Last week, fans got a shiny new look at Horizon Forbidden West running on a PlayStation 5, and it's safe to say that the majority of us were floored by what we saw. Yet, there has been a vocal minority who aren't happy with the way that Aloy looks.
I'll give you a moment to roll your eyes, sigh dramatically, shake your head knowingly, whatever you got to do to get that exasperation out there. Right. Let's continue on. Guerrilla Games is delivering absolutely amazing visuals for the next chapter in Aloy's story (which just might be a trilogy), taking her to what remains of California, Utah and Nevada after the robots reclaimed the Earth. In new territories come new secrets to uncover, and Aloy has the ability to climb with her grappling hook as well as a scuba set which allows her to dive into the glittering waters. Furthermore, she isn't the only one with a command over the machines because the hostile Raiders use Clawstriders and Tremortusks to strike fear into their enemies. Clawstriders look a little like dinosaurs with chainsaw jaws, which is personally my favourite type of dinosaur. On the other hand, the Tremortusk is a literal war elephant with four tusks and projectile weaponry. Cut to me speeding off into the sunset as fast as Aloy's legs can carry me.
Get a good look at what's in store in the footage from State of Play below.
The game is coming to the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5, but it's evident that Guerrilla Games is pushing the limit of what the latter can do. "With the PS5's SSD, there will be virtually no loading screens," said director Mathijs de Jonge in a dev diary last year. "In an open-world game like Horizon Forbidden West, if you open up the map and fast travel from one end to the other, or restart from a checkpoint, it will be super fast. When you boot up the game, you're right there in the action." And, the developer's Decima engine has gotten an upgrade, allowing the super sharp graphics to take centre stage in the gameplay snippet. Things are going to look a little different between Horizon Zero Dawn and Horizon Forbidden West for this reason, but a few are furious with how Aloy looks in the second game.
In a tweet that has gone viral, a player criticised Sony for designing its female protagonists to possess "masculine" features. This is (apparently) "unlike the average woman" who has "curves," and they took it upon themselves to share Aloy's face with a few... alterations from Horizon Forbidden West. In the second screenshot, she's smiling with beautifully white gnashers, her eyebrows have been manicured and filled in for a semi-natural look, her lips are fuller and glossed, and she's wearing eyeshadow and false eyelashes. These things are commonplace in the apocalypse as these products were the only things that survived the destruction.
Of course, I'm being sarcastic. This person is shocked that Aloy doesn't look like she did in the previous game, when she was a teenager. However, the slight differences are inciting discussions amongst fans about why there has been this sort of reaction to Aloy's newer design. "Y'all do not know how bodies work apparently," said imthechosenginger on Reddit. "Being fit does not mean your body does not carry fat. There are plenty of people who have 'chubby cheeks' and are very fit." Some point out that there is six months between the events of Horizon Zero Dawn and Horizon Forbidden West and so Aloy's face shouldn't have changed so significantly from the original game.
But... she looks the same. Overall. There are more details in her face like freckles, rosy cheeks and a few lines between her brows and her forehead. If you tell me these changes are going to ruin the game, then I will laugh and remind you that Horizon Zero Dawn is one of the best-selling games for the PlayStation 4. And then laugh some more.
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