The majority of these releases really won't be seeing the light of
day until the spring season, so maybe in a way, I'm using the term "upcoming"
a bit loosely. Actually, this section is made up of the racing games that seem
to have a rather solid and firm release schedule. In other words, the developer
gave a date of release. Now, as you may know, games DO get delayed (the sad truth
of GT4 thus far), so these release dates should not be taken as the gospel. So, without
any further delay, let's get into the games!
Publisher : Microsoft Game Studios
Platform : Xbox
Racing Type : Simulation
Release Date : April
Sony and Polyphony Digital may have the simulation genre down and perfected, but
that really hasn't swatted off a few companies who have tried (and failed) to steal
GT's crown. We've seen GT-like games from SEGA, Codemasters, Capcom and Namco, but they
really haven't come close to the meticulous detail and features offered in any Gran Turismo
title. Micorsoft hopes to challenge that with their new racing sim in the form of
Forza Motorsport, a racer that will do everything GT does, and then some.
While the car list may be only a third of GT4's, the developers promise a
selection of vehicles that people would want to drive, rather than some of the
slower 60-hp compacts offered in the GT franchise. Not only that, it's the only racing
sim that has the Porsche and Ferarri licenses, something that GT4 doesn't even have.
But it's not just about the cars, Forza Motorsport hopes to change things done
in the GT franchise by offering visible vehicle damage that can also alter your
car's performance, as well as bigger tuning options, the ability to swap car engines,
extensive graphical custmozation for the car's body, and of course, online support,
which was taken out of GT4.
I've tried the demo a little bit, and it seems like that Forza Motorsport can
take on the GT franchise, but as to what the final retail version holds, we can only
wait and see. Micorsoft really hasn't let us down in the racing games for the Xbox system,
knowing how great the Project Gotham Racing and RalliSport Challenge games are. Forza
Motorsport could be the thrid jewel in Microsoft's racing crown. Release has been slated for
April, but seeing how this game has already seen a couple of delays, we can't say that this
date is golden.