Game Review – Forza Motorsport 3 – Turn 10 Studios (Xbox 360)

You know in Top Gear, when they do the Star in the Reasonably Priced Car, and Clarkson looks at the stars list of cars and tuts just a little? Well gamers who love racing games would probably do the same thing if they looked at my racing game history, which up until recently consisted solely of Road Rash on the Sega Megadrive and Burnout on PlayStation2 and Xbox 360. Both of them tend to focus on the fun to be hard pushing other people off the road, so much as winning races.

There’s a good reason for this; I’m rubbish at racing games. I never know when to brake, the racing line is a mystery to me, and usually before you can say “watch out for the lampost” I’ve wrapped my cyber-self around it. Indeed the only fun I usually get out of racing games is to see how dramatically I can crash.

Forza 3 however is not like that. Forza 3 sidles up to you and whispers sincerely “I know other racing games have treated you cruelly, and laughed at your lack of skill, but I promise I won’t.”

Amazingly, it makes good on it’s promises by being possibly the only racing game I’ve come across that is accessible to everyone but allowing you to customise every aspect to your own skill levels.

Can’t see the racing line? Set it to show it on the road using green arrows, which turn to yellow then red to indicate where to brake.

Still not sure about braking? It will do it for you.

Fed up with trashing your car? Set it to “no damage”.

And if you still end up in the gravel, there is a “rewind” function, that allows you to reverse all of the action to the point before you lost control.

This leaves you free just to actually race and enjoy it. As you get more confident you can raise the difficulty step by step, and it means that anyone can pick up the game, race and enjoy it. (Faun loves it!).

The single-player season mode puts the player through a completely personalized racing calendar that includes more than 200 different events, including circuit, oval, drag, drift, and timed events, you get to chose what races you want to take part in, and what vehicles you want to use, and there are plenty – over 400 customizable cars from 50 manufacturers and over 100 race track variations with the ability to race up to 8 cars on track at a time.

The graphics engine is superb, even down to small details of the shadows changing on the dashboard as you travel around the track. The cars all look amazing, and some of the tracks are ridiculously challenging even on the easiest setting. (The Amalfi coast is currently a bugbear, all cobbles and tight corners.) As you progress through the seasons, some of the tracks come up reguarly (Silverstone, Catalunya), so rewarding your perseverance, as you get to know the corners and tricks.

This is a stunning game, great fun for anyone who’s ever been put off by racing games before, and was an unexpected joy.

This was originally posted on January 24th 2010 at  my old blog

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~ by moviegrrlreviews on May 25, 2010.

One Response to “Game Review – Forza Motorsport 3 – Turn 10 Studios (Xbox 360)”

  1. […] 4 – new trailer Forza 3 was a bit of a revelation to be honest. A racing game that was hugely playable but didn’t punish you if you were super […]

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