The Shadow Carja, also referred to as the Carja in Shadow, is a splinter tribe made up of those Carja who wholeheartedly supported the former Sun-King Jiran's war against the other tribes or those living in the area that fell under Shadow Carja control. After Avad took to the throne and put an end to the violence, these supporters broke off, claimed a citadel in Sunfall – the far west of the map – and renamed themselves the Shadow Carja. Often dressed in black and red, the Shadow Carja are impolite and look down on outsiders.
Prior to the events of Horizon Zero Dawn, the Shadow Carja were members of the original Carja tribe who were devoted to King Jiran. However, with the king becoming increasingly mentally unstable and ordering the Red Raids that afflicted other tribes, a civil war broke out in Meridian and resulted in the overthrow and death of Jiran.
The remaining loyalists fled Meridian, placing themselves in the summer palace of King Jiran at Sunfall as the new Carja, but under the influence of Helis, they called themselves the Carja in Shadow, as they hoped to regain their place in Meridian.
Soon after, Sylens presented to the Shadow Carja an entity of high intelligence, HADES, as a being from their mythology, the Buried Shadow, and formed the Eclipse. With the being's influence, the Shadow Carja became adept with the Old Ones' technology, from Focuses to machines, planning to recapture Meridian.
- High Priest Bahavas
- Itamen (defected)
- Dowager Queen Nasadi (defected)
- Relentless Shivin
- Savage Tarav
- Uthid (defected)
- Merciful Yusis