Sony Inspects Aloy’s New Face In ‘Horizon Forbidden West’

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Horizon Forbidden West may be delayed until next year, but Sony is continuing to do periodic features on it, and there’s a bit of an unusual one live today.

There’s a new blog post up all about how they’ve updated/improved Aloy’s face and character model for Horizon Forbidden West, going into fine, fine detail about what’s been added.Part of this is due to the upgrade to PS5, but they also say that nothing will be “compromised” for the game’s release on PS4, either.

In an era where it’s a little hard to create new, original video game icons to stand up to the likes of classics that have been around for decades, Aloy has stood out as a unique, iconic character for the PlayStation brand.

The images above and below show design elements that Sony has incorporated into her model and face, and upgrades include things like “peach fuzz” finely visible on her skin, going for photo realism while still managing to dodge the uncanny valley.

Aloy is performance captured by actress Ashly Burch, but the two don’t really resemble one another much.Aloy’s appearance has been the subject of an annoying amount of controversy ever since the release of the original game, and that has not stopped with Horizon Forbidden West, as some deem her “not attractive enough” which has resulted in this rather horrifying image that became a meme after the Horizon gameplay premiere.

MORE FOR YOU ‘Demon Slayer’ Season 2 Finally Has An Actual 2021 Release Date Netflix’s ‘Squid Game’ Season 2 Not A Sure Thing, Says Director ‘Genshin Impact’ Still Refuses To Increase Anniversary Rewards, Despite Fan Outcry Guerrilla has been extremely open that they didn’t feel the need to make Aloy “supermodel” attractive like so many other game heroines, and opted for a more grounded look, which for most normal people, they’d say she still looks great.And yet here in the video game industry, naturally this has been a point of contention.

Here’s what Bastien Ramisse, Lead Character Artist at Guerrilla, had to say about “new” Aloy here:

“The team always designs her outfits with the intention to allow graceful and fluid movement over heavy and impractical costumes.We also believe that meticulously placed details are part of immersion and tell an often unspoken story.

At Guerrilla, we are always eager to explore and expand the identities and cultures of our tribes.While the Utaru tribe was briefly included in Horizon Zero Dawn, they feature more heavily in Horizon Forbidden West, with an updated design, grounded fashion construction, and expanding the use of materials to create practical clothing to fit their day-to-day activities, environment and hierarchical diversity.”

And her upgrades this generation:

“Each generation of consoles brings extra power that lets us add even denser polygons to our character models, so we can create finer details such as peach fuzz, smooth contouring, or finer texture details and accurate materials expression, to name a few.And not only do visual aspects benefit from the new PlayStation 5 hardware — we have also increased the number of skeletal joints to bring our deformations and facial expressions to a whole new level for more credible and immersive character performance.

All in all, a dream come true for both players and developers!”

I maintain that Aloy is one of the best designed third person character models in the entire video game industry, especially her iconic hair which is something almost every developer still struggles to get right in games after all this time.I’m looking forward to playing as her again in a few more months, and not looking forward to whatever new appearance debates this blog post may spark.

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Paul Tassi

I’ve been writing about video games, television and movies for Forbes for over 10 years, and you may have seen my reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic.I cover all

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I’ve been writing about video games, television and movies for Forbes for over 10 years, and you may have seen my reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic.

I cover all manner of console and PC games, but if it’s about looting or shooting, I’m definitely there.If I’m watching something, it’s usually science fiction, horror or superheroic.I’m also a regular on IGN’s Fireteam Chat podcast and have published five sci-fi novels.

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