When the first details of Forza Horizon 5 were revealed back in June, some of the most interesting information centred around the location and the landscape within. Mexico is the backdrop for the newest edition of Playground Games’ open world racing series, and the initial announcement included mentions of sandstorms and even volcanoes. All eleven biomes which will be present in the game at launch were announced on Monday, and they make for an intriguing prospect.
A Diverse World
While the entire map is set in one country, this doesn’t mean that it will be monotone. As Mike Brown, Creative Director of Forza Horizon points out, “Mexico is almost like the whole world in one country… there is no more exciting location for the Horizon Festival”. Eleven distinct biomes will provide players with the greatest variety of any Forza Horizon game yet.
Forza Horizon 5 is our biggest open-world yet and includes 11 distinct biomes, each with unique topography, driving conditions, seasons and weather. Find out more about the vibrant, ever-evolving landscape you’ll experience while exploring Mexico here. https://t.co/PDO0zl9Wze— Xbox Wire (@XboxWire) July 26, 2021
On top of all that, seasons are also making a return for Forza Horizon 5. For each biome, there will be four separate seasons to experience it in, and each biome will indeed react to seasonal changes in different ways. Rainfall season occurs at different times of the year in different landscapes, and this will be reflected in the game. The world map itself will be bigger than that of Forza Horizon 4, roughly one and a half times as big in fact, so all these biomes aren’t going to be crammed into a small space either.
The Eleven Biomes
Starting off with the greener aspects of the Mexican countryside, there are farmlands, jungles, swamps. The Farmlands areas will be the most familiar to players coming from Forza Horizon 4, with small fences and picturesque homesteads to obliterate in your car. As for the other two green areas, Jungles boast hidden temples while Swamps provide challenging terrain through which to race, such as shallow pools of water.
Moving along the colour pallet to some shades of yellow, there are arid hills, living deserts and sand deserts. The Arid Hills biome features lakes which dry up in the winter, providing different routes through the landscape in the colder months. The living desert has a sandy floor but plenty of life in the form of cactuses and flowers, as well as towering rock formations, whereas the sand desert features wide-open sand dunes and low-lying shrubs.
Next up there are the more dramatic landscapes, the canyon and the volcano. The Canyon biome is exactly as it sounds, with a small river flowing through the bottom of a big valley with steep sides. This biome has more of an echo for engine sounds than the others do, in a testament to the attention to detail Playground Games has put in. The Volcano is an enormous peak which players can drive to the very top of. This is the only part of the map that might feature snow.
Finally, there are the coasts and the city of Guanajuato. If you’re looking for white sands and palm trees, then the Tropical Coast biome is what you’re after. Alternatively, you can head to the Rocky Coasts, which are light on vegetation but feature impressive rock formations. As for Guanajuato, it is a colourful city filled with elevation changes and tunnels, so racing through the streets will be a lot of fun indeed!
Which biome are you looking forward to exploring the most? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments below!