Forza Motorsport is a well-respected racing series that over the years has only grown. Fortunately, this time around Playground Games has broadened their horizons (pun intended) and in a way, reinvented the series.
Forza Horizon is the newest and in my opinion best Forza yet. This time around, unlike previous Forza games, it is free roam—yeah I know, it’s amazing. There are plenty of locations to enjoy. The map is mostly open Colorado road, but still has small towns and settlements scattered around the map. There are larger towns that are great for drifting and good if you want more of an urban feel, but nothing is too big. All in all, the map is just wonderful.
The story mode does not bring disappointment, as there is plenty to do. You are an amateur racer that enters into a competition known as The Horizon Festival. You are constantly trying to gain sponsors and get to the number one slot on the popularity list. You’re also trying to beat “celebrity” racers and gain points by winning, to gain the next wristband color. Earning wristbands is pretty much just getting to more challenging and rewarding races whilst upgrading your cars along the way.
In this game, you will find yourself competing in some outrageous races. These races consist of racing planes, helicopters, hot air balloons, etc. It’s absolutely crazy. There will be a set car to use and if you win you get to keep it! Another thing added is street racing. These will bring you to those larger towns I talked about earlier. They’re another nice distraction from the usual standard races.
The racetracks bring you all over lots of terrain and offers different driving styles in turn like automatic, manual and manual w/ clutch.
Much like Need for Speed, there are barn finds that you can collect. There are 9 finds total. Another collectible item is 1% discount cards. There are 100 of them around the map and they can be a little tricky to find sometimes. Yet another side adventure is to drive on all 216 roads in the game. These little things by themselves can keep you entertained for quite a while.
The car selection is magnificent. There are plenty of cars to choose from. You can drive around in free roam with whatever car you chose, but you have to meet the requirements for the races. Each car has a class. You can make it gain class rank by upgrading. The upgrades under the hood are extensive, but the body upgrades aren’t as much. The vinyl shop is back yet again, and is working very well. You can paint and cover your car with your own unique designs and can in turn sell your vinyl in the market place.
The single player is absolutely amazing and everything runs extremely well. The graphics are great, cars are beautiful, and the map is huge. It’s entertaining and fun!
The multiplayer is also well done. There are multiple race playlists for competitive people, and a mini games playlist for those who just want to have fun. Also, you can enjoy multiplayer free-roam with some friends to discover barn finds, discount card and get those roads traveled on. You can set speed records in speed traps and speed zones or just drive and have fun!
The mini games playlist is entertaining. Though there are only three modes, they are extremely fun. Those modes consist of: Cat and mouse, King and Infection. All of these are the greatest if you have friends to play them with.
The ranking system is near perfect and also quite simple.
Another great thing that Forza Horizon offers is the car club. You can add people to your car club and once they’re in everyone can share cars that they own with the members of the club. Those cars however, can’t be used in single player races, but can be used in basically everything else!
Overall Forza Horizon is one of the best racing games I’ve played to date and I only have one complaint: crashing into small shrubs while I’m going over 200 mph can be devastating. Deadly shrubs aside, I highly recommend it to any racing game fan.
Only available on Xbox 360 for $40 new