solid and builds on the lore of the series with some twists and turns you’ll find engaging.
The gameplay is improved on the first with new and excitingly larger enemies to defeat along the way. It’s available now and well worth your hard-earned dollars.
Horizon Forbidden West scores a 9/10