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Forza Motorsport 3 review

Gassed up and ready to take on Gran Turismo

Whether you know it or not, Forza 2 burst onto the scene with a user-generated community that’s second only to Just about everything you can do in the game, from personall-y honed vehicles and custom decals to edited replay movies and snapped photos, can be uploaded, shared, sold and experienced with a ginormous community. Hell even holds Design Tournaments on a regular basis.

Is it better than... (Race War!!)

Forza 2? Yes. On the surface they appear very similar, but Forza 3 has a far broader appeal. But even if they were identical, the Rewind button is an absolute godsend! And where it took Forza 2 two years worth of paid DLC to amass its automotive arsenal, Forza 3’s giving it to you right out of the gate. In a bit of a trade off, owners of smaller, standard-def TVs can actually read the menu text! However, the visual portion is now covered by a mist of glaucoma…

Perhaps best of all, all 400 of the game’s cars are unlocked from the beginning! You’re only limitation is what you can afford. Turn 10 tells us that there are roughly 90 attainable cars in the first 15 minutes.

Need For Speed: SHIFT? Sorta. If you haven’t seen SHIFT’s amazing new driver experience, it really is one of the biggest evolutions racing sims have seen in years, and makes Forza look very sterile by comparison. SHIFT’s mid-race milestones are an interesting compensation, as well as a wonderful reason to not restart, but it’s Forza 3’s ability to endlessly rewind turns that’ll make you a better driver.

Plus, EA’s history of annual NFS releases gives us no reason to believe the game will see anywhere near the amount of continued online and community support. After all, there’ll probably be a new one in eight months, right?

Gran Turismo 5: Prologue? Depends. It may not be fair to compare a full-featured game to what’s essentially a compensatory demo, but it’s almost unavoidable in this case. Both games are after the same audience of diehard gearheads, but it’s Forza that extends the biggest olive branch towards a much broader audience.

GT is essentially the same game every time, only prettier. And while Gran Turismo 5 will probably add in the features it should’ve had years ago, its primary focus has and always will be pure, unadulterated car porn. For many, that’s all that matters... so visually speaking, Prologue (Answer A.) still looks significantly better than Forza 3 (Answer B.), and it stands to reason the full featured GT5 will look even better. See, we’re not here to bash the PS3! That’s for the video below:

The Rewind addition removes the most agonizing aspect of the modern racing sim, while the ridiculous level of customization and online support keeps the experience fluid and rewarding. And at 60 bucks, Forza 3 presents more value than just about any other game in any genre.

Oct 8, 2009

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With a huge collection of cars, years worth of playability, some of the deepest driving around, and real inroads to casual acceptance, Forza 3 is one of the best games in its field and in general.

PlatformXbox 360
US censor ratingEveryone
UK censor rating3+
Release date27 October 2009 (US), 23 October 2009 (UK)