Creating The Lore Of Horizon Zero Dawn

Kimberley Wallace

One of the most exciting parts of Horizon Zero Dawn is its fascinating world where humans are at the bottom of the food chain and giant, animal-like machines rule the roost. But how did it get that way, and why are things getting more dangerous? How is it that people came to forget technology and live in this preindustrial state of development? That's for you to uncover when you finally step into the game come February 28. We spoke to Guerrilla Games and discovered that the team spent a lot of time on the lore and explanations for the world.

From the beginning, Guerrilla Games decided it wanted the story to be a work of science fiction, and so no fantastical elements or explanations, such as magic, would come into play. "We're not going to rely on fantasy at any point; we're not going to go for any kind of supernatural explanations," says lead writer John Gonzalez. "We really dug down into the history of the world and built it all the way up in order to imagine how it is this world came to be. What I want to put out there to people is just that it does make sense. We took that really seriously.

" In Horizon Zero Dawn, humanity has regressed into tribes and are all living off the land in different ways. For instance, Aloy's tribe, the Nora, is a hunting group that's dependent on the bow to take down wildlife and mechanical beasts. But the Nora are just one of many tribes in the game, and the writers were tasked with figuring out how all the tribes would differ from one another and what conflicts they would have. This meant creating a rich history full of warring tribes, crafting different religions for them, and most importantly, Guerrilla made sure to consider their different climates when deciding how the different tribes lived off the land. "It was a great deal of fun [coming up with the tribes], but it was also a great deal of work," Gonzalez says.

"We took it pretty seriously. I don't think there's ever been a development team where so many people read Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies [a Pulitzer Prize-winning non-fiction novel by Jared Diamond - Ed. ] We really thought about how humans have adapted historically to their environments and how that then is reflected in their material culture and also the ideologies that they have. "  This required them thinking more deeply about the tribes and their histories. "As is unfortunately common in our world, different groups of people usually don't like each other, and there are certainly exceptions to that, but in this case some of the recent events that have…

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