Cauldrons are optional dungeons in Horizon Zero Dawn that increase the amount of machines that Aloy can interact with and control. There are a total of four Cauldrons hidden throughout the Horizon Zero Dawn game world that players can find and explore. Inside they will find various machines blocking their way. Making it all the way to the core of a Cauldron will increase the amount of machines that can be overridden using Aloy’s armament.

Cauldron Sigma

The first Cauldron that players come across is Cauldron Sigma. Nestled within the Embrace, this Cauldron is actually brought to Aloy’s attention thanks to a Nora named Dral, who tells of a mysterious place where machines can be found guarding some old ruins. Head to the location marked on the map to find the entrance.

Once inside the Cauldron, things get trickier, like the other Cauldrons around the map, players will need to make their way through various puzzles and enemies before they make it to the core, where they can face off against that Cauldron’s boss machine. With the boss machine down, it’s time to override the core and unlock new machines that can be tamed.

Completing this Cauldron unlocks the following machines for overriding:

  • Grazer
  • Scrapper
  • Lanchorn
  • Sawtooth

Cauldron Rho

The first Cauldron that you’ll have to find on your own can be located in the stretch of mountains on the southern side of the map’s center area. The front door is locked by default, so you’ll need to enter through it using a broken area underneath. Look for a way down to enter the Cauldron.

Once inside, use the turbines to make your way through the area. There are several large enemies in this Cauldron, and you’ll find it much more of a challenge than the previous dungeon. The main boss in this area is a Snapma, as well as a nearby Sawtooth (which we managed to anger during our battle). Take out the Snapmaw by exploiting its weaknesses with your Focus.

Once the Snapmaw is down, override the core to unlock the following machines:

  • Longleg
  • Shell-Walker
  • Trampler
  • Ravager
  • Snapmaw 


Cauldron Zeta

The third Cauldron in the game can be found to the northwest, up in along the northern edge of the map. This is a higher level area, so you’ll want to wait until you’ve gained quite a few levels before making your way up to this area. This Cauldron is easily one of the most challenging, thanks to the addition of a Thunderjaw as the main boss. There are several Watchers around the area, so be careful as you approach the entrance.

Once inside, use your Focus to find the way forward and make your way down to the core. Completing this Cauldron will unlock the following machines for overriding:

  • Rockbreaker
  • Stormbird
  • Thunderjaw

Cauldron XI

The final Cauldron in the game, this dungeon is located to the southwest of the Meridian area. Head to its location to find that several Shadow Carja have found their way inside. This dungeon is pretty challenging as a whole, so bring plenty of medical supplies along for the trip.

Unlike the other Cauldrons, you won’t be facing a machine as the boss this time around. Instead, you’ll have to hold off against several Shadow Carja as the invaded the area. It’s a tough fight, but you shouldn’t have too much issue if you’re carrying the best weapons in the game.

Once you clear this dungeon, and override the core, you’ll unlock the following machines for overriding:

  • Glinthawk
  • Stalker
  • Fire Bellowback
  • Freeze Bellowback
  • Behemoth 

Now that you know all about the Cauldrons, it’s time to jump back over to our Horizon Zero Dawn guide, where we have plenty of additional guides to help you get a mount, and even find all the Power Cells you need for the Ancient Armory quest.