Well, Guerrilla Games is just about tying up all the loose ends before Horizon: Forbidden West drops on February 18. To us, that means there’s still a few days worth of mopping up leftover games before the next big thing hits the shelves. Of course, 72 hours sure isn’t a lot of time in the gaming world, but it is, however, enough to get one, maybe even two more journeys out of the way. Or, if you’re loaded with free time, then perhaps the entire list that we’re about to draw up.
Horizon: Forbidden West, like Horizon: Zero Dawn, is set in a post-apocalyptic world, where the roots of humanity have once again flourished and thrived to breathe a second wind into its carcass. Mechanical beasts roam the lands, tribes fill the pockets of the far corners of the region, and the whole world bends over backwards for the lost technology that once engulfed the world in disaster. Quite an acquired taste for a genre, for sure. And yet, there are a few games that tap into a similar vein — if only slightly. So, if you enjoyed Zero Dawn, then you’ll definitely want to check these five out.
Similar to Horizon, Biomutant narrows its focus on the remnants of civilization. The old world no longer showcases its mounds of grand and glorious structures, but instead survives through the leftovers and the bare bones of nature. Mutated animals and mechanical beasts plague the land and divide whatever is left of the starving planet, and you, unfortunately, are just another creature that’s thrown into the deep end without a paddle to float.
Combat-wise, Biomutant doesn’t put so much as a dent on Guerilla Games’ masterpiece. However, its rich story-driven experience and vibrant world are two things that counter its one and only major flaw. It’s unique, it’s oddly satisfying, and it’s short enough to plow through on a good weekend, providing you sweep any other temptation from the table.
Biomutant is available on Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and PC.
4. Ark: Survival Evolved
To be honest, Ark: Survival Evolved probably won’t give you your complete fill if you’re going out of your way to look for an action-heavy banquet. Lower your expectations just a smidgen, to the point of craving a snack more than a meal, and you’ll get your money’s worth, without a doubt. But as far as its Horizon references go, Ark: Survival Evolved has them by the boatload.
Pitting you against a remote island crammed full of dinosaurs, prehistoric beasts, and a whole lot of mechanical enhancements, it’s up to you to branch out and survive the day-to-day. How you make a living for yourself in such a hostile world is another question, though one you can answer by exploring the very veins of the island and building from the remains of the obstacles you overcome.
Ark: Survival Evolved is available on Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Switch, and PC.
3. Final Fantasy 15
The best part about Final Fantasy is that, even when you think you know what’s about to come, something else entirely usually pops up from out of the blue. It’s a guessing game that nobody has ever really been able to crack, which is partly the reason why so many stand in line to watch its releases come to pass. Final Fantasy 15, of course, is no different.
Giving the player an open-world playground with endless possibilities is an ideal start for the fifteenth chapter in the series, that’s for sure. Maybe Eos isn’t quite like the notorious Forbidden West, but it is swimming with a similar amount of opportunities. Besides the main narrative, Final Fantasy 15 allows for you to traverse a huge world with your closest friends. With an ocean of side content, contracts, abilities, as well as encounters to unearth, FFXV stands as one of the greatest and most engrossing entry in the franchise to date. A Horizon clone it is not — but that shouldn’t steer you away from it even for a second.
Final Fantasy 15 is available on Xbox One, and PlayStation 4
2. NieR: Automata
NieR: Automata has acquired quite the reputation over the years for its rich and immersive storytelling, as well as its many, many endings that have given players far more bang for their buck. Plus, with roots that interlock with Horizon: Forbidden West, particularly when it comes to the open world aspect of the game, it makes it all the more worthy of taking a place on this list.
If you’re interested in scrubbing through derelict buildings and infiltrating top secret research facilities, as well as throwing down with an army of mechanical beings, then you’ll definitely want to swing by Horizon—I mean, NieR: Automata. It has enough for you to do, that’ll you’ll be spending a good dozen or more hours mopping up trophies and achievements for the fun of it. And then you’ll do it all again in New Game+. Rinse and repeat a good three to four times, and you’ll have the story down. Probably.
NieR: Automata is available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC.
1. Shadow of the Tomb Raider
In all fairness, the Tomb Raider reboot doesn’t ring that many bells when I think of all the components it has in common with Horizon. Well, that’s because there isn’t any. And yet, whenever I’ve been rummaging through the remains of an old bunker in Zero Dawn, all I’ve ever thought about were the many, many tombs I’ve sifted through in Tomb Raider. And Shadow of the Tomb Raider, thankfully, had them stacked up by the dozen.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider has everything all wrapped into one, and then some. From role-playing elements to stealth segments, optional tombs to mind-blowing cinematics, and everything in-between. Now that I think about it, both Horizon and Tomb Raider have a fair bit in common. Plus, one thing the two definitely share is the fact that both are award-winning masterpieces, and true staples on the gaming monopoly. If that isn’t enough of a reason to go back and relive it all over again, then I don’t know what is.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider is available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC.
So, what’s your take? Will you be dipping into any of the above five games? Let us know over on our socials here or down in the comments below.