Walkthrough for the Side Quest Breaking Even in Horizon Forbidden West.
How to Start Breaking Even
To access this quest you’ll need to complete the main quest The Eye of the Earth. After this, you can start the quest by either heading to Camp Nowhere (a settlement north of the Tallneck: The Stillsands) and talking to Porguf, or by heading to a Campfire northwest of Stone’s Echo and find a gossip named Lora sitting there. Talk to her and she should tell you a rumor which starts this side quest.
|Quest Giver||Starting Location||Prerequisite||Level||Rewards|
|Porguf/Lora||Stillsands||Complete The Eye of the Earth||15|
Either way, you’ll need to head to Camp Nowhere and talk to Porguf, who will furnish you with the details and allow you to progress the quest further.
How to Clear the Spinebreak
After striking a deal with Porguf, make your way southeast to the Spinebreak, detonate some Firegleam and go through the hole it makes in the wall, then turn right (east) and use your Pullcaster to rip a grate off the wall. Crawl through the hole previously blocked by the grate, talk to an Oseram woman named Lunda, then continue east and scan the Safe text datapoint.
Make your way south and east, crawling over and under rubble until you find yourself in a chamber occupied by three Apex Tracker Burrowers and an [Apex Spikesnout]. There’s nowhere to hide in this chamber, but the machines are unlikely to chase you in the tunnel to the west if you flee, so you can pick the machines apart with hit and run tactics, if you wish. Clear out the machines, loot the room for various caches, then head up a ramp to where the Spikesnout was and use your Pullcaster on a crumbling wall - it’ll take two different attempts to finally reduce the wall to rubble.
Press on to the east and exit outside to find the source of the tunnel collapse.
How to Defeat the Rockbreaker
[Rockbreakers] are big, nasty machines, but you’re given many advantages during this battle.
First and perhaps most important, it’s possible to entirely cheese the fight if you’re patient enough. If you can get up on high ground you’ll find that this Rockbreaker’s range is limited and it can’t chase you up the rocky cliffs that surround the circular area it dwells in. You can just stay out of sight and take potshots with a Sharpshot Bow, virtually free from reprisal. It might take a while, as the Rockbreaker will spend more time burrowing around, only exposing itself intermittently.
If you choose to fight fair, the Rockbreaker is weak against Frost damage and Shock damage, and there are plenty of Chillwater Canisters strewn about to make sure you have plenty of resources to craft ammo lying around. Debuff the Rockbreaker with Frost and you’ll amplify all damage dealt as long as it remains debuffed - a useful boon, indeed.
Debuffed or not, the best target on the Rockbreaker is the Exhaust Port on its back. You’ll inflict a ton of damage if you can land a hit on this, but getting the machine to expose it may be tricky (inflicting it with Shock should give you some clear shots - make the most of them). Less valuable but more accessible targets are its four Mining Claws, which will take extra damage from your attacks and, if removed, deprive the Rockbreaker of its ability to burrow. They’re also valuable upgrade components, making them particularly appealing targets.
The Rockbreaker’s main attacks involve burrowing and bursting up from the sand under victims, sometimes with a vertical lunge, or a horizontal splash. Failing that, the Rockbreaker is fond of spitting torrents of rocks at opponents from a distance, during which you’ve little choice but to run and wait for the Rockbreaker to stop.
After the machine has been reduced to scrap, loot a chest to obtain Porguf’s Lockbox and seek out another cache to find the Oseram Forester armor, which is a very rare suit of armor with many skill bonuses that’ll improve your melee prowess.
When you’re done looting, crawl under some rubble along the eastern end of the Rockbreaker’s clearing to reach the eastern half of the Spinebreak and make your way east until you find the obstruction blocking the passage. Fortunately there are some Blaze barrels nearby, so shoot them with a fire arrow to detonate them and clear the Spinebreak.
Return to Porguf to complete the quest.