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"The lesson will be taught in due time, Aloy. Until then, we wait."
This article contains heavy spoilers. Read ahead with caution.


"I don't know what piece of Elisabet I'm missing. I don't know what you have that I don't. I looked through all the data from your Focus. You were raised as an outcast. Shunned and isolated, just like me. So what's the difference?! What's my defect?"
―Beta to Aloy

Beta is a major character in Horizon Forbidden West. She is a genetic clone of 21st century roboticist and engineer Dr. Elisabet Sobeck. She was created by Far Zenith and is the genetic twin of Aloy.

Appearance

As a genetic clone of Elisabet Sobeck, Beta is physically identical to both Dr. Sobeck and Aloy, having red hair and green eyes. However, Beta is both thinner and paler than Aloy, likely owing to lack of sunlight and exercise.

Unlike most people, Beta keeps her Focus equipped on her left temple rather than her right.

History

Life with Far Zenith

Beta was created by Far Zenith on their mission to Earth using Elizabeth Sobeck’s genetic code as the key allowing them access to Zero Dawn terraforming systems, and GAIA. While heading towards Earth, Beta was allowed access to the APOLLO training interface managed by the Zeniths, allowing her to study various topics as permitted.

Sometime on the way to Earth, Beta was allowed to enter a small hideout created by Tilda. She described it as a small lake house, and was allowed to talk to Tilda, who did not reveal any critical information about herself, or the Zeniths.

Upon arriving on Earth, she was forced to work with the Zeniths, who claimed it was her responsibility to rebuild the terraforming system. However, she began to suspect the Zeniths sent the Extinction Signal to trigger HADES to wipe Earth clean and start over. When taken out on missions within the confines of a Specter drone, Beta witnessed the Zeniths wipe out the primitive tribal people they came across. Beta hoped to one day escape, but knew she lacked the skills to survive in the wilds.

She was eventually brought to the Proving Lab, where her genetic code allowed the Zeniths to open the gene-locked door and access a copy of the GAIA root kernel, albeit lacking sub functions. But as she retracted the RECLUSE SPIDER arms, she inadvertently exposed Aloy, another Elisabet clone created by GAIA. Beta was quickly removed from the scene by the Specters while Erik attempted to kill Aloy. However, from that brief encounter, Beta saw the opportunity to escape that she had been searching for.

Escape

The Zeniths had Beta retrieve APOLLO, ARTEMIS, and ELEUTHIA, presumably by the time Aloy reactivated her own GAIA kernel. It was during her retrieval of ELEUTHIA that Beta enacted her escape plan.

She convinced the Zeniths that ELEUTHIA's acquisition could be accomplished faster if she had the GAIA data kernel with her. While transmitting ELEUTHIA back to the Zeniths' base, she also beamed a distress signal to GAIA. Then she distracted her current handler, Verbena, long enough to seal herself in one of the facility's ectogenic chambers and altered its logs so it'd register 236 pods instead of 237, having included her pod number in her message. Additionally, she ripped out her implant and left a message in it to Aloy in case she perished in the attempt, informing her of her actions and how far along the Zeniths' plans were. By the time Aloy and Varl found her, a pair of Specters had arrived to retrieve Beta. Varl took Beta into hiding while Aloy dealt with the Zenith Specters. Afterwards, she was taken back to the Base.

Upon waking, she began experiencing "Simulacrum Withdrawal Syndrome" (a side-effect of removing her implant) and hid in the server room in a panic. Thus, she requested a Focus from Aloy to ease her symptoms. Once she rose to her feet, she relayed what information she knew about her creation and the Zeniths, but was surprised regarding Aloy's assumptions that her former handlers were descendants of the original colonists.

Once she answered all of Aloy's questions, she guessed that her counterpart was planning to manufacture an army of machines to defeat the Zeniths, only to learn that GAIA hadn't had enough subordinate functions necessary to take on HEPHAESTUS. She then started having a panic attack and began second-guessing her own decisions, fearing the Zeniths would find her and take her back. Once Aloy calmed her down, Beta agreed to use her skills to help GAIA.

While Aloy ventured back for the second subordinate function, Varl came to check on Beta. Initially, their conversation focused on how they might capture HEPHAESTUS before getting to know each other. Eventually, she got to talking about Tilda, whom she suspected was different than the other Zeniths. After Aloy returned from her mission, GAIA sent her to Beta and Varl. As Aloy entered the room, Beta was watching her first datapoint, which Aloy nostalgically recalled helped her through tough times. She told Aloy what she knew about Tilda, but frustrated her counterpart when she couldn't provide any information on why Tilda cut her off. Aloy then left her alone.

After Aloy returned with the last of the three subordinate functions, Beta had come up with a plan to capture HEPHAESTUS. Because it was too large to be beamcast or contained in Aloy's cartridge, their only option was call it to Cauldron GEMINI, where the original GAIA had built two data cores after a seismic event, though GAIA would need to be physically transported there. However, Beta pointed out the many flaws in the plan: when GAIA were to begin the merge with HEPHAESTUS, MINERVA wouldn't be able to conceal the resulting power surge from the Zeniths; Aloy proposed Erend, Zo, Alva, and Kotallo attempt a diversion with pulse generators at the other Cauldrons. Even so, Beta added that HEPHAESTUS had evolved beyond Elisabet's Alpha Clearance before Aloy helped her realize that they would have to find Ted Faro's Omega clearance, but the only problem was that it would be in Thebes, his private bunker in San Francisco. Fortuitously, Aloy recalled that the Quen had set up a base in the city and suggested Alva might be able to help. While Aloy traveled there, Beta began to work on fabricating GAIA's transport rig and the pulse generators.

Going to GEMINI

By the time Aloy returned with Omega Clearance, the transport rig and generators were complete. Unfortunately, given HEPHAESTUS's proliferation throughout the Cauldron network, the merge would still take an estimated 35 hours; however, if both Aloy and Beta were to operate the merge, the completion time would be reduced to a mere 4.5 hours.

The thought of possibly being captured again by the Zeniths was too much for Beta: when Varl's pleas failed to move her, Aloy stepped in. The two's argument grew heated, culminating in Aloy calling Beta out for being unable to do what was necessary. It was at this point that Beta broke down, admitting that she saw herself as defective and wondered why she lacked the courage. This confession led Aloy to make one of her own: that her strength to push forward through the impossible came from Rost. Having reached an understanding, Beta agreed to go to GEMINI on one condition: should the Zeniths find them, Aloy would kill Beta rather than let her live as their slave again. While Aloy finished her preparations, Beta and GAIA developed an visual interface for the merge, in order to improve its efficiency.

Recaptured and final freedom

Beta, GAIA, Varl and Aloy went to GEMINI and succeeded in trapping HEPHAESTUS. As Beta and Aloy began the merging process, they are stopped by the arrival of Far Zenith, having been unconvinced by the team's trick: in a matter of seconds, Aloy was incapacitated, Varl was killed, and Beta and GAIA were captured by the Zeniths. Aloy could not bring herself to kill Beta, leaving her in the hands of captors once again. Gerard took Beta back to their base and demanded she resume the process to merge HEPHAESTUS with GAIA. Beta resisted, so simulations would be ran to torture her, with said simulations inducing feelings of isolation and despair.

Tilda van der Meer, who had betrayed the Zeniths during the GEMINI mission and helped Aloy escape, opened the Data Channel to communicate with Beta upon Aloy's request. There, Aloy sees Beta being tortured and communicates with her "sister". Aloy promises to come for Beta and secretly devises a plan: when they arrive, Beta will free HEPHAESTUS from containment and inject it into Far Zenith's computer network, which will allow the subfunction to rapidly manufacture machines to neutralize the Specter army. Beta promised to hold on as long as she could until Aloy was ready to rescue her.

Once Aloy and her allies assault the base, Beta executed her part of the plan and unleashed HEPHAESTUS on the Specters, while Aloy and her team killed all of the Zeniths. Aloy reached Beta and freed her from Far Zenith's torture device, and the sisters briefly reunited before being interrupted by Tilda. She told them about Nemesis, the rogue AI that sent out the Extinction Signal that woke HADES, as well as the other subordinate functions. Having discarded Beta as an inferior copy for good after meeting Aloy, Tilda demands that Aloy abandon Earth in the Zenith's spaceship in order to escape Nemesis, but Aloy refused to abandon her friends and planet.

In response, Tilda summoned the Specter Prime in an attempt to subdue and kidnap Aloy. Beta fled and took cover while Aloy battled and destroyed Specter Prime, killing Tilda in the process. Beta hugged Aloy upon her victory, and they and their allies returned to their Base to prepare for the inevitable arrival of Nemesis, whom Tilda revealed in en route to destroy the planet now that HADES failed to do so. Beta began speculating on how to recapture HEPHAESTUS, noting it has very likely grown stronger since it's escape, while vowing that they would be ready for the rogue AI.

Personality

Having received an extensive college level education from APOLLO, Beta is remarkably intelligent, surpassing Aloy in technical expertise and displaying a firm grip on strategic insight.

However, her traumatic upbringing has left her with severe anxiety and a crippling fear of the Zeniths, to the point of having a panic attack when she realized how far ahead Far Zenith was in their acquisition of GAIA. Beta has little interpersonal experience, and as such is incredibly reclusive and struggles with opening up to people.

It is only with Aloy's encouragement that Beta begins to find courage and confidence against seemingly impossible odds.

Abilities

  • Alpha Clearance: As a genetic clone of Elisabet Sobeck, Beta has high-level clearance to Zero Dawn facilities in the same manner as Aloy. Upon Aloy's return from Thebes, Beta is given Ted Faro's Omega Clearance to grant her a degree of control over HEPHAESTUS.
  • Genius-Level Intellect: Combining Elisabet Sobeck's innate genius with education from APOLLO, Beta is a polymath in several fields.

Relationships

Zeniths

The Zeniths created Beta to aid their search for a copy of GAIA on Earth. To the Zeniths, Beta is seen only as a tool. They chose to have minimal contact with her, branding themselves her "benefactors." Due to their complete control over her, and the isolation they forced her into, Beta is incredibly afraid and resentful of the Zeniths. At one point, she expresses that she would prefer to die than be recaptured by them.

Tilda van der Meer

Tilda disagreed with the other Zeniths' decision to have little contact with Beta, as well as their choice to instruct her only in topics that would be needed to recover GAIA. She wanted to give Beta some level of socialization, and appreciation for art. They were friendly for a time, until Tilda closed the hidden data tunnel she shared with Beta. Suddenly being cut off from her only human contact deeply hurt Beta, and increased her mistrust of the Zeniths in general.

Aloy

The both of them first met in LATOPOLIS (or Hades Proving Lab). They met again during the main quest Cradle of Echoes at the Ninmah Research Lab (referred to as "SOS location" during the quest) where Beta hid herself in to escape from the Zeniths after finding out what is believed to be their true goal. There she was rescued by Varl and Aloy. Despite both being clones of Dr. Sobeck, Aloy and Beta have incredibly different personalities which led to friction early in their relationship. Beta was frequently dismayed that Aloy and her companions were not farther in their progress to restoring GAIA, and Aloy was often annoyed at Beta's pessimism. It is later revealed to Aloy that Beta is afraid to be captured by the Zeniths and be forced back into her previous lifestyle, which consists of nothing but training and interaction from virtual avatars from the APOLLO database. This lead her to get Aloy to promise to kill her if she were ever captured, so she would never go through that again.

During the main quest Gemini, after successfully trapping HEPHAESTUS. The Zeniths went directly to Cauldron GEMINI despite their diversions, this lead to her capture. As she was being taken away by Erik Visser (one of the Zeniths), she called to Aloy so that she would kill her. But Aloy was unable to. After being captured, she was forced to merge HEPHAESTUS with GAIA on her own. Tilda van der Meer opened the Data Channel to communicate with Beta upon Aloy's request. There, Aloy sees Beta being tortured and asks Tilda for more information, Tilda informed Aloy that if she resists, simulations would be ran to torture her, said simulations would then induce feelings of isolation and despair. After being told of Aloy's plans, Beta said "As long as I know you're coming for me, I can endure anything." Unbeknownst to her at the time, Tilda asked Aloy what her plan was, but she simply replied "That's between me and my sister." This marks the point where they started to see each other as sisters.

During Singularity, after Aloy defeats Tilda, she and Beta they share a tight hug before returning to The Base.

Gallery

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