Horizon Forbidden West release date, trailer, news and rumors horizon forbidden west

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Horizon Forbidden West is the long-awaited sequel to the critically-acclaimed Horizon Zero Dawn that made its debut during Sony's PS5 games event in June and recently scored a gameplay trailer during Sony's latest State of Play event.  

Coming to PS5, and perhaps somewhat surprisingly, PS4, Horizon Forbidden West continues Aloy's story, and takes her to America's wild frontier. We didn't see much more of the game during Sony's PS5 event live stream in September, sadly, but the game's most recent gameplay trailer (embedded below) shows us what to expect. 

Namely, it's a whole new open world to explore replete with new machines, gadgets for traversal and weapons to take down the new raider faction. In the latest 14-minute trailer for the game, we get a chance to see Aloy in action using the new grappling hook, breathing mask and glider to easily navigate the ruins and rubble of the coastal environments, as well as two new weapons to take down a mammoth-like Tremortusk. 

The visuals look stunning, but it is – admittedly – still a work in process with framerates looking like they drop below 30 fps at points.

Want all the juicy details? Here's what we know about Horizon Forbidden West so far, including its release date, trailer and more. 

Horizon Forbidden West: what you need to know

  • What is it? The sequel to the critically-acclaimed Horizon Zero Dawn
  • When will it release? Late 2021
  • What platforms will it be available on? PS5 / PS4

Horizon Forbidden West release date

Horizon Forbidden West

(Image credit: Sony)

While the Horizon Forbidden West release date was notably absent from the latest State of Play trailer, developer Guerrilla Games has since released a dev diary video confirming that the Horizon Zero Dawn sequel will release exclusively for PS5 in 2021. We now know it will also come to PS4, too – meaning you won't have to upgrade to new hardware to play the game.

Despite confirming in a PS5 trailer at CES 2021 that the game is still set for a 2021 release, some rumors suggest the game could be delayed until 2022. 

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However, Sony hasn't officially announced any sort of delay and, back in February, PlayStation boss Jim Ryan told GQ he felt "pretty good" that Horizon Forbidden West will still arrive in 2021. Fairly recent social media advertisements have also stated that Horizon Forbidden West will arrive in "late 2021" or "second half of 2021", meaning it's likely we won't see the game until the tail end of this year. 

Horizon Forbidden West trailers

Sony and Guerrilla Games revealed the first Horizon Forbidden West trailer at the PS5 games reveal event on June 11, 2020. The trailer below provides a three-minute glimpse at the kinds of varied landscapes you'll explore in the second game, and which machines you can expect to fight (mammoths and alligators, by the looks of it).

We also get the sense that Horizon Forbidden West will be heavy on underwater gameplay, based on how much of a big deal the trailer makes of Aloy using her scuba gear at the 1:40 mark above, and the shots of underwater ruined cities. 

The Horizon sequel looks amazing, though, it's hard to tell just how much of what's shown is actual gameplay and not pre-rendered. 

Of course, there's also the State of Play trailer that's worth watching, too:

Horizon Forbidden West setting, story and gameplay

Horizon Forbidden West

(Image credit: Sony)

We know that Horizon Forbidden West sees Aloy traveling to post-apocalyptic California and will feature locations such as San Francisco and Yosemite. Based on the trailer it seems like Aloy's journey could take her all over the Western Seaboard, down the coast to Mexico, and potentially back out east to the Caribbean Sea.

Along the way we'll see a bunch of new enemies, including the velociraptor-esque Clawstriders and some new aquatic machines that look pretty intimidating. To make matters worse, raiders have learned to control some of the machines, making Aloy's life out west that much harder.

We'll learn more about the game's plot as we move closer to launch, but the key point is that there's blight that could destroy all of the life on the planet – and it's up to Aloy and her crew to stop it before it does. 

Horizon Forbidden West news and rumors

Horizon Forbidden West

(Image credit: Sony)

We've compiled all the latest Horizon Fordbiden West news and rumors below for your perusal:

Still on track for 2021 release
Despite rumors suggesting Horizon Forbidden West is delayed, it looks like (at present) Sony is still intending to release the sequel in 2021. 

PlayStation advertisements on social media (captured by IGN and VGC) both cite a 2021 release date for the game, with one saying "late 2021" and another saying "second half of 2021". 

Combined with PlayStation boss Jim Ryan's comments that he was "feeling pretty good" about Horizon Forbidden West hitting its release window target, it looks like we will still be getting our hands on the sequel sometime this year.

Virtually no loading screens
During a dev diary video from Guerrilla Games, Horizon Forbidden West game director Mathijs de Jonge explained how the sequel will utilize the PS5's super-fast SSD.

"With the PS5's SSD, there will be virtually no loading screens," Jonge said in the video. "In an open-world game like Horizon Forbidden West, if you open up the map and fast travel from one end to the other, or restart from a checkpoint, it will be super fast. When you boot up the game, you're right there in the action." 

Check out the video below:

Adaptive triggers
You can expect improved use of haptic feedback and adaptive triggers on the PS5, and Horizon Forbidden West is no exception, with its unique mix of bows, slings, and ropecasters. Guerrilla Game Director, Mathijs de Jonge, has said that "The DualSense wireless controller adaptive triggers will help us to make the weapons feel even more unique and satisfying to use."

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