Runaway success: Horizon Zero Dawn has been a triumph for PlayStation 4 manufacturer Sony Interactive Entertainment. — AFP Relaxnews
The PlayStation 4's Horizon Zero Dawn has been pronounced, with several important caveats, a record-setting release for the PlayStation 4.
Critically acclaimed and commercially successful, Horizon Zero Dawn has been a triumph for PlayStation 4 manufacturer Sony Interactive Entertainment, game developer Guerilla and many millions of players.
How many million? 2.6 million, according to Sony's figures, which account for digital sales and boxed copies alike.
The sales figure relates to the first two weeks of the game's availability and generates its own particular record: Horizon becomes the PlayStation 4's best launch of a Sony-published new IP – that is to say, a game not part of an existing franchise, and a comparison of early rather than lifetime sales.
In broader context, Sony has published approximately 50 games for the PlayStation 4, most usually as a PS4 or PlayStation family exclusive (Firewatch being the current exception.)
Among its higher-profile releases have been cult favourite Dark Souls spin-off Bloodborne, superpowered action adventure Infamous: Second Son, and blistering racer Driveclub, remastered post-apocalyptic survival story The Last of Us, and early 2017's warmly welcomed Nioh.
May 2016's Uncharted 4: A Thief's End retains its status as the best Sony-published launch overall, as well as the PlayStation 4's best-seller to date, necessitating the rather specific "new IP" record for Horizon.
For the Dutch developer, Horizon has become a studio launch record setter too; before the optimistic, explorative sci-fi action adventure it was previously known for the much grimmer first-person shooter franchise Killzone, its wheelhouse for ten years straight.
In fact, Guerilla's previous release Killzone: Shadow Fall had been a PlayStation 4 launch title in late 2013 – both Shadow Fall and 2015's Bloodborne could have surpassed 2.6m sales by now, though of course they've had a lot longer to do it.
So what's next for the studio? It's working on an expansion to Horizon Zero Dawn, it confirmed in a statement, committing to continued support for this latest release.
Already announced is a technical partnership with video game design legend Hideo Kojima on another PlayStation 4 exclusive, Death Stranding, expected 2019, for which anticipation is extremely high, and which has already called upon Hollywood talent such as Mads Mikklesen, Norman Reedus, and Guillermo del Toro. — AFP Relaxnews