Horizon Zero Dawn‘s female protagonist Aloy wasn’t designed as a selling point, says developer Guerrilla Games. The developer explains that it focused on creating the “best possible character” that it could.
Guerrilla has previously explained why Horizon Zero Dawn has a female lead, saying that its games had feature male leads for “quite a while” and wanted to do “something else” and something “fresh.”
Horizon Zero Dawn Devs on Its Female Protagonist Being a Selling Point
In a post on the PlayStation Blog, the game’s lead narrative designer John Gonzales explains that the Horizon Zero Dawn team “focused really hard on creating the best possible character we could.” Gonzales also says that “We never thought that it would be a selling point that we’re having a female protagonist, we thought it would be more a selling point that you’re being the best possible person and character to play as in this world.”
Though, Guerrilla does recognise fans’ enthusiasm for Aloy, who is one of few female lead characters in video games. The narrative designer says that “people who have played the game so far seem to really enjoy being Aloy.”
Things like the cosplay gives us this feeling that Aloy is a character that people really want to become. There’s something about her that they find in terms of visual design, abilities and story that they want to immerse themselves in. That’s really exciting and inspiring.
It’s easy to see why fans have been so drawn to Aloy, as the character dreams of “being accepted and belonging to a community,” says Gonzales, but she also hates that same community for making her an outcast. There’s an “underlying vulnerability and woundedness” that players who have ever struggled to fit in – especially female, LGBT or non-white players – can relate to.
But, Aloy is also described as having an “incredible toughness and grit” and as “someone you wouldn’t want to mess with.” As seen in Horizon Zero Dawn gameplay trailers, the game’s female protagonist is indeed a total badass, showing that even when people have counted you out, you may still have a lot of fight left to give.
Sony has previously said that having a female lead made it ‘worried’ about Horizon Zero Dawn but judging from Guerrilla’s comments and the response from gamers so far, the upcoming RPG could well be a hit.
Horizon Zero Dawn will be released on PS4 on February 28 (North America) / March 1 (Europe).