Horizon Forbidden West praised for it's representation

horizon forbidden black characters

Horizon Forbidden West is one of the most visually stunning games on the Playstation 5. So it's hardly surprising that Gureilla Games are receiving heaps of praise, in regards to how authentic their Black characters appear in the game.

Quite a few people on social media have been pointing how realistic the character models look, from their facial features to skin tone, imperfections and all. But why do the character models look so good? 

Well on the Playstation Blog, lead character artist Bastien Ramisse said, “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."

As you can see from one example below, players are not only praising the character models, but many also consider them to be the best looking Black video game characters yet.

That's not too far from the truth either, because while games featuring Black characters like Mafia III, The Last of Us: Part II and more recently Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales, to name a few, have phenomenal skin shaders, Horizon Forbidden West sets a new gold standard with the power of the Decima engine.

Remember how cool it was seeing Miles Morales with an actual fade in a game. Well this is that times a hundred. Guerrilla Games absolutely killed it.

It's worth noting that not only do the character models look good, but there's also a noticeable amount of Black npcs in the game. Horizon Forbidden West has a melting pot of different races, yet it's hard to ignore the game's diverse Black population, who are found in the world.

Not many games have featured this many Black video game characters in a single setting, which is another impressive milestone.

Not many games have featured this many Black video game characters 

 The only other games which have come close are Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Grand Theft Auto 5 and Mafia III, however unlike Horizon Forbidden West, those games are steeped in stereotypes.

In 2015, Pew Research Center found that 35% of Black people, 36% of Hispanics, and 24% of whites surveyed believe that minorities are portrayed poorly in video games.

However here we have a video game which features a large portion of Black characters and they're not represented as gangsters, athletes or promiscuous. They talk and act like regular people, but at the same time they astonishingly stand out for their realistic character models and designs.

Which is why it's brilliant, yet not surprising, to see an outpour of love from a side of the gaming community, which more often than not, is not typically used to seeing themselves represented in authentic ways in video games.

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