Was Horizon Zero Dawn ever bested on a visual level?

Jun 23, 2019
2,480
this is just mind boggling.



FF7 is really shaping up to be a benchmark in all aspects and TLOU2 is ND, i love when people underestimate ND, every new game is this hehe.
It boggled my mind that people were saying RDR2 looked better than TLOU Part 2, a game that literally hasn’t even been released. While that may be, I highly doubt it’s going to be a slouch in the graphics department especially after the visual feast we got with UC4 and Lost Legacy.
 

Kamaros

Member
Aug 29, 2018
1,198
It boggled my mind that people were saying RDR2 looked better than TLOU Part 2, a game that literally hasn’t even been released. While that may be, I highly doubt it’s going to be a slouch in the graphics department especially after the visual feast we got with UC4 and Lost Legacy.
the problem is people comparing and saying this with high res captures from RDR2 vs TLOU2's media coverage on youtube, sure we have some high res screens but yeah, it's a stretch.

but i believe even more than the graphics, TLOU2 will be a whole new level on animations and detail like Drake's shirt blowing on the wind in a game from 2016.
 
Oct 24, 2019
1,413
What another game does is beside the point, The Order used black bars because it had to. They spun it as "stylistic" to sell it.

And I didn't say what you think I did to the other person....

Horizon > The Order, definitely.
Horizon > other games? Debatable.
I'm not sure how else to interpret this comment you made:

I agree with you. Horizon is not the best, it's just better than The Order.
In response to a guy who just said Uncharted, Red Dead, Death Stranding, and God of War are all better than Horizon. Seems pretty clear to me that you are acknowledging Horizon is inferior to those 4 games
 

astro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
24,022
I'm not sure how else to interpret this comment you made:

In response to a guy who just said Uncharted, Red Dead, Death Stranding, and God of War are all better than Horizon. Seems pretty clear to me that you are acknowledging Horizon is inferior to those 4 games
...because it's better than The Order but there are outright better games and some that are debatable?

Why are you trying to get a petty gotcha via semantics? Right after you huffed your own farts with the "intelligent language" comment, too... lol.
 

Manfred

Member
Oct 28, 2017
2,859
Geneva, Switzerland
We've primarily been talking about facial animations during zoomed in dialogue and cutscenes.
Yes. And ? Here is a a dozen of these to be compared between different moments and models :



Now let's compare with this for exemple :



So let's forget the budget, the workforce and the timeline invested in each games : there are clear differences but they aren't roughly sliced as stated here and there, when looking at all this collection of faces. Sure RDR2 is polished to an unknown and incomparable level when HZD is unequal with all these in-engine dialogs, where the lighting won't be finely tweaked all the time, and it also suffers from its repetitive filmic way to present these.
 
Oct 24, 2019
1,413
...because it's better than The Order but there are outright better games and some that are debatable?

Why are you trying to get a petty gotcha via semantics? Right after you huffed your own farts with the "intelligent language" comment, too... lol.
It's not a petty gotcha. It's pointing out that your entire premise is built on sand that keeps shifting every couple of minutes.

You're the one resorting to ad hominem attacks... not particularly intelligent behavior
 
Oct 24, 2019
1,413
Yes. And ? Here is a a dozen of these to be compared between different moments and models :



Now let's compare with this for exemple :



So let's forget the budget, the workforce and the timeline invested in each games : there are clear differences but they aren't roughly sliced as stated here and there, when looking at all this collection of faces. Sure RDR2 is polished to an unknown and incomparable level when HZD is unequal with all these in-engine dialogs, where the lighting won't be finely tweaked all the time, and it also suffers from its repetitive filmic way to present these.
Where's a comparison against all the other games I mentioned? As you pointed out, those would probably be more fair comparisons than a team with the budget and manpower of Rockstar. They'll still blow Horizon out of the water though.

That video of Horizon is reminiscent of Bethesda games, where (as much as I love them) the characters are dead-eyed puppets talking to each other. It dips into the uncanny valley.

Characters in GoW, Uncharted, Death Stranding, etc. basically look like living, breathing people
 

chris 1515

Member
Oct 27, 2017
4,403
Barcelona Spain
Yes. And ? Here is a a dozen of these to be compared between different moments and models :



Now let's compare with this for exemple :



So let's forget the budget, the workforce and the timeline invested in each games : there are clear differences but they aren't roughly sliced as stated here and there, when looking at all this collection of faces. Sure RDR2 is polished to an unknown and incomparable level when HZD is unequal with all these in-engine dialogs, where the lighting won't be finely tweaked all the time, and it also suffers from its repetitive filmic way to present these.
Again this is vastly improve into the Frozen Wild DLC.

And the technical director talking about HZD, he was saying Kojima Productions is far better than them for lighting and cutscene and they gave advice and a big document about how to improve the engine and tools for cutscene.

The characters model are good but the cinematic and facial animation were not so good in HZD.

But with better tools, help of Kojima Productions and a bigger budget, I think it will be even better than Frozen Wilds
 

astro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
24,022
It's not a petty gotcha. It's pointing out that your entire premise is built on sand that keeps shifting every couple of minutes.

You're the one resorting to ad hominem attacks... not particularly intelligent behavior
Says the person who says things like "trying to get the last word and slink away", at least I know I'm being a bit of a jerk here... you could do with some self awareness regarding your own passive aggressive behaviours.

And I'm sorry but there is no shifting sands, it might be true that I could have used clearer language, but you made an assumption and now refuse to back down when I've clarified. This entire thing is petty, my comments included, but you're taking it to new levels.
 

PlayerOne

Member
Apr 16, 2018
300
Facial animations are average in horizon but dlc improved them dramatically and are imo amazing for this type of game.
 

Swift_Gamer

Member
Dec 14, 2018
2,017
Rio de Janeiro
Why do people act like pc don't exist? Many games look better than it on a high end pc with better shadows, post processing effects, aa, draw distance, etc.

On consoles though, it is top 5 for sure.
Because this goes way beyond all that. You can have all that and not top god of war, which lots of PC games on ultra don't do, because artistic direction is a thing. Power is not everything. A game can be more technically advanced and look worse.
 

Soph

Member
Oct 25, 2017
948
It's a beautiful game. I do hope they actually hire an archer next time to show them how she's supposed to fire her main weapon though.
 

Rion

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,348
This looks insane... dreaming of a world where ND games get PC versions, or a new Developer that pushes this hard uses PC as their primary platform...
Ubisoft already exist but for some reason people they like to act like they don’t. Watch Dogs 2, Ghost Recon Wildlands, Assassin’s Creed Origins / Odyssey, Farcry 5 and The Division 2 are all absolutely astounding looking cinematic, open World AAA games especially maxed out on an insane PC.

They don’t have the same level of writing or characterisation as RDR2 or TLOU but in terms of visuals, animation and World scale they’re right up there with the best.
 

astro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
24,022
Ubisoft already exist but for some reason people they like to act like they don’t. Watch Dogs 2, Ghost Recon Wildlands, Assassin’s Creed Origins / Odyssey, Farcry 5 and The Division 2 are all absolutely astounding looking cinematic, open World AAA games especially maxed out on an insane PC.

They don’t have the same level of writing or characterisation as RDR2 or TLOU but in terms of visuals, animation and World scale they’re right up there with the best.
They can be impressive, and they do operate mostly in a more open environment which is a big difference... but they don't quite come close to what we see in these gifs and I'd love to see this kind of animation and detail on PC at 60fps+, RT, higher res, etc...
 

Manfred

Member
Oct 28, 2017
2,859
Geneva, Switzerland
Again this is vastly improve into the Frozen Wild DLC.

And the technical director talking about HZD, he was saying Kojima Productions is far better than them for lighting and cutscene and they gave advice and a big document about how to improve the engine and tools for cutscene.

The characters model are good but the cinematic and facial animation were not so good in HZD.

But with better tools, help of Kojima Productions and a bigger budget, I think it will be even better than Frozen Wilds
Where's a comparison against all the other games I mentioned? As you pointed out, those would probably be more fair comparisons than a team with the budget and manpower of Rockstar. They'll still blow Horizon out of the water though.

That video of Horizon is reminiscent of Bethesda games, where (as much as I love them) the characters are dead-eyed puppets talking to each other. It dips into the uncanny valley.

Characters in GoW, Uncharted, Death Stranding, etc. basically look like living, breathing people
I have posted this to have a clear reminder, or a discover, of what we are talking about, and not only what was described with exaggeration. It's ok to pinch weaknesses of HZD , but not to emphasize these juste because the game is an obvious technical accomplishment.

And I think the compare shows greatly how the setup (camera angle, lightning) and the production value is influencing what we are identifying as realism, especially in the case of RD2R2 when faces can be rigid but the overall impression soften by the amount of work provided on all the rest.
 
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Ushay

Member
Oct 27, 2017
4,149
Not to tak from Horizons achievements but I think a lot of games have hit similar highs.

- Gears 5
- RDR2
- Death Stranding
- Metro Exodus

It's been an incredible generation imo
 

Nooblet

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,943
They can be impressive, and they do operate mostly in a more open environment which is a big difference... but they don't quite come close to what we see in these gifs and I'd love to see this kind of animation and detail on PC at 60fps+, RT, higher res, etc...
Animation wise Ubisoft is factually ahead of most, the hot thing everyone is talking about i.e. motion matching was something Ubisoft came up with and released publicly for others to use (including ND). For Honor basically still has the most advanced animation system in market atm, despite RDR2's existence.

They just prefer to focus more on playability and controls more than most and especially more than someone like R*, but if they wanted to they can go all the way. Just because they don't doesn't mean they are not as good in that area.
 

astro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
24,022
Animation wise Ubisoft is factually ahead of most, the hot thing everyone is talking about i.e. motion matching was something Ubisoft came up with and released publicly for others to use (including ND). For Honor basically still has the most advanced animation system in market atm, despite RDR2's existence.

They just prefer to focus more on playability and controls more than most and especially more than someone like R*, but if they wanted to they can go all the way. Just because they don't doesn't mean they are not as good in that area.
I'm talking about what we see in those gifs... we don't see someone pushing it the same way on PC.
 
Oct 28, 2017
147
I feel like a broken record, but trying to reach consensus around something that boils down to taste is so perplexing. “But AC/DC is SO the better band, you just don’t get it!”

I find AAA games generally boring as hell to look at.
 

Linus815

Member
Oct 29, 2017
6,129
Animation wise Ubisoft is factually ahead of most, the hot thing everyone is talking about i.e. motion matching was something Ubisoft came up with and released publicly for others to use (including ND). For Honor basically still has the most advanced animation system in market atm, despite RDR2's existence.

They just prefer to focus more on playability and controls more than most and especially more than someone like R*, but if they wanted to they can go all the way. Just because they don't doesn't mean they are not as good in that area.
The open world games mentioned in the original post that was replied to, like AC Odyssey, most certainly don't have animation coming even close to most games mentioned ITT.
 

cowbanana

Member
Feb 2, 2018
3,424
Traveling without moving
I don't think any other game looks as good as HZD, but that's just my preference for the art direction and the fantastic mechanical creatures in the game. Everything is so well done and the robotic enemies are really well animated and incredibly fun to fight. The environments in this game are the most beautiful I've seen in any game. RDR2 surpasses HZD in realism when it comes to environments, but I prefer the look of the more stylized and and colourful environments and lighting/atmospheric effects in HZD.
 

Ryo

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,390
The anisotropic filtering isn't that great in Horizon and environments look kinda hazy in the distance, the rocky environments have this soft look to them and the water looks like plastic. The character animation is fine but during some cutscenes it's robotic and I feel as if the pseudo-RPG dialogue system is used to mask the lack of quality here.

What really stood out to me when playing it is just how beautifully animated Aloy's hair is and the complexity and detail involved in the design of the machines. The flora is generally impressive as well, the placement was procedurally generated apparently.

In some respects it is still king but as an overall package it has to be RDR2.
 
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chris 1515

Member
Oct 27, 2017
4,403
Barcelona Spain
I don't think any other game looks as good as HZD, but that's just my preference for the art direction and the fantastic mechanical creatures in the game. Everything is so well done and the robotic enemies are really well animated and incredibly fun to fight. The environments in this game are the most beautiful I've seen in any game. RDR2 surpasses HZD in realism when it comes to environments, but I prefer the look of the more stylized and and colourful environments and lighting/atmospheric effects in HZD.
The stronger part of HZD is the quality of LOD 0 assets. This is superior to many other Open world most of the time.




And the density of assets is great too.







 
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J 0 E

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,014
Frankly, every time I return to it I ask myself the same question, OP: Has it ever been bested?


Horizon set a new standard for open world graphics and effects and the videos / GIFs we see everyday since its release just prove that Guerilla made a future-proofed technical marvel.

The way Aloy and the machines are detailed / animated are something else.

Also, it warms my heart to see almost 90% of the posts citing RDR2 and Death Stranding as the other contenders.
 
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Oct 30, 2017
1,039
HZD, RDR2 and DS are the top open world games visually imo.
Then we can choose our personal favorite. I can't see why one of them is so much better than the other. Let's wait and see GoT though.

RDR2 has a more realistic look, DS and especially HZD a more ''fantasy'' approach.

Regarding Linear games, ND games have the crown, and The order.
 

Nephilim

Member
Oct 28, 2017
3,128
The jungle area around Meridian is insanely good looking in Horizon, but still, RDR2 is the best looking open world game and AC Origins is underrated as sin when it comes to visual quality in an open world game.
For instance Origins has way better day night transitions then both mentioned above..
 

abellwillring

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,066
Austin, TX
I really hated the combat in this game so I never finished it, but it is probably accurate to say that it's about as good as it gets visual-wise. Quite often absolutely stunning.
 

ShinUltramanJ

Member
Oct 27, 2017
7,513
Because this goes way beyond all that. You can have all that and not top god of war, which lots of PC games on ultra don't do, because artistic direction is a thing. Power is not everything. A game can be more technically advanced and look worse.
Artistic direction is a thing, but so is a massive budget. How many PC games are rolling with a budget as massive as God of War’s?
 

Firefly

Member
Jul 10, 2018
2,153
Because this goes way beyond all that. You can have all that and not top god of war, which lots of PC games on ultra don't do, because artistic direction is a thing. Power is not everything. A game can be more technically advanced and look worse.
Banner Saga tops God of War. Because artistic direction is a thing.

I mean, I get your point about artistic direction but its also not something that can be judged objectively. God of War's art is great but not that great.
 

Flux

Member
Oct 28, 2017
3,215
Half a dozen games have already done that, Horizon ZD looks good but isn't on some unreachable level of graphical fidelity.