Forza Motorsport is one of a handful of big 2023 Xbox exclusives, and the racing sim’s devs are talking a big game from dynamic weather and changing track temperatures all the way down to minute details like how dirt accumulates on your car over the course of each lap.
“Damage and dirt build up is unique to each car,” Turn 10 vehicle art director Gabriel Garcia said during today’s Xbox Developer Direct livestream. “It’s now contextually aware and more localized. We simulate paint thickness, chipping, and directionality. Dirt accumulation is more realistic, gathering in the low pressure areas like recesses and alcoves. These innovations tell the story of the work you put into a race and reflects the marks and battle scars of motorsport.”
Throughout the presentation, Garcia and other Turn 10 developers proudly ticked off a bevy of other granular improvements to the eighth game in the series, including but not limited to:
- dynamic time of day and weather effects
- track temperatures that change with each lap
- better reflections thanks to an in-game spectrophotometer
- vegetation and overgrowth with 10 times more detail
- regional track announcers
- more realistic suspension, exhaust, and turbo audio
Zooming back out, the overall game will feature more than 500 cars, 800 unique upgrades, and 20 environments, each featuring multiple track layouts, including the series’ first-ever South Africa race track, Kyalami. Turn 10’s message culminated in the impressive-sounding but ultimately unquantifiable claim that Forza Motorsport’s physics engine includes a bigger leap forward than the three most recent previous games combined.
It certainly sounds like the game will exploit the new-gen Xbox Series X hardware in a way that existing first-party exclusives haven’t so far. And it should—Forza Motorsport is coming out three years after the launch of the console and six years since the last game in the series. Hopefully it learns a lesson from PlayStation 5’s Gran Turismo and doesn’t let a grindy in-game progression and monetization overshadow the simulation elements when it arrives sometime before the end of 2023.