Horizon Forbidden West developers talk combat in latest behind-the-scenes blog

Release Date
February 18, 2022

Through a PlayStation Blog post, the team at Guerrilla Games has once again provided some insight into the upcoming adventure Horizon Forbidden West.

This week focuses on combat, and how the team wanted to “significantly evolve” that aspect from the first game. Some of this came from new skills and combos in Aloy’s arsenal including grappling. “Our aim was to show that Aloy is more comfortable traversing her environment – without losing sight of the fact that she’s human, of course, so things don’t always go perfectly for her,” says gameplay animation director Richard Oud.

You’ll need all these abilities when dealing with the machines of the sequel, who sound more tenacious than ever. More include jumping and climbing as part of their behaviour now, and even the water isn’t safe. “More machines are now capable of swimming and have the ability to dive and chase Aloy underwater,” lead AI programmer Arjen Beij reveals. “Amphibious enemies can also use jumps to get in and out of the water, so if you are unlucky they will combine this with an attack.”

Luckily, Aloy should still be able to escape from combat if things get too hairy in Horizon Forbidden West. However, human enemies in particular will co-ordinate as a team to try and flush you out. “The goal was to make human combat as deep and challenging as machine combat,” says the returning Richard. “This meant extending the combat system and adding more variety in the way you encounter human enemies in the world. We want to give the player the option to engage in their own playstyle, whether they prefer ranged or close combat encounters.”

 Horizon Forbidden West arrives on February 18, 2022 on PlayStation 5 and PS4.

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