Forza Horizon 5: We played the beta preview of Forza Horizon 5 to see how Playground Games has found the formula for success. Forza Horizon 5 has a major challenge before it. On the one hand, it is the successor to possibly the best Xbox One video game. On the other, it is the first big name that Xbox Series users expect for this first year of the console’s life. But neither one thing nor the other deviates from the path to Playground Games, the creators of this spin-off saga that has earned the right to watch the numbered series of Turn10 from you to you, each one in their own style. Each one majestic. We have been able to play the latest preview version of the newest for Microsoft and Windows 10 consoles for several hours. And as always, the most important thing emerges: enjoy the trip. Now in Mexico.
The most arcade-style driving games, which want to get away from the purest competition, have in Forza Horizon a saga in which to learn and take notes. Neither the series was the first to install an open world to explore, nor was Forza Horizon 5 revolutionizing what we already know from the fourth installment. But many times it is not the what, but the how, that makes the difference. And after several hours with the great name of the new generation for Xbox Series, we are clear that the game maintains the excellence that we already knew.
The concept of open world and exploration are two of the elements most present in the definition of what the title is. Because as we said in the analysis of Forza Horizon 4 (and 3; and 2), it is a saga that grabs you because you enjoy the simple fact of driving cross country, going from one place to another, seeing how change the weather and have a good time as a travel experience. And this is very present here, because Mexico, the new location, is gigantic and offers contrasts that we had not seen before. And because there are the roads full of vehicles to overcome or challenge, small events to solve and races and circuits to target. Everything is familiar but at the same time, with a feeling of freshness. Changing your location is not just doing it at a visual level.
The power of a good introduction
The first thing we did was start with an impressive introduction in which they leave us falling with a 4×4 in the middle of a volcano to go down at full speed and realize that the drawing distance is brutal. We move forward, we jump in slow motion as the canons mark and we control a Corvette that has only one mission: to enter a sandstorm, one of the new weather phenomena. Driving with an internal camera is quite an experience because you can’t see anything. It’s time to go into a jungle area with a rally car, skidding through the mud and using the windshield wiper. To take down a Mercedes beast to get to the festival. The good starts.
It is there where they invite us to make the first exhibition, something also a house brand: race against a plane that drops a series of bikers who are jumping, crossing in front of us and who come to leave the motorcycle to do Wingly in front of us. All this while we see that the game looks especially visual, especially in performance mode where there is no ray tracing or so much detail, true, but the fluidity of 60fps makes the difference. They were missed on Xbox One, with the Smart Delivery Forza Horizon 4 it was already a delight and now we know that we do not want to go back to 30fps.
Among the novelties, a new campaign with diverse missions, ranging from going into a sandstorm, finding an Aztec piece and taking a picture with it; or the classic search for abandoned vehicles with a curiosity: now the truck that takes them to the workshop will be brought by us, as if it were a GTA mission, but without shooting and with optimal vehicle control, of course.