Forza Motorsport 7 - Review

Forza Motorsport 7 is here and with it comes the weight of expectation. Not only the expectation of the racers, but the expectation that it will outperform all others with the arrival of the Xbox One X. Luckily Forza Motorsport has big shoulders and for the past 12 years, Forza has been the pinnacle racer on the Xbox.

Sporting a list of over 700 cars and a brand new dynamic weather and time of day system, Forza Motorsport 7 is already looking the goods.

First thing you notice is that you're no longer some phantom racer or a floating helmet through the window. You now get to choose your racer, pick their race suit and helmet, and customise your look as you progress through the game unlocking more designs as you level up.

Turn 10 studios have once again delivered a solid package visually, while it's not drastically updated when compared with the likes of Forza Motorsport 6 or Even Horizon 3, they are still beautiful. Engines, interiors and boots can all be inspected closely but it's the attention to the small details that sets Forza 7 apart. As your speed and G forces increase you can see the windscreen wipers begin to move and shake and if you’re racing in a race car, wires and air hoses move around under acceleration and cornering giving an added sense of speed.

The revamped dynamic weather system has received some much needed love. During a race it's not a matter of clear or rainy weather now. With the new weather system, it can go from an overcast day, to a light sprinkling to a full on downpour and back again. Or you could have an electrical storm where it's nothing but lightning and thunder with the constant threat of rain, which makes for a very tense race while on slicks. Water once again settles on the track, pooling usually just off the racing line, right where you need to dive for that overtaking move. When you hit them it really does effect the handling of the car feeling like you're skating across with grip only returning once you're through the puddle, usually too late for the upcoming corner.  

Forza Motorsport 7 feels very familiar, but the core offline career mode has had a bit of a tweak. Split across six championship tiers with increasing difficulty and commitment, each with a satisfying variety of racing series in each. Each tier is unlocked via points that you earn by racing, and with each unlock comes the option of a new tier of cars to purchase and race. Cars are once again big money and you will run out of coin but this can easily be replenished by replaying old events and smashing the competition. So far, it seems mostly the same, but Forza 7 has introduced Prize Crates. These Prize Crates are purchasable with in-game currency and contain mods, new gear for your driver avatar and of course the chance at Legendary Cars.   

Forza Motorsport 7 has you covered no matter your racing level of interest, turn off the assists and you have a decent sim that will still hold your hand a little, or go for a full arcade experience and turn on your desired assists to best keep you on the track putting in lap times. Drivatar AI has been tweaked and while you do still occasionally run into a rogue one, push on, you’ll be better for the experience. One assist in particular that I liked the idea of was the Friction Assist which pretty much means that no matter the surface you're driving on, the car will behave the same way. Trust me, turn it off, so much more fun is to be had. When you finally nail that four wheel slide through a corner in the wet and set your best time, it is a great feeling. Assists can be changed mid race giving you even better control on your level of difficulty.

Mods are back giving you the chance for some extra XP, cash and also added control elements to help you through.

The online experience so far has been rock solid. Playing during an early release of the game meant that there wasn’t much around besides our head to head races which have always been solid and stable. The only issue I have is with the chat function. If you’re in a party chat, the game automatically switches to a game chat mode. While it is easy to change back, I’ve run into some issues where the chat just freezes needing a reboot.

Turn 10 have once again delivered a rock solid Forza entry. While it may not have the depth of other racers out there, it does cater for all levels of racing enthusiast. If you’re a Forza Motorsport or racing fan, you will enjoy Forza Motorsport 7.

I do feel the need to point out one thing however. Forza Motorsport 7 does look good, but it falls short of the “wow” factor. A wow factor I was expecting given all the hype surrounding it. Unfortunately, being that I am playing on a day one style Xbox One I do kinda feel left behind.

This past week we have had the EB Expo where I got to try Forza Motorsport 7 on the One X and I have to say, I was right, the standard Xbox One has been left behind, as running on the One X, Forza 7 looks phenomenal. It still plays the same but visually the increased power is really being utilised.

Hopefully come next month I’ll be lucky enough to have a bit more time with the One X and be able to show you all just what it can do.

Pat (Snoogs)

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