Horizon Forbidden West – Seven Tips For Surviving in Tenakth Territory
With Horizon Forbidden West almost upon us, we wanted to share a few tips and tricks that helped us earn that elusive platinum trophy ahead of launch. Whether you've already played through Horizon Zero Dawn or plan on watching the story refresher before starting up the second act of Aloy's journey, these seven tips and tricks should help turn you into a much more successful hunter-gatherer.
Customize the Difficulty
Horizon Forbidden West is developed to be balanced on Normal difficulty but if that's proving to be either too little or too great a challenge, don't be afraid to tune it to your liking. This has no impact on any of the trophies so you can scale everything down to Story difficulty if you just want to enjoy Aloy's journey or bring it up to Very Hard if you want to make every battle matter. Even turning on only Easy Loot will save the player from having to run up to a broken machine and hold down the Square button to loot its materials; those seconds saved will quickly add up during your playtime!
Concentrate on those more precise moments
When aiming one of Aloy's weapons, pressing the right analog stick in will activate Concentration, giving Aloy more precise control over her shots while slowing down the world around her. This can be immensely helpful when trying to snipe off specific machine parts for loot or perhaps even blasting off a heavy weapon to temporarily bolster Aloy's fighting prowess. One thing to keep in mind is that if you toggle on Auto Concentration in the settings listed above, this will also slow down time for throwing rocks and burn up your Concentration meter.
Invest in Weapon Techniques
As Aloy levels up or is rewarded skill points from completing side quests, you'll quickly be filling in the six skill trees in no time. While most of the skill tree offers passive bonuses to make Aloy into a lean, mean machine-killing, well, machine, every tree offers up weapon techniques at key junctions that give each of Aloy's weapon types an additional ability to use when holding down L2 and pressing R1. These consume Weapon Stamina, so you can't be using them all of the time, but some of the techniques like Quick Wire for the Tripcaster can help you rapidly deploy a tripwire without having to manually aim and lay down both points.
Stay a while and listen
Many outposts and fast travel points have NPCs that do little more than listen to the rumors of the area and pass them on to Aloy. By sitting down and having a quick chat with these NPC's, Aloy can usually hear about some special event in the area, whether it's a rebel outpost, a machine gauntlet run, or another point of interest. Even if you skip these moments, having a quick glance at Aloy's map can often reveal question-marked destinations in every direction, often leading to risks and rewards alike.
Complete those Salvage Contracts ASAP
As Aloy ventures out further and further west, she'll come across various salvager camps. In each of these three camps are Oseram salvagers each competing to create the best armor they can. As one might expect, completing all of these tasks will reward Aloy with a set of Legendary armor that's among the best in the game. Not only that but each successful contract also nets Aloy a hefty amount of shards and experience on top of equipment coils and Apex machine parts.
Upgrade when you can, plan when you can't
Each weapon and armor that Aloy acquires is unique can be upgraded up to five times, each time increasing the effectiveness in a myriad of ways. Not only will weapons deal more damage or armor offer stronger resistances but you'll often unlock new ammo types and coil slots. These new perks can easily transform a preferred piece of gear and keep it just as deadly as Aloy levels up and ventures further out. Every machine Aloy defeats will reward her with machine parts necessary to craft those essential upgrades. However, if you ever find yourself missing a specific fang or fin, visit the workbench. From there, highlight over the upgrade you're looking to make and press the Triangle button. This creates a Job to track down those missing materials and pops up on Aloy's map as a sidequest that shows where specific materials can be found.
Aim to break, not to kill
The various machines that populate Horizon Forbidden West all carry their weak points out on display. As tempting as it may be to follow FPS traditions and always aim for the head or heart, these mechanical wonders can often shrug off a dozen arrows to the luminous brainstem. Oftentimes, the greatest upgrades and rewards are locked away behind these detachable parts which are typically destroyed once a machine is dispatched. If you use Aloy's Focus in the middle of a fight, you can get a quick scan of every weak point on the enemy. Of course, thanks to the genius of whoever designed these machines, most weak points are illuminated in bright orange gears or glowing lights. Using weapons with high Tear damage can rip these machine parts right off and deal a devastating amount of damage to the machine's vitality.
Hope these tips help you out as you venture out into primary territory and square off against Thunderjaw and rebels alike. If you have any tips of your own, feel free to leave them in the comments below and help out your fellow explorers!
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