Information about the quickest way to get your hands on rare weapons in Horizon Forbidden West.
Where to Get New Weapons
You’ll start the game off with a variety of Uncommon weapons and armor, and you’ll quickly find that these weapons underperform against all but the weakest of machines. Upgrading your gear is, by a significant degree, the best way to increase damage output, so you may want to seek out Rare (blue), Very Rare (purple) and Legendary (orange) weapons sooner rather than later.
New weapons can be obtained from merchants, completing quests (both main quests and side quests), in chests and other containers, by completing optional content like [Rebel Camps], gaining medals from Hunting Grounds, or completing collectible sets, like Black Boxes.
The biggest impediment to gaining access to new weapons and armor is Main Quest progression, as many areas and activities are gated behind Main Quest progress. If you can’t reach a merchant, you can peruse their wares, and if you can’t reach an activity, quest or collectible, you can’t complete it.
The best way to access new weapons and armor, then, is to advance the main questline.
How to Get Rare Weapons Quick
While getting your hands on legendary gear ASAP would be ideal, that requires a significant amount of story progress to even access the content you’ll need to complete. In the meantime, don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good; there are plenty of rare-quality upgrades you can get in the meantime that’ll make your life significantly easier.
First, you need to complete the main quest [The Embassy] to get access to the eastern portions of the Forbidden West. After that, the first opportunity to acquire new gear will likely come during the quest Death’s Door, during which you’ll pass by a Campfire where a Hunter is waiting, who will sell you the following weapons:
- [Frost Hunter Bow]
- Forgefire Tripcaster]
- [Slicing Shredder Gauntlet]
After completing Death’s Door you’ll be able to visit the city of Plainsong, where another Hunter will sell you the same weapons, plus the following:
- [Slicing Hunter Bow]
- [Acid Warrior Bow]
- [Shearing Warrior Bow]
- [Hardweave Sharpshot Bow]
Keep in mind you’ll need both Metal Shards and usually a specific machine part to purchase a weapon. Most of the requirements for these weapons are fairly low, however, and you can usually get the materials required (rare weapons usually require a “Circulator” part) by killing the machine any way you see fit - knocking off specific parts to harvest specific components isn’t usually required at this phase, although the materials required to upgrade rare weapons are another matter…