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Horizon Forbidden West redesigned skill tree "brings melee and ranged combat closer together"

Horizon Forbidden West
(Image credit: Guerilla Games)

Horizon Forbidden West features a "completely redesigned" skill tree with tools to help amplify your playstyle.

In a new blog post, lead combat designer Dennis Zopfi said that "one of the focus points that influenced all our combat decisions was increased player choice, and we applied this to everything: melee, weapons, outfits, skills and other new mechanics. We wanted to give players more tools, depth, and dials to play with."

A workbench system, where you'll be able to upgrade and strengthen weapons and outfits, is one part of that approach, but Zopfi says that the skill tree will also help. 

"In Horizon Zero Dawn, skills were bought and unlocked as you leveled up. While that principle remains in the sequel, we completely redesigned the skill tree with additional tracks and skills; within the skill tree, skills also synergize with those that are either already present on outfits or need to be unlocked on them."

To help "bring melee and ranged combat closer together," Zopfi says that new skill Resonator Blast lets Aloy "charge up the spear with melee hits." When fully powered up, the stored energy can be placed on enemies and followed up with a projectile for a big explosion.

As well as the new abilities, the blog post offers a closer look at the grappling hook and parachute combo shown off in a previous gameplay presentation, and hints at the Spike Thrower, a new "high damage weapon which, when thrown at the right moment, makes it easier to hit larger targets."

Horizon Forbidden West is currently set to launch on February 18, 2022 for PS5 and PS4.

Here are some more upcoming PS5 games to look forward to.

Ali Jones

I'm GamesRadar's deputy news editor, working with Ben T across our gaming news articles. I started my journalistic career while getting my degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick, where I also worked as Games Editor on the student newspaper, The Boar. Since then, I've run the news sections at PCGamesN and Kotaku UK, and also regularly contributed to PC Gamer. As you might be able to tell, PC is my platform of choice, so you can regularly find me playing League of Legends or Steam's latest indie hit.