Horizon Forbidden West has one big problem: players can’t customize their machine mounts, but hopefully Horizon 3 will fix this oversight.
Horizon Forbidden West has one big problem that the next Horizon game can easily fix. Although Forbidden West contains new types of mountable machines, there is no way to customize them. Players can dye outfits and paint designs on Aloy’s face, so the ability to decorate mounts seems like the next logical choice, especially given the Tenakth rebels’ tendency to accessorize their machine allies. Additionally, with Aloy’s extensive access to advanced technology, customizing mounts is surely something she’s capable of.
[Warning: This article contains spoilers for Horizon Forbidden West.]
Horizon Forbidden West offers players the opportunity to ride four distinct machines, as opposed to the three similar options offered by Zero Dawn. Players are able to mount swift Chargers, massive Bristlebacks, fierce Clawstriders, and eventually soar atop Sunwings. Every mountable machine in Horizon Forbidden West has its own personality and abilities, with elemental variants available for Clawstriders and Bristlebacks. However, the game doesn’t provide players with an opportunity to name, customize, or bond with their mounts. Hopefully, the next Horizon game will remedy this oversight.
Horizon Forbidden West is a perfectly fine game without mount customization, but the feature’s exclusion feels like a missed opportunity. The Horizon series’ infamous machines are widely adored and have the potential to be loyal, beloved companions. Aloy’s “stash” could be linked to her mount, allowing players to access an expanded inventory on the go. Mounts could be decorated with paint and their attacks could be upgraded to allow for additional combat opportunities. The ability to name mounts and store them in some kind of stable, just like Red Dead Redemption 2‘s iconic horses, would also be welcomed by players who’ve grown attached to their rides. Enhancing the series’ mount system is an easy way to foster additional adoration for Horizon Forbidden West‘s animal-inspired machines. Expanding this feature would also make sense regarding Horizon 3‘s potential storyline.
Mount Customization Is Consistent With Horizon Forbidden West’s Ending
Through Horizon Forbidden West, Aloy attempts to capture the machine-building subordinate function called HEPHAESTUS. At the end of the game, although she finally has HEPHAESTUS in her clutches, she releases the subordinate function in order to defeat the Zeniths. However, if Aloy wants to restore GAIA to her full potential and save the planet, she’ll need to provide the terraforming AI with the ability to manufacture machines. Additionally, the villainous AI NEMESIS is approaching Earth with the intent of destroying the planet. If she wants to save the world in Horizon 3, Aloy needs a machine army. If Aloy gains the capabilities to manufacture machines, it makes complete sense that she’d be able to custom-build one of her own.
Plenty of other games provide their protagonists with companions, and the Horizon series has some of the best creature designs of recent years. Providing players with ways to customize their mounts is a great way to provide agency and immersion. It’s disappointing that Horizon Forbidden West didn’t take advantage of this opportunity, but hopefully Horizon 3 will make up for its mistake.
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