Forza Horizon 5: The game to define a franchise


In a world of disappointing triple A titles, and games that are more DLC than game, one franchise never fails to deliver. Friday, November fifth saw the opening of the pre-launch access of Forza Horizon 5, allowing anyone who dropped a hundred dollars to play an incomplete version of the game just 5 days before it’s actual release date on November ninth. Who would be silly enough to do that?
So far, the game is more stunning than it was originally thought to be, in just about every aspect too. graphically, gameplay-wise, content wise, all deserving of in depth analysis to clearly see what makes them stand out.
Naturally, no modern game is really complete without some beauty. Forza Horizon 5 takes this to a whole new level. You can drive down the freeway looking at the gorgeous stars overhead, or watch the sun reflect off the roof of your car as you scale a volcano. All in gorgeous 4K. The game feels totally unique, and the graphics really do show the jump in quality from the previous to current generation consoles.
The cars are more detailed too, along with the things related to them. Tires flex and bend when you take tight corners, and pour out clouds of smoke when they slide. Textures look real, and things reflect off your car like mirrors. It’s incredible how much closer to real life a new game can look.
Content wise, Forza Horizon 5 shows staggering amounts of time poured into the world. Mexico doesn’t fail to look gorgeous from coast to coast, the jungles are packed densely with forestry, and every building is unique, and vibrant. The amount of roads to drive on is insane, and the map is much larger than those of previous games, not to mention taller, too. The volcano, “La Gran Caldera” towers over the whole map, at least a mile tall. And the map itself is almost 67 square miles, much larger than horizon 4’s 44 square miles.
The game’s map consists of many areas with unique driving experiences and gorgeous sights. To name a few, there are the two coasts, one smooth, the other rocky. Both consist of long, sweeping roads that offer a view to the ocean below. A desert with huge dunes to jump off of. Wide, open plains reminiscent of Horizon 4. Canyons with twisting, tight roads, a huge, overgrown jungle, and you can’t talk about Horizon 5 without mentioning the huge volcano looming over the map.
The gameplay is incredible, the suspension overhaul that the developers teased is noticeable. Cars drive smoother, and are generally easier to drive while still requiring skill. Features that were changed or outright disliked in horizon 4 have changed. The in-game loot lottery system, “Horizon Wheelspin(s)” features less filler items and more sweet, sweet cars and cash to help you fill up your garage. Menus are easier to navigate, and online connections are more streamlined compared to previous titles
However, with all of this praise, the game still has it’s flaws. For one, the game still being in early access means most online features will be barred until the game fully releases. Players are

noting strange occurrences as well, such as floating trees and cacti, and vehicles occasionally coming to a halt or jumping hundreds of feet in the air. Events like this happen minimally though, and don’t take away much from the enjoyment of such a gorgeous game.
After all of these trials and tribulations, Playground Games may have finally achieved it, the perfect Horizon game. From the expansive, gorgeous map, to the incredible gameplay and insane graphics quality, it is difficult to believe that only a few years ago, a game like Forza Horizon 5 would have never been though possible. Kudos to Playground Games, and may the next two years of Horizon Mexico be the best the festival has ever seen.