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Horizon Forbidden West Complete Edition (PC) Review: Still Just as Good in 2024
May 30, 2024 Andrew Cheng

Horizon Forbidden West was first released on the PS5 and PS4 back in 2022, and fast forward to today, we have the PC version of the game. Released as a Complete Edition that includes the Burning Shores DLC – which made its debut on the PS5 in 2023 – it’s really the definitive edition of the game.

Even though it’s been some time since the initial release of Horizon Forbidden West, playing through the game again in 2024 feels just as entertaining as when I first jumped into the post-apocalyptic world two years ago. If you haven’t had the opportunity to play the sequel to Horizon Zero Dawn yet, the Complete Edition for PC is certainly worth considering.

What It Is

Given that it’s only been about two years since Horizon Forbidden West was released on the PS5, Guerrilla Games’ latest title is getting a PC release quite quickly. Naturally, the PC version comes with a number of new features, such as unlocked frame rates, customisable graphics settings (of course), Nvidia DLSS 3, and support for various ultrawide aspect ratios. These include 21:9, 32:9, and even 48:9 with compatibility for triple-monitor setups.

The customisability of Horizon Forbidden West’s PC release is really its biggest selling point. After all, the PS5 version doesn’t have these customisation options, especially in regard to the different aspect ratios. I play the game mostly on a 21:9 ultrawide monitor – which is why the screenshots you see here are in that aspect ratio – and it is truly an immersive experience.

Pricing wise, Horizon Forbidden West Complete Edition goes for RM249 on Steam and Epic Games Store, though the latter is currently offering a discount for the game, lowering the price to RM199.20 until 13 June 2024.

The Good Stuff

What surprised me the most when I fired up Horizon Forbidden West on PC for the first time is the fact that it’s not overly demanding to run. Using my rather…dated rig that’s powered by a Radeon RX 580 graphics card with an AMD Ryzen 5 2600 processor, I can get reasonably stable 30fps frame rate on the High quality preset.

Granted, the frame rate does dip below 30fps when things get busier on-screen, but that’s also because I am running the game at an ultrawide resolution of 3440 x 1440. Lowering it to, say, the standard Full HD resolution of 1920 x 1080 would definitely get me much higher frame rates on an older system like mine.

Suffice to say that Nixxes, the studio that ported Horizon Forbidden West to PC, did an incredible job here. Throughout my time playing the game, I didn’t encounter any dealbreaking issues. Whether it’s the performance or general polish of the game, this is a well-optimised PC title.

PC controls of Horizon Forbidden West are also worth a mention. For a fast-paced, action game like this, a keyboard and mouse setup offers much more precise controls than a gamepad. Don’t get me wrong, I love the PS5’s DualSense controller – which works seamlessly with this PC version of the game, though a wired connection is required – but the accuracy afforded by a mouse is just…different than a gamepad, in my humble opinion.

Beyond that, Horizon Forbidden West is still a stunning game on PC with beautiful visuals and very detailed character models. This, paired with a fun, complex gameplay, make for a really entertaining title for me to return to. Even though I’ve already spent countless hours in the game, there’s nothing quite like hunting big bad machines with the vast array of weapons at my (or rather, Aloy’s) disposal.

Of course, there’s also the engrossing narrative of Horizon Forbidden West. The cliffhanger ending of the base game still isn’t quite to my liking, but thankfully, the Burning Shores DLC does bring the story to a more conclusive end. Well, before the next sequel of the Horizon franchise, anyway.

Speaking of which, that’s a good segue to the next section.

The Bad Stuff

As much as I enjoy the overarching plot of Horizon Forbidden West, it can also get quite convoluted. You really need to know the storyline of Zero Dawn and The Frozen Wilds DLC before getting into Forbidden West. A lot of jargons are thrown around throughout the storyline – what is the Faro plague again? – and in order to not get lost in the story, it’s essential to know what’s what in the world of Horizon.

Besides that, even though Horizon Forbidden West is not a super demanding game to run, it still can’t be played on, say, a handheld gaming PC. I tried to run the game on the ROG Ally, and the overall experience is…well, not exactly ideal. Even on the lowest settings with sub-par visuals, I’m still getting choppy performance.

To be fair, this is a AAA game set in a large open world environment. Until handheld gaming PCs get a bit more powerful, I can’t quite hunt machines when I am out and about just yet.

Is It Worth It?

Horizon Forbidden West Complete Edition on the PC is just as entertaining as I remember it to be on the PS5 with the added bonus of offering far more customisation options. Sure, the storyline can get quite confusing, but it doesn’t change the fact that this is still a beautiful game with stunning graphics and entertaining gameplay that will keep players entertained for hours on end.

That being said, I do think the RM249 price tag for the PC version of Horizon Forbidden West is a tad steep, especially for a game that was originally released back in 2022; albeit on a different platform. With that in mind, it’s definitely a good pick up if you can get the game at a discount, such as the ongoing offer on Epic Games Store now, which lowers the price to RM199.20 until 13 June 2024.

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