Varl is a major character in Horizon Zero Dawn. He is a Nora Brave, the son of War-Chief Sona and the older brother of Vala, whom Aloy competed against in the Proving.


Growing up as the son of legendary Nora War-Chief Sona, Varl was constantly competing with his younger sister Vala for her attention. Once Varl came of age, he competed in the Proving and became a Brave.

When it was Vala's turn to compete, the Proving was attacked by the Eclipse, killing Vala and most of the Brave candidates. The Nora quickly formed a war party to retaliate, but in their haste for vengeance, many of them were killed in an ambush. Sona quickly recovered and gathered another party to lead a counter-attack. When Varl attempted to join them, Sona ordered him to escort the wounded to the Embrace and guard the Embrace Gates.

Getting Vengeance

Some time later, Varl was approached by Aloy about the path to Meridian. While initially confused as to why she would seek exile, Varl pointed her to Marea in Mother's Crown upon learning of Aloy's Seeker status. Before she left, Varl asked her to help search for Sona, who had gone missing after launching her attack. Varl remained at the Embrace Gates until Dran returned with word of Sona's location. Eager for revenge, Varl left the gates in the hands of his fellow Braves before heading to Devil's Thirst. Varl located the war party and Aloy, joining them just after they killed off a group of Eclipse cultists. Upon arrival, Varl was berated by Sona for disobeying orders, prompting Aloy to look around the base. The Seeker would find the location of the remaining killers: the Ring of Metal in Devil's Grief, taboo to the Nora. Agreeing with Aloy that there wasn't time to beg the Matriarchs for an exception, Varl convinced Sona to break the taboo. Aloy met Varl and the rest of the war party at Red Echoes, where they worked to disable the three checkpoints set up by the killers.

The Eclipse's Assault

"Not enough... must be... perfect!"
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Aside from Teb, Varl is the first true friend that Aloy makes among the Nora. The two form a close bond while taking vengeance on the Eclipse. While Varl's appearances are quite limited, it is apparent that the connection between Varl and Aloy remains close and unwavering throughout the game. Like many Nora, he is a Brave firm in the Nora faith, although he is willing to stray from tradition should the situation demand it. Unlike Sona, Varl is not disdainful of the Sundom, although he expresses his discomfort at being outside of the Sacred Lands.

While he respects Sona immensely, Varl has a strained relationship with his mother, due to her high standards and the pressures of having to live up to her name.


Nora Characters
High Matriarchs Jezza - Lansra - Teersa
Tribe Members Aloy - Arana - Bast - Den - Dral - Dran - Enara - Ferl - Fia - Grist - Jarg - Jarm - Jun - Karst - Lut - Marea - Muns - Nakoa - Olara - Orn - Resh - Solai - Sona - Taim - Teb - Thok - Vala - Varl - Yan
Outcasts Brom - Cren - Grata - Jom - Kam - Kurnst - Nora Keeper - Rost - Yun