Horizon: Zero Dawn is a brilliant game, and absolutely one of the greatest exclusives for the PlayStation 4. It also tells a thrilling and highly intriguing science fiction story about the end of the world and robot dinosaurs. Yeah, it's a pretty original story!
Unfortunately, it also has its share of problems in terms of story inconsistencies and plot holes. We're not saying that they completely tarnish the entire story, but there's no denying that they are there.
These are ten plot holes in Horizon: Zero Dawn that were never explained.
10 Why Hunt The Super Dangerous Dinosaurs?
A major element of the gameplay sees you hunting these extremely dangerous machine animals, and it's established that hunting said animals is an important issue in the game's world. But...why? They don't provide any food whatsoever, which would probably be important issue #1 for this society. Why waste time and energy hunting robot dinosaurs when you can hunt smaller animals for food? It's possible that they are hunted for their valuable resources like Blaze and Chillwater, both of which are really important for society. But still, is it really worth the trouble!?
9 How Do The Ancient Facilities Still Have Power?
Not to nitpick here, but how on Earth do all these ancient facilities still have power? Some of them are millennia-years-old, and they were abandoned long, long ago. Not only do they still work flawlessly, but they've seemingly been projecting the little holograms on and off throughout all the intervening years.
Surely the battery or generator or whatever would have run out long ago? Some theories have been put forth, claiming that the technology is ridiculously advanced and that the facilities run on solar or geothermal energy. Either way, a little more explanation would have been nice.
8 The Robo Animals Are Really Weak
We get needing to make the animals weak for gameplay purposes, but it doesn't really make sense within the context of the story. The FARO bots are meant to serve as these incredible war machines, yet they can be taken out with sturdy pieces of wood and primitive arrows. Not only that, they seemingly have terrible tracking capabilities, as they don't even notice Aloy crouching in the grass! How did they even manage to wipe out modern humanity? It's possible the robots are weaker due to being underground for so long, and the robots were never meant to fight individually - they are meant to swarm similar to pack animals.
7 How Did Sobeck Blackmail Faro?
In one of the records, it's established that Sobeck blackmailed Faro and threatened to tell everyone "the real cause of the glitch." What exactly is "the real cause of the glitch?" It can't be Ted's psychotic specifications and orders, because everyone already knows that Faro and his creatures are dangerous. People already know about their traits, and they know that they use biomass as fuel. They even protest outside of Faro's building, so it's obvious that Faro was getting the blame for his creatures, anyway. What leverage did Sobeck have over Faro in this situation? Maybe it was because Faro insisted that there be no back door?
6 HADES' Pitiful Last Act
At the end of the game, HADES is in dire straits and pulls out all the stops to stop Aloy - one single Deathbringer and a few other machines. There's just one problem with that. Aloy has singlehandedly taken down all of these creatures before, and mostly without breaking a sweat. Why would HADES think that these creatures would be able to take down Aloy? Why didn't he send the cavalry? Of course, it's entirely possible that these creatures were literally all that HADES had left, and he sent every last machine under his command to stop Aloy. After all, the Spire needed to be defended at ALL costs, so why not send the ENTIRE army? If so, that is one pitiful army...
5 Why Isn't Everyone Fighting The Deathbringer?
While we're on the subject of the finale, why wasn't everyone in attendance fighting the Deathbringer and HADES before Aloy got there? Once Aloy shows up, Erend, Varl, and Talanah are just kind of sitting around and waiting for Aloy, clearly not preoccupied with the Deathbringer.
Maybe we could forgive this if they were injured and/or taking a little breather, but they don't seem to be injured or tired at all. It's like they were just waiting for Aloy to show up. We know Aloy is a total boss and capable of taking entire armies out by herself, but come on guys, a little help here would be appreciated!
4 The Matriarchs' Treatment Of Aloy
OK, so baby Aloy is found within the chamber of their deity, and absolutely no explanation is given. Surely they would see this as some type of divine intervention and treat Aloy like a literal God? But no, they kind of keep her at arms' length throughout her entire upbringing and even allow her to become an outcast within the society. It's possible that they were hesitant regarding Aloy's true allegiance, as one even thought that she was a bad omen and an agent of the Metal Devil. But surely some compromise could have been made between complete devotion and total ostracism?
3 Why Does GAIA Have A Protocol!?
Speaking of the whole "Aloy is randomly deposited inside the chamber" debacle, why on Earth does GAIA have a stupid protocol that prevents her from speaking directly to the tribes? It is GAIA who oversees the "birth" of Aloy, but unfortunately, she can only hope that they see this as a good omen, as her protocol directly prevents her from speaking to the humans. Seems to us that A lot of headache could have been spared if she just told them her plans and who Aloy was. Did Ted add some sort of protocol? Did humans collectively agree to stop talking to AI for some reason? Poor GAIA...
2 How Does HADES Have A Physical Form?
What really gets our brains joggin' is the physical manifestation of what seems like HADES' soul. Once Aloy stabs HADES and shuts him down, presumably he should have stayed shut down, as he is merely a piece of software/artificial intelligence. Instead, HADES sends out some sort of physical soul-like thing that proceeds to drift through the air and enter Sylens' lantern. What on Earth was that!? How is that NEVER explained? Is HADES some sort of magical spirit and not a malicious piece of software? It's possible that Sylens was in on this somehow, and maybe it'll be answered in the sequel. We really hope so.
1 Why Not Nuke The Faro Plague?
So, why didn't we just nuke the heck out of the Faro plague when it was still in its infancy? Faro calls Sobeck for a meeting, and she is not aware that humanity is in fatal trouble, signifying that the world obviously hasn't been overrun by killer dinosaur robots. They're likely relegated to a relatively small portion of the globe, so why not just totally glass that area and be done with it? Sure, there are environmental ramifications, and it would certainly suck glassing a large portion of the Earth, but the alternative is complete annihilation, so we really don't have a choice. Maybe we just didn't bother because we knew the robots could self-replicate, but come on, we could have at least tried.