Oh, be still my beating heart. Microsoft has just announced a sequel to Forza Horizon will be coming to the Xbox One console. Best yet, it will be built using the same graphics engines that made Forza 5 the best looking racing game on sale today.
If you are unfamiliar with Forza Horizon it was the last game released for the Xbox 360 console in the storied Forza Motorsports franchise. While the traditional numbered sequels of Forza have been hard-core racing sims targeted at fans of Gran Turismo, Forza Horizon took the graphical prowess of Forza Motorsports and used it to craft a more open arcade style racer that was easier for new fans to pick up and play.
While the game was less than loved by fans for its less realistic gameplay, those who could look past the name found a great racer that provided hours of fun in a new and interesting format compared to most racing games.
I for one found the game to be very satisfying to play. It seemed to be the perfect mix between crazy arcade racing like Need for Speed and the graphical depth and realism offered by Forza Motorsports. Plus it had bad-ass stunt races like car vs. plane matches.
There is not a lot of news about the new game, but we have a few details and IGN has given us a nice video overviews of what is to come.
Click past the jump for the video and more details on Forza Horizon 2.
The new game will be based around the same premise as the first. There is a large festival that celebrates all things music and speed, and the area in the immediate vicinity of this festival is your playground.
The original game was based in an imaginary location in Colorado, but the new game is getting more ambitious and moving things to continental Europe. This opens up the possibility for more diverse environments, conditions and road types.
Beyond the move to Europe, Forza Horizon will be the first Forza game to use a newly developed dynamic weather system, allowing the weather to continually adjust and change.
The game itself is being developed by Playground Games. This is the team that was responsible for classic Xbox racers like the Project Gotham Racing series, and of course the original Forza Horizon. While the first game was developed without much outside help from Turn10 studios, the creators of Forza Motorsports, this new game is a much more collaborative effort. Aside from being built on the same engine that produced the stunning visuals of Forza Motorsports 5, the cars of Horizon 2 will also be better to drive thanks to added input from Turn 10.
The first Forza Horizon may not have been the smashing sales success that the previous Motorsports titles were, but Playground games built a strong foundation of fun and excitement, and I can’t wait to see what they can do with better hardware, and improved graphics engine, and the playground of the world that is Europe at their disposal.