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Review: Horizon Zero Dawn - The Frozen Wilds (PS4)
Horizon Zero Dawn - The Frozen Wilds in the game database
Review: Horizon Zero Dawn - The Frozen Wilds (PS4)

The Frozen Wilds” DLC is more of the same that we got in this year’s Horizon Zero Dawn. So if you liked the core game, you already know the expansion is worth it.

After I’ve finished Horizon Zero Dawn and written the review, I spent with the game about a dozen more hours, looking for missed collectibles and doing remaining side missions. I did not, however, go back to the game since then, because, for me, it was a complete experience and running around in even the most beautiful world is pointless. Guerrilla Games kept on delivering new content, yet none of it was big enough to bring me back. The several months, during which I’ve waited for “The Frozen Wilds” DLC, I spent on thinking about the game, reading others’ opinions.

Horizon, as any other triple-A title, divided the players. With all that quarrels about the genre – is it still RPG or something else (I, for one, don’t consider it a RPG) – there were too little discussions if Aloy’s adventure can withstand this couple of months to be remembered for a nomination for the Game of the Year title. Sony decided to remind us about the game with an expansion, which is (fortunately for the company) as great as the core game. “The Frozen Wilds” doesn’t reinvent the wheel nor experiment with new ideas for the sequel. Guerrilla team polished what they had, thrown in some new content to not bore us with the same stuff, and it all takes around 7 hours – at least my gameplay took that long and I’ve managed to do every quest (I used to leave collectibles for the post-game). Is that enough for a DLC? Yes.

The land we start new plot in is covered in snow and ice. Constant blizzards show (and remind) us how well-made the game is in terms of graphics. There are not many graphical upgrades so to speak (i.e. better water effects), but… what is there to improve? Still, the developer did what he could to bring us even better game than the original. For starters, we have more interesting shots during cutscenes and conversations between characters. They are not puppets anymore, shaking unnaturally their heads and sometimes moving their arms. The gesticulation is much more life-like now and mimics is more natural. Of course the Polish language version still has completely broken lip-sync, but what can we do apart from shrugging our shoulders and changing the language?

The core mechanics, for the most part, is left unchanged. The max level cap is raised and we got a couple of new abilities, although, for me, they are useless. Well, maybe they will be appreaciate by players who use mechanical mounts all the time. Now we can repair them, and collect stuff and attack without dismounting them. This is so great I made a use of it like three times. But, as I said, it all depends on your playstyle. The point is, there aren’t too many universal abilities. Happily, other aspects make up for it. New element-based weapons are good to have, especially when you have to fight new types of creatures, much more aggressive and (because of that) unpredictable. Is the game harder? Maybe a little, but only when you enter new locations on lower level than it’s recommended (Guerrilla suggests at least 30th level, I started with 50th).

The main plot of the DLC is on the quality level of the core game – it’s nothing that special, but it shouldn’t bore you either. We get to learn about Sylens’ past and it’s focused on exploring the estabilished world rather than making the groundwork for the sequel. You can get to know the events from before the New Dawn project and while it’s not much, the story about dam built by Faro and A.I. named CYAN proves to be a great continuation of the existing plot – and there are still a lot stories to tell. What about the characters? Apart from Aloy, we have two characters that are somewhat important. And… they are designed better than most of core Horizon Zero Dawn’s NPCs. Not that it’s some big achievement, but I can appreciate scriptwriters make an effort to put their hearts into dialogues.

Horizon Zero Dawn – The Frozen Wilds costs €19.99 and you’ll need the core game to run it. If you don’t, you can wait for the Complete Edition which will be available soon. All in all, you should buy this expansion if you liked the original. We are getting more of the same, with some polishing and no unnecessary experiments. 7 hours to finish the story is a solid result and we can easily make it 4-5 hours longer by collecting everything on the map. However, if you didn’t like the Guerrilla Games’ title, the DLC won’t change your mind.

The game was reviewed on PS4 Pro.

Horizon Zero Dawn - The Frozen Wilds
Out rating: 8.0/10
If you had fun with Horizon Zero Dawn, "The Frozen Wilds" DLC will do likewise. The expansion does not introduce many changes, but it offers a big, beautiful snow-covered land.
  • Pros
  • Beautiful graphics full of atmosphere
  • Better execution of dialogues
  • More of the same
  • Cons
  • Not many side quests
  • Lip-sync in Polish version is still bad
guerrilla games Horizon Zero Dawn Horizon Zero Dawn - The Frozen Wilds playstation 4 review

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