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Xbox’s next exclusive is one of the best-looking games we’ve ever seen

Xbox’s next exclusive is one of the best-looking games we’ve ever seen

The world's first caRPG

Xbox came out swinging at Summer Game Fest with a huge show that directly addressed the fans’ biggest concern with this generation so far: a somewhat disappointing lack of games.

In the space of one hour, Xbox completely changed the narrative with a barrage of straight-up bangers that made me genuinely excited for the next couple of years. From Fable and Dungeons Of Hinterberg to South Of Midnight and the stupidly massive Starfield.

But one of the games that really impressed me in a way I just didn’t see coming was Forza Motorsport. While I adore Forza Horizon 4 and Forza Horizon 5’s open-world playgrounds, what I know about cars would fit on the back of a crisp packet. As such, I wasn’t expecting the upcoming Forza Motorsport to blow me away - but that’s exactly what it did. In fact, Turn 10’s brand-new racing sim might well be this generation’s best looking game.

During a behind-closed doors demo of Forza Motorsport we got to see a work-in-progress build that showed off brand-new AI tech that makes NPC racers more believable than ever before, an impressive new adaptive difficulty system, a stunning dynamic weather system, real-time ray-tracing effect, and some of the best darn looking tarmac I’ve ever seen in a video game.

Forza Motorsport’s main aim is to really make players feel like they’re developing a bond with their cars via an impressive new progression and mastery system. As Turn 10 explains, “each corner functions like a moment-to-moment objective”, with players being constantly graded on sharp turns and shown how much better they’re getting on each course. The more you race in a specific car, and the more tangible improvements you make as a player, the more Car Points you earn to spend in the new car builder system. As the developer proudly explained, this game is a “caRPG” - a pun that got a very well deserved laugh from the assembled journalists.

Forza Motorsport /
Xbox Game Studios

In Forza Motorsport cars are built, not bought. This is all in aid of forging that bond with your cars, tweaking and fiddling and experimenting until it feels just right - until it feels like yours. And then, of course, you take it right back out onto the road for more races.

While Turn 10 is keeping quiet about the exact number of modes and courses in Forza Motorsport, the core gameplay loop of mastering, building, and racing seems like it will keep players invested for a substantial amount of time.

It doesn’t hurt that the races and cars themselves look blisteringly beautiful too. We were treated to a look at the game running in 4K 60fps, and the tiny details are simply breathtaking. From the sun glinting off the wheels of your car as you screech around the tarmac to the hood reflecting its surroundings in real-time as you switch to first-person, this game is a damn stunner. I’m also a sucker for good video game rain, and the gentle splatters of water that trickle down the camera as you race really add to that sense of immersion.

Turn 10 is also incredibly proud of the substantial improvements made to its proprietary Drivatar technology. Thanks to advancements in machine learning, NPC drivers are able to tear it up on the track just as well as a pro gamer could without the need for any cheats or shortcuts. But fear not: if you’re looking for a more relaxed time there are a huge range of difficulty and accessibility options to tailor the challenge to your liking.

Forzo Motorsport looks like it’s shaping up to be the ultimate racing sim, with a renewed focus on making the experience as personal as possible while polishing up the visuals and moment-to-moment gameplay to a frankly unbelievable degree. Slick, stunning, and devilishly fast, this is definitely one car fanatics need to keep an eye on.

Featured Image Credit: Microsoft

Topics: Xbox, Microsoft, Forza