Forza Horizon 4 review Xbox One

Jari Välimäki

Forza Horizon 4

Forza Horizon is back baby! The fourth installment in the widely succesful
and popular series brings us to the United Kingdom to experience
the fun of driving in all new ways, with an all new progression
and weather system that Playground games calls Seasons.

If you are not familiar with the series from the past, Forza Horizon is an open world driving game
that let’s you tear up the world in almost any way you can possibly imagine,
let that be free roaming the map, or driving co-op with your friends,
or racing the cpu in one of the various modes, and much much more.

One of the major changes to this years title is the addition of Seasons,
meaning you can now race be it Winter, Autumn, Summer or Spring.
And boy does it look swell, I have added alot of screenshots from in-game for you to view above.

How Playground Games intends to use the seasons in game is interesting,
when you first start the game and race you will get to experience all four seasons initially,
and come up on Autumn, in a few weeks time after launch,
Seasons will rotate dynamically for all players in the world weekly,
so there will never be a dull moment and change up the fun and challenge to driving (looking at you slippery winter).

The other major change to this years title is the new progression system which is based on Influence,
in previous Horizon titles you had festival wrist bands and followers for levelling up and progressing,
the interesting thing here is that you can earn influence also in new ways.
Playground Games has incorporated earning Influence in-game even to watching Forza Horizon 4 streams on the Mixer Platform
(requires you have your Mixer account linked with your Xbox Live gamertag).
And as normal you can earn Influence by part-taking in racing / doing stunts and exploring the vast open world.

Exploring Britain is a ton of fun, and there is alot to explore here, you have over 500 roads to drive down,
and like previous titles you have barn finds to discover for them sweet classics to be restored.
And be it that you love cars, there’s over 450 cars in the game to get your hands on with more coming in
future car packs to the game. And don’t worry; Danger signs, speed traps, speeds zones,
drifting zones are all present as previous Horizon titles,
and there’s alot of them for you to explore and conquer.

One of the new features added to the open world is the ability to spend your hard earnt racing cash on Houses and businesses,
driving around in the open world finding beauty spots to snap some beautiful screenshots off to
finding new houses up for sale that you can buy (some don’t come cheap). Essentially buying a
house in game means that you start from the location when loading into the game,
some houses do come with perks though as the ability to fast travel anywhere in
the world, this will cost you though until you have found all the bonus boards as per previous titles we’ve become used to.
There’s also the influence boards to hunt down for a total of 200 bonus boards and some of them are in well tricky areas for you to find.

Also when you arrive at your newly purchased house this is where you can customize your drivatar with new clothing items and such,
these you can win from levelling up in the game and from wheelspins and super wheelspins.
Difference here is that a wheelspin contains a single item or cash, and the super wheelspin contains 3 items.

I mentioned Businesses above, and as you progress in game you will eventually come up on owning Worlds Fastest rentals,
which will earn you cash when you are not around to drive yourself (think of it as daily drivatar rewards from previous games).
World Fastest rentals also is one of the four stories of Horizon that you will complete while playing,
each of these (trying not to spoil everything) feature some wild racing and stunts to earn that sweet influence/cash and 3 stars on.

Showcases are also part of Forza Horizon 4, and as these are one of my favorite things about the Horizon series,
I won’t go into detail about them besides saying
what has been shown previously by Playground Games themself,
there is a Halo showcase that lets you drive the Warthog featuring some funny dialogue from Cortana.

If you pre-ordered the Forza Horizon Ultimate Edition, you will also have access to Bond Car pack,
and two upcoming additions to the game at a later date.
Personally I cannot wait to see what the expansions bring to the table,
as previous titles brought the likes of Storm Island to Horizon 2, and Blizzard Mountain
snow for the first time to Forza Horizon 3.

Let’s talk about the graphics and sound, music in game next.

Forza Horizon 4 on the Xbox One X, is Native 4K UHD with HDR-10 support and looks absolutely stunning,
with fast loading times. During my review playtime, I have not come across any hickups or tears of the like,
it really runs like a dream. As you can see from above screenshots (all captured on the X)
This title is really a showcase for the power of the X.
Sound wise the game is great, you have cars that sound like cars, and sheep that baa when you try to run
them over (hah), I do not know myself exactly how a specific car should sound,
but to me they’ve done a good job on this front.

Forza Horizon 4 has always been known for it’s awesome soundtrack to give you that special Festival feel, and this years soundtrack is no exception.
It’s got fire, and fits the game like a driving glove to an old school Jaguar steering-wheel.

If you want a preview of the music in-game here’s the spotify link to the whole game soundtrack.


Final words

You are going to have a blast with this title, I forsee atleast hundreds of hours of pure fun for you to have here,
just completing all the regular races will have you close to the 100 hour mark,
and then you move onto the co-op and multiplayer fun.. and just one more race, and one more… you know what I mean,
time well spent in gorgeous Britain!

I love how Playground Games continue to improve on their games title after title,
the passion and dedication. I have quickly become a huge fan of the Horizon series
and it’s on joint 1st place for me with Forza Motorsport series with this release.
What could be improved upon? I honestly cant think of anything, so I’m just
going to leave that to the geniuses at Playground Games.

Forza Horizon 4 releases on October 2nd this year, and with the Forza Horizon 4 ultimate edition
you can jump in and play a few days early launching on September 28th.

Xbox Game Pass subscribers can play Forza Horizon 4 on launch day October 2nd as well.

Please see your local retailer or online store for pricing.

Review code supplied by Microsoft.

As I am writing this article and watched last nights Forza Horizon 4’s launch stream,
there was some new information on what’s coming to the game later on in October,
and this includes the ability to make your own blueprint races with an in-game race editor,
this editor will allow you to construct your own races for up to 40miles in total.

You should follow Turn 10 / Playground Games on twitter or visit the forums for more information on this.

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