Lego Horizon Adventures is a very new look for Aloy, so here are 5 things we learned, from its Zero Dawn-shaped story to its surprising Lego inspiration

Aloy and Varl in Lego Horizon Adventures
(Image credit: Sony)

Lego Horizon Adventures is a very different kind of project to what we've grown used to from Guerrilla over the past few years. From Horizon Zero Dawn and Horizon Forbidden West's beautiful, open-world RPG gameplay, to Call of the Mountain's VR climbing game, there's at least a visual trend that this new game is happy to buck.

We got our first look at Lego Horizon Adventures during Sony's recent State of Play, but if you're still wondering exactly what to expect from Aloy's blocky upcoming adventure, look no further: After hands-on with a demo at Summer Game Fest, and an interview with Guerrilla narrative director James Windeler, we've outlined five key details to take away from this whimsical new Horizon game.

1. The story is "inspired" by Horizon Zero Dawn, but it's not a direct retelling

Lego Horizons Adventures

(Image credit: Sony/Lego)

As with most Lego games, Lego Horizon Adventures is a simplified, family-friendly version of the story. According to narrative director James Windeler, it's "inspired" by the events of Horizon Zero Dawn, but unlike games like Lego Star Wars or Lego Lord of the Rings, this isn't a Lego-themed remake of the original.

There will be some "iconic scenes" that long-term Horizon fans should recognize, but Windeler says that while the team had to "take a really good look at what makes a Horizon game," they also had to give themselves "permission to break our rules," opting for a more humorous, approachable take on the series.

2. Its biggest inspiration was the Lego Movie

Plenty of Lego games have come before, but it was The Lego Movie that had the biggest impact on Lego Horizon Adventures. That was "our biggest target," Windeler tells me, "in terms of the comedy, but also the look." Lego Horizon Adventures certainly evokes the toybox, stop-motion feel of the movie, rather than the smoother movement of previous games. Characters move around as though they're real figures being controlled, action figure-style, by someone playing in a massive Lego diorama.

3. Five difficulty levels allow you to dial up the challenge

Lego Horizons Adventures

(Image credit: Sony/Lego)

Lego Horizon Adventures is certainly intended as a more approachable Horizon experience, but if you're looking for a challenge, you should still find it. There are five difficulty levels, ranging from a particularly accessible story mode to a much harder mode that should prove genuinely tricky at times. 

I played my demo of Lego Horizon Adventures at normal difficulty, a balanced experience between those two extremes, and there were a couple of fights where my co-op partner and I had to resort to some dirty tricks in order to succeed, and even then I only narrowly avoided disaster in some of the bigger battles. Don't expect a repeat of the main game's tough-as-nails Ultra Hard difficulties, but don't assume this will be a walk in the park, either.

4. Everything in the game can be built with real Lego bricks

Aloy walking with a Tallneck behind her in Lego Horizon Adventures

(Image credit: Sony / Lego)

Windeler tells me that "every single asset" in Lego Horizon Adventures can be made out of real Lego bricks. That's because the team had the help of Lego's Master Builders, who helped them recreate the world, characters, and machines of Horizon Zero Dawn. That means that if you can see something in the game, and you've got the bricks (and the building expertise) to hand, then you can build it for yourself, an apparent first for a licensed Lego game like this.

5. Lego Horizon Adventures is billed as a more approachable story, designed to bring new players to the franchise

Lego Horizons Adventures

(Image credit: Sony)

This is intended as a more "lighthearted" Horizon experience, and Windeler says that the team had to "examine" what elements of the series "work well for a broader audience." That's partly because the aim of Lego Horizon Adventures is to bring in new players who might not have had the chance to engage with the games before; "we want it to be more approachable, we want people to come into it."

That new approach extends to Aloy too. A character who doesn't always connect with the people around her particularly easily in the main games, Windeler says that returning voice actor Ashly brought a new "exuberance" to the role. "There's still the core quality of Aloy," he explains, "but it's so much more upbeat, and that was a big focus too.

For a closer look at Lego Horizon Adventures, and more from Windeler on how and why the game came to exist, check out our Lego Horizon Adventures preview.

Ali Jones
News Editor

I'm GamesRadar's news editor, working with the team to deliver breaking news from across the industry. I started my journalistic career while getting my degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick, where I also worked as Games Editor on the student newspaper, The Boar. Since then, I've run the news sections at PCGamesN and Kotaku UK, and also regularly contributed to PC Gamer. As you might be able to tell, PC is my platform of choice, so you can regularly find me playing League of Legends or Steam's latest indie hit.