Count for Something

This post contains some spoilers for the Horizon Zero Dawn ending. Proceed at your own risk.

I finished Horizon Zero Dawn today.

And then I wanted to cry for having to leave behind a fictional world so fully thought out with intriguing characters, cultures, and creatures.

I knew as I started the final act that this was a game that was going to stick with me. Anything after this seems like it won’t compare. I’m used to having emotional experiences with books – I should make a list of books that have made me cry. What I was not expecting when I finished Horizon was exactly how its ending made me feel.

Here’s the final scene:

What struck me most wasn’t Aloy finding Dr Elisabet Sobeck, the woman who you could consider her mother. Or that we were hearing Dr Sobeck tell a story of her childhood. It was this simple quote from Dr Sobeck’s mother that she recounts to GAIA over the scene:

“Being smart will count for nothing if you don’t make the world better. You have to use your smarts to count for something. To serve life, not death.” -Mrs. Sobeck

It is at that point that I started to cry.

Our world is full of some incredibly smart people, many whom want to make the world better. They want to do better for the future. While they can’t anticipate what the future will bring, they are doing whatever they can to make the world better.

But it is those same people that are being stripped of their ability to research, to create, to solve, to discover, to do what others couldn’t that came before them.

We shouldn’t discount intelligence, or be afraid of it. Discoveries have helped us fuel our world, and we wouldn’t have that without being curious, and supporting those that have the want to solve, or the intellect to figure out a solution. Intelligence can be intimidating, but that shouldn’t be the cause to push it away or discount what is being said.

We should strive to make the intelligence of our world count for something. To make life better in whatever capacity we have the ability to. Otherwise, what’s the point?

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