Aloy Is Lara Croft, But Better – Horizon Forbidden West PS5 Review
Gameplay 4
Quality 5
Experience 5
Value 4
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Quality 0
Experience 0
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Aloy Is Lara Croft, But Better – Horizon Forbidden West PS5 Review

Horizon Forbidden West – Review by Kelly Stretch – @ArtemysPlays  | Editor – Nick de Bruyne

As soon as Guerrilla Games revealed Horizon all those years ago I knew it would be a firm favourite of mine. Decrepit landscapes, a completely new dystopian world, machines, and a well rounded, fully dressed, female lead.

Horizon Zero Dawn came around, and I have dropped in and out of the game for years, longing for more of Aloy, her world and her story. This past week we got that, and it was so worth the wait.

What’s Good About Horizon Forbidden West?

+ Aloy is a real woman, with red hair, freckles, and an attitude not to be scoffed at.

+ The game is gorgeous and extremely well detailed – from landscape, to machine, to the peach fuzz on Aloy’s chin.

+ The world building is top-tier and lore is interwoven throughout the game.

+ Makes abundant and good use of the PS5 and DualSense technologies.

+ The audio design and OST are breathtaking.

West Life

Horizon Forbidden West takes everything the first game brought to the table and makes it better – I can’t think of something I would want changed in this game that would make a huge difference to my experience.

New armour, ammo, weapons and weapon types all make taking out existing and new machines and enemies interesting and while the game calls for a stealthy approach most of the time, you could easily rush in and cause chaos when you are well equipped.

Queen of my heart

Where I had issues in the first game, like a lot of reading of logs and files to uncover more of the lore, Horizon Forbidden West makes it easier to follow with more story told by voice overs by Aloy and her company.

This doesn’t take away the logs and things you can find around the map, but they are also of better quality this time around. Listening in this game is not a chore. Aloy will also mention when she thinks you should look at one of the logs if it contains vital information, so you know when you really should look at the extra info the game is giving you – so you could go the whole game without ever doing a stitch of extra reading.

Flying Without Wings

I would recommend having played the first game before jumping into this one, or at least having watched an in-depth synopsis of Horizon Zero Dawn, or you will be lost in terms of what is happening for the first 5 to 6 hours at least.

The other thing I must mention is how well the characters were written and brought to life, their stories and voices adding more emotional ties back to the Forbidden West than was possible in Zero Dawn.

The game showcases the power of the PS5 and also reminded me of the cool things the DualSense could do (weapon sounds, rumbles, and adaptive triggers all adding to the immersion).

Any Issues?

Yep, nobody is perfect. Pop-in and pop-out in some instances (already addressed in a patch, but did affect me during review time).

I found climbing/platforming cumbersome in areas, and felt overwhelmed at the amount there was to do, wondering if missing a side quest could affect my journey.

The Verdict:

Horizon Forbidden West is everything fans of the franchise could have hoped for and more. More than that, it reminded me of the power of the single player, story driven game in a multiplayer troll filled world – nobody sullied the experience for me… it was mine, and it was wonderful.

Relevant links: Horizon Zero Dawn Review  |   Horizon Zero Dawn Photo Gallery