Horizon Forbidden West PC Graphics Analysis – How Does it Stack Up Against the PS5 Version?

avatar-user Ethan Blackstone 2024-03-27
blog image

As the gaming world continues to evolve, the line between console and PC gaming becomes increasingly blurred. A prime example of this trend is the release of Horizon Forbidden West for PC. This piece examines the technological capabilities of Horizon Forbidden West on the PC platform, scrutinizing its graphical quality, efficiency, and total gameplay experience in relation to its PS5 version. With the transition of this sequel from console to PC, we examine the enhancements, requirements, and optimizations that make Horizon Forbidden West a remarkable title on another platform.

System Requirements and Test Setup

Horizon Forbidden West woman in game

For starters, running Horizon Forbidden West on a PC demands a baseline hardware setup, with lower settings requiring at least an Intel Core i3 8th generation coupled with a GTX 1650 4 GB and 16 GB of RAM. Those aiming for higher graphical fidelity will need more robust configurations. Our testing was conducted on a high-end system featuring an AMD Ryzen 5950X, Nvidia RTX 3080Ti, and 32 GB of RAM, enabling us to push the game's settings to their limits without compromising on performance. Additionally, the game's compatibility with Windows’ DirectStorage API highlights the recommendation for a PCI e 4.0 SSD, emphasizing the importance of fast storage solutions in achieving optimal performance.

Graphical Settings and Initial Observations

The graphical settings menu in Horizon Forbidden West offers a comprehensive suite of options, allowing players to fine-tune their gaming experience. From texture quality to anti-aliasing, the game provides a wealth of adjustments, though it stops short of offering visual demonstrations for these settings. Despite this, the presets available make it easy for those less inclined to tweak individual settings. Our test bench's performance at 4K resolution with maxed-out settings, including the use of Nvidia Low Latency and V-Sync, showcases the game's impressive scalability across different hardware configurations.

Performance Metrics and Visual Fidelity

On our test rig, Horizon Forbidden West ran flawlessly at its highest settings, maintaining a frame rate of 60-65fps at 4K resolution. The transition of the game's lush environments and intricate character models to PC is nothing short of spectacular, with every detail from the dense jungles to the detailed machines being rendered with outstanding clarity and realism. Even during intense combat sequences, the game managed to maintain consistent performance, proving the effectiveness of the port's optimization.

Enhancements Over the PS5 Version

Woman and monster in game

The PC version of Horizon Forbidden West introduces several quality-of-life improvements not found in the PS5 release. Notably, support for ultrawide screens and an uncapped frame rate option stand out as significant upgrades, enhancing the immersion and visual appeal. However, it's worth mentioning the absence of hardware-accelerated ray tracing, a feature that could have further elevated the graphical experience on PC. Despite this, the game still benefits from the DirectStorage API, which significantly reduces loading times, making for a smoother gameplay experience.

Comparative Analysis with PS5

When comparing Horizon Forbidden West on PC with the PS5's Favor Resolution mode, the differences are subtle yet noticeable. The PC version edges out its console counterpart with slightly better texture quality and rendering of distant objects, thanks to higher anisotropic filtering and internal rendering resolutions. These improvements, although iterative, showcase the PC's capability to enhance an already visually stunning game. Nonetheless, both versions maintain the game's artistic beauty and engaging world, ensuring a fulfilling experience regardless of the platform.


Colorful game art

The transition of Horizon Forbidden West to PC, expertly managed by Nixxes Software, marks a notable advancement in closing the divide between console and PC gaming experiences. By addressing the shortcomings of past ports, such as rendering inconsistencies and extensive shader compilation times, this edition offers a seamless experience that rivals its console counterpart. With its impressive performance, enhanced graphical settings, and optimizations, Horizon Forbidden West on PC is a testament to the potential of modern game ports, providing PC gamers with an exceptional opportunity to explore Aloy's journey in a post-apocalyptic world. Whether you're a veteran of the PS5 version or a PC enthusiast looking to dive into the Horizon series, this port is a compelling addition to any gaming library.

Latest posts

See more