Sunday, October 02, 2005

Forza vs PGR2 vs GT4

With it being a long weeked I thought I'd rent Microsoft Game Studios' Forza Motorsport and see what all the hype was about, as everywhere I look it seems to get great reviews. I was keen to see how it shaped up against both Project Gotham Racing 2 and Gran Turismo 4, as Forza has been hailed the "GT4 killer"... so how do they compare? Well, for a start Forza is easily the better looking, the damage modelling is a big improvement on the pokey one in PGR2 (hit a barrier lighlty and your bonnet crumples) and GT4's lack of any damage loses it points there. Plus in Forza you can add a huge variety of decals and vinyls, think of it as a cross between NFSU2 and PGR2, adding all sorts of custom kits and paint jobs to any of the cars - something else lacking from GT4. The tracks in all 3 games are nicely rendered and have a good level of detail Sound-wise Forza again scores well, the engine noises and details (turbo winding up etc) are really good, however the music detracts from the experience and I had to turn it off. PGR2's sound is good too and the music is fine, same for GT4 which can lack some realism at times(ie. after tuning)but the VTEC Hondas sound so real it's scary, and the Dodge Charger sitting at idle sends shivers up any petrol-head's spine! As for gameplay - well that's where GT4 comes back, with over 720 cars (Forza has 230+ and PGR2 less) GT4's sheer content is mind-blowing, it has more tracks than the other two as well and I particularly like the 2nd-hand cars (I can drive an Evo 1 again!!) and the photo mode. It also boasts rally driving and novelties like a 1/4 drag strip - neither of the other two offer those features. GT4 also feels more like a simulation than the other two, but Forza comes very close. PGR2 comes across more like an arcade gamebutit's showroom feature is fantastic Personally i prefer GT4 to the other two, but Forza comes a close second. PGR2 is a great game but GT4's content and sheer playability makes it stand out from the rest and Forza's quality and content sets the benchmark for Xbox racers to come For a similar comparison, see GameSpot's Driving Simulator Roundup


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