Horizon Forbidden West flying: how to unlock the Sunwing mount

Horizon Forbidden West flying: Two Sunwings fly over the jungle in Horizon Forbidden West
(Image credit: Guerrilla Games)

In Horizon Forbidden West, flying can be a great way to traverse the sprawling open world map. Not only does it provide much-needed speed, it also gives you an advantage over your enemies as you rain down hellfire from the skies. 

One of Horizon Forbidden West’s best features is Aloy’s ability to override machines that inhabit the world. While taking over a massive Thunderjaw and having it do your bidding is a ton of fun, we don’t think anything really beats the sheer practicality of unlocking the ability to fly on the back of a Sunwing.

You’ll encounter Sunwings pretty early on in the game, but won’t be able to override them and make them docile until you progress a fair way into the main story. Cauldrons are traditionally where you’d unlock such an ability, but in this case, the area you need to explore is gated off by a key mission. 

Worry not, however, as we’ve put together this guide to help you take to the skies, covering how to get the Sunwing override code and where to find a Sunwing once you have it. 

Horizon Forbidden West flying

Horizon Forbidden West flying: how to unlock it

Aloy on a cliff face watching flying machines.

(Image credit: sony)

In order to fly, you need a Sunwing. These are Horizon Forbidden West’s answer to a pterodactyl and can prove to be formidable foes if they aren’t on your side. However, to fly one, you're going to need to bring one under your control.

To do that, you're going to need to acquire a Sunwing override. Unlike other overrides, while the Sunwing override is found in one of Horizon Forbidden West's cauldrons it's not one you will stumble across at a random moment. In order to get into Cauldron GEMINI, you'll need to complete the mission fittingly called Gemini. 

This is one of Horizon Forbidden West's main missions, so if you’ve focused on side quests, you may be a little way off. It’s the fourth to last mission in the game and comes with a recommended level of 30.

Horizon Forbidden West flying: How to get a Sunwing

Aloy flys on a Sunwing above a rocky landscape

(Image credit: Future)

Once you get the GEMINI override code, you aren’t quite done yet. Unsurprisingly, you need to get yourself a flying machine. Get your spear ready, because we’re going robo-pterodactyl hunting.

Thankfully it should be a pretty short hunt as they are easy to find. This is fairly well signposted by the game too, but in case you’ve gotten lost or aren’t tracking the mission, go to The Base.

From there, head to the west side exit. Once outside, jump down from the ledge and then from the camp, head right. You will find a fork in the road. Take the fork that heads up and to the right. Follow the path towards the top of the mountain, where you will find Sunwings. From there, just use the foliage to sneak up to one unseen and override it. 

You now have the ability to fly. This is easily one of the best unlocks in the game, and lets you move around, making a lot of things, like reaching hard to get to places much easier. You can also call your flying mount on-demand using the quick menu at the bottom of your screen. 

One thing you can do now you have the ability is fly up to several Tallnecks on the map. There are several that can be overridden quickly with the use of the Sunwing, so go clear the fog from your mini-map.

If you somehow found your way to this guide, but don't own Horizon Forbidden West, here are a couple of deals from around the web:

Patrick Dane
Gaming Guides Editor

Patrick Dane is TechRadar Gaming's Guides Editor. With nearly a decade in the games press, he's been a consistent voice in the industry. He's written for a plethora of major publications and travelled the world doing it. He also has a deep passion for games as a service and their potential to tell evolving stories. To wit, he has over 2000 hours in Destiny 2, over 1000 in Overwatch and is now deeply into Valorant.