Horizon: Zero Dawn becomes one of the most anticipated releases of 2017, which gives Sony high expectations when considering the future of the series.

As its imminent release creeps ever closer, Horizon: Zero Dawn is already being hailed as one of the games to play this year. Sony appears to share this optimism and the company has expressed high hopes for the future of Horizon: Zero Dawn as a franchise.

In an interview with with MCV, Sony Interactive Entertainment’s UK product’s manager, Jon Edwards, says the company is pleased by Horizon: Zero Dawn‘s reception. He told MCV, “We’re excited by the reaction that the fans have had to the game so far.”

However, he confirmed that it’s too early to claim with certainty that the game will evolve into a larger franchise, saying, “Nothing has been announced to date but I think there’s a lot of potential for this to be an exciting new franchise for us – we’ll just have to wait and see.”

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For now, the company wants to remain in the here and now, continuing to focus on marketing. Lately, Sony has been actively promoting Horizon: Zero Dawn with an array of trailers highlighting some of the fantastical mechanized creatures found in the game’s primitive, yet advanced world.

It seems those efforts have paid off, if pre-orders are any indication. “Pre-orders are in line with our expectations. The players seem to be excited for this new gaming experience and this is reflected in the pre-orders,” Edwards says.

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Pre-orders look good on paper, but it doesn’t mean diddly if the game doesn’t meet expectations. No Man’s Sky can attest to that. However, Edwards believes Sony genuinely has a hit on its hands.

We’re really optimistic about how this title’s likely to perform. It’s got a great studio behind it and what we’ve revealed so far has been really well-received. It was also on many ‘Most Anticipated Games of 2017’ lists which added to our confidence.

It certainly made our list for the most anticipated games for 2017. As a matter of fact, it has joined other big name titles slated for release this year, such as BioWare’s Mass Effect: Andromeda, and Nintendo’s The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. 

Edwards also took a moment to dote on Aloy, the game’s protagonist, who triggered a bit of apprehension and worries from Sony early on. They were oddly unnerved at the idea of a female lead, and curious as to how she would be received by the gaming public. Those sentiments have long passed following the outpouring of support from the community, with people even cosplaying as her already. Now, Edwards has even labeled her as “a PlayStation icon of the future.”

That remains to be seen. But judging from the positive public reception thus far, it’s a safe bet gamers can expect to see a lot more of Aloy in their future.

Horizon: Zero Dawn is set to release on February 28, 2017 in North America, and on March 1, 2017 in the United Kingdom, but will be exclusive to PlayStation 4.

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