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A few Christian references I noticed in Horizon Zero Dawn

Humdinger

Member
I'm not really a Christian, so don't take this as bible thumping or anything like that. I'm not trying to start a religious discussion. This is more along the lines of what you'd do in English class, where you'd note the themes. As I was playing through Horizon Zero Dawn again recently, I noticed a few Christian themes in the story and language. Nothing major, and it's probably not even worth a thread, but I didn't know what else to do with it, so I figured I'd put it out there.

[Warning: This contains story spoilers, for anyone who hasn't played the game yet.]

I noticed 4 things:

1. There is, of course, GAIA and Hades. That's the most obvious one. That parallels the story of God and Satan, with Satan originally being a servant of God, but then splitting off from God and turning into an enemy.

2. Addressing Elizabet Sobeck, GAIA says, "With you, all things are possible." She says it twice in the game. The language sounds a little archaic, and it reminded me very much of the phrase from the Bible, "With God, all things are possible." It would makes sense for GAIA to say that, since Elizabet is her creator, her God in a sense.

3. Aloy says of Elizabet, that she "loved the world so much" that she "died for it," that she "sacrificed [herself] for everyone else, for everyone who would come later." That sounds a lot to me like an echo of John 3:16, "God so loved that world that he gave his only begotten son..." -- which of course is a reference to another person who (at least according to some traditional Christians) died for the world because he loved it, sacrificed himself for everyone who would came later.

4. And there is Aloy's "virgin birth" as well. She doesn't have a biological father.

Anyway, I'm not claiming Horizon is meant to be read as some Christian allegory. I just noticed a few parallels that seemed kind of neat.

I interpret 2 and 3 as the result of GAIA having been exposed to all world literature, including Christian imagery and language, as part of her education. So these phrases come out like old poetry comes out in the metal flowers.
 
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EDMIX

Member
There is quite a lot. I enjoyed all the parallels made. Next to Death Stranding, that is one of my favorite new IP this gen. The whole world they crafted is amazing.

The fact that the first area had places called stuff like Mothers heart or Mothers Embrace was just a amazing touch. The went above and beyond to craft that sci fi world.
 
If we're talking about this I noticed something else, in the game there is a one off statement made about cryogenics. Shortly afterward you learn more about faro. Well, given Pharaoh = faro and Faros live for ever their Sarcophagus (a huge metal box...) I believe that faro isn't gonzo at all. In fact, I think after he dealt with the alphas that he froze himself with the knowledge and will be the final evil (he will think he can still control the machines, which he can't of course). I think he also sent the message to disrupt Gaia. He wants to repopulate the world in his own image. A real god complex... Like a pharoh

He has the means, the motive, and the ability.
 

LMJ

Member
I personally enjoy the fact that the entire game is about female empowerment, leadership and motherhood and yet Aloys village (an entirely matriarchal society) is one of the most backwards and savage (yup I said it)

And the most prosperous nation/civilization in the game is patriarchal, with successful commerce and happy denizens etc lol
 
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S

SLoWMoTIoN

Unconfirmed Member
Christianity lore is just a bunch of ripping off from older dead religions though. All Abrahamic religions are this to be fair.

Also the lore in this game felt more like Greek/Pagan shit.

And yes Aloy is literally Jesus.
 

Silent Duck

Member
Hades... you mean this guy?

 

M1chl

Currently Gif and Meme Champion
I mean, how do you know that, if you don't know bible "all that well" while you still can put finger on certain verses and where are they located? That does not make any sense...
 

wintersouls

Member
I personally enjoy the fact that the entire game is about female empowerment, leadership and motherhood and yet Aloys village (an entirely matriarchal society) is one of the most backwards and savage (yup I said it)

And the most prosperous nation/civilization in the game is patriarchal, with successful commerce and happy denizens etc lol

I will never understand how anyone can think about these things while playing a video game, whatever the game. Video games are to be enjoyed in the purest sense of the word.
Personally I have never considered these things, when I take a gamepad in my hands it is to escape by immersing myself in the fantasy world that I have before my eyes.
 

Humdinger

Member
The OP was commenting on their relationship not their names. Hades rebeled against Gaia in much the same way Satan did against God.

Right, thank you. I admit I did overlook the parallel to Greek mythology, but I'm not talking about the labels ("GAIA," etc.), I'm talking about the relationship/story. Unless in the Greek myth, Hades was originally created by and a servant of Gaia, then split off and turned against Gaia, there isn't the parallel I'm talking about. It's been a while since I studied Greek myth, so I don't know. I'm much more familiar with Christian/Jewish stories, so that's where my mind went.

If we're talking about this I noticed something else, in the game there is a one off statement made about cryogenics. Shortly afterward you learn more about faro. Well, given Pharaoh = faro and Faros live for ever their Sarcophagus (a huge metal box...) I believe that faro isn't gonzo at all. In fact, I think after he dealt with the alphas that he froze himself with the knowledge and will be the final evil (he will think he can still control the machines, which he can't of course). I think he also sent the message to disrupt Gaia. He wants to repopulate the world in his own image. A real god complex... Like a pharoh

He has the means, the motive, and the ability.

Hmm. I did wonder if Ted Faro managed to survive somehow. I didn't notice the "Pharoah" connection until you pointed it out. That's interesting.

I mean, how do you know that, if you don't know bible "all that well" while you still can put finger on certain verses and where are they located? That does not make any sense...

Are you suggesting I'm an undercover Christian? Mwah hah hah. Actually John 3:16 is the most famous verse in the Bible. It doesn't take a Biblical scholar to know that one. You see it held up on placards at football games, on bumper stickers, on wall posters, greeting cards, etc. (or at least you used to). The other quote rang a bell, but I had to google it to get it right. It's something Jesus says in Matthew.

You have wwaaaayyyyyy to much time on your hands to sit around and put that together.

True, lol.
 
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Blond

Banned
You have wwaaaayyyyyy to much time on your hands to sit around and put that together.

It's pretty fucking obvious throughout the whole game. Even a passing knowledge of the bible and you'll start drawing instant parallels while playing.
 

Ar¢tos

Member
The new testament was written in Greek.
Ehhh... Kinda... Since it was written in a time span of 300-600 years (mostly by word of mouth) , depending on what is considered canonical, and by over 90 authors (almost all of them anonymous) I would say that the Greek from earlier texts is quite different from the Greek of the later texts).
 

M1chl

Currently Gif and Meme Champion
Are you suggesting I'm an undercover Christian? Mwah hah hah. Actually John 3:16 is the most famous verse in the Bible. It doesn't take a Biblical scholar to know that one. You see it held up on placards at football games, on bumper stickers, on wall posters, greeting cards, etc. (or at least you used to). The other quote sounded familiar, because Norman Vincent Peale repeatedly used a similar saying, although it wasn't quite the same. I had to google it to get the quote right. It's something Jesus says in Matthew.
No, it was just honest question, I have non-theistic history (coming from Czech Republic is kind of given) and so I find that interesting, how can you put the finger to a certain verses.
 
Hmm. I did wonder if Ted Faro managed to survive somehow. I didn't notice the "Pharoah" connection until you pointed it out. That's interesting.
I'm not certain of course, it just seemed an odd inclusion, then after the alpha situation, the absolute control of knowledge, Ted being the person who had control of the machines, teds massive change in career, and the signal being unknown leads me to believe he is still there and possibly at fault.

I'm not certain that a game that very clearly controlled it's content would let any of it just slip for no purpose at all

Side note, I'm surprised no one has yet brought how they call it the faro plague
 
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Humdinger

Member
No, it was just honest question, I have non-theistic history (coming from Czech Republic is kind of given) and so I find that interesting, how can you put the finger to a certain verses.

Oh I see. Apologies if I sounded a little snarky. Raising Christianity on a videogame forum is guaranteed to attract people who are anti-religious, who will make weird interpretations of what you're saying. I thought that was where you were coming from.

I needed to google that second quote to get it right, but both of them were familiar to me. I've read the New Testament a few times (which is where both those quotes come from), as well as a fair amount of Biblical commentary. I also have relatives who are traditional Christians, and I live in what's called the Bible Belt part of the US, so a lot of this I just pick up.
 

Doom85

Member
Nah, it's clearly referencing:

1. Disney's Hercules which clearly invented Hades and was totally not part of a prior religion

2. Gurren Lagann ("Do the impossible, see the invisible! Row! Row! Fight the power!")

3. Transformers as Optimus Prime died for our sins

4. Star Wars since Anakin didn't have a dad because Darth Plagueis fucked some midichlorians or something
 
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Humdinger

Member
I'm not certain of course, it just seemed an odd inclusion, then after the alpha situation, the absolute control of knowledge, Ted being the person who had control of the machines, teds massive change in career, and the signal being unknown leads me to believe he is still there and possibly at fault.

It's certainly possible. That signal 20 years ago came from somewhere.

Side note, I'm surprised no one has yet brought how they call it the faro plague

Nice, I hadn't thought of that!
 

Humdinger

Member
It was a very fun game, I'm excited for a sequel. See what is planned.

I expect Faro has a second plan, a Zeus program, to implement.

It's fun to speculate. I'm looking forward to the sequel, too. I've played the games several times, and I always enjoy the story. I seem to grasp new things about it each time.
 

#Phonepunk#

Banned
Yes Christian lore looms big in all of popular culture. As much as modern people hate on religion, they love their devils and demons and tales of redemption. These stories and symbols will always be with us.

My favorite is Bayonetta, which is full of references to the Christian cosmology. She is properly shown to be the most spiritual person in the game, hence why her power dominates all.
 
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Humdinger

Member
Same goes for Shadow of the Colossus.

It's based on biblical stories.

(Adam & Eve, the garden of Eden, the forbidden fruits, the flaming sword guiding them away from paradise, Nimrod etc)

Interesting. I haven't played that one yet.

I don't think I ever saw so many triggered people in a Gaf thread since the split :D

Nice job Humdinger, you made a good post, my man.

My real purpose is to use Horizon Zero Dawn to win people to Jesus. Don't tell anyone.

Good thread and topic worth talking about

TOP 5 RELIGIOUS REFERENCES IN HALO.

Ah, some cool observations there.
 

VertigoOA

Banned
There’s a shit ton of religious imagery in Destiny 2 also. On the vanguard menu screen both Ikora and Zavala have halos around their heads akin to Byzantine art, reinforcing the underlying holy space war narrative. Bungie is quite fond of that as most of their naming conventions for lots of their content stems from Byzantine era Christianity.
 

#Phonepunk#

Banned
yes other religions exist but Christianity is far and away the primary one of classical Western Civilization.

people pointing out that other religions existed before, you do know how culture works, right?
 

Bitmap Frogs

Mr. Community
Ehhh... Kinda... Since it was written in a time span of 300-600 years (mostly by word of mouth) , depending on what is considered canonical, and by over 90 authors (almost all of them anonymous) I would say that the Greek from earlier texts is quite different from the Greek of the later texts).

Still greek tho :p
 

LMJ

Member
I will never understand how anyone can think about these things while playing a video game, whatever the game. Video games are to be enjoyed in the purest sense of the word.
Personally I have never considered these things, when I take a gamepad in my hands it is to escape by immersing myself in the fantasy world that I have before my eyes.


Well then no worries as I enjoyed the game immensely and unlocked everything possible, hell, I would argue it has some of the best projectile combat in games in general...

However just like movies or books, I cant just turn my mind off and enjoy it, I'm always processing info and seeing, questioning things just the way my mind works...

As much as I did enjoy Horizon (really need to play the DLC...damn you backlog) I still picked up on the writers less than subtle political cues and as mentioned found the fact I mentioned prior amusing...
 

Smasher89

Member
And then you have the opening, which is basicly the Lion king, its full of references for a ton of stuff, there'ss other movies in there but wont go into those since i dont remember as clearly and those were kinda spoiler territory.
 
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