Forza Motorsport 3 (2009, Driving Simulator) – 7/10 360 exclusive game review

Cast / crew
Game Designer: Dan Greenawalt

Forza Motorsport 3 (2009)

Race online or offline against up to seven opponents in most of the world’s most desirable cars from dozens of car manufacturers on scores of tracks set in twenty-one international locations (including new to the series Amalfi Coast, Benchmark High Speed Ring, Camino Viejo de Montserrat, Sedona Raceway Park, and returning favourite Fujimi Kaido). Customise them mechanically and visually and buy, share or sell tuning setups and designs on the new Forza Storefront.

7/10

Despite suspiciously glowing contemporary reviews and brazenly making eyes at casual gamers (you can complete the game and get a lot of the achievements almost without driving a single lap), FM3 is more hardcore than ever because only they will be able to extract any satisfaction from it. The casual gamer will give up before even a single lap is through thanks to AI that clearly doesn’t obey the same laws of physics you do, the fact that you can’t touch anything other than tarmac, wheels still seem to spin or lock with traction control and anti-lock brakes turned on, and an extremely uninvolving, if fluid, default driving experience. It is instantly dull and even more so in the uncommunicative cockpit view (almost imperceptible head movement). However, if you learn to drive with your assists off and spend time tuning your cars and avoid the cockpit view, you will be rewarded with a very good driving model and reasonable driving experience and you will appreciate the wealth of cars and superb original tracks presented with beautiful, crisp graphics at a marvellous sixty frames-per-second. Once here, it is, as before, bafflingly addictive but, even with that, you’re unlikely to play the game through to it’s 125-hour conclusion. Told you it was hardcore.

Classified 3+ by PEGI. The game is only suitable for persons who have reached the age of 3 or over.

Links

Supercar Challenge (2009, Racing Simulation Game, PS3 exclusive) – 8/10 review

Executive Producer: Mark Cale
Consultant Car Handling & Race: Bruno Senna
Tiff Needell:
Game Designer: Mark Cale
Game Designer: Dave Thompson
Game Designer: Gareth Wright

Supercar Challenge (2009)

8/10

The main problem with Supercar Challenge is clear; it’s the full-price charge for DLC-size additional content for Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli (two new tracks, three additional track layouts, about a dozen new cars). However, this is to overlook the improvements that have been delivered in every area (especially the sixteen-player online racing) and the sweet driving simulation experience that has been carried over intact from the previous game. The most important change gameplay-wise is the ability to choose your own car for the central Challenge mode allowing you to form a relationship with and intimate understanding of your chosen steed (because, unlike almost all other racing games, each car feels different). While the game can be a challenge at times, the driving experience is so satisfying (in a car you like) that battling around in any position is rewarding and overtaking or pressuring the AI into convincing mistakes, especially (grrr) Lorenz Gerber, is absolutely wonderful.

Classified 3+ by PEGI. The game is only suitable for persons who have reached the age of 3 or over.

Links

Forza Motorsport 3 (2009, Racing Game, 360 exclusive) – demo review

Forza Motorsport 3 (2009)

Quick thoughts on the Forza Motorsport 3 available for download today. Graphics are a big step up from the last instalment with no low-resolution liveries on the cars and pin-sharp backgrounds and textures scattered generously everywhere; it looks very nice. The sixty-frames-per-second refresh rate continues to make a huge difference to every other 360 racer. The front-end menus are attractive, airy and clear. Negative comments? The lighting model places it in a firm second place visually against Gran Turismo 5 Prologue both on the track and in the showroom. Gargantuan loading times for the circuit still exist. Perhaps most damningly of all, though, is that all five cars felt (and sounded) very very similar. They shouldn’t. They include four road cars (Mini, Evo, Ferrari California, Audi R8) and one racing car (Porsche) with massive differences in drive trains, weight and engine power and note. Yet moving from one to the other never felt like you were in a different car. Currently released 360 exclusive Race Pro and PS3 exclusive Supercar Challenge have FM3‘s driving model trumped.

Supercar Challenge custom livery competition winners

 

Eutechnyx and System 3 ran a competition for custom livery creators to get their designs into Ferrari Challenge successor Supercar Challenge and I won with the following designs. The text link takes you to more pictures and a discussion of the creation of the livery while the picture link shows you a larger picture.

Forza Motorsport 2: McLaren F1 GT Vodafone custom paint job

Just in time for the anticipated public reveal of Forza Motorsport 3 at E3 2009, I’ve remembered a couple of Forza 2 liveries that I never posted before. Sadly, I can’t remember anything about their creation. This one is clearly inspired by the McLaren Formula One team and their Vodafone sponsorship.

Forza Motorsport 2: Ferrari F430 Italian Flag custom paint job

Just in time for the anticipated public reveal of Forza Motorsport 3 at E3 2009, I’ve remembered a couple of Forza 2 liveries that I never posted before. Sadly, I can’t remember anything about their creation but I can see that this one was pretty straightforward combining the Italian national colours with the Ferrari logo.

Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli (2008, Game, PS3) – 8/10 review

President System 3 Software: Mark Cale
Executive Producer: Mark Cale
Technical Consultant Car Handling and Race Consultation: Bruno Senna
Instructor Race: Tiff Needell
Game Designer: Mark Cale
Game Designer: Dave Thompson
Game Designer: Gareth Wright
Lead Programmer: Craig McHugh
Manager Programming: Andrew Perella
Manager Technology: Mark McClumpha
Manager Creative: Mark Barton
Designer: Gareth Wright
Designer: Kev Shaw

Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli (2008)

Partake in the international Ferrari 430 Challenge series across fifteen tracks then take over twenty models from Ferrari history for a spin in one-make Trophy championships. Additionally, you can be tutored around Ferrari’s Fiorano test circuit and take the challenge online.

8/10

One-make racing game which boasts rewarding and convincing driving and racing, outstanding rain effects (unlike a lot of games, they remembered the wiper animations), a good livery editor and some terrific tracks that we haven’t seen before in a game (Circuit Mont-Tremblant, Virginia International Raceway and the Auto Club Speedway of Southern California and, for the first time in a long time for cars, Circuit Paul Ricard). There are some nice touches such as wildlife, leaves and men with flags (yay!) at circuits and a personal favourite music track over the main menu (Ebla by E.S. Posthumus). For me, the single marque is no limitation at all (indeed, I love single marque games) and the cars exhibit a wide variety of handling; some of them are an absolute joy to drive including the F512 S, F355 GTB, and the F40.

Classified 3+ by PEGI. The game is only suitable for persons who have reached the age of 3 or over.

Links

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Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli: Ferrari 575M Maranello Italia and Not Italia custom livery

Italia

Not Italia

Another competition entry for FCTP and, as you can see, the original design was based on the Italian flag. The competition didn’t allow you to use flags so I altered the colours and submitted that as NotItalia.

Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli: 365 GTB/4 Comp. Track custom livery

I’m not too convinced that I pulled this idea off. It’s supposed to be a race track with kerbing and grass. The racing numbers are styled as a grid marker (I was rather pleased with that idea).

While I felt the design looked a bit naff in the screenshots above, in replays it worked surprisingly well and that, coupled with the fact that the car was great fun to drive, made me feel a lot better about how the paint job turned out.

Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli: Ferrari 360 Modena Ying Yang custom livery

The idea behind this paint job, as indicated by the title Ying Yang, was a two-tone design with a different colour on each side of the car and the demarcation pattern to be styled after the classic ying-yang icon. Unfortunately, you can’t tell from the finished job. This is a case of one of those ideas which simply didn’t work when applied. It is posted as a complete failure.

Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli: F355 Berlinetta Thorny custom livery

Original Colour

Base Paint Variations

I’m really bad at abstract pattern creation but this is my attempt at one and, because it is made from the neutral colours of black and white, the base paint can be changed to almost any other colour and it still looks fine. While I was quite pleased with the design in these screenshots, I didn’t feel it looked as good during the race.