Horizon Forbidden West had its own State of Play event last night (May 26) revealing its first gameplay on PS5, and it certainly did not disappoint.
The gameplay was captured using a PlayStation 5 and it simply looked stunning, phenomenal even. It really was a joy to behold and it got fans excited to see more of Aloy’s latest crusade to save the world. Here’s what we learned.
Horizon Forbidden West takes place around six months after the events of the first game. The gameplay reveal begins with Aloy helping her friend Delver, who was injured as a result of an attack from raiders known as the Tenakth tribe. Aloy, Delver, and Erend were on a scouting mission and when they were attacked, Erend was captured by the raiders.
The raiders that captured Erend, like Aloy, know how to override the machines. One such machine that the raiders were in control of is one called the Clawstrider. These machines new to the series have a striking resemblance to a Velociraptor.
When Aloy leaves Delver to attend to his wounds, she ventures to a nearby beach in a ruined San Francisco. Despite its surroundings of decay, the beach is brimming with wildlife, denser than what we had seen in 2017’s Horizon Zero Dawn.
Unfortunately for Aloy, it’s not long until she too is attacked by the raiders. Aloy has to quickly deal with the group mounted on a pack of Clawstriders. It was here that Aloy took the opportunity to use her more advanced Focus that is able to highlight more areas and obstacles of interest.
Climbing some nearby ruins to evade the raiders, Aloy soon finds herself submerged underwater. By using her new Diving Mask, Aloy can spend as much time underwater as she needs. The Diving Mask is perfect for exploring, finding alternative routes, and hiding from raiders underwater.
The water is full of colour and life and reminded me of a beautiful tropical reef. Aloy uses the power of the current to quickly manoeuvre underwater, however, she must also be wary of submerged creatures too.
After briefly managing to evade the raiders and the Clawstriders, Aloy sees Erend tied up and being tormented by his captors. If a pack of ravaging raiders wasn’t bad enough for Aloy to contend with, we once again see the giant elephant-like beast called the Tremortusk that we had seen in a previous tease.
When the Tremortusk leaves the area, Aloy uses this opportunity to attack the raiders and save Erend. We see Aloy use her spear and bow & arrow, but we also see her utilise a power surge implanted in her spear to shock the raiders. Before this, we had also seen Aloy use a smoke grenade to distort the Clawstriders.
Despite Aloy’s best efforts and disposing of some of the raiders, others still manage to get away with Erend. So Aloy pursues them in wondrous tropical ruins brimming with colour. It’s around this moment we see Aloy use two of her other new toys: a grappling hook device called the Pullcaster and a glider called the Shieldwing. Seriously, even Batman would be a little jealous of Aloy’s gadgets right now.
Getting closer to where Erend is being held, Aloy sees an isolated Clawstrider and she seizes this opportunity to override the creature for herself, riding in on the creature to save the day. Yet for Aloy, her mission is far from over.
If she is to save Erend, she now had to do battle with the giant Tremortusk that Aloy briefly saw just moments ago. The battle is epic and showcases more than I expected for the gameplay reveal. I thought the developers might save this encounter for the full game, but it was a nice treat nonetheless.
The Tremortusk has units mounted on the top of its back, carrying a number of raiders who are also attacking Aloy from above. In a way, this encounter very much reminded me of the Oliphants aka Mûmakil from The Lord of the Rings.
During this battle, Aloy uses her skills to bring down the mechanical monster, including the use of explosive arrows and adhesive bombs to temporarily slow down the creature. The battle is a hard-fought victory for Aloy, though her war is far from being over.
When freeing Erend, he presents Aloy with a “gift”, an object he set out to acquire on his mission before being captured by the raiders. Upon receiving the gift Aloy activates the device given to her, which reveals a world map. We don’t know exactly what this device is for, but what we do know is that it will help Aloy to learn the secret to ending the Blight. The red Blight is spreading across the land killing all organic life and it seems that only Aloy can stop it.
As the gameplay reveal came to a close the developers at Guerrilla Games gave us a quick deep-dive into some of the weapons and gadgets that Aloy will have at her disposal in Horizon Forbidden West. Sadly, we never got a release date for Horizon Forbidden West, but hopefully, that is something that we’ll get in the coming months.
Are you looking forward to Aloy’s next adventure? Let us know across our social media channels. Horizon Forbidden West will release for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5.
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Featured Image Credit: Sony/Guerrilla Games