As is always the case, the answer to the question on the title of Horizon Zero Dawn is not so easy to give. As an open-world game with plenty to do and see and multiple possible challenges being there, Horizon Zero Dawn indeed s playing time is going to vary a great deal from player to player. However, there are also the additional side-missions and the expansion to think about: The frozen wilds. This expansion packs a considerable amount of content that takes place in the frozen wastes of the north. It also introduces two brand new players to the mix: Aloy and Hawke, and adds two recent locations – The Ice Gate and The Wastes. If I had to make one recommendation for Horizon Zero Dawn, it would be to play through the campaign’s opening before jumping into the side-missions and experience what happens in the campaign before moving on to the side missions.
That said, Horizon Zero Dawn has enough to keep you playing long after the final credits roll. For me, it is the combat that makes the game so much fun to play. The fighting is exhilarating and feels like it’s always trying to get you near your potential as a soldier. It gives you an excellent chance to show off all your skills and, at the same time, makes you feel very fresh and eager to learn more.
It also makes you appreciate just how much longer you could have played if only you hadn’t gotten sidetracked by that side mission. The challenges within the campaign are very nicely balanced. While some are easier than others, you never feel as though you’ve been shortchanged. And there are several times when you can feel like you’ve been stretched too thin, yet Horizon Zero Dawn still finds a way to keep you happily engrossed in the game.
If Horizon Zero Dawn had been such a letdown, then we’d have seen a lot less of the dragons and the other creatures prowling about the map. There’s nothing quite like the feeling you get when you’ve killed a dragon and knowing that you’re just one click away from another! And this time, you don’t have to kill the dragon; you can take it down faster than it can run away and raise more to fight for you as you progress through the game. These moments don’t come around often enough in games nowadays, especially when there are so many lovely things to see, but Horizon Zero Dawn manages to do them exceptionally well.
The open world is beautiful. It’s been crafted expertly and looks more accurate than you’ll ever expect. The vegetation and the rocks are actual, and the animals are very lifelike. Everything works. It’s not exaggerated or overdone – just right. It’s evident that this game was created by an objective team, who’ve spent a lot of time creating the world, and the animals, and the challenges within it, to make sure that Horizon Zero Dawn feels like a work of art.
In terms of gameplay, players need to slowly explore each island to find items, weapons, and other secrets to help them level up. Killing dragons is fun but repetitive. The challenges on every isle are varied enough to provide something new to try consistently, and beat the dragon, or collect the item required for the next challenge. There’s no way to predict which challenges will be most straightforward, but players need to put in the time to beat them all. This is what Horizon Zero Dawn is all about.
Long load times are a thing of the past; Horizon Zero Dawn has a fast travel system, so you won’t spend hours trying to set up everything again. You’ll be playing in no time. On my computer, I was able to play this game more than five times in a row because the load times were so short. This game can indeed be called a new game, as it has many features that look similar to older games, but its most significant achievement so far is to make the long load times bearable.
Horizon Zero Dawn has a huge variety of quests, all of which are different, with different levels, rewards, etc. You should do searches according to your style, but don’t go too slow or too fast; otherwise, you won’t feel like you’ve earned anything. This game has so much to offer and a lot of content to keep you coming back for more. It’s designed for long-term players, and even if you only have a few hours free, you can still get the most out of it. Don’t let the length of the game stop you from enjoying it. Enjoy the visuals, enjoy the sounds, enjoy the benefits of a fast travel system, and above all else, enjoy the experience!