Forza Motorsport 6 is Turn 10’s latest effort on Xbox One and after spending quite a while with the game I feel confident in saying that they have done it again. Forza Motorsport 6 is an amazing racing title with this year’s version focusing more on simulation racing as opposed to the more arcade-y style of the Forza Horizon series. Forza Motorsport 6 has a good amount of content that should keep you busy for quite a while, especially if you are a completionist. There is a career mode to go through with a multitude of series that tie into the “Stories of Motorsport” as well as Showcases where you will get to do some fun and different events such as racing pre-World War 2 cars as well as race in the Indy 500. You then have a variety of multiplayer and customization options that the Forza franchise has built up over the years. This is the 10 year anniversary for the Forza series and it has been great to see how the franchise has evolved over the years into what we see today.
Forza Motorsport 6 is a simulation racing game for both car enthusiasts as well as casual fans. The gameplay that you experience will be dependent on the assists you have turned on. There are various assists to choose from such as the suggested line that tells you when you should brake to make that upcoming turn, whether you want that damage on your car to be purely cosmetic or affect the way it runs, whether you want automatic shifting and more. If you are a Forza veteran then you might want to turn all of these assists off so that you can have complete control over everything. This is, of course, a risk/reward system. If you use the assists provided it might be easier for you to complete the race, however, you won’t get as much money or experience points that the other person got who didn’t use any assists. Drivatar’s are back in Forza 6 which means you are basically racing against people on your friends list, even when they aren’t online. You can choose the skill level on these Drivatars as well to give you a real run for your money or you can make it easy if you just want to have a relaxing race. In addition to all of that Forza Motorsport 6 has also introduced Mods. There are three different types of mods you can equip before a race with “crew,” “dare” and “boost.” One of the crew mods I was using, for example, was the Yas Marina Grip Specialist which gave my tires 6% more grip on the pavement as well as an additional 6% grip if I was racing on Yas Marina itself. Another mod that is available is part of the “Dare” set and is the “Chase Cam.” Forza 6 has many different viewpoints with a cockpit view, a third person view outside the car, something I call the “windshield view” where you don’t see the car at all and just the road and more. This “Chase Cam” dare mod forces you to race in third person for an entire race. If you are someone who prefers the cockpit view then this would definitely be a change of pace. Other mods give you an extra 1,000 credits for any perfect drafts you get in the race (up to 6,000 credits) and more. One of the super rare mods that I was able to get was “Chassis Engineer” which meant it would make my vehicle 10% lighter and the braking would improve by 12%.
As far as aesthetics and audio are concerned, Forza Motorsport 6 is a beautiful title. It runs at a smooth 1080p and 60 frames per second. It has daytime and nighttime racing as well as racing in inclement weather. Each one presents its own challenges but if you are racing on a track while it is raining that is a whole other thing. The puddles grow on the track as the race progresses making the track more dangerous as time goes on. These puddles are no joke and will seriously screw you up if you hit them the wrong way. There is a very real chance of hydroplaning here and if you don’t keep it under control you could go from first to last in the blink of an eye. The rain effects are spectacular. Especially within the cockpit view you can see the rain hit the windshield with the windshield wipers going to try and clear your view. If you choose a third person perspective you can see the rain slide down the car as it is racing down the track and it really is a sight to behold. The environments are also stunning and there were many times while I was racing that I would say “Xbox, take a screenshot!” to capture an amazing looking image and there was one of them that I liked so much that I made it the background on my Xbox One. This game also has a photo mode so you can go into that at anytime and line up the best picture you can to take and share with the community (or use as a custom background on your Xbox One). There are 26 world-famous locales in the game which includes 10 newly captured tracks. You will be racing all over the world in some of the world’s fastest cars and this presents many opportunities at grabbing that perfect picture.
The audio in the game is also something that is done really well and you immediately notice it with the rev of a powerful engine as well as the tires screeching around that last tight corner on the way to the finish line. With the rumble triggers on the Xbox One controller that gives you another sense of tactile feedback. That means you can feel it when you hit the gas and your car is revving up. You can feel it when the tires are gripping the road trying to make that turn, when you drive off into the dirt or when you go crashing into that wall. It is an amazing feature that the Xbox One controller has that no one else does and it is a shame that more studios don’t capitalize on this to further immerse you in their game.
The career mode in Forza Motorsport 6 focuses mainly on the “Stories of Motorsport.” There are different volumes to go through such as “Super Street,” “Grand Touring,” “Ultimate Motorsport” and more. Within each volume are different series of races for you to complete. As you complete these races and series you will unlock different showcase events that you can do. Showcase events are something a little different than you normally find in the game. This is where you can return to Le Mans and battle it out between Ford & Ferrari. You can weave your way through an obstacle course with cones to set the fastest time in a 2014 Volkswagen Golf R. You can participate in the Top Gear Showcases where you can participate in BMW M4 Bowling and knock down as many pins as you can on a rainy Top Gear test track. There are a plethora of things to do and it should keep you busy for quite a while.
In addition to the career mode there is also the “Free Play” and “Test Drive” mode. The free play mode is fairly self explanatory. In this mode you can adjust the rules to your liking, pick the car you want to race and the track you want to race on. This is a great way for you to practice and hone your skills as you can set the number of opponents to the maximum number allowed or have no opponents at all and just concentrate on mastering the course. The “Test Drive” mode is even more open than that. There is no race for you to compete in. You simply pick the track you want and the environment and then begin hurtling down the track. Since this isn’t a race there is no lap limit and you essentially go as long as you want.
Moving over to the multiplayer side of things there is the multiplayer mode itself, leagues and rivals. The multiplayer mode features seven different modes for you to choose from. There are things like “Exotic Showdown,” “D Class,” “Unlimited Drift,” “Tag (Virus)” and more. The new leagues feature is something a bit different. It looks at your skill division and then matches you up with others of the same skill level. The more you race in this mode the more points you will earn. These points will allow you to climb the League leaderboard and then when the League ends your position on the board will determine the rewards you get. Leagues appear to last for one week so you will want to pay attention and not miss out if you are trying to climb the leaderboard to get a nice reward. With the Rivals mode you challenge a rival’s best attempt on a track. This is essentially you racing your rival’s ghost. You need to beat the best time that they put up and, sometimes, it might take you a few laps to do while you build up your speed. Within the Rivals mode there are a number of different options for you to pick from such as monthly events, autocross, drift zone, Class C Time Attack and much more. I found it to be a great way to really drive your friends crazy if you are able to beat the best time they were able to put up.
If you have been playing the Forza series for years you know that it is a racing game but not all of the action takes place on a race track. The credits that you earn racing will allow you to purchase new race cars such as the 2017 Ford GT which is the cover car for the game. All of the companies are here so if you are someone who doesn’t care about Ford you can always go to Bentley, Chevy, Ferrari, Honda or whatever else you want. The better the car the higher the price tag obviously so you will need to manage your money and credits if you are looking at one those high end cars. Once you start getting a nice selection of cars you can admire them in your garage where they are sorted by manufacturer. I have a 2009 Honda S2000 CR that I really liked using along with the 2015 Jaguar F-Type R Coupe, for example. Forzavista is also in this game where you can get up close and personal with your car and customize it to fit your style. There are 460 Forzavista cars in Forza Motorsport 6 so if you are a big car enthusiast you could probably spend hours here just customizing your different rides and learning all about them. You can change the rim size, spring and dampers, the rear wing and more.
If you really want to get down to it you can also go into the tune setup where you can adjust your car’s performance to how you like it. You can change the tire pressure, the alignment, how stiff the springs are and much more. You can also get new parts for your engine like a fuel system, a camshaft, and intercooler and more. If you are someone who wants to upgrade their car but you don’t know a whole lot about this type of thing there is also a “Quick Upgrade” feature for you. If you choose this option the game will take the car you currently have selected and will get you the upgrades to get your car to the top of its class. I really enjoy how Turn 10 caters to both the car enthusiast as well as the more casual fan. It is a fine line to walk but, in my opinion, they do it really well. Customization doesn’t stop there of course as you can paint your car and create your own livery. Creating your own livery is a great way to customize your ride as you can pretty much do anything you want whether it is advertise something of yours like a website, a favorite team or whatever the case may be. If you aren’t interested in the creative process then you can just download designs that others have made so, once again, both sides are happy.
Throughout my time with Forza Motorsport 6 I was enamored with many things but there were a couple of items that I feel I need to bring up. While I was going through some races in the career mode it seemed to me like there was some “AI rubber banding” going on. There were instances where I would be in first place and by a pretty large margin and then suddenly as I got closer to the finish of the race I would see one or two cars that were tailgating me. I had not crashed or unnecessarily slowed down at all and, yet, here they were. I was able to hold them off a good part of the time (protip: look in your rearview mirror to see what side they are going to try to pass you on) and prevent them from passing me but it got to be a little annoying. It certainly didn’t happen every race but it happened enough times where I felt I needed to mention it here. Also, there were some slight matchmaking issues that I ran into. I chalk that up to not many people having the game right now and that it will assuredly be better once the community gets the game but it was a bit bothersome to see it. Once I did get online though everything worked great so no worries there.
Forza Motorsport 6 is a phenomenal title. There is so much here to do that it should keep everyone busy for a while, regardless of your interest in cars. If you are really into car culture and you enjoy tinkering with your cars then you can spend a good amount of time here doing that. If you are more of an artistic person and enjoy creating liveries for the car you can do that. If you are none of the above and you just want to race then you can do that as well. Forza Motorsport 6 does an exceptional job of catering to each audience. It is one of the most beautiful looking games around and racing on some of those tracks in the rain is no joke. There is a demo available to download so be sure to download that and give this game a try. If you do then you will unlock a car that will show up when you play the full retail version. The Forza Motorsport series is celebrating it’s tenth anniversary and if Turn 10 can keep producing titles like this then I look forward to the next ten years and beyond.
Originally posted on Gaming Target