My Forza Motorsports Review & Impression

Discussion in 'Console & PC Gaming' started by LegacySTI, May 2, 2005.

  1. LegacySTI

    LegacySTI

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    Disclaimer: I am going to be as fair & balance as possible, I love racing games, I love GT4, I love PGR & Xbox Live, there's nothing wrong with having good racing games on Xbox & PS2.

    ***All pictures snapped & driven by yours truly***

    Preface:

    When GT4 came out and bought out tons of new content, then the infamous Forza demo from OXM came out and really dissappointed many as well as myself. Then the Forza demo crashing at CES, most of us has written Forza off as a GT competitor

    Well, I'm glad that was just a demo...

    The opening movie almost looked like the GT4 opening with the same type of cinematics and a touch of American-ness.

    You start by creating a profile, then pick arcade or simulator mode, the arcade mode resembles GT4 where you select different classes of cars and tracks, many of them look exactly like GT4's offering. When the race starts, it does the same image flipping and sound a la GT4.

    The graphics, wow with 480p widescreen, its very sweet. You don't really need 1080i here. It has a crisp CG animated look, not quite photorealistic at GT4 but after-awhile you will admire the sweet graphics, it is much crisper, cleaner, and uniform than GT4's only replay look sweet. The car in-game graphics are much more detail and doesn't pixellate, which is a complaint of GT4 that the "draw distance" is too short and very difficult to drive fast and see traffic ahead.

    I am quite impressed by the level of detail, if you think PGR is detailed, Forza blows it away. When you hit a metal fence, you actually feel and hear the fence scrapping the car!

    Graphically it is much more "technical" than GT4's blurring tricks to fool you, which does the job on non-techies, but Forza be prepared for eye candy. Pixel Shader is at work everywhere. I hit somebody, my hood is dented and scrapped, looks the part...

    Night time racing is quite cool, the lighting is quite realistic. In GT4, the headlights of cars illuminates similarly and not very unique.

    With damage, 1 of my headlight was smashed up and it uses xenon hids which is well represented.

    [​IMG]

    Lots of sweet dynamic lighting, shadows, and smoke trails!!

    [​IMG]

    Ok, how's the control? Its quite fast and responsive. Very touchy at 1st but after I lapped the car 3 times and tried all buttons, its quite good. The hand brake works like a hand brake, not like GT4's unrealistic handbrake. Spins, drifts, and induced mild understeer and oversteer quite easily achieve and felt in Forza. GT4 upgraded the handling, but not upgraded the feel, the cars still has that car rotating screen feeling and not a real sense of speed and grip on corners.

    I believe tremendous work to fine tune the handling & control here, I think the Forza guy nailed it. The braking is still quite tricky but it is quite realistic.

    If you guys liked PGR where realistic physics such as wind, drafting, and tapping other cars, Forza goes even further. Nothing like drafting and tapping out the other car in the lead and watch they spin out or ram the car in the wrong corner and you end up hitting the wall.

    Sound, huge leaps over GT4. I can't even begin to start from the sound of the STI's boxer rumble to the V8 in the RS6 and the sweet sound of the Ferrari 550, and the Zonda.

    Now the reason GT4 is huge because the modding, I'm actually quite addicted to modding cars in Forza now starting with my MR2 turbo, Forza allows even more levels of modding than GT4. Near every car can be modified without the usual limits in GT4. The Civic Type R can get either Supercharged or Turbo, as well as modifying the shifter, ignition system, suspension, flywheel, etc. Think GT4 tuning even further.

    The best part is you get to paint your car for free, the only mods you pay are the bolt on stuff.

    Like adding front lip, diffusers, side markers, wings, and hoods.

    Check out my custom MR2 MKII Turbo.

    [​IMG]

    The tracks are convincingly realistic and very well done like GT4, I can say which is better since I haven't unlocked all the tracks but I can tell the GT4 has the greater number and variety.

    [​IMG]

    Look at the dynamic reflections!

    [​IMG]

    RX-8 drifting action.

    [​IMG]

    RS6 Drifting.

    Finally, I can honestly say this is the faster, cooler, and more innovative racing game on the market today. GT4, now feels dated, more like a GT3 expansion pack, and lacks the innovation that Forza packs.

    I give Forza 4.5/5 - GT4 4/5

    So much more cooler things to do in Forza than GT4, don't forget Xbox Live!!

    All the comments about Forza being "arcadey" is not looking at the game correctly.

    If we compare GT4 & Forza, the sum of all the features, content, etc.. the game that is more arcadey is GT4. Because it suits a broader appeal by making the game cinematically more production looking and gives this false sense of a simulator just because it has Nurgurgring and more licensed cars does not hide the facts that GT4 still lacks damage, physics, controls are setup for general audience and even with TSC turned off, the cars feel still lack feedback and more realistic handling.

    GT4's value is content and polish, it uses it to hide the fact that the game is still pretty much the same as GT3.. that's not such a bad thing but Forza has *convinced* me that it feels quite dated now.....


    **Update**

    Stunning Visuals!!

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Laguna Seca

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. LegacySTI

    LegacySTI

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    More pix!!

    [​IMG]

    Look at the mesh grill with the S-Line painted on.

    [​IMG]

    Race spec Pagani Zonda

    [​IMG]

    BMW M3 GTR

    [​IMG]

    STI preparing for a curve.

    [​IMG]

    Drifting in my custom MR2 Turbo.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Going sideways in the RX-8
     
  3. welshgtlover

    welshgtlover

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    Nice review Legacy, I tend to agree with the points you made, however you didn't mention about the a.i and what a HUGE improvment it is over GT4, other than that, great review.. Hope to see you online when it comes out! :sly:
     
  4. livemusic

    livemusic Premium

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    Nice review man, thanks for your impressions.
     
  5. kinigitt

    kinigitt

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    Nice! cant wait to pick up the game next week!

    dont know about that wheel though... I'm kinda strapped right now.
     
  6. Mista Bob

    Mista Bob

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    Great review.
    Or atleast I thought so untill I read what you had to say on the physics. And to make it worse, your comparison between Forza's and GT4's phsyics could not be any more wrong.

    Having played both Forza and GT4. I can tell you without a doubt that GT4 is more realistic.

    Umm, excuse me?
    Forza's hand brake is something I would expect to see in an Arcade racer, not a ''simulation''. For example, front wheel drive car. Understeer? No problem. Use the hand brake to go into an insane power slide, where you still have complete control.
    Hell, you dont even need to do that to 'drift'. Its just wrong when a FF car handles like rear wheel drive through corners. Try that same thing in GT4, your going to slide right into the wall.

    Huh? PGR and realistic should NEVER be used in the same sentance.
    I would sure hope Forza goes further than PGR in realism, because PGR is an arcade racer.

    Wow. I cant figure out whether you are just very biased or just dont know what your talking about.
    Your reasons for calling GT4 arcadey make no sense at all.
    GT4 lacks physics? Well that proves to us all that you dont know what your talking about.
    Controls setup for a general audience? Whats that supposed to mean? I guess they should put brake on R1 and accelerate on select, right?
    I'm not even going to bother to try and 'disprove' your points as you obviously dont know what you are talking about (GT4 lacks physics and feedback? you should be a comedian). Not to mention the review is very biased.

    Dont even bother with the wheel, you would be better off using the controller.

    While Forza is a VERY good game. It is definately not a "GT Killer" or anything. And I still have a very hard time believing they are marketing this as a simulation.
     
  7. code_kev

    code_kev

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    Well to be fair, Gt4 is hardly the uber sim either. One thing I found better in the old forza is the feeling of grip from the tyres.
     
  8. kinigitt

    kinigitt

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    uhh the forza demo was more realistic than gt4 is... for road cars. I don't know about the race cars, but in Forza the physics for the tires and power being put down felt much better.

    neither is totally better than the other in terms of physics, because they both do some things better than the other. But he said the fine-tuning of the physics makes for a better game in forza. so "more realistic" is a moot point, because they're both doing things differently to strive for realism.
     
  9. BlackZ28

    BlackZ28

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    holy **** those pics look great the RX8 looks like ... REAL! woot..
    .. nice review. more pics brotha! :D !! yea nice one!
     
  10. godzilla_GTR

    godzilla_GTR

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    great reveiw!What region and car did you start with?
     
  11. Lt.Doomsday

    Lt.Doomsday

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    i'm seeing this game as a rental this tuesday when it comes out,hopefully i can rent it. wish i had x-box live,but i couldn't afford it.
     
  12. HammerShot

    HammerShot

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    Guess I'll have to check it out. Online Drift challenges is pretty tempting. :tup:
     
  13. Smoke_U_24/7

    Smoke_U_24/7

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    Wait, MistaBob has a point here. although LegacySTI didn't mention anything about the sense of speed in Forza, Looking at the X-Box's graphics card spec, I would right off the back believe that Forza has the better "feel" to it, if the developers were patient enough to research and program the SOS properly.

    Yes, Legacy does sound abit biased, but you have to also weigh in the PS2's capabilites, the Video memory is double the amount in the X-Box versus the PS2, but the processor is a P3 733mhz, which is faster, but in terms of the bits, not as advanced as the PS2.
    So yeah, the a.i. is going to be better because the X-Box video card has it's own CPU, so the only thing the p3 has to do is process the data, and the PS2 just has one 300mhz processor to process all the data, including graphics.
    My point is that the two will be equal just because of the hardware that the two is based on, so neither game deserves criticism.
     
  14. flynn

    flynn

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    ahhh what?


    yes on paper xbox is faster then PS2....but that does not mean that a driving game on xbox will automatically have a better "feel". I can tell you flat out after playing the full version of Forza, that its no where near as good in terms of mass simulation...or "feel" of the car in general. It feels very much like PGR with more over/understeer. Its still a really good game. But in the "feel" dept not even close to GT4. I would also like to point out, that most of the cars "feel" the same in Forza. where as in GT every car has a distinct feel.

    Dont make stuff up to back your argument. AND PLAYING THE GAME BEFORE SAYING ANYTHING would be even better.
     
  15. CAMAROBOY69

    CAMAROBOY69 Premium

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    That is an outstanding review LegacySTI !!!! Thank you very much for posting your feedback, opinions, and pictures in here. Many of us are very thankful. I am buying this game for sure when it comes out tomorrow or wednesday or at the latest thursday. :tup:
     
  16. LegacySTI

    LegacySTI

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    Ok, just to add to my impression.. I'm trying to be as objective and unbiased as possible. I will say again, I think GT4 was great, no question the amount of content and depth is unbeatable value but....

    The more I play Forza, the more I am realizing that GT4's depth is "debate-able" and Forza has stepped up several notches in realism and I will list here..


    - High speed braking in GT4 is unrealistic, hold brake and the car slows down.. really? You mean going 140mph+ I can hammer the brakes without losing control

    - High speed braking in Forza is a balancing act, you don't hammer it, you must modulate and tap, if you have anti-lock braking turned off, the car tends to lock up into a slide and slowing down the car progressively in key..

    - AI players in GT4 still drive in lines and move like school buses on the road, they don't make humanly moves or pull a fast one on you, most of their moves are predictable..

    - AI players in Forza behave more aggressively like Gan-san in Best Motoring, likes to take it "outside inside" and sneak into the curve or give you that hard tap in the rear when you're cornering and send you spinning into the dirt...

    - Night time lighting in GT4 is limited because of PS2's capability, the headlight illuminates the same as the lamp pole and all other light source in the game.

    - Night lights in Forza illuminates realistically on the road, objects, has the foggy look, correctly shaded, and the Xenons look the part..


    Ok, there are comments about Forza & PGR being alike.. I can voucher the good parts from PGR is featured in Forza but what makes PGR arcadey is the whole "every car can drift" thing.

    I find Forza toned down the drifting, say the Civic Type R can drift in PGR but in Forza it carries mild understeer into corners and it is not a drift but induced understeer effect. Of course a Viper is easy to drift.

    I've been playing GT4 since the Import version, (go search up my GT4 posts) I think that GT4's only depth is in the content it has, it is much more polished, a lot more tracks, and the license tests are not very realistic IMHO view. I know GT4 is leaps beyond GT3 but after driving a couple of laps in Forza, I'm feeling that GT4's driving experience is underwhelming now.
     
  17. flynn

    flynn

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    I agree 100% that Forza has really nice driver AI. It makes racing very intense. And also like you said earlier...the sounds of the cars are disctintive and realistic.

    All in all a great game......and certain aspects may be more accurate. But IMO I still think GT4 overall has a more realistic feel. And when you factor in the amazing FF of the DFP...to me its no contest. (will have to wait for wheel for Forza)

    I would also like to point out that...I hope this games does really well....if for anything that PD will kick it up a notch for gt5.
     
  18. LegacySTI

    LegacySTI

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    Ok, you assume I am biased, care to point out where the bias is?

    PS2's advantage is that PS2 can do photorealistic colors with great color accuracy, something Xbox lacks due to the X86 and nvidia chip. (Yes, even PC(x86)
    /Windows cannot do true color accuracy!!)

    This is why Forza appear to have a crayon color effect. Not enough color accuracy.

    I am a big fan of the Japanese touches in menu, interface, and overall game UI design as the case with GT4, very polished game which Forza lacks. But in terms of driving excitement Forza has it.

    The 3 keys things that makes a driving sim immersive...

    - Graphics, sound, and artistic work
    - Driving dynamics, realistic handling, physics...
    - Controls, feedback and depth

    GT3's sound is extremely weak, no only I can't tell if it is a VTEC, Boxer, or Inline engine, they all sound nearly the same, buzzy...

    Graphically, I love GT4's artwork at recreating the tracks and scenes but with low-res textures compare it next to Forza is very dated looking, but the photoquality car rendering is good, just the cars still look too static, flat, and not a sense of speed. Dynamic lighting used is too generic in GT4/PS2, the tire streaks, smoke, and tire marks are too generic in GT4.

    Driving wise, GT3 was the benchmark, GT4 added a few new subtleties but did not engage the driving enough. There was still the lack of pronounce understeer, car rotating, and cornering feel.

    Forza has shown that you can induce mild understeer and correct into oversteer easily. GT4 feels much more locked down in that regards. Does the e-brake actually work in GT4?? GT4's depth is really debate-able, it does some things really well but I just can't feel the car enough even with the Logitech Driving Force Wheel.

    As for physics, c'mon guys... GT4 runs into wall and keep going and not stopping!?

    Hit an AI car from behind, not only no damage but the new physics is that it slows you down, but in real life, it would either lose control or the AI car is suppose to spin out, I rarely see cars in GT4 spin out, especially AI ones...

    Play GT4 & then Forza back to back... you'll know what I mean...
     
  19. LegacySTI

    LegacySTI

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    I sure hope GT5 on PS3 will exceed the GT3/GT4 engine. I am still a big fan of GT series, competition is good.
     
  20. code_kev

    code_kev

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    Umm no. It's all down to the art.
     
  21. jaxx751

    jaxx751

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    i dunno, i gota play it for my self.
     
  22. BlackZ28

    BlackZ28

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    Looks like gamespot agrees with you.
    It gave forza a 9.2 and GT4 an 8.9
     
  23. animateria

    animateria

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    Sheeesh... (Read the Gamespot stuff also) The game seems to feature everything GT fans wanted for GT4!! :drool: Now if I only had an X-Box :grumpy: ... Well Microsoft's hitting Sony as hard as they can!! Sony and PD will need a lot of quality control in their next gen PS and GT5... I hope PD is playing Forza... They need to look at a game that may as well be better than their game... Veterans losing to Freshmen... They should be ashamed of themselves!! (j/k?)
     
  24. the hodge man

    the hodge man

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    americans are very lucky, forza is out today in the US in europe we have to wait another 1 and a half weeks which angers me a lot!:irked:
     
  25. welshgtlover

    welshgtlover

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    Hey hodge, a fellow Welsh lad, cool.. I have a leaked version of the game, but will still be buying the game when it comes out. Hopefully see you online matey! :tup:
     
  26. MrGrumpy

    MrGrumpy

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    Great review LegacySTI, only 1 more day to go for us Aussies to get it (assuming the street date is kept).

    This is definitely the year for console racers GT4, Forza and Enthusia (lucky enough to play the Japanese version of this and it's brilliant as well), three Christmases in one.

    I'm so happy.

    Cheers
     
  27. LegacySTI

    LegacySTI

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    People typically bash Gamespot for giving Xbox games low marks but I believe the tide has turned and Forza is definitely much "satisfying" to play than GT4.

    Honestly speaking, I was playing GT4 for about 3 months and I really got tired of racking up and buying used cars and modding them, I had 7-8 different Skyline GT-Rs, 5 different STI, and 4 different EVOs, they are just cosmetically different but same cars overall.

    I do feel the 700+ cars in GT4 is overkill, the Photo mode was a nice departure but it's not a gaming feature. I end up wasting more time setting up camera angles than playing the game.

    What really made the difference is the sound dept, I don't care if you're a fan or not, you have to admit GT4 sounds are pretty awful, even NFSU is better.

    I do welcome GT4's more intensive handling and upgraded physics, it's still only a few degrees more than GT3. You can still wall grind and car bump your way around.

    The 89% rating Gamespot gave was "objective" and Forza received 92% is deserving.

    The innovative features such as the race line guide arrows, car tuning, stats, and much more immersive graphics + sound.

    For all the nay-sayers, stop criticizing Forza until you played it. It has made a convert of me.. (I happened to love GT2 more than GT3..)
     
  28. livemusic

    livemusic Premium

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    Anyone knows where can I get Forza´s intro vid?
     
  29. the hodge man

    the hodge man

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    welshgtlover if you have xbox live what is you gamertag?
     
  30. Driftster

    Driftster

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    Well well well.......I post in the forza thread months ago....And what do I get ......I get
    "Flopza sucks, GT4 is 1337 H4X0rZ pwns u 4 FREE"......NOW people start to see the light....Amazing what some wheel time can do..