Forza Motorsport is an exhilarating racing simulator that offers an immersive and realistic experience for car enthusiasts and gamers alike. Developed by Turn 10 Studios and published by Microsoft Studios, Forza Motorsport has been a flagship title in the racing genre for years, and with each new installment, it continues to push the boundaries of what a racing game can be.
Forza Motorsport is the reboot of the famous Turn10 and Microsoft Franchise. Thanks to Microsoft we had the pleasure of getting our hands on the title a few weeks early to write our review today. Forza Motorsport brought a lot of new features that we will analyze one by one.
The ForzaTech Engine is the graphics engine that has always powered the various Forza Motorsport games. The guys at Turn10 developed the latest iteration with performance and graphical fidelity in mind. Thanks to a years-long research and development study, they managed to balance the various things and brought out many new features. Finally we have RayTracin and a whole new global illumination system.
Ray tracing has been introduced in a very clever way. In fact, on the XBOX Series While for all the other parts we have classic lighting and Cube mapping. This means that the XBOX can provide high-performance RayTracing and even 60 FPS. In fact, the modes proposed on XBOX are, native 4K and 60 FPS, dynamic 4K with ray tracing and 60 fps and 4K native with ray tracing at 30 fps.
Precisely thanks to these technical choices Turn10 has managed to find the right balance between performance and graphic quality. While on PC we have a completely different story. In fact there we have no constraints and we have Ray Tracing implemented in all surfaces. So much heavier from a graphic point of view. But on the PC we can also afford it.
In addition to the lighting system, the ForzaTech Engine also has a revamped Weather Engine. In fact, thanks to skilful work, Turn10 has taken some parts of the Weather system from Playground and its Horizon 5, but has rethought it, making it lighter and less resource-hungry.
This is because Horizon has a single scenario to render (albeit much larger), while Forza Motorsport has to render many circuits in different parts of the world. This allowed Turn10 to rethink the Weather Engine and implement volumetric 3D Clouds and dynamic weather change during the race.
In fact we could go from rain to clear and from night to day and vice versa. All of this will obviously also have repercussions on the presence of fog and the conditions of the circuit.
The Folliage and tree system present in the various circuits is also completely new. In fact, in addition to the divine implementation of ambient occlusion, Turn10 has made all the vegetation 3D and created a folliage system (borrowed from Playground).
All this projects us into a magical environment… almost FABLE-like. The rivers and rocks were rendered in photorealistic mode. In short, playing Forza Motorsport is an all-round experience, not only from a driving point of view but also from a landscape point of view.
Forza Motorsport has more than twenty tracks and more than 500 cars available and unlockable with game progression
Circuit of Barcelona-Catalonia
Grand Oak Speedway
Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit
Laguna Seca circuit
Le Mans-Sarthe International Circuit
Virginia International Speedway
Forza Motorsport being a LIVE Game will have constant updates. These will begin with the addition of new tracks starting from 2024. In short, Live Game is the future of simulators (see Microsoft Flight Simulator) and we are very happy about it!
Forza Motorsport see career mode brought back to its roots. Players will start with slow cars and gradually work their way up to faster vehicles over time.
The career itself will be divided into tours which will limit the number of cars you can participate with. Restrictions include vehicle type, nationality and performance index class of your car.
Each tour is made up of five different cups and each cup is made up of five different races. This means approximately 25 races for each tour.
The developer has confirmed that after launch more tours will arrive with new cars and tracks added directly into them.
Forza Motorsport also introduces a new collision system that allows realistic visual damage and very realistic structural damage depending on the difficulty level. In fact, if we hit our opponents or parts of the circuit we will finally have structural damage which will or may not, depending on the severity, affect our race. Furthermore, the pit experience has also been redesigned, adding dynamic scenes in the pits and finally also giving us graphic feedback on what happens inside the pit lane.
The replay system did not introduce any major innovations to the already excellent system of previous titles. It allows us very immersive cinematic sequences, with the possibility of viewing from different angles, from the helicopter and from the other opponents we have alongside. It also allows you to quickly switch to photo mode which allows you to capture and clean up the image to take beautiful shots to share with friends on social media.
Talking now about the new penalty system during the race, we can say that it is a godsend. Finally you won’t be able to push or cut corners without remaining unpunished. We like this a lot. And it was implemented very well . However, as regards fuel consumption and tire wear, an excellent job was done, because now after a couple of laps and soft tires we feel, in the true sense of the word, the car slipping away from our control. This is ultra realistic. A good job has been done on the outside of the production of the cars, meticulously reproducing the line and aerodynamics but we must say that there is still a lot of work on the interior design…. but we hope that future LIVE updates will fix things .
Now let’s talk about the various game modes. Forza Motorsport from this point of view does not differ much from its predecessors. On the game system, Forza has remained the same as always, free races, championship races, score progression system… unfortunately the thing that negatively surprised us is the absence of qualifications to decide the position in the starting grid . In fact, in the championships, you will have to do 3 free practice laps which are only used to get you familiar with the track. But then once you’ve finished these you’ll have the opportunity to choose your position on the grid! The further you decide to start, the fewer bonus points you will have. This system is still a bit fragile in our opinion, it risks falsifying the race…
I hope Turn10 comes to its senses and also brings the old qualifying mode as an option.
The Multiplayer part of the title was tested satisfactorily thanks to competition sessions with the developers and other colleagues. Here too we had an excellent feeling with the mode and we did not notice any lag or problems whatsoever.
The offline modes (tournaments and championships) are the modes that impressed us the most. Very rewarding thanks to the new scoring systems. Well implemented, although we expect some additions from Turn10 to give a little more spice to these modes.
As for the scoring system, a new system has been introduced in Forza Motorsport that rewards the feeling you have with the car. This feeling is rewarded with a score that allows you to have credits to upgrade the car by buying parts. Furthermore, during the various phases of the track the scoring system will also give the driver votes on how the corners are taken or overtaking is done. There has been an enormous amount of work done here by Turn10 that has far surpassed what Sony has given us to date with Gran Turismo. As a final note, let’s talk about the new version of the DRIVATAR System. Here we have excellence. The system is finally as intelligent as, if not more than, a human. The AI cars are very competitive and try to overtake whenever they can. Furthermore, if they are pressured with our reckless driving, they are induced into errors by sending them off the track in the curves. Great job Turn10!!!
In conclusion we can say that Turn10 and Microsoft have innovated and renewed a franchise, trying to stay with their feet on the ground, but giving the virtual pilots a serious system of scores and penalties that was needed in this type of genre. Microsoft’s SimArcade becomes more Sim and less Arcade. Even to the eyes, the renewed graphics system brought a breath of fresh air, leaving us speechless as to how the various implementation choices were balanced. This Forza Motorsport will be my driving simulator for many years to come, which will obviously be paired with my first love, Microsoft Flight Simulator. Here’s a GEEK curiosity to close. Microsoft Flight Simulator shares part of the Forza Tech Engine with the new Forza Motorsport… and it shows!