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Horizon Forbidden West leak means that spoilers are coming

Horizon Forbidden West
(Image credit: Guerrilla Games)

Horizon Forbidden West may have leaked in its entirety, more than a month before the game's release.

Images of what is understood to be the PS4 version of the game were posted to social media yesterday (via VGC). Copyright strikes have been issued against those images by the copyright holder, but VGC reports that the leaked build of the game is "legitimate," and that it contains "the entire core content planned for the final game" minus a few art assets. We've reached out to Sony to clarify the extent of the leak.

Warning: Mild spoilers for Horizon appear below. If you'd like to go in as fresh as possible, don't read below the image. 

Horizon Forbidden West

(Image credit: Guerrilla Games)

At the moment, two images appear to be circulating. The first shows Aloy and fellow Horizon Zero Dawn character Varl hiding in some long grass, with the latter asking "how can we deal with him." The second shows Aloy looking at a machine in the distance while Varl says "It's clear." Mission text reads "Reach for the Stars," and instructs the player to scan the machine and find an entrance to some ancient ruins. 

That relatively basic instruction makes it seem as though these images are from an early point in the game, but while the build doesn't appear to have made it to file-sharing sites yet, if the entire thing is out in the wild, more information is likely to be revealed.

A similar fate came for one of Sony's other big franchises with The Last of Us 2 hack ahead of its release in 2020. Naughty Dog said it was "disappointed" by the leak, which saw early footage and story details circulated around the internet in the weeks leading up to launch.

If you want to avoid any kind of spoilers for Horizon Forbidden West, it might be worth setting up some social media filters now, at least until the game releases on February 18. In the meantime, Guerilla has been showing off plenty of details on its own terms, from the tribes of the Forbidden West to an explanation of how Horizon Forbidden West side quests will be better than Zero Dawn's.

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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.