Guerrilla expands on the world of Horizon Forbidden West

By Heidi Nicholas,
The Horizon Forbidden West team has gone into a little more detail about the sequel's world, and how they design it to be "filled with adventure, culture, and opportunity."

Horizon Forbidden West

In a PlayStation blog post, the devs explain how they work to differentiate Horizon Forbidden West's tribes, like the Tenakth. Senior writer Annie Kitain says that "Many of their beliefs are influenced by the ancient ruins of the Forbidden West, and unlike other tribes, they’re comprised of three distinct clans. Their shared history, convictions, disputes — all of that is important to developing the characters that Aloy will meet on her journey.” Lead living world designer Espen Sogn adds, "the Tenakth are known to be competitive and combat-focused, but so are other tribes. So how do we distinguish them, and how do we communicate that visually? It then becomes all about the details, the animations, and the behaviors. Within their settlements, you’ll see the Tenakth working out, readying themselves for battle. They’re often younger because they need to be capable warriors. Their base is an ancient ruin, from which they’ve picked up certain Old World gestures that they may not fully understand – like using a military salute to say hello."

All non-combat NPCs in Horizon Forbidden West are "part of a crowd system," which comes with rules about things like walking paths and animations. On top of this, there's also an attitude system for personality. "When members of a tribe are in their settlement, their safe spaces, they can act like themselves. The Oseram are a social and historically patriarchal tribe, so their animations are more about shoulder punches and high fives. The Utaru, on the other hand, are laid back, so they will often sit down together and be a bit more touchy-feely." The differences between the tribes comes across in other areas, too. "Hunters from the Nora tend to favour ranged combat and stealthy hunting. Carja excel at the use of traps and tripwires. The boisterous Oseram love fighting up close and personal with a hammer. The Tenakth and Utaru have their own preferences as well."

It's not the first detailed Horizon Forbidden West post we've had — another recent post focused on the "increased lethality" of machines. What do you think? What are you most excited for in Horizon Forbidden West? Let us know in the comments!
Heidi Nicholas
Written by Heidi Nicholas
Hey, I'm Heidi! I've just finished studying a Masters in English Literature, but I've been obsessed with gaming since long before then. I began on the PS2 with Spyro, before graduating to the Xbox 360 and disappearing into Skyrim. I'm now a loyal RPG fan, but I still like to explore other genres — when I'm not playing Assassin's Creed Odyssey, or being lured back into Red Dead Redemption 2 or The Witcher 3!