STAFF REVIEW of Forza Motorsport (Xbox Series X)

Wednesday, October 4, 2023.
by Brent Roberts

Forza Motorsport Box art In the world of games, there's one category of software that tries its best to deliver a real-world experience, and that would be the simulation genre. Rather than strive for some fantasy adventure or some arcade type experience, simulators look to not only teach, but train as well, so when and if you encounter such an experience in real life, you will have some simulated training. For years, Forza Motorsport has been the quintessential driving simulator. Since its inception, other racing simulators have been released whose main goal was simple; dethrone Forza, dethrone the king. There have been countless resources poured into this task, and while some of them came close, Turn 10 decided to release another installment of Forza Motorsport and show to the world why they wear the crown. Buckle up because it's going to be a white-knuckle review as we hunt for the apex and check out the latest Forza Motorsport.

Starting out, Forza will ask you to select your graphics output, and there are three choices to choose from:
1. Performance - this will prioritize 60FPS on-track performance at 4K resolution.
2. Performance RT - Enables on-track ray tracing at 60FPS but at the cost of variable resolution.
3. Visuals - Maximize 4K visual quality on-track with ray tracing but at 30FPS.

Depending on your setup and system you will be able to select what is best for you. I found it helpful to try out the various modes to get a feel for them, but ultimately settled on Performance RT. Once you're into the game itself the game will take you through the Builders Cup Intro which consists of three different races. This will lead you to choosing some vehicles and begin your racing education. I say education instead of gameplay because Forza Motorsport will teach you how to get better at racing, through racing itself. Once you complete the intro series, Forza Motorsport will open itself up to you and you'll get to see the path laid before you.

In the Builders Cup you will see that it is divided into 5 tours (Modern, Enthusiast, Power, Legacy, and Open Class). Each one of these tours consists of 5 series and each series is made up of 4-6 races, with each race comprised of at least 4 laps. When you start to think that each series consists of a minimum 16 laps and up, you get a sense that you will be driving for a very, very long time. It's this time though that Forza uses to train you how to drive.

In Forza Motorsport, the game itself is almost entirely different to anything we've expected or seen in the past. Let's start with the settings. While the driving assists are still enabled, how you get to configure them with the additional assists is something that will help give you a deeper appreciation for real life race drivers. The Accessibility menu allows for an absolutely extensive list of customization options that will allow you tailor your driving experience. Once you have your settings sorted out on how you would like to drive, now comes the real fun.

From the main menu you have the ability to go to the store as usual to purchase any type of car packs / passes that will unlock more content for you, however, this is where Forza starts to have faults, but not for the reason you may be thinking. There are tons of cars that fill the roster within Forza Motorsport, but the lineup feels very, very thin. When companies are priding themselves on the number of cars to choose from, Forza Motorsport abandoned that for quality vehicles that will be the pinnacle of driving excitement. So gone are the days when you have like 40 Ferrari's to choose from or 45 different Ford vehicles. Why would Forza do this? When you see the new car upgrade system you'll understand why.

For those of us who love Forza Motorsport, we usually find ourselves a small handful of cars that we actually will drive. I can admit I never drove an old Impala or a Transit van. This is because when we have like 400 cars to choose from and only really drive eight of them, then why have the other 392 vehicles? This reality and rationalization are the core behind the new car development program and also where we see how Forza strives to teach us how to be a better driver.

In previous Motorsport installments the equation was simple; save up enough money through auction house sales and races and pick any car you want and upgrade it however you wanted. That's now gone, along with the auction house. Instead, Forza Motorsport has given each car 50 levels of experience, and the more you drive the more experience you have of the car, and THAT is what will unlock the items you can use to upgrade. Take note though, by performing well you gain car points for THAT CAR, NOT in general. What does this mean?

The Car Points (CP) will not go with you if you select a different car. Car Points are tied to the car itself and no others. For example, let's take your 1980's childhood poster Lamborghini and try to upgrade it right away, and you'll see you can't. After a couple of races, however, you should have about 1400 CP to spend on upgrades. Want a race intake? 400 CP. How about a race exhaust? 500 CP. Engine swap? Yes, but you'll have to finance your home to afford it due to the cost. I'm exaggerating of course but when you start taking into account the cost of upgrades, you'll see that the credits you earn are strictly for purchasing cars while the Car Points (CP) are used for your performance upgrades. One cool addition for this entry though is how when you hit level 50 you also unlock body kit aero components. All of these upgrades are also factored into your car's overall balance which you can clearly see on the screen, and you can see how each part will impact it independently.

As you drive your car of choice and level it up, you unlock more performance options which help keep your interest pinned for several races, but if you're really looking to upgrade your cars quickly, then become a better driver. Forza Motorsport will now give you multiple methods of earning CP and leveling up. For starters, leveling up the car itself will give you bonus CP and when you drive the course there are several sections and Forza grades you on each one on a scale of 1-10 where 10 giving you the most CP boost. Should you hit a car or venture off the track though, you'll be pulling 1's all day long.

This is because the key to Forza Motorsport is learning how to drive. How to take your car and put it right to its limits throughout multiple environments. Taking hairpin turns on the inside can open you up to contact and whether you're hit or the one doing the hitting, you're going to score a 1. This trains you to be patient and wait for your moments to overtake. Sometimes it's best to abandon the racing line to pass along the outside and gain position by not having a perfect lap. Getting a 7.5 in a corner is a lot better than 1.

Forza will also allow you to gain more XP bonuses by allowing you to set personal best times within various sections. These sections are designed to see how you master your handling of your vehicle within the corners and straights to shave as much time off the clock as possible. For example, if you set a section time of 20 seconds in one lap and go through the next lap and set a section time of 19.8, then you'll get an xp bonus. This pushes you to become a better driver to find the breaking point, the apex, and the straightaway speeds in every course you race.

Another interesting feature is how Forza provides a preliminary practice round of the track. This is where your section boosts can come into play. Each session is around 10 minutes long but only requires you to complete on average 3 laps, with a bonus objective of setting a particular lap time. Completion of that will also allow you to select where on the starting grid you will launch from. You can start as high as 3rd place, but the further back you put your car the larger your credit bonus will be, but the more challenging the race will also be. Should you opt to even go for more bonuses you can increase the difficulty, penalties and realism, and here is where Forza has always shined.

Every car has an established curb weight and therefore handles differently. In Forza Motorsport you can customize your vehicle with fuel weight, and the increase weight will dynamically impact the car's handling ability. There's even an achievement for finishing a race with less than 1 lap of fuel remaining. All of this impacts how the car handles, but that's only half of the big picture. The environment of Forza Motorsport is incredibly realistic, and when coupled with an even better weather system, it's not uncommon to find yourself hydroplaning as you tackle long flat straights or the inside of a downhill corner where the water has collected.

I'm happy to report as well that the paint department has returned with force. Outside of upgrading and tuning, that's all that can be done with the cars you own. Remember how I was saying that this game is very sparse? This is in part the number of race events that take place outside of the career. There is Featured Multiplayer which is actually a scheduled event that brings the best out to play. Free Play is exactly how it sounds. You literally choose everything that happens. Rivals are back where your only opponent is the clock. Set the fastest times and let the world know. Finally, there's Private Multiplayer where you can create completely custom events that is a hybrid of both Free Play and Multiplayer.

Graphically, Forza Motorsport is absolutely beautiful. The quality of the car models coupled with the lighting once again show the world why Turn 10 and Forza continually set the standard for graphic quality. From the exterior to the interior and every nut and bolt, the level of detail is without contest. There is no other competition. The smooth menu music is looped in, and when your car takes off at the light and your engine roars, hold on to your senses because on a home theater system this game sings. Realistic pit stops where you hear the engine just idling and sounding like Thor's hammer, Forza Motorsport delivers a driving presentation that is mesmerizing.

Forza has done so much for Motorsport, and hopefully when they expand on this platform and provide more driving content we can very well see the expansion of things such as legendary races that are recreated. When you decide to set out to create what could arguably be easily regarded as the premier driving simulator, Turn 10 did exactly that. Forza Motorsport is a phenomenal driving game that combines mind bending physics for driving accuracy melded with an audio and video presentation that is second to none. When you can combine those two elements to near perfection like Forza Motorsport has done, it goes without saying that Turn 10 has done an absolutely amazing job paying attention to and focusing on making you a better driver. That is the ultimate goal of any Motorsport game, and Forza wears the crown.

**Forza Motorsport was provided by the publisher and reviewed on an Xbox Series X**

Overall: 9.2 / 10
Gameplay: 9.2 / 10
Visuals: 9.8 / 10
Sound: 8.8 / 10


Site Statistics

Registered Members: 78,033
Forum Posts: 725,964
Xbox One Titles: 5,773
Xbox 360 Titles: 1,086
Xbox 360 Kinect Titles: 95
Xbox 360 Arcade Titles: 586
Original Xbox Titles: 987
Staff Reviews: 2,511
Member Reviews: 10,339
News Articles: 16,524
Screenshots: 38,456
Xbox 360 Achievements: 45,112
Xbox 360 Faceplates: 2,016
Cheat Codes: 1,706

Latest News

Nacon Unveils RIG 900 MAX HX

Nacon Unveils RIG 900 MAX HXLicensed for Xbox, the 900 MAX marks the pinnacle in wireless game audio, merging capabilities such as a personalized Dolby Atmos headphone experience, dual wireless connectivity with Bluetooth audio, and a seamless charging base station.

Nacon Announces New RIG 600 PRO Headset Line

Nacon Announces New RIG 600 PRO Headset LineThe RIG 600 PRO HX is officially licensed for Xbox and includes Dolby Atmos for Headphones. Gamers can experience three-dimensional precision audio by simply connecting the USB-C wireless adaptor to the Xbox console or PC.

See News Archives

Community Forum Activity

KeyWe Giveaway!
Post by Variation-XBA
0 Replies, 20183 Views

2021: XBA is still here
Post by shrew king
37 Replies, 173969 Views

Watch Dogs: Legion
Post by Nato King
0 Replies, 110454 Views

Xbox Series X or S
Post by Nato King
5 Replies, 129615 Views

Spellbreak Grand Magus Pack (3) and Starter Pack (7) Giveaway!
Post by Variation-XBA
0 Replies, 121235 Views

I pay $ 1000! I search the Element 54 Canadian launch Team signaturen Faceplate
Post by Smill
0 Replies, 139629 Views

Xbox one no signal
Post by debrartin
0 Replies, 132496 Views

do you remember?
Post by SnoochyBoochy
3 Replies, 190496 Views

i haz xbox
Post by SnoochyBoochy
0 Replies, 148328 Views

Claiming the first thread of 2020
Post by Kraft
7 Replies, 238556 Views

Important! I pay $ 1000! I search the Sweden launch and the Element 54 Faceplate
Post by Smill
3 Replies, 136618 Views

Squad Up
Post by samslophead
0 Replies, 235514 Views

TERA Skinned Xbox One X Giveaway!
Post by Variation-XBA
0 Replies, 167348 Views

Starfield Release expectations?
Post by DJ tx
4 Replies, 289487 Views

Issue with Xbox live on Xbox home
Post by rcmpayne
0 Replies, 158068 Views

© 2000-2023 - All rights reserved. All trademarks are properties of their respective owners.
Xbox is a registered trademark of Microsoft. is not affiliated with Microsoft.

Made in Canada
Site Design by Cameron Graphics