Forza 5

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Once upon a time, Gran Turismo was considered by nearly everyone as not just the best driving series out there, but it could do no wrong. I’m talking way back on the PS2 days here, but that perception was very real. A great game would come out, like V8 supercars, and regardless of how good it was, people would shun it because it wasn’t Gran Turismo. And then Forza came along, and the first one would experience a similar fate. But when Gran Turismo 5 was consistently delayed and Forza 2 and 3 came out on the 360, people’s perceptions changed. Now (unless if you’re a Sony or Microsoft fanboy), it’s easy to see the genuine competition between the two last genuine for the best car racing sim on the market. As a fan of both, there was very little separating the two in terms of physics, visuals and sounds. They were virtually identical.

Until now.

Turn 10 has successfully implemented the potentially revolutionary Drivatar system into Forza 5, and for an industry that lives and breathes on hyperbole, I want you to trust me when I say this could actually change everything. If you don’t know what Drivatar is, it’s essentially your driving profile. It documents your driving style. Are you an aggressive driver when you approach corners? Do you cut corners? Do you ram other cars out of the way instead of breaking? Everything you do on the track, it take notes. Now what it does is most impressive. It creates a V.I. out of that information and uploads it, and then puts it online so other people are racing against “you” when they are in career mode. No longer are you going to win races by 50 seconds (unless if you have a freaking Ferrari and the other drivers have Corollas) and no race is the same. The repetitive nature that threatened to kill racing sims has been solved due to this, and other franchises in every other genre need to look at this. Can you imagine if in GTA, the game logged your style of play, and when attempting to kill a boss, he pulls out a rocket launcher and jumps in a helicopter and goes after you rather than just staying in the same spot? Or in Madden, if in franchise mode, a player starts to scramble 5 out of 7 plays with Colin Kaepernick rather than just sitting in the pocket?

It’s nothing short of brilliant, and would be a complete shame if other games don’t try to incorporate something similar to this in future titles.

And then when you throw in assist and customisation options that fully cater for the biggest noob to the biggest veteran of car racing, this title is so under-appreciated that it’s not funny.