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Horizon Zero Dawn collectibles guide

Finding all of Horizon Zero Dawn’s collectibles for fun and profit

Jeffrey Parkin (he/him) has been writing video game guides for Polygon for almost seven years. He has learned to love just about every genre of game that exists.

There are four types of collectibles in Horizon Zero Dawn: vantage points, ancient vessels, metal flowers, and Banuk artifacts. The vantage points provide some backstory (way, way back stories) for the world you’re exploring and learning about. You can collect and sell the others as sets to three specialty merchants in Meridian.

We’re not going to walk you through the exact location of every one (there’s a lot of collectibles), but we will point you in the right direction and give you some hints.

Also, make sure you visit tallnecks while you’re looking for collectibles. The maps we’re about to tell you to buy will point you to a general location, but the tallnecks will fill in the topography and help you plan your routes.

We should also note that we’re only talking here about the things that the game officially calls collectibles. During your time in Horizon Zero Dawn, you’ll also find datapoints — text and audio files — but these don’t go toward your completion percentage or achievements. And there are way too many of them to talk about (and they’re both hard to find and all over the map).

Table of contents

Special items — maps

Treasure maps are part of Horizon Zero Dawn’s extensive meat-based economy.
Special maps mark the general area where a collectible can be found.

Some merchants sell special items (they have a star icon). Check these out any time you see them. They’re maps that mark the general location of the collectibles you’re looking for. There are four maps for each of the four types of collectibles. They’re pretty cheap, so buy them any time you see them, too.

Vantage points

Apocashitstorm is our new favorite word.

Vantage points are 12 messages from the past that you can find and listen to with your focus. They tell the story of Bashar Mati and his “Apocashitstorm Tour.” They’re brief messages, though, so don’t expect grand cinematics. They just frame a story that you have to fill in on your own (and with datapoints from bunkers).

How to find them

You ironically can’t see vantage points with your focus, but you can pick up the supply boxes next to them.

Like the name implies, vantage points tend to be high up. When you get to the location shown on your map, look for something to climb. Sometimes there’s also a rappel point nearby to help you find your target, but not always. There is, however, always a supply crate next to vantage points that will show up on your focus.

Ancient vessels

Coffee cups. He’s talking about coffee cups.
See? Coffee cups.

The ancient vessels that Studious Palas is seeking are things that we can totally get behind — the first thing we’re going to look for in the apocalyptic ruins of civilization is a coffee cup (the second is coffee).

How do I find them?

An ancient vessel and some other strange artifacts from long ago.

Ancient vessels are always near Old Ones ruins. They’re found in ancient debris piles marked with a purple very rare icon. They’ll show up when you scan with your focus, but they are usually out in the open.

What are they worth?

Modification boxes are like getting modification, but with an extra step.

You can sell A set of four ancient vessels Studious Palas for a reward box containing 500 shards and some modifications.

Metal flowers

Twenty years, you say? Why, that’s about the same time that [SPOILERS].
Metal flowers (and all of these collectibles, actually) are marked with a purple very rare/special icon.

The 30 metal flowers that dot the landscape are a bit of a mystery. Even Kudiv, who is looking for them, doesn’t have a good answer about what they are or where they came from. His only real hint is that they started showing up around the same time the machines started to go mad which is interesting for … reasons. [SPOILERS] reasons.

How do I find them?

Finding metal flowers is a mixed bag of difficulty. Some of them are right off of the path. Others are tucked in some hard to find (or well-protected) nook. And one is infuriatingly underground — in the bunker Aloy found as a child near Mother’s Watch.

Metal flowers are always surrounded by a triangular bed of non-metal flowers.

There are two things that help you pinpoint them, though. First, they’ll show up on your focus if you’re close enough. Second, they’re surrounded by a triangle of pinkish-purple (Is that mauve? We have no idea what color mauve is.) flowers. This unnatural shape is easy to pick out from a distance (assuming you can see it).

What are they worth?

Here are some modifications and also some modifications that you have to work to find out what they are.

You can sell a set of 10 metal flowers to Kudiv for a reward box containing 1,000 shards and a bunch of modifications. That sounds like a lot of money, but it takes a lot of time to collect 10 flowers.

Banuk figures

So they’re like John Wayne Gacy’s clown paintings?
We assume these paintings are Banuk for “Collectible here!”

Banuk figures are six cultural artifacts (artefacts) that are hidden in hard to reach places around the world. Cantarah is working to repatriate them to the Banuk.

How do I find them?

Banuk paintings mark the paths to the figures.

Banuk figures take a bit of climbing to get to, but they’re actually the easiest to find because Arnak helpfully graffiti’d his way to where he planted them. Get near the location on your map, then look for something to climb. You’ll know you’re going the right way if you see the Banuk paintings on the rocks.

What are they worth?


Give The three pairs of Banuk figures to Cantarah for a reward box with 500 shards and some modifications.

The next level of puzzles.

Take a break from your day by playing a puzzle or two! We’ve got SpellTower, Typeshift, crosswords, and more.