Horizon Forbidden West combat and stealth mechanics overhauled

Horizon Forbidden West developer Guerrilla Games has published an extensive blog detailing combat and stealth reworks. 

Guerrilla Games took to the PlayStation Blog (opens in new tab) to write about several new aspects of Horizon Forbidden West (opens in new tab). Chiefly, the developer revealed that stealth has been entirely reworked for the upcoming sequel, and that the developers on Forbidden West have extended the skill cap from Zero Dawn to offer more skills, thus catering to an extended amount of play styles.

There’s also a big rework for Forbidden West’s enemy AI. Whereas before, Guerrilla developers explained, enemies would handle varied terrain with an absence of grace, stumbling over obstacles in their path, this time they’ll take the quickest route right to Aloy with sublime style, bounding over obstacles in their path with ease.

Actually, enemy animations are a big focus of this new blog post. It turns out the enemies of Forbidden West will have a vast number of combat animations for you to identify and overcome, and Guerrilla talks at length about attacks now coming at Aloy from all sorts of angles in particular. It seems like you’ll really have to identify where you’re being attacked from, and how, and adapt accordingly.

Finally, there’s a brief dive into enemy behaviour. Through identifying enemy behaviour patterns, Guerrilla is able to developer combat abilities that tie directly into the personality of a machine. For example, a Clawstrider is a fearsome beast, relentlessly pursuing Aloy throughout the open world, and so it has a suitably ferocious counterattack. 

As for the full game, Aloy’s sequel adventure will be with us early next year, when Horizon Forbidden West lands on both PS4 and PS5 on February 18, 2022. Guerrilla has actually spent the past few weeks now delving into different aspects of the forthcoming sequel, including the revamped skill trees.

Check out our upcoming PS5 games guide for a complete look at all the other PlayStation exclusives launching next year.

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