Forza Horizon the first mis-step in the series?

The games in the Forza series are the games I go to most often, either for a quick romp or hours of deep gaming…no contest.  So when I first heard of Forza Horizon, I was seriously excited.  Unlike previous games in the series, Forza Horizon looked to expand on the tried-and-true formula of track-based racing and move deeper into the real car culture by simulating meets, makeshift parking lot shows and (sigh) street-racing.  Early news about the game touted an open-world environment where players can meet, cruise and race and that really interested me.

Last week, the official demo hit Xbox Live and I got on that download quickly!  Unfortunately, after playing, I’m a bit weary for this title and I don’t think it’s going to live up to my expectations.  I was anticipating that “Horizon” wouldn’t feel quite the same as the previous 4 games since the focus is wholly different.  However, I at LEAST thought it would feel authentic and it really, really doesn’t.

“Horizon” looks and feels like an amalgam of several games from several publishers.  The driving feels like a Need for Speed game and the menus and assorted finishing touches look like they came straight out of “Grid” or “Dirt.”  And wouldn’t you know it, there is a very good reason for that!  Turn-10 studios co-produced “Horizon” with a new studio called Playground Games.  Playground games employs staff formerly from Codemasters (who developed Grid/Dirt/Dirt2).

I really expected more and I think this may be the first setback in the Forza series.  I’ll still pickup my reserved title on 10/23 and I’ll still give it a fair shot and a full review…I just don’t think I’m going to love it.


The initial race with “Flynt” feels more like a Need for Speed game than Forza…


There is something about the color pallete, camera angles, and camera “shake” that feel like the Grid/Dirt games by Codemaster.

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