How to breathe underwater in Horizon Forbidden West: craft the Diving Mask
Horizon Forbidden West’s world is a large one, constructed to be explored over lengthy stretches of time. The huge, open wilderness is beautiful and overwhelming, giving gamers the possibility to roam freely round among the west coast’s most well-known pure websites and cities. There are towering sequoia forests, endemic to elements of Northern California, together with the desiccated Dying Valley and its ocean of sand. You’ll climb mountaintops and iconic American landmarks just like the Golden Gate Bridge. You’ll additionally swim lakes, caves, and oceans, which comprise one of many distinctive highlights of Forbidden West.
The way in which these components weave collectively finally makes the exploration facet of the sport stand out. “One of many first issues we mentioned once we began improvement was that we wished to focus extra on selection and density,” Mathijs de Jonge, director of Horizon Forbidden West, instructed Polygon.
Swimming is a key a part of this: It’s stunning, and better of all, it’s completely seamless. Outdoors of video games particularly devoted to swimming, I’ve sometimes skilled our bodies of water as gating mechanisms. After I can swim, it’s usually with a restricted endurance bar — or it is likely to be on the again of a creature, like in Pokémon Legends: Arceus. In Forbidden West, there’s no operating round lakes to keep away from falling in, or tiptoeing round waterfalls. I leap the fuck in. There are brimming ecosystems in there, crumbling American landmarks, and tons of collectibles.
Although Aloy is initially restricted by holding her breath, there’s fortunately a Diving Masks software that enables her to breathe infinitely. Admittedly, swimming can really feel graceless earlier than discovering this software, as quests make Aloy navigate labyrinthian underwater passages. Stick it out and get that Diving Masks, and swimming turns into actually liberating and thrilling. It turns the sport into one among my all-time favorites for exploration.
After you have unlocked your base, and have spoken with GAIA, I might extremely advocate getting that Diving Masks as quickly as doable. Right here’s how one can.
[Ed. note: spoilers follow for certain Horizon Forbidden West story quests.]
Methods to craft the Diving Masks for infinite underwater respiratory
With a purpose to craft the Diving Masks, you have to to have exited The Daunt, unlocked your base, and uploaded the GAIA kernel. Crafting the Diving Masks is an early a part of The Poseidon subordinate perform quest line referred to as “Sea of Sands.” When GAIA tells you to decide on which of the three subordinate features you’d wish to pursue — Aether, Poseidon, or Demeter — choose Poseidon, and head to Las Vegas.
If you arrive, the map will present a big, yellow, round space. You might be in search of a constructing that seems to be a pagoda, however has water spilling out of it. You’ll realize it’s right as Aloy will name it a “Tower of Tears” when she sees it. The best option to find it’s to move to a excessive level, and seek for the constructing.
To get inside, there’s a grapple level on the sting of the primary flooring, near the place the water is pouring out. You’ll encounter three NPCs who’ve been making an attempt to dive into the lately flooded constructing. Converse to Morlund, and he gives you the hunt to craft the Diving Masks.
With a purpose to craft the Diving Masks, you have to three objects:
- Compressed Air Capsule
- Machine Knee Cap
- Artificial Membrane
The Compressed Air Capsule is contained in the flooded elevator shaft that the three NPCs had been diving in. Dive in, swim downward, and harvest the Compressed Air Capsule from a protruding panel on the wall.
To acquire the opposite objects, activate the looking goal portion of the hunt line, and comply with the cues to activate Aloy’s focus. The main target will reveal tracks that lead Aloy to a Bellowback and Leaplasher web site. Bellowbacks can have Artificial Membranes; Leaplashers can have Machine Knee Caps. It’s possible you’ll must kill a number of to acquire the objects.
Afterwards, head again to the pagoda, converse with Morlund, and craft the Diving Masks on the workbench contained in the constructing. You’ll now have it completely, and it’ll activate immediately while you bounce into the water — no must equip it.
What makes swimming underwater so particular
As in actual life, exploring underwater in Forbidden West feels expansive and free — in bigger our bodies of water, just like the lake (probably primarily based on Lake Mead) which gamers can first run into in The Daunt. At that time, you received’t have infinite underwater respiratory. However when you unlock the Diving Masks, the choices broaden superbly — permitting gamers to free swim the whole lot of the massive lake, swimming previous faculties of fish, and exploring the numerous secrets and techniques that lie in its depths. This is only one of many many hidden nooks that can change into accessible after you have the Diving Masks.
This sense of underwater freedom is essentially by design. The builders selected to not make fight underwater an choice, as a substitute giving gamers stealth choices within the type of tall kelp. “I assume it’s fairly related as on-ground motion; the mechanic itself must be responsive and it’s essential to really feel that you simply’re in management,” de Jonge mentioned. “Subsequent to that, the environment matter, and the participant wants choices to keep away from underwater fight with machines. We didn’t even try and develop that as participant motion is simply too restricted below water and machines are massive, quick, and lethal.”
[Warning: the following contains spoilers for late-game locations and machine types in Horizon Forbidden West.]
Among the sport’s most cinematic moments occur when Aloy is underwater. You see a few of Las Vegas’s most well-known motels, imagined in a post-post-apocalyptic future that entails gentle exhibits and holographics. That is the place Aloy first encounters one of many sport’s most deadly, intimidating enemies, the Tideripper, a Loch Ness Monster-inspired machine. It’s additionally the place gamers get to see how charming Burrowers are once they swim. The frustratingly bouncy entry-level enemies change into otter-like underwater, chittering and winding round.
Exploring underwater San Francisco, within the closing stretches of the primary quest, additionally really feel like a present. It’s haunting, seeing elements of the acquainted metropolis submerged — particularly because it’s a metropolis I’ve lived in. The post-apocalypse hit residence as I swam across the Ferry Constructing in its oceanic grave. These are only a few of my favourite reminiscences from my time in Forbidden West’s unimaginable underwater environments. My Diving Masks and I might be making many extra.