Turn 10 Studios are back with the most photo-realistic version of the Forza series yet. Find out if the gameplay matches the visuals in our Forza Motorsport 7 Review.
|Release Date||October 3, 2017|
|Developer||Turn 10 Studios|
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It’s crazy to think, but Forza Motorsport 7 marks the tenth edition of the Forza series on the Xbox platform. It’s been a staple of the brand since the original Xbox and has only gained steam in recent years with its spin-off Horizon series. I’ve come to really enjoy the quality of the main series with its vast selection of cars and beautiful scenery. It’s one of the most enjoyable racing series I’ve ever had the chance to play and that feeling continues in Forza Motorsport 7.
As you start the game, you’re shuffled into a few quick scenarios to show off the dynamic nature of the locations in the game. I raced in Dubai as sandstorms drifted across the road. Another race saw a torrential downpour create puddles all over the road, but it dissipated before the end of the race. It got me excited to play FM7 in such a simple way. No longer do tracks seem similar after you’ve done them once or twice. It feels like reality. Some races are sunny and then turn to a downpour, sometimes you start a race at sunset and end under darkness. It’s a great next step from adding night driving and rain to Forza Motorsport 6.
If you think that this kind of stuff id purely aesthetic and doesn’t really add to the game, you’d be mistaken. The rain itself can be particularly rough especially when trying to brake into a corner. The AI has an equally difficult time with it and I actually saw more than one driver end up off the road because of it. I even had some trouble on certain night races because there is so little light that it’s easy to run into an object on the side of the road at times. I didn’t expect to enjoy the dynamic conditions as much as I did, but it added so much more variety and I’m not sure that I’ve seen a better sky or more realistic puddles in a video game. The water splashes weren’t quite as spectacular although they’re much harder to notice.
The single-player mode in Forza Motorsport 7 is a little different than the more restrictive “Stories of Motorsport” in Forza 6. This time you’re working through different championships on your way to the final one, the Forza Driver’s Cup Challenge. Each different series in each championship is based on a different car type. I got to drive ATVs in one of the series which was a cool experience. There’s plenty of different series to choose from and you’re not forced into any of them so you can drive the cars you want to drive and avoid the ones you don’t. With 700 of them, there are definitely some I loved more than others.
As is customary with Forza games, there are plenty of different ways to get different prizes. The money you make from each race can be spent on cars while the XP you earn from each race rewards you new cars. Every new car you get upgrades your car collection and as you go up in tiers you get access to new types of cars. This is a nice system if it weren’t for the fact that some events are closed off if you haven’t earned or bought enough cars. This makes the single-player mode a bit more restrictive than I first thought.
The different racing events aren’t the only things that single-player has to offer, though. It also includes events called showcases which are one-off events for cash and cars. Some of these are as straight-forward as racing a professional driver others have you knocking down bowling pins with a limousine. It’s fun stuff that breaks up the regular events and I liked being able to jump into it and complete it right away versus doing the four races that are required to complete a series.
Forza 7 starts you off with most of the assists turned on like the rest of the series. This makes it seem like more of an arcade racer and takes away a lot of the fun for me. It’s almost like you don’t even have to drive at all. Once you start turning assists off, it really starts to feel more like a simulation and you have to worry more about breaking, steering, and drifting. This is how Forza was meant to be played in my opinion and no other game comes quite as close as this one does to capturing a real driving experience in a video game. Every car feels different and distinctly unique which sounds like an easy thing, but a lot of racing games aren’t so good at making the physics of each car feel different. Forza 7 doesn’t have that issue, you can even tweak your car before a race or buy upgrades to most parts to allow you to race exactly the way you want to.
Mods are once again available in crates and are purchased with in-game cash. It’s still weird for me to see a loot system in Forza, but it’s addictive. Some of the crates include cars and outfits for drivers, but most offer extra XP or cash by meeting certain conditions like getting first place or things like that. There are some that double your XP without any condition. I’ll be interested to see if they start selling these for real-world cash as I might be a bit more against them if that becomes the case, but as it stands, it’s a nice option for those that have in-game cash burning holes in their pockets.
I had a great time with Forza Motorsport 7 and I’m ready to head back in and race some more. Overall, I feel like this game is still the king of the racing genre from the gameplay to the feel of the cars and tracks to the aesthetics. If you loved Forza 6, you’re going to love 7 just as much. Go out and grab this one if you’re a racing game fan!
* A copy of this game was provided to FYIG by Xbox for review purposes*