PlayStation 5 – Horizon Forbidden West review by Harrison
Available on PlayStation 5 and PlayStation 4 18/2/22 (PEGI 16) 5 Stars
Youth #Gottit View:
One of the best PlayStation games of recent years has just become even better. Horizon Forbidden West is a huge game and beautifully constructed. If you’ve already completed the original game, ‘Burning Shores’ will be a much enjoyed extension to the adventure – Highly Recommended!!!
Available 19/4/23 for PlayStation 5: Horizon Forbidden West: Burning Shores DLC!!!
Perhaps one of the most highly anticipated games in recent years, Cyberpunk 2077 provides players with an unparalleled level of personalisation, freedom and enjoyment few games can match. The game is told through the eyes of V, a gun for hire with a surprisingly strong moral compass in a city where honesty and virtue get you killed, as he attempts to stop the consciousness of the rock icon and cyber terrorist, Johnny Silverhand (Keanu Reeves), from taking over his body and destroying his mind. The game starts off giving you a choice of which background you’d like to hail from; a corporate disgrace, a nomadic junker or a Night City street kid – giving you the first taste of one of the games key appeals.
Throughout the game, almost each and every little detail you choose, from hairstyle to dialogue path, influences the greater story. When playing through the Cyberpunk, I was amazed at just how much time I would spend pondering over each thing I did, knowing it could very well change the future of my character, with this this customizability being what really makes the game feel personal to each player. On the theme of its great customizabilty, Cyberpunks skill tree is excellent, allowing players to enhance their characters abilities in three key ways. The first being through the use of attribute points, tokens earned from completing objectives and leveling up which can be put into 5 umbrella categories which make general improvements to V. For example if you invest points into the ‘Cool’ category, not only does it unlock otherwise unavailable dialogue choices, influencing anything from the information you can receive, relationships you can have and the rate at which you can achieve certain information but it’ll also increase your ability to sneak around and be more anonymous thus configuring the game more to whatever the player wants. Alternatively, if you prefer the guns blazing approach, Cyberpunk of course has an option for you, allowing you to invest into the strength category, providing the player with the ability to break down doors ,both metaphorically and literally, as you can take more damage and dish more out in return.
The second way you are given in order tailor make your character is through perk points. These are achieved similarly to attribute points, and are even used in a similar way, however, perk points provide a more specific improvement, being accessed by going into the 5 categories and unlocking the more classic styled skill tree as you unlock both abilities and stat boosts in line with each category. The perk points provide a relatively skill tree experience with there being a decent amount of choice in this regard but nothing of major concern unlike the other 2 improvement features. Finally, the third improvement are to V’s cybernetics. These allow V to perform superhuman feats including extra lives, double jumps or even slowing down time, however, the game has an interesting feature, as with each enhancement, V’s humanity level decreases. At lower levels V’s behaviour becomes eratic and strange with V even killing people,uncontrollably after reaching below zero due to the disease cyberpsychosis. I loved this feature, as it not only provided a deeper level of – you guessed it – customizability for V as you decide just how human you want them to be but it also adds to the incredible world of Cyerpunk with diseased characters taking certain actions consistent with the lore.
On the theme of the Cyberpunk world, I have to say that Night city has to be one of if not the most beautiful settings I have ever had the pleasure of playing within. From its abundance of complex streets filled with interesting characters and personalities not in any way key to the main story and completely optional to the rich detail and breathtaking skyscrapers protruding above your head as you play, there is nothing you can ask for. The map feels just large enough so that you can spend hours adventuring and exploring its secrets but not too large that moving from objective to objective becomes too much of a hassle with travel distances rarely being above a kilometre. The map is filled with side quests which aren’t really side quests, although being optional, providing more detail and characters for the main story in a level of freedom I have never seen before. In terms of combat, this game is great. Weapons feel balanced, with high damage slow fire rate being on average your best bet, as it feels the game really rewards accuracy. Weapons are a highlight of the game with each class having its own benefits. Cybernetics can play a key part here with certain weapons like the mantis blades being only available after receiving certain advancements.
As a protagonist, V is exceptional. You grow with the character and due to being able to control almost every aspect of their life, each death, betrayal and victory feel especially impactful when playing. Reeves is amazing as usual, providing a tense yet somewhat comedic take to the hardened rocker Johnny as the chemistry between him and V keep every moment feeling fresh and exciting whenever Johnny pops up. As far as the story goes, it is a modern day masterpiece. The futuristic yet not-so-far nature of it all makes the themes especially relevant to today and twists and turns leave you speechless. Cyberpunk manages to construct an entire world in the first few hours of the game not providing too much explanation but at just the right rate that it never gets confusing.
With what I’ve said so far it almost seems like this game is flawless and for the majority of its aspects it is, however, much like most things, it has one fatal fault – Bugs. Cyberpunk is littered with glitches and mistakes with everything from teleporting enemies shooting through walls to random NPC’s floating for no reason popping up as frequent as every 10 minutes. Despite all this, I am hopeful for the future with having already seen,only a few days into release, a large improvement into the severity of the bugs going from absolutely game-breaking at some points to now just laughable. I am envious of those who play it in a couple of months time and believe it will only get better.
In conclusion, Cyberpunk 2077 is a futuristic marvel that brings almost every great Sci-Fi together into a magical blend of style, charisma and pure beauty of its Cities, helped by its fantastic combat and customisation systems only let down by the vast number of bugs.
Available on PlayStation 5, XBox Series X, PlayStation 4, XBox One and PC (PEGI 18) 5 Stars
Youth #Gottit View:
This is genuinely a very special game and one of the most important new releases in years. Try not to get too caught up in the hysteria around the early glitches – this will be sorted and Cyberpunk will end up being one of the best gaming experiences on the market. Highly Recommended!!!