Horizon Forbidden West PC Review

Sony acquired Nixxes Software in 2021, and the acquisition has already paid dividends. Whereas some PlayStation to PC ports handled by other studios have launched with problems, the Nixxes ports have been almost universally well-received. Horizon Forbidden West is the latest PlayStation game to make the jump to PC, with Nixxes hitting it out of the park yet again. In short, Horizon Forbidden West is a near-perfect PC port.

Horizon Forbidden West on PC is exactly what one would expect. It’s basically the same as the PlayStation version of the game, with the graphical quality and performance largely dependent on one’s rig. With a powerful enough PC, the Horizon Forbidden West PC port looks nothing short of jaw-dropping, with vibrant, eye-popping graphics in every direction. There were no performance issues or any kind of technical problems to speak of in our time with the PC version of Horizon Forbidden West, with the game running smooth as butter. We never experienced any frame drops, stuttering, or any other notable problems.

Content-wise, gamers can expect Horizon Forbidden West on PC to be mostly identical to the PlayStation version. It offers a giant open world adventure that sees Aloy exploring the post-apocalyptic areas that make up the titular “forbidden west.” Beyond the massive and often deadly machines roaming around, Aloy also has to contend with a mysterious new faction of enemies that introduce some shocking twists to the ongoing Horizon story.

Forbidden West is a bolder and bigger version of its predecessor with more machines to fight and more tools at Aloy’s disposal. Forbidden West‘s vast open world is packed with things to do, keeping players busy for hours on end as they complete side quests, gather resources, and simply explore. There are some repetitive quest objectives and bland conversations, but overall, it’s hard to complain about anything Forbidden West brings to the table from a gameplay standpoint.

The machine battles in Forbidden West are the driving force that will keep players glued to their monitors. These heart-pounding encounters have players going toe-to-toe with everything from small, but dangerously quick raptor-like machines to massive monstrosities, like the giant snake players have to fight early on. Before long, combat falls into a satisfying rhythm of knocking off machine parts and rolling out of the way of attacks. Aloy has a bow with multiple arrow types, a variety of traps she can lay, and a spear for up-close melee attacks that can also be used to hack into some machines and turn them into mounts.

Horizon Forbidden West
on PC is another incredible port from Nixxes.

One drawback with the PC version of Horizon Forbidden West is that the default mouse and keyboard controls can be lacking, especially compared to playing the game using a standard DualSense controller. The roll button is assigned to the left CTRL button, making it somewhat difficult to pull off last-minute dodges in the heat of battle. This same button is used to complete some platforming moves, which are also slightly more difficult to pull off for those that don’t take the time to remap the controls.

After getting used to the dodging, Horizon Forbidden West is perfectly playable from start to finish with a mouse and keyboard, but losing out on features like haptic feedback and adaptive triggers is a big trade-off. The ideal scenario is playing through Horizon Forbidden West with a PS5 DualSense controller. Now, there were reportedly some performance issues when playing Horizon Forbidden West‘s PC port with a DualSense controller early on, but it seems those hiccups have since been resolved, at least in our testing.

One issue that hasn’t been fixed, and likely will never be addressed, is the lack of cross-saves. While those that played through Horizon Forbidden West on PS4 or PS5 may have already had their fill of the game and aren’t interested in playing it again on PC, there are no doubt some out there who started Aloy’s adventure on PlayStation but now want to continue it on PC, for whatever reason. The lack of cross-save support means those individuals will have to start Horizon Forbidden West from the beginning. This is a consistent problem with PlayStation-to-PC ports, and at this point, it seems unlikely that it will change.

No cross-saves means the Horizon Forbidden West PC port is aimed directly at PC gamers that have never played it before. They will get to experience the best and most fully-featured version of Forbidden West possible, as the PC port is the Complete Edition of the game. This means that it comes bundled with the Burning Shores expansion, a sizable post-game adventure that adds over 10 hours of additional content for those hungry for more after wrapping up the main story.

Besides the Burning Shores DLC, Forbidden West on PC also enjoys all the post-launch quality of life improvements that were released for the original game. One of the best ones is the ability to turn off gathering animations. It may seem like a small thing on paper, but disabling those animations makes a massive difference in the long run.

We tested the Horizon Forbidden West on a PC powered by a Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080, AMD Ryzen 9 5900X 12-Core Processor, and 32.0 GB RAM.

Horizon Forbidden West on PC is another incredible port from Nixxes. It successfully brings the Horizon Forbidden West experience to PC with a ton of content and tremendous performance. It’s a must-buy for anyone that enjoyed the original, and it should leave fans excited to see what the studio is able to pull off with its upcoming Ghost of Tsushima PC port.

Horizon Forbidden West

Aloy returns in the sequel to Horizon Zero Dawn. Forbidden West follows the now iconic machine-hunter as she embarks to the aptly named Forbidden West to attempt to find the source of a powerful plague that is destroying all that it infects.


  • Jaw-dropping graphics and fantastic performance
  • Includes the Burning Shores expansion and QoL updates
  • Massive open world adventure with a ton to see and do
  • Intense combat encounters

  • No cross-save functionality
  • Default mouse and keyboard controls aren’t ideal

Horizon Forbidden West is available on PC, PS4, and PS5. Game Rant was provided with a PC code for this review.