Today, Sony Interactive Entertainment has released an in-depth interview between The Last of Us: Part 2 director Neil Druckmann and Guerrilla Games’ managing director Hermen Hulst that focuses primarily on what it took to develop Horizon: Zero Dawn, revealing several intriguing bits of information behind the creation of the hit PlayStation 4 exclusive. Interestingly enough, not only does the interview between the video game developers touch on the process behind the creation of the open world action-adventure title, but also the two discuss the general business of making games, and how Naughty Dog and Guerrilla Games approach the practice.
As seen in the video below, The Last of Us: Part 2 director poses several compelling questions to Guerrilla Games’ managing director, and it’s well worth watching its whole run time of almost a half-hour. For instance, Druckmann asks Hulst about the difficulties his studio had transitioning from a dark, linear first-person shooter like Killzone into a vast, lushly designed open world such as Horizon: Zero Dawn, how the latter title changed throughout the course of its development, and how the creation of the protagonist Aloy came to be.
In response to Druckmann’s queries, Hulst offers up several interesting answers, revealing that Horizon: Zero Dawn originally had machine guns in its first prototype, but were scrapped due to the mechanic feeling “weird,” which caused the studio to opt for a somewhat quieter approach to combat with bows and arrows and the like. Furthermore, Hulst breaks down how Aloy actually became the composite of three different people, with her face being inspired by the Dutch actress Hannah Hoekstra, her voice coming from American actress Ashly Burch, and her motion capture being done by a parkour athlete.
As it happens, the interview between the game developers became more of an informal conversation as it progressed, as Hulst managed to learn of Druckmann’s personal impressions about Horizon: Zero Dawn, with The Last of Us: Part 2 director praising the open world release for its mechanics and visuals. When asked about his time spent with the Guerrilla Games title, Druckmann said, “You better believe I’m going to my team and saying, ‘OK, [Zero Dawn] is the bar now. We have to top this.'”
Echoing Druckmann’s sentiments about Horizon: Zero Dawn, fans and critics alike obviously agree with him, for not only did the game receive positive reviews across the board, but also it sold incredibly well for a new IP, with becoming Sony’s biggest franchise launch ever. Of course, considering the huge amount of hype in support for Naughty Dog’s forthcoming The Last of Us: Part 2, it’s quite possible for Druckmann and his team to move the bar up one more rung in terms of quality and financial success when it comes out for PlayStation 4.
The Last of Us: Part 2 is currently in production for PlayStation 4, and Horizon: Zero Dawn is available now for PlayStation 4.
Source: PlayStation EU – YouTube