Horizon Zero Dawn is a Mix of Tomb Raider and The Witcher

Horizon Zero Dawn is one of the best games I've ever played and certainly a masterpiece though while playing I couldn't help but draw some similarities to other games. This was not really with the story as I found to be somewhat unique, but with the style of the core gameplay and Aloy herself.

When you look at Horizon it's basically a combination of the recent Tomb Raider series mixed with the Witcher. Aloy is basically Lara Croft when you think of her abilities focusing heavily on bow based offense with some slight melee options for close combat. The two also heavily rely on stealth based combat whether that's regular movement through an area or attacking enemies. Both also can on the odd occasion get savage when taking down enemies directly, but aren't usually built for head on collisions.

A further similarity can be drawn with their traversal of the environment as both do quite a bit of climbing and parkour across rough, wild terrains. You could go as far as saying that both are Tomb Raiders in their own worlds with Lara searching our ancient tombs whereas Aloy hits up our modern yet ancient in their time buildings. We also see that both craft for slightly better weapons/equipment and move through an open, yet linear world.
Horizon Zero Dawn is a Mix of Tomb Raider and The Witcher
While the character of Aloy and general gameplay takes on a Tomb Raider like style, the game itself is more akin to The Witcher. This is less about her being like Geralt which she has far too much charisma to be, but in the world. Horizon and The Witcher provide a singular main quest, but allows you to fully explore the open world if you'd like. The environments are also absolutely gorgeous with dynamic worlds to travel through and feature lively thriving communities.

I'd say that The Witcher might be larger in what you can do within the world, but Horizon Zero Dawn still provides deep side quests to explore and people to meet. All three actually share the system of harvesting from the world for items though with Horizon being RPG focused there's trading and things to earn from really getting out there. A final note would be the attitude towards their travel companions as both care little for what they ride and grab whatever they can to ride nearby. I immediately called my horses Roach in Horizon as it just felt like the same sort of care in the game.

I'm definitely not hating on Horizon Zero Dawn since I thought it was perfect and this was essentially the same connection I drew between them all. That third person open world really seems to be one of the strongest aspects in creating a compelling universe to explore. While they do all trade certain aspects of gameplay, each does stand on its own and I 100% suggest playing them all.

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Gamerheadquarters Reviewer Jason Stettner