"It crawls like a spider, and carries a container on its back. I wonder what's inside?"
―Aloy, upon sighting a Shell-Walker

The Shell-Walker is a machine in Horizon Zero Dawn. It is a crab-like machine that often carries a hexagonal cargo crate on its back. They always move in groups.


With their six legs and two utility limbs, Shell-Walkers are very similar in appearance to hermit or fiddler crabs.

They possess eight limbs, six of which are used for locomotion while the other two are used as tools. While one of their non-walking limbs is shaped like a crab's pincer, the other features a shield emitter. Atop the main chassis is a large metal cargo container. The container is detachable, and it is not uncommon to come across a dump site with several containers stacked atop each other.


The Shell-Walkers have likely been around for some time, peacefully moving raw materials and parts from the gatherers, like the Lancehorn, to the Cauldrons to produce more machines. However, the Derangement occurred, an event in which the HEPHAESTUS sub-function of GAIA deemed humans a threat and made all the machines more aggressive, and started designing more combat-oriented machines. Due to the importance of their cargo, the Shell-Walkers were given new hardware to defend themselves from humans.

They do not seem to hunt for potential targets, and instead mainly focus on their task to transport materials.


The most important ability of the Shell-Walker is the cargo container that they carry, which can also be found dumped or stacked with other containers. They often contain valuable supplies.

While not strictly a combat machine and not very effective in a fight, the Shell-Walker is equipped to defend itself and will not hesitate to fight back if threatened. Once alerted, the Shell-Walker will activate the energy shield mounted on its left arm, which can block substantial damage if held right. The Shell-Walker will fire back with its lightning gun while also attempting to run down a hostile. While the projectile is not hard to dodge, it can do heavy damage. The Shell-Walker can also perform melee attacks with the pincer on their right arm.

Individually, these machines are very weak. As such, they always travel in groups. One can often hear them before they even see them, as Shell-Walkers are very communicative machines, constantly warbling and chirping to each other, and they make a lot of noise as they walk.


Name Damage Type Primary Damage Secondary Damage Trigger Range
Claw Combo Melee 200 - 2m - 8m (1st)

3.5m - 12m (2nd)

Multi-Claw Strike Melee 200 - 2m - 8m
Shield Claw Strike Melee 200 - 2m - 8m
360 Shock Shock Shock-Icon 300 - 0m - 12m
Charging Shock Blast Shock Shock-Icon 80 - 10m - 30m
Homing Shock Blast Shock Shock-Icon 140 30 per second for 5 seconds 30m - 60m
Shock Volley Shock Shock-Icon 80 - 30m - 60m


Image: Component: Information: Weakness: Strength:
ShellWalker-Body Body Hard outer casing to protect synthetic muscle and operational systems. None Shock Shock-Icon
ShellWalker-CrateHolders Crate Holders Destroying this component will detach the cargo container. All None
ShellWalker-LightningGun Lightning Gun Destroying this component disables the ranged Shock attacks. Tear Tear-Icon None
ShellWalker-PowerGenerator Power Generator Destroying this component disables the ranged Shock attacks. All None
ShellWalker-ShieldClaw Shield Claw Destroying this component disables the energy shield. Tear Tear-Icon None



  • During development, Shell-Walkers were originally named Scuttlers. The original name can still be seen in the description for the Carja Ropecaster Tutorial.
  • The Shell-Walker is the only HEPHAESTUS machine in the game to be based on an invertebrate life form, appearing to resemble a crustacean. This feature is more pronounced in FARO Chariot Peacekeepers, who are built to have insectoid appendages or cephalopodic features.
  • If you destroy a Shell-Walker's crate holders, it will attempt to hold the crate with its claw, unless that too is destroyed.


Acquisition Class Broadhead - Charger - Fireclaw FW - Frostclaw FW - Glinthawk - Grazer - Lancehorn - Rockbreaker - Scrapper - Snapmaw - Strider - Trampler
Combat Class Ravager - Sawtooth - Scorcher FW - Stalker - Stormbird - Thunderjaw
Communication Class Tallneck
Recon Class Longleg - Watcher (Redeye Watcher)
Transport Class Behemoth - Fire Bellowback - Freeze Bellowback - Shell-Walker
Chariot Class Corrupted Machines - Corruptor - Deathbringer - Metal Devil
Unknown Class Control TowerFW