It's rare that alpha builds leak, let alone ten months after launch, but that's just what's happened to Horizon Forbidden West. A file called 'TestGame' was uploaded two days ago on a popular PlayStation hacking platform. As it turns out, that file was the Forbidden West alpha build complete with a debug menu.
As reported by Insider Gaming, having the debug-enabled version of the Decima Engine means that people will be able to reverse engineer the game, and potentially build their own PC ports ahead of any official Sony ones. It also means that players will be able to unpack Horizon Forbidden West like never before.
"For people that don't know, this is not just any test game. It's Horizon Forbidden West, but an alpha version of it, made when devs had to send it to production so that testers can test it remotely during COVID times," one commenter said on the leaked build's website.
Aside from giving people the ability to possibly reverse engineer the game and dig into Horizon Forbidden West, it may also contain cut content or scrapped ideas, making for some interesting discoveries that could shine a light on alternate directions for certain aspects of the game. We've seen similar situations in the past with the infamous Half-Life 2 leaks, though they happened prior to launch. Regardless, those leaks are still being used by the community to this day, over 20 years later.
However, sharing this information is already proving difficult, with DMCAs being handed out to those posting any leaked specifics. As such, it may be a while before the contents of this alpha build are made public knowledge, and any discoveries may land posters with takedowns and strikes. And whether this has any far reaching impacts beyond Horizon Forbidden West remains to be seen, but it's an already unprecedented leak for current-gen.
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