Guerrilla Games just finished up a Horizon Zero Dawn Q&A and we’ve got some juicy tidbits for you. The world and backdrop for the latest PlayStation 4 exclusive was so wondrous to behold that many gamers couldn’t stop themselves from asking about it. Not only that, but the citizens and overall society of the world were built in a believable way with some silly ideas. I’m looking at you Ancient Vessel guy. I mean if it looks like a cup, talks like a cup, it must be shaving utensils in your mind. Also, the machines themselves that populate the land were a popular subject as well. Lastly, spoilers ahead so if you haven’t beaten the game, think carefully about reading on.
First up, Guerilla Games responded to some questions about the tribes of people Aloy comes across in her journey. All the way from her birth place wrapped up in superstition to the (let’s say) less than intelligent people roaming around. Turns out that most of the tribal society was made with a status quo mindset. This way the insight and wisdom of Aloy and Sylens would stand out and be brought to the forefront. Although the Banuk tribe was the personal favorite of Guerrilla’s character designer due to their spiritual connection to the machines.
In regards to the story itself, GAIA, or the Mother Earth A.I. players discovered rebuilt the entire planet, was always planned from the very beginning. The concept of a giant, artificial intelligence rebuilding the world after all life on it was extinguished was quite a heavy and unique concept. I’m sure many gamers were expecting Project Zero Dawn to save the planet for its destruction, but that was never the case in even the earliest versions of the story.
The machines themselves were obviously a popular topic. The team behind the Q&A revealed that the design for the two toughest enemies, Stormbird and Thunderjaw, took 2-3 weeks to design on paper and a full 5-6 months to make from scratch to final, playable state. In particular the Thunderjaw originally was created with bright colors that represented old Killzone assets. The disc launchers on their back used to be the Killzone VC9. It was also revealed that the larger a machine was, the more likely it would act as a protector to the other machines. Surprisingly, the more docile creatures were the favorites of the devs. i.e. Grazers, Lancehorns, and Watchers. They represented balance and cuteness (no we’re not kidding) to some of the designers and testers.
Finally, who doesn’t enjoy a little fun and humor. When asked what were some of the funnier glitches in development, two QA testers mentioned some funny stuff. At one point, there was a build that caused 5% of quest NPCs’ faces to to “break.” Another time during early development caused all Mother’s Heart citizens to spawn on top of the mountain. “So we watched them have some wild rooftop parties!” Other QA workers revealed that the current record for achieving the Platinum trophy is twenty one hours in-house. (I acquired it in thirty eight hours so I fail.)
Let us know if you learned anything new or were impressed at what Guerrilla Games created. We’ll definitely geek out with you in the comments below.