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.


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.


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.

Race Pro (2009, Racing Game, 360) – 8/10 review

Creative Director: Diego Sartori
Game Designer: Diego Sartori
Technical Director: Ola Olsson
Lead Programmer: Michael Andersson

Race Pro (2009)


I hate AI that isn’t affected by grass and gravel and kerbs and camber and G-forces and momentum and variable grip and their line through corners and your car being in their way and you driving into the side of them at 100mph and, like most racing games, Race Pro is guilty of this. So why the high score? Communication. Race Pro communicates the relationship of the driver to the car and car to the track more successfully than just about any other console game. This means that every single time you crash, understeer, oversteer, slide or nail a corner oh-so-sweetly, you know exactly why. Every time. Forza Motorsport 2 and Gran Turismo 5 Prologue are more forgiving and far more polished and Ferrari Challenge: Trofeo Pirelli has more heart, but this is probably the best driving experience available on 360 or PS3 at this time.

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

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.

Porsche 959 Martini Forza Motorsport 2 custom paint job

Even though I thought I’d posted all my custom Forza Motorsport 2 liveries, when I returned to it briefly I discovered that there were a handful left I hadn’t posted. Unfortunately, because it was a good while ago now, I don’t remember anything about making them including sources or techniques. So, I’ll just post the pictures.

Actually, now that I look at it I seem to remember that the Porsche logo isn’t available in white so it had to be traced using primitives over the existing Porsche logo. I did this at a large size for accuracy and then could use the group scaling feature to make it the size required. Forza’s wonderful ability to colour a whole group of vinyl’s was then available to make the Porsche logo any colour I required. I also used the same technique for the Martini text which is used in both white and black. I really miss those features (accurate group scaling and group re-colouring) in Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli.

Nissan Skyline: Import Tuner Challenge custom paint jobs

While certainly not on the same level as Forza Motorsport 2, the 2006 instalment of the Shutokou Battle series (also known as Tokyo Highway Battle, Tokyo Highway Challenge, Tokyo Xtreme Racer and, now, Import Tuner Challenge) also has extensive car customisation that includes vinyl and sticker placements. You can place three vinyls on the side of the car and several stickers. The vinyls don’t include primitives as Forza Motorsport did but are made up of many complex patterns and artworks.

I used two main cars through the Quest mode of Import Tuner Challenge: a Nissan Skyline Coupe CPV35 and a Nissan Skyline GT-R BNR34.

The paint job on the Nissan Skyline GT-R BNR34 rotates and shrinks one of the complex flashes supplied and uses it as fire coming out of the mouth of a dragon at the flying girl. Notice also how the wheels are different colours. I think it works.

Nissan Skyline GT-R BNR34

The paint job on the Nissan Skyline Coupe PCV35 takes the same girl but rotates her 180° making her appear to be reclining seductively on the rear wheel arch. After adding the tear vinyl at the front wheel arch, I needed something to visually lead the eye from front to back. I used a large katana vinyl to accomplish this without noticing that it looked like I’d skewered her on it. Sorry, girl.

Nissan Skyline Coupe CPV35