Horizon Forbidden West improves a lot of elements that were present in Horizon Zero Dawn. From traversal to crafting to melee combat, Forbidden West truly feels like a proper successor and a genuine upgrade in terms of gameplay mechanics to the original. One thing it greatly expands upon is the skill tree, giving much more agency to players who are looking to tailor their Horizon experience exactly to their liking.
While the skill tree is far improved from Zero Dawn, at the very beginning of Forbidden West some players might get a little bit overwhelmed by the sheer number of options available to them. This could result in players not knowing where they should be putting their skill points. Although there’s technically no “wrong” place to put them, some skills offer a lot more to the player right off the bat than others that should be prioritized to start.
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Horizon Forbidden West Skill Tree Starters Guide
When players first get access to skill points in the early hours of Horizon Forbidden West a good place to start in the skill tree is the Hunter tab. Essentially, Hunter skills will aid the player in just about every way throughout their playthrough. Grabbing the Concentration+, Deep Concentration, and Concentration Regen skills right off the bat are good picks as they give the player a lot more options when it comes to hitting targets with precision in combat.
As the player keeps gaining skill points, it’s a good idea to prioritize the Triple Notch skill in the second-tier Hunter skills as it gives a major damage boost and makes tougher machines much easier to take down.
While they might be tempted to start sinking points into the Warrior tree right off the bat to improve their combat effectiveness, players should wait to put any points into it until they start encountering human enemies. Melee combat should typically be avoided in the Horizon games since it’s far easier to be killed when fighting enemies head-on and Aloy can take care of most threats from a distance if the Hunter tree is properly leveled. Warrior skills will be useful down the road as players are put into close combat, but starting out it can be ignored.
The Trapper tree is also a good place to sink some points into in the early section of the game as long as the Hunter tree is also getting attention. Stealth is a major part of success in Horizon Forbidden West and traps play a major part in taking down machines. Getting the Trap Limit skill early on can help with taking out large groups of unwary machines at once by allowing Aloy to place more traps and tripwires at the same time.
Further down the Trapper tree is an extremely useful skill, Quick Wire, which shoots Tripcaster wires two at a time, eliminating the need for the player to select the two places they want to hang the wire from. Although that does reduce the number of options available when setting traps, it makes setting tripwires much faster meaning that they can be set in a hurry if need be.