Horizon Zero Dawn (Official Discussion Thread)

Flogger23m

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I disagree, I don't recall it looking blurry. Checked my screen shots a few pages back. Looks fairly good, especially for a 2 year old game (PC version anyways). Not the greatest in every way possible, but it doesn't look blurry to me.
 

polonyc2

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I disagree, I don't recall it looking blurry. Checked my screen shots a few pages back. Looks fairly good, especially for a 2 year old game (PC version anyways). Not the greatest in every way possible, but it doesn't look blurry to me.

maybe I've been spoiled by playing a few ray-tracing enabled games recently that I forgot what a game looks like pre-RT...I'm going to try enabling DSR 4K...where's your screenshots?
 

TheSlySyl

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maybe I've been spoiled by playing a few ray-tracing enabled games recently that I forgot what a game looks like pre-RT...I'm going to try enabling DSR 4K...where's your screenshots?
It's the upscaling that makes it blurry. Turn off FSR or whatever it calls it. I remember it immediately making the game look like shit.

I played at 1440p with a 1080ti and had a wonderful visual experience.
 

polonyc2

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It's the upscaling that makes it blurry. Turn off FSR or whatever it calls it. I remember it immediately making the game look like shit.

I played at 1440p with a 1080ti and had a wonderful visual experience.

I never use any upscaling unless absolutely necessary for performance (usually for ray-tracing performance)...it doesn't look bad, it just doesn't look as amazing as I thought...the post-apocalyptic setting looks great, it's just the textures, foliage etc aren't as high-res as I was expecting
 

Flogger23m

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maybe I've been spoiled by playing a few ray-tracing enabled games recently that I forgot what a game looks like pre-RT...I'm going to try enabling DSR 4K...where's your screenshots?

Page 13. Ray tracing really doesn't look that much better in most games. I barely notice it on vs off in most of the games I've played. And it mainly helps in settings with lots of reflections. Horizon Zero Dawn is an outdoor game so it won't be noticed much.

Given that the game is two years old on PC, I still think it looks good. Very much standard for the era. Terrain environments look good, effects look good, as do characters. Maybe not 100% cutting edge everywhere, but it is a two year old game based on a even older PS4 game. Despite that it still holds up very comparably.
 
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polonyc2

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now that I'm done with the tutorial area and the game has opened up a bit it definitely looks really good in spots but there's definitely some softness to the image as well...higher-res textures could have taken this to another level...hopefully Forbidden West will bump up the fidelity a bit more
 

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Domingo

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Forbidden West's image is softer than the PC version of Zero Dawn. At least via the 60fps performance mode. There are more effects and it's more colorful, but it's also only 3200x1800, too.
 

Flogger23m

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Forbidden West's image is softer than the PC version of Zero Dawn. At least via the 60fps performance mode. There are more effects and it's more colorful, but it's also only 3200x1800, too.

That is kind of odd, I doubt the PS5 is getting some type of limit. With luck the PC version will be enhanced slightly. Assuming get get a PC port.
 

DWolvin

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now that I'm done with the tutorial area and the game has opened up a bit it definitely looks really good in spots but there's definitely some softness to the image as well...higher-res textures could have taken this to another level...hopefully Forbidden West will bump up the fidelity a bit more
I think it might be art style more than softness, this isn't trying to be photo realistic by any means, but it's very good looking in my mind. And honestly not trying to sound like an ass, but what games since this was released to you consider to be great? To me, Far Cry 5/6, Ride 4, Control, Cyberpunk, Hitman 3, and the New Tomb Raiders are all great, but all pick areas that are not 'realistic'. There will always be a blend between art style and realism- your last shot Aloy would have been blinded looking into the sun instead of seeing softer trees, but in H:ZD realistic vision would get you killed repeatedly.
 
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polonyc2

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I think it might be art style more than softness, this isn't trying to be photo realistic by any means, but it's very good looking in my mind. And honestly not trying to sound like an ass, but what games since this was released to you consider to be great? To me, Far Cry 5/6, Ride 4, Control, Cyberpunk, Hitman 3, and the New Tomb Raiders are all great, but all pick areas that are not 'realistic'. There will always be a blend between art style and realism- your last shot Aloy would have been blinded looking into the sun instead of seeing softer trees, but in H:ZD realistic vision would get you killed repeatedly.

the gameplay, story and world building are A+ in HZD...I was just referring to the graphics not looking as clean and sharp...the Tomb Raider games are a good comparison to HZD in terms of graphics...TR also had a bit of softness...the last 3 games I played had ray-tracing enabled and had impressive eye candy (Doom Eternal, Guardians of the Galaxy and Far Cry 6)...Far Cry 6 didn't have best RT implementation but combined with the HD Texture Pack looked really good

HZD looks best during the nighttime as the lighting is really top notch...the enemy design of the machines is also excellent...cutscene character models look really good but in-game they look a bit weird...foliage and environmental textures look soft...I think the bloom is overdone a bit during the daytime...the world in HZD looks a bit like RDR2 but Red Dead looks sharper
 
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DWolvin

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Gotcha, hating non-changeable bloom (in DoF) is something I can agree with, and dislike. I like the art style of H:ZD enough that I was confused about your description because I couldn't see it. But I'll also agree that night is amazing (go hunt stalkers at night for a good time). I'll also say that RT almost needs to be reviewed as a separate item, since it's pretty rare and very volatile in implementation both between hardware and engine.
 

polonyc2

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really amazing game...I'm spending most of my time exploring the map and doing side missions, cauldrons, clearing corrupted zones etc...once you understand the mechanics and how to defeat the various machines the gameplay is crazy fun...gorgeous post-apocalyptic setting which reminds me of Last of Us meets The Division

my only complaints are that the game feels very Ubisoft-ish at times with the clearing of bandit camp quests, climbing those Tallneck machines to reveal more of the map feels like the Assassin's Creed towers...anytime the game shifts the focus from the machines to the humans it starts to lose a bit of the greatness...some of the machines also feel a bit same-y as I was hoping that each machine would be completely unique
 

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T4rd

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The human enemies in ZD are definitely a weak point in the game, as well as melee combat in general. Both of these things are mostly addressed in Forbidden West (which I currently have 90+ hours in and am still playing through at the moment). They also improved texture quality and resolution considerably over ZD, which is what I'm assuming you're referencing when you're complaining about any blurriness. FW will definitely be another game that I buy and play twice when it comes to PC in a couple years probably, just as I did for ZD.
 

polonyc2

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The human enemies in ZD are definitely a weak point in the game, as well as melee combat in general. Both of these things are mostly addressed in Forbidden West (which I currently have 90+ hours in and am still playing through at the moment). They also improved texture quality and resolution considerably over ZD, which is what I'm assuming you're referencing when you're complaining about any blurriness. FW will definitely be another game that I buy and play twice when it comes to PC in a couple years probably, just as I did for ZD.

I find melee combat fine in HZD...game was really easy in the beginning because of it...the heavy attack is OP...but as I progress in the game I find I really need to use the various bows and elemental arrows...plus it seems that every bigger enemy is now never alone...always 2 Sawtooths, Fire Bellowbacks etc...1 at a time is fine but 2 or more is challenging

gameworld is gorgeous...there's definitely a bit of extra bloom and softness during the daytime but sundown/sunset look absolutely gorgeous...the lighting in this game is top notch...I'm sure it looks gorgeous in HDR
 

DWolvin

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It also falls into the general trap of allowing you to build how you want, like I went stealthy hunter, and then dumps you in the first caldron and SUPRISE! big boss fight in a goldfish bowl. That sucked. But the game is still great overall and I can't wait for H:FW when it hits PC.
 

Flogger23m

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I find melee combat fine in HZD...game was really easy in the beginning because of it...the heavy attack is OP...but as I progress in the game I find I really need to use the various bows and elemental arrows...plus it seems that every bigger enemy is now never alone...always 2 Sawtooths, Fire Bellowbacks etc...1 at a time is fine but 2 or more is challenging

gameworld is gorgeous...there's definitely a bit of extra bloom and softness during the daytime but sundown/sunset look absolutely gorgeous...the lighting in this game is top notch...I'm sure it looks gorgeous in HDR

Enemies get bigger. I assume you haven't been to the desert or jungle areas of the game yet.
 

polonyc2

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Enemies get bigger. I assume you haven't been to the desert or jungle areas of the game yet.

I've discovered most of the machines (base game not DLC)...it seems like I have around 9 more to discover...the Glinthawk doesn't count because I saw it from a distance and scanned it but haven't actually fought one yet...I have 35 hours in and I have a ton of the map yet to explore...I'm just wandering around exploring and doing side quests...I normally always take my time exploring in every game but this easily looks like a 100+ hour game for me
 

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polonyc2

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I think I'm exploring too much of the map with the 2nd tier blue (Rare) Carja weapons...some of the group machine fights are giving me issues (especially the multiple Corrupted Sawtooths)...I'm guessing the 3rd Tier purple (Very Rare) Shadow weapons are the best weapons (for the base game) and I should do some more Main missions until I'm able to buy some 'Shadow' weapons at a vendor
 

vegeta535

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I think I'm exploring too much of the map with the 2nd tier blue (Rare) Carja weapons...some of the group machine fights are giving me issues (especially the multiple Corrupted Sawtooths)...I'm guessing the 3rd Tier purple (Very Rare) Shadow weapons are the best weapons (for the base game) and I should do some more Main missions until I'm able to buy some 'Shadow' weapons at a vendor
Most the best weapons are in the frozen wild dlc. They are nott hat hard to get but you will get destroy if you go there early.
 

Flogger23m

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Most the best weapons are in the frozen wild dlc. They are nott hat hard to get but you will get destroy if you go there early.

Yeah I played it after the main game. It has a nice sub-story, but I suggest finishing the main game first not to get side tracked.
 

LurkerLito

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The best weapons outside the DLC are the Hunter Lodge weapons. Some of the challenges are a pain, but clearing them is worth it till you go to the DLC area.
 
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Blade-Runner

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I find melee combat fine in HZD...game was really easy in the beginning because of it...the heavy attack is OP...

What difficulty are you playing? I played through on the second hardest and initially found close combat to be quite unforgiving until I had obtained several upgrades.
 

polonyc2

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What difficulty are you playing? I played through on the second hardest and initially found close combat to be quite unforgiving until I had obtained several upgrades.

Normal difficulty...in my previous post I mentioned that the dual Sawtooths and bigger enemy hordes were challenging but I upgraded certain melee Skill points and now I'm wiping the floor with them...I charge into 2 Sawtooth and dual Fire/Freeze Bellowbacks and crush them...I'm still only Level 25 or so and I feel OP...I'm going to take a video of a battle against 2 Sawtooths or 3 Bellowbacks just in case people think I'm exaggerating...I'm sure the higher difficulty levels will be more challenging but I think once you master the combat it shouldn't be too bad

I'm sure the machines that I haven't encountered yet will pose more of a challenge but I think my experience playing the Dark Souls games has made every other game seem tame by comparison...in HZD I'm almost playing the same way with lots of rolls, dodges, heavy attacks etc
 

Blade-Runner

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Normal difficulty...in my previous post I mentioned that the dual Sawtooths and bigger enemy hordes were challenging but I upgraded certain melee Skill points and now I'm wiping the floor with them...I charge into 2 Sawtooth and dual Fire/Freeze Bellowbacks and crush them...I'm still only Level 25 or so and I feel OP...I'm going to take a video of a battle against 2 Sawtooths or 3 Bellowbacks just in case people think I'm exaggerating...I'm sure the higher difficulty levels will be more challenging but I think once you master the combat it shouldn't be too bad

I'm sure the machines that I haven't encountered yet will pose more of a challenge but I think my experience playing the Dark Souls games has made every other game seem tame by comparison...in HZD I'm almost playing the same way with lots of rolls, dodges, heavy attacks etc

Upping the difficulty makes a huge impact to game play style early on because even a single watcher could just about kill you with one well timed attack. This meant relying on stealth and long range tactics especially when dealing with mobs. The first Death Bringer I encountered took multiple attempts to kill it, and even then there was a fair amount of cheesing to do it.

The difficulty threshold tilts towards being much less challenging once you unlock the concentration and hunter reflex skills (this one is particularly cheesy as you can endlessly bunny hop to slow down time) and have access to ropecasters.
 

polonyc2

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Upping the difficulty makes a huge impact to game play style early on because even a single watcher could just about kill you with one well timed attack. This meant relying on stealth and long range tactics especially when dealing with mobs. The first Death Bringer I encountered took multiple attempts to kill it, and even then there was a fair amount of cheesing to do it.

The difficulty threshold tilts towards being much less challenging once you unlock the concentration and hunter reflex skills (this one is particularly cheesy as you can endlessly bunny hop to slow down time) and have access to ropecasters.

for my first playthrough of a new ip I would never play on the highest difficulty to start with...if I'm familiar with a franchise then I would start with a higher difficulty (Doom Eternal being a recent example)...that Concentration feature seems pretty necessary to use the bow...I like experimenting with all the different weapons such as Ropecasters etc...I don't think it's a cheese to use them as they have their strengths and weaknesses

I haven't even run into a Death Bringer yet and I've explored most of the first large area of the map (and a bit of the 2nd area)...when talking about early enemies I'm referring to Watchers, Striders, Sawtooth, Scrapper, Grazer, Bellowback, Corrupted versions and a few variations...the heavy melee attack and roll was OP against all of them...I have no doubt the higher difficulty will be more challenging but I think people that have completed the game at least once on Normal or the next tier will be better prepared

I have a feeling I'm going to love NG+
 

vegeta535

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for my first playthrough of a new ip I would never play on the highest difficulty to start with...if I'm familiar with a franchise then I would start with a higher difficulty (Doom Eternal being a recent example)...that Concentration feature seems pretty necessary to use the bow...I like experimenting with all the different weapons such as Ropecasters etc...I don't think it's a cheese to use them as they have their strengths and weaknesses

I haven't even run into a Death Bringer yet and I've explored most of the first large area of the map (and a bit of the 2nd area)...when talking about early enemies I'm referring to Watchers, Striders, Sawtooth, Scrapper, Grazer, Bellowback, Corrupted versions and a few variations...the heavy melee attack and roll was OP against all of them...I have no doubt the higher difficulty will be more challenging but I think people that have completed the game at least once on Normal or the next tier will be better prepared

I have a feeling I'm going to love NG+
Deathbringers are story machines. You don't run into any in the wild I believe.
 

DWolvin

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You do find Stalkers guarding certain areas, but other than caldrons you probably won't stumble upon them in the early wandering around. And I feel they are the biggest 'noob killer', since they have so much mobility. Deathbringers are big, slow, loud, and scared me but died easily.
 

polonyc2

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I took a video of me fighting 3 Fire Bellowbacks at the same time...melee only...no other weapons or freeze/fire traps etc...only Level 28...melee is OP...the heavy attack knocks down even the bigger machines...when you combine melee plus the elemental weapons, traps etc you become an HZD Master...although I did upgrade some of the melee skills you can still dominate with just the base melee against a lot of the early machines

I wasn't expecting all 3 to attack me at the same time but I still took them all out!

 

DWolvin

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Nicely done! And I just realized I beat the game without using heavy attack (at least on purpose). Explains much, I can't believe I didn't notice that... :ROFLMAO:
 

Flogger23m

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I took a video of me fighting 3 Fire Bellowbacks at the same time...melee only...no other weapons or freeze/fire traps etc...only Level 28...melee is OP...the heavy attack knocks down even the bigger machines...when you combine melee plus the elemental weapons, traps etc you become an HZD Master...although I did upgrade some of the melee skills you can still dominate with just the base melee against a lot of the early machines

I wasn't expecting all 3 to attack me at the same time but I still took them all out!



Yeah that is a mid sized machine. They get bigger, but there will still be plenty of those throughout the game.
 

Blade-Runner

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You do find Stalkers guarding certain areas, but other than caldrons you probably won't stumble upon them in the early wandering around. And I feel they are the biggest 'noob killer', since they have so much mobility. Deathbringers are big, slow, loud, and scared me but died easily.

Yeah, stalkers were deadly especially when fighting more than one at a time.

I have a feeling I'm going to love NG+

Not sure that NG+ is really going to be that much more challenging when fully upgraded and kitted out, but who knows. I generally don't have time for more than one play through of a given game.
 

polonyc2

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Yeah that is a mid sized machine. They get bigger, but there will still be plenty of those throughout the game.

I don't want the game to become too easy so hopefully the really large machines won't be able to be knocked down so easily with heavy attacks...I've run into those crocodile looking machines and the heavy attack doesn't seem to stun them so that's a good sign...my first Glinthawk fight was a lot of fun because as I was trying to shoot it down from the sky, other machines such as those crocodiles and Lancehorns also started attacking...the art style and post-apocalyptic setting are really well done
 

Flogger23m

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I don't want the game to become too easy so hopefully the really large machines won't be able to be knocked down so easily with heavy attacks...I've run into those crocodile looking machines and the heavy attack doesn't seem to stun them so that's a good sign...my first Glinthawk fight was a lot of fun because as I was trying to shoot it down from the sky, other machines such as those crocodiles and Lancehorns also started attacking...the art style and post-apocalyptic setting are really well done

Like I said, once you get to the desert you'll see some big ones. With good weapons and upgrades they become easier but some of the big ones were nearly impossible to kill initially until I came back.

Really hope the sequel comes to PC soon.
 

polonyc2

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I just ran into my first Thunderjaw!...awesome looking machine...T-Rex!...this is definitely not something I can do with melee heavy attacks...requires some good Tearblast arrows and weak point targeting...HZD is pretty much the Jurassic Park game everyone has been wanting to see!
 

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DWolvin

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What were the toys from back in the day~ Zoids or Zords? That's what I see... But yeah, the 'bots design is really well done. I would pacify them a few times just to look up close...
 

MavericK

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I just ran into my first Thunderjaw!...awesome looking machine...T-Rex!...this is definitely not something I can do with melee heavy attacks...requires some good Tearblast arrows and weak point targeting...HZD is pretty much the Jurassic Park game everyone has been wanting to see!
Freeze slinger is your friend with those guys.
 

polonyc2

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Freeze slinger is your friend with those guys.

yup the freeze bombs are effective against most of the machines in the game...as far as the Thunderjaw, at least for that first encounter the developers designed that area to make it easy to take him down...there was this WW2 type of trench/bunker tunnel which made it really easy to kill him...just jump down into it, use the Tear arrow to knock off one of the Thunderjaws' weapons and use it against him...I'm not sure if every area with it will be as user friendly
 
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polonyc2

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difficulty went way up in that desert area...everywhere I go is a gank squad of multiple difficult enemies grouped together...2 Thunderjaws mixed with Behemoths or Stormbirds etc...I wish the game would let you equip more weapons at one time without having to go into your inventory to swap it out
 
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