Breaking Even is a side quest in Horizon Forbidden West where Aloy uncovers the mystery of a cave-in at The Spinebreak, a tunnel between two areas of the tribe lands, and finds the door code to a cache of supplies.
It’s very likely that you come across The Spinebreak much earlier in your adventure than you can actually find the code though. It’s easy to find the eastern entrance while you’re doing the first story mission in the Forbidden West, or when you visit it during a quest called The Burning Blooms with the Carja hunter, Talanah.
The Spinebreak Code is accessible once you’ve found Camp Nowhere, a small Oseram settlement in The Stillsands - the southern desert area of the Forbidden West.
This is where you meet up with Talanah once you’ve completed The Burning Blooms, but to get the code to the door in The Spinebreak, you need to speak to the Oseram expedition leader standing next to her, Porguf.
Breaking Even Side Quest Walkthrough - Where is The Spinebreak Code in Horizon Forbidden West?
Talk to Porguf at Camp Nowhere, and he will tell you about how he lost half of his crew to a cave-in at The Spinebreak.
Agree to investigate and to look out for his family heirloom lockbox, then head east to the western entrance of The Spinebreak.
Inside, use your spear to loot the cars you can scan with your Focus, then clear the Firegleam Blocked path at the end of the tunnel.
Next, look to your right and tear open the vent with your Pullcaster, then speak with the trapped Oseram crew members on the other side.
After the conversation, continue forward and there’s a note you can scan with your Focus. This is the first data from Josh, the person who left the supplies behind the locked door in The Spinebreak.
Continue through the collapsed tunnel, looting as you go, and at the end you will emerge in a chamber filled with tough, Apex machines. There are three Apex Tracker Burrowers and one Apex Spikesnout.
As always, you have two options: the Stealth option or the Loud option.
If you’re the loud type, the Burrowers have conveniently exposed scanners on their back which are ripe for shooting off. While the Spikesnout is particularly weak to Plasma and can be made Brittle with cold damage to exploit its many weak spots.
For the quieter option, scan the area with your focus and you can see some concealing mushrooms. Shoot them with an arrow, move into the stealth field and you should be able to pick off the Burrowers with Silent Strikes until just the Spikesnout remains.
When they’re defeated, loot the room then scan the back wall with your Focus. You can then use your Pullcaster to rip open a hole in the wall to continue.
As you make your way out into the open clearing, ominous noises hint that an even bigger fight might be in store for Aloy.
In the clearing, you’re attacked by the giant burrowing land-whale known as a Rockbreaker - one of the tougher machines in the game.
To take it down, focus on dealing electrical damage to stun it and stop it from burrowing. Or you can try and use its other weakness, cold, to inflict Brittle and deal extra damage to its many exposed weak points.
Generally, you want to dodge roll out of the way of the Rockbreaker’s initial attack when it bursts out of the ground - which is easier said than done - then follow up with your own attacks while it’s exposed.
Focus your fire on the weak spots at its claws, the large glowing exhaust ports on its back, and the raised fins above its head.
For easy cold damage, lead the Rockbreaker over to one of the dead Frost Bellowbacks littering the arena. Shoot them while the Rockbreaker is close and the explosion will really help out.
With the Rockbreaker defeated, again loot the area, including the armor from the superior supply cache in the middle, then continue to the other side of the clearing.
Finding The Spinebreak door code
Inside this side of the tunnel, use fire or explosive ammo to ignite the blaze containers next to the wall and blast a path forward.
This shouldn’t be the only hole your blasting has made though. Look to your right and there should be another opening in the wall with a note inside.
Scan it with your Focus and you will find The Spinebreak Door Code: 2054.
Go through the first hole you made, which leads to the eastern side of the tunnel, turn right and enter the code.
With that, make your way back to Camp Nowhere, speak to Porguf and you have completed the side quest!
There are plenty more topics to cover in the Tenakth tribe lands, so check out our Horizon Forbidden West guide.