Well, HZD just went up a level or two, for the better I might add.
Decided to engage on a massive trek from Daytower to the outskirts of Meridian - simple, right?
Er, nope, because the game brought out the big guns. I waltz down into this valley and end up engaging one of the apex machines - Stormbird! The thing was fucking massive and, had I not had that armour for melee attacks, would likely have been able to pull off a one-hit KO. Managed to take out it's lightning gun, even roped it a couple of times, while mostly melee striking it to death! You'd think that couldn't possibly work, but it's so much larger and has nothing to really fend off a frontal assault to the legs. Even so, one massive fight. Also very much a graphical triumph, the PS3 would have keeled over trying to animate this monster.
It also unfurls some really impressive vistas, with draw distance that's quite stunning. The road to Meridian is pretty much desert which makes it very distinct from the earlier game environments. Oh and Thunderwings turned up, which I decided to evade - no way am I up to taking on a robot T-Rex, never mind one packing lasers and missiles! Kind of cool that you hear them long before you see them.
Finally, did the blastwire experiment on two Sawtooths and lo and behold, laying three inter-crossed explosive wires absolutely does a number on a Sawtooth!
So, I've now got a warp point outside of Meridian and an absolute crapload of territory to carefully explore. It may not be as large as it feels due to the density Guerilla have achieved, but like Zelda BotW, the world now feels suitably massive.