Tag Archives: Fujimi Kaido

Two steps forward, one step back: A Forza 5 Review

I can safely say, at this point, I have a love/hate relationship with Forza 5.  After playing in career mode and free play mode for nearly two weeks, I think I have my finger on the pulse of the game so here are my thoughts…

It seems like Turn 10 Studios made big improvements to all of the polish in Forza 5.  Little details that heighten the enjoyment of playing are immediately noticed.  The dashboard reflections, blinding sunlight and various dirty effects such as dust/rubber that collect on the car throughout a race are impressive (particularly in photo mode where the dust effect is very subtle but realistic).

Also, Turn 10’s upgrades aren’t limited to what you can see on the screen as massive improvements have been made on the audio side.  Considering how authentic the sound was in Forza 4, I am pretty floored at the level they have achieved here.  Tires squeal and screech more gradually and this actually helps you find the grip limit in the corners.  On turbocharged cars, the spool is more noticeable and it’s different from car to car as are the blow off valve effects.  One other audio enhancement I noticed was how the environments effect what you here.  When you’re near a wall on a closed course, the exhaust noise echoes (especially on a home theater system with DTS processing).   On tuned naturally aspirated cars, valvetrain and intake noise are much more pronounced now, which heightens the impact of modifying cars in the game.

So, things look and sound better than before…great!  So how is the gameplay experience?  Well, I have no complaints about the actual racing experience (aside from the music which can be turned off).  Racing is as intense as ever, and tuning/hot lapping is about the same.  I do think that they changed how mods effect overall class rating, but I can compare that another time.

Unfortunately, what Turn 10 studios removed from Forza 4 is just as noticeable as what they added.  Several tracks are missing from previous games such as the famed Nurburgring, the Fujimi Kaido mountain pass and Maple Valley (my favorite).  I can’t understand why they think removing beloved tracks would sit well with the fans!  In addition, hundreds of cars are missing from Forza 5 entirely and cars that remain are not as tunable as they were in past iterations.  Plus, of the cars that made the cut, most of them can’t even be played in free play mode unless you own them!  Thankfully, there is a glitch around this that most people are aware of (for now).  Also, some body kits from Forza 4 have been removed are the Forza 5.  For example, only the “racing” front/rear wings are available for a 350z!  Moreover, the selection of wheels seem the same as Forza 3, 4 and Forza Horizon.  There are many other wheels on the market, even from the manufacturers they already have licensing agreements with.  I simply do not understand…

The final verdict is that it seems the focus on Forza 5 was to improve the details at the expense of the overall package.  At this point, I’d expect a next-gen title to be able to make marked improvements without sacrifices made to features people already loved about predecessor titles.  I am hopeful that they can rectify many of this with some downloadable car/track packs but I feel apprehensive about paying more to complete what, at times, feels like an unfinished game.  I am still enjoying myself, but I’m also hopeful that Gran Turismo 6 can return to its former glory.  GT6 will be in my hands tomorrow, as will Need for Speed Rivals for Xbox One.  For now, enjoy some pics.

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