As many will know by now — especially if you've played it — Horizon Forbidden West very much takes place in the real world, and it gets pretty specific. As its name implies, Aloy's second adventure takes her to the western edge of the United States of America, travelling from Utah through to Nevada and California. While it's obviously not a like-for-like recreation, developer Guerrilla Games has included numerous real-world landmarks, locations, and natural sites. The above video illustrates this pretty perfectly.
Being set in a distant future where civilisation as we know it is gone, it's always fascinating seeing famous buildings and other sites left to decay over time. If you make your home in the US, you may recognise places like the Golden Gate bridge, Alcatraz, Zion National Park, the Transamerica Pyramid, Las Vegas landmarks like the Paris and Bellagio hotels, and many more. Even some less well known places, like McWay Cove, Mono Lake, and the Utah Caverns are represented in the game pretty faithfully. It's impressive stuff.
Horizon Zero Dawn was similarly packed with real-world locations, but Forbidden West definitely feels like a step up in terms of sheer number. Some landmarks are even explored in particular quests or side activities.
There are probably many more landmarks not shown in the above video. Have you spotted any familiar sights in Horizon Forbidden West? Share in the comments section below, and if you're looking for help with the game, take a look at our extensive Horizon Forbidden West guide.
They still have global warming then?
The sea level is very much the same... /jk
@lolwhatno It shows that in the video, look at the Palace Of Fine Arts for example
I'm not familiar with most of these landmarks so I didn't really recognize them while playing but this is very impressive
i feel so bad n guilty towards Sony n Gurilla for abandoning HFW but ever since EldenRing came out i cant put it down
@Throb In fact, some parts of Las Vegas are under water, while others are covered by sand. Not really consistent, but nice looking and useful for gaming purposes.
WARNING. There's a spoiler in the video.
Didn't know Aloy could fly a winged mount. Now I do. Low-key peeved!
@pimpjuice They got the money so they don't care.
@Max_the_German Spoilers, I guess, but here’s why: There’s a protective dome above the game’s Las Vegas (it’s explained in some of the datapoints you can find there) and the dome was covered by sand. Parts of the city under the dome were flooded for reasons related to the story, unrelated to see levels rising (unlike the San Francisco area)
I thought Ratchet and Clank Rift Apart was the best looking game of all time but ever since Horizon came out I'm not so sure anymore.
Wow, I had no idea the game was accurately designed around real Western US landmarks! Very impressive. Gives me The Last of Us and Death Stranding vibes with the post-apocalyptic US backdrop. The attention to detail is astounding. This makes me more excited to play the game now!
@RubyCarbuncle I still think Ratchet is generally better looking but it's also confined to relatively small and somewhat linear levels that definitely make it easier. And even then it's not by a lot.
Makes you realise the astonishing amount of miles Aloy and gang walk in the game.
"Just popping over to San Francisco to do a quest, see you in about three weeks!"
My personal GOTY so far.
All of these are quite impressive, but I found myself thinking for several of them "no way this thing would be standing over 1000 years later"
It's Incredible the level of detail they put into this game though!
When you get to that zone there is a hill that leads to a beach. The landscape had to be one of the most beautiful things I have seen in gaming.
The amount of talent behind this game is truly amazing. The Digital Artists should really get more recognition if they part of a game like this.
If you want to see dilapidated buildings on your screen just turn on the news. I guess this comment will be removed, but it is what it is.
It shouldn’t be. You’re pointing out facts.
@Voltan Huh, I assumed that San Fransisco was supposed to be because the San Andreas Fault had given way, dropping everything west into the ocean
I haven’t made it through the video and I haven’t played the game (just finished HZD), but given the location you’d think the Hoover Dam would make an appearance.
Edit: Never mind. It’s included. Not sure why it’s called Presa Hoover, but that’s the dam. I actually saw them constructing that sky bridge and walked on it once it was completed. I could only take a bit of it because it is quite high off the ground.
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