Forza Motorsport: No Drag or Drift Races on Launch


The newest iteration of Forza Motorsport promises a vastly improved experience, with under-the-hood mechanics having been ramped up considerably: The Forza Monthly for July 2023 dove into the finer points of AI and the title's tire model - and also announced that two game modes will not be part of the game on launch day.

Image credit: Microsoft/Turn 10 Studios

While appropriate tires and suspension setups will already be available, players are going to have to wait for drag racing and drift competitions to be part of Forza Motorsport. "We've prioritized our development efforts on circuit racing with modern race cars and modern production cars. This focus impacts the entire game, from the cars and tracks we've included, to the new rendering features, physics, AI and gameplay experiences we have built", states Creative Director Chris Esaki. As a result, both modes are absent for the game's launch.

More Detailed Tire Model​

Whether or not players understand the reasoning behind this temporary omission, there is no denying that Forza's tire model has seen an impressive jump in depth according to the numbers presented: Previously, Forza Motorsport titles had a refresh rate of 60 Hz on a single contact point per tire, which has been upped to 360 Hz and eight contact points for the new title. This allows for better behavior over uneven surfaces, such as kerbs.

More tire compounds are also going to be available, with production cars having the option to roll on Street, Performance, Drag or Race rubber. The latter features three sub-compounds, those being soft, medium and hard. Additionally, wet tires are available, as well as a special vintage tire for older cars, although this is cannot be equipped to modern vehicles. All of the tire types will feature and improved heat model aimed at better predictability as grip levels will not fall off as abruptly as they used to when exposed to extreme temperatures.

Forza Motorsport Corvette E-Ray Porsche 911 GT3.jpg

Kerbs can supposedly be attacked much more confidently in Forza Motorsport, thanks to a much-improved tire model. Image credit: Microsoft/Turn 10 Studios

Refreshed Drivatar System​

Meanwhile, the Forza Monthly also highlighted the AI and the mechanics behind it. Forza is known for its Drivatar AI, which bases its behavior on that of real players, appearing with their names and cars even in singleplayer game modes. In the upcoming Forza Motorsport, however, the system is going to use machine learning to achieve a realistic, human-like performance while still using the appearance trademarks of players' friends.

To determine the optimal AI lines, Forza's AI controller runs each track and layout 26.000 times to ensure any combination of car, track, weather and even vehicle upgrades nets a desirable result. AI mistakes are also a factor, and the new difficulty setting ranges from 1 to 8, with 8 being the hardest setting in the game.

Forza Motorsport is scheduled to launch for PC on Steam and the Microsoft Store, as well as Xbox Series X|S on October 10th.

Your Thoughts​

How do you rate the improvements Forza Motorsport is promising to bring to the table? Are you looking forward to giving the game a try yourself already? Let us know in the comments below!
About author
Yannik Haustein
Lifelong motorsport enthusiast and sim racing aficionado, walking racing history encyclopedia.

Sim racing editor, streamer and one half of the SimRacing Buddies podcast (warning, German!).

Heel & Toe Gang 4 life :D

Comments

They definitely don't want to sell their game with 0 gameplay.

This generally doesn't bode well.

The game will certainly be fun to play, but from the silence we can expect plenty of problems and missing content here and there. See you in 3 years' time when the game will be patch 50 and finally finished.
 
Forza Motorsport claims to be a realistic motorsports simulation!
.....without training and quali????
More than a concept with no gameplay, it's a purely auditory game :p

Revolutionary and exploiting the full power of the XBOX.
 
Biggest step in FM history. Can't wait :)

Chris really loves to go deep into details. This is what i always wanted personally. But also kinda crazy to me since after so many FM games i never ever thought FM would go this far into physics simulation details. I love it.

For me this is truly build from the ground up.
 
Physics-wise numbers aren't everything. We will see. Physics and FFB (although I am not sure if I will want to use a wheel with it).

Drivatar-wise during in the showcase the drivatars were often not sticking to the racing line, etc. so their "AI controller" needs to run another 26000 laps.
 
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Looking forward to giving this a go on Gamepass but if the racing is the usual start at the back try to win in 3 laps model probably won‘t stay long. When the only way to win is to either run the other cars off the track or barge your way to the front at turn 1 it gets old quite quickly. That or make your car so over powered the racing is pointless anyway.
 
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Looking forward to giving this a go on Gamepass but if the racing is the usual start at the back try to win in 3 laps model probably won‘t stay long. When the only way to win is to either run the other cars off the track or barge your way to the front at turn 1 it gets old quite quickly. That or make your car so over powered the racing is pointless anyway.
yeah, that has completely killed GT7 for me.
 
Physics-wise numbers aren't everything.

This is very true but seeing the way Turn10 is going with things like the upgrade from 1 point to 8 point tire model and also increasing the physics calculation frequency the informed sim player should know how important that is and how much better the results are looking at Kunos and the huge step in this regard from AC to ACC and other sims. :)
 
Blah blah blah hype runs wild with this one..

This game will be as realistic as any arcade mass market racer will ever be.
Well untill the next Forza, when we will have a super duper hyper realistic tire model x 2.

Personally I quite like Forza, will be nice to have an arcady couch racer to play with the kids. Just dont take it seriously. ;-)
 
Blah blah blah hype runs wild with this one..

This game will be as realistic as any arcade mass market racer will ever be.
Well untill the next Forza, when we will have a super duper hyper realistic tire model x 2.

Personally I quite like Forza, will be nice to have an arcady couch racer to play with the kids. Just dont take it seriously. ;-)
If you want to play with the kids, then use Forza Horizon.... Forza Motorsport should be simulation focused as much as possible.
 
This worries me. Xbox has a track record of messing up lately. The new console launched without games. Their flagship titles, Halo, Forza and Fable weren't ready. Halo eventually came out, missing Forge, missing co-op! With Fable, they're STILL shy about showing gameplay. Redfall was an infamously unfinished mess.

I would have thunk Forza Motorsport should be a relatively easy game to develop. Easy to plan at least, I don't want to denigrate the work developers are doing. What I mean is, you don't have to come up with world building, elaborate level design, a narrative or even a special gameplay hook that could all take time and multiple restarts and iterations to arrive at something cool! But with a sim racing game, don't you just model the usual tracks and cars but a little more detailed this time...? Meanwhile programmers can work on updated rendering (Forza 5 was already awesome in this regard) and update the physics. And yet, there was no Forza Motorsport between Forza Horizon 4 and 5! The excuse was, if I remember correctly, it took time to develop the completely new physics model. Fair enough. But now we're FINALLY getting close to seeing a release of Forza Motorsport, already years later than the usual FM -> FH -> FM -> FH schedule would have indicated and years into the new console's life... and now we're finding out it's going to be missing features???

What is going on at xbox?

I don't even care about drag or drift races. At all. But here's my paranoid take on why these races are missing: I saw a video of FH5 a while back where someone did a drag race against Unbeatable AI and it blatantly showed them pulling away and driving faster than humanly possible, proving the AI cheats. Could it be they're omitting drag races from the new FM to avoid similar exposure of their AI tricks?
As for drifts: We all know how much weird placebo FFB opinions are ghosting around the sim racing community where people will defend explicitly broken physics behavior as realistic because they're fans of the sim. Usually the oddities are subtle enough that between different wheels and different setups, there is a degree of plausible deniability. Is AC's FFB best, or is it RRRE's? Depends, I guess. That said, is it possible that outright focusing on drifting in a race entirely about drifting, would expose oddities with FM's tire model more immediately and that's why they omitted the mode? Whereas in circuit racing they can rely on the usual confused, over-opinionated beehive of sim racers arguing without real world knowledge over whether it's realistic?
 
D
These Forza monthly segments are so weird and honestly quite uncomfortable and cringe to watch, why that girl keeps making faces at the camera, trying to look cute?
How anyone can take this format seriously?
My expectation meter for decent Forza Motorsport dropped below zero.
 
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This worries me. Xbox has a track record of messing up lately. The new console launched without games. Their flagship titles, Halo, Forza and Fable weren't ready. Halo eventually came out, missing Forge, missing co-op! With Fable, they're STILL shy about showing gameplay. Redfall was an infamously unfinished mess.

I would have thunk Forza Motorsport should be a relatively easy game to develop. Easy to plan at least, I don't want to denigrate the work developers are doing. What I mean is, you don't have to come up with world building, elaborate level design, a narrative or even a special gameplay hook that could all take time and multiple restarts and iterations to arrive at something cool! But with a sim racing game, don't you just model the usual tracks and cars but a little more detailed this time...? Meanwhile programmers can work on updated rendering (Forza 5 was already awesome in this regard) and update the physics. And yet, there was no Forza Motorsport between Forza Horizon 4 and 5! The excuse was, if I remember correctly, it took time to develop the completely new physics model. Fair enough. But now we're FINALLY getting close to seeing a release of Forza Motorsport, already years later than the usual FM -> FH -> FM -> FH schedule would have indicated and years into the new console's life... and now we're finding out it's going to be missing features???

What is going on at xbox?

I don't even care about drag or drift races. At all. But here's my paranoid take on why these races are missing: I saw a video of FH5 a while back where someone did a drag race against Unbeatable AI and it blatantly showed them pulling away and driving faster than humanly possible, proving the AI cheats. Could it be they're omitting drag races from the new FM to avoid similar exposure of their AI tricks?
As for drifts: We all know how much weird placebo FFB opinions are ghosting around the sim racing community where people will defend explicitly broken physics behavior as realistic because they're fans of the sim. Usually the oddities are subtle enough that between different wheels and different setups, there is a degree of plausible deniability. Is AC's FFB best, or is it RRRE's? Depends, I guess. That said, is it possible that outright focusing on drifting in a race entirely about drifting, would expose oddities with FM's tire model more immediately and that's why they omitted the mode? Whereas in circuit racing they can rely on the usual confused, over-opinionated beehive of sim racers arguing without real world knowledge over whether it's realistic?
What has me skeptical as of the latest showcase is his body language when mentioning that wheelbase compatibility and ffb dive will be coming in a later showcase.

He doesn't exude confidence or even smile at the camera as a reassuring gesture.
 
These Forza monthly segments are so weird and honestly quite uncomfortable and cringe to watch, why that girl keeps making faces at the camera, trying to look cute?
How anyone can take this format seriously?
My expectation meter for decent Forza Motorsport dropped below zero.
"Look sexy and make suggestive faces for our viewers to get the rates up. Our customer base is weird; they're not here for the cars".
 
When they put FM and FM7 side by side in that LMP1 car or whatever it was, honestly i could not tell that FM was supposed to be a next gen game, lighting even looked worse. I really hope its just the YT compression, but usually you can still see a more advanced game even through the compression. I could not.
 
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Physics-wise numbers aren't everything. We will see. Physics and FFB (although I am not sure if I will want to use a wheel with it).

Drivatar-wise during in the showcase the drivatars were often not sticking to the racing line, etc. so their "AI controller" needs to run another 26000 laps.
they showed wheel gameplay on the forza monthly stream, and in a future episode they will talk about wheel support and ffb
 
I never watch these things. I watched one and they didn't actually say anything, soooooo :p
I'm looking forward the the next Forza. The Forza MS franchise is my favorite chill out single player campaign game. I usually get the FFB dialed in good enough that it actually feels better than some of the current hardcore sims in the market right now.
 
D
they showed wheel gameplay on the forza monthly stream, and in a future episode they will talk about wheel support and ffb
Let me guess, no DD wheels support except Fanatec in compatibility mode.
 
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