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Horizon Forbidden West: The Symbolism Behind Tilda's Art Collection

In a world as large as the one Guerilla Games created in Horizon Forbidden West, it can be hard for players to uncover all of its secrets. Horizon Forbidden West's landscapes had to be littered with interesting histories to assist build the world of the new IP. Players required to come to grips with not only the story of the games, but how its post-apocalyptic setting came into existence. Gamers were intrigued by the first game and also the unique narrative it unveiled, but when they learned plenty about Aloy and her community, very little was known about that old Ones that came before. SPOILERS AHEAD.

Horizon Forbidden West helped to provide some much-needed revelations regarding the humans that lived one thousand years before the events of the games, who were instrumental in causing the world's downfall. Players were even capable of meeting some of them using the appearance of Far Zenith – the audience of advanced humans who extended their natural lifetimes to attain a form of physical immortality. Certainly one of Far Zenith's members stands out in particular, not just as an enemy-turned-ally-turned-enemy but additionally like a key to unlocking much more of Elisabet's past. Tilda van der Meer includes a large part to experience within the era of Horizon Forbidden West, but she also has an amazing art collection that contains many hidden meanings.

Horizon Forbidden West: Tilda's Foreshadowing And Fateful Meanings

During Horizon Forbidden West's 'Everything Remains' quest, Aloy finds herself exploring parts of the ruined remnants of Tilda's Old World home. Although it's optional for players to prevent and check out Tilda's impressive art collection on the way to benefiting from answers from the mysterious member of Far Zenith, if they do examine the pieces they can witness some revealing dialogue. The works of art were rescued by Tilda from the chaos of the ” old world “, as well as in a means, she (consciously or not) selected the works that informed her whole story, from her betrayals to her regrets.

None from the pieces convey this much better than Rembrandt's painting of Jeremiah, who he depicts in mourning. Tilda tells Aloy that he's mourning his home, just as she's with both the Old World and the Sirius Colony that was destroyed by Nemesis. What is key about Tilda's choice of this painting is the fact that Jeremiah predicted Jerusalem's destruction, but he "could do nothing at all to prevent it," and instead "saved its treasures from destruction" just like Tilda saved the artworks. This shows the stark contrast between Elisabet and Tilda – one attempted to save humanity, whereas another thought she could do nothing at all and simply sought to escape and preserve material things.

Another piece by Rembrandt may be the Night Watch. Tilda says that "it was commissioned to honor a militia comprised of influential citizens," drawing obvious comparisons between your subjects from the painting and Far Zenith's uber-rich original members. The fact that the painting is obnoxiously large likewise helps to share both sets' feeling of their own importance. The symbolism between your artworks and Tilda's journey continues in Willem van der Velde's The Gust, a picture of a ship at sea that perseveres despite the "waves and wind [that] threatened to destroy" it. It embodies the numerous hardships the Odyssey and it is passengers faced in addition to Far Zenith's tumultuous journey, as well as Tilda's belief that they'll succeed despite their difficulties.

Tilda's Lost Love in Horizon Forbidden West

From troublesome voyages to important people, Tilda's views of herself and Far Zenith are evident, only one of the main themes that both define the gathering and Tilda's story is the concept of lost love. Tilda loved Elisabet Sobeck, but she chose to leave her behind when the Odyssey departed the doomed planet. She has regretted that call for centuries, and this loss and longing can be found in numerous collection's pieces. In the hooded picture of Titus that's "infused with a feeling of loss" to van Vianen's lidded ewer which served as a memorial to his dead brother, the artworks are infused with mourning.

The picture of Selene and Endymion even features Cupid, the god of affection, who bears an impression to represent "Selene's undying infatuation" for that simple shepherd. Tilda goes on to state that although "the two must remain apart, her love will forever burn." It's not hard to piece two and 2 together here and see why Tilda relates to this work so strongly. Vermeer's Woman Reading a Letter and the forgery Woman Reading Music beside it are also symbolic of Tilda and Elisabet's relationship, as well as hers with Beta and Aloy. The latter two are clones from the former scientist, and Tilda's passion for forgeries and copies explains her later dependence on Aloy.

Tilda's art collection symbolizes her feeling of her very own importance, her selfish dismissal of humanity in general, and her very own tragic love story. The collection is really a monument to herself and her personal narrative as much as it is to her lost love, but it also shows the key differences between herself and characters like Elisabet and Aloy work with the good of humanity over their very own self-interest.

Horizon Forbidden West is currently available on PS4 and PS5.

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