Our next GOTY award goes to Forza Horizon 4, the second in the racing series to PC. Find the rest of our awards and personal picks here PC games.
Jarred: There are different types of racers, and I fall firmly into the group that likes less serious simulations. Driving around Forza Horizon’s compressed presentation of the UK may not be realistic, but it’s great fun. Earning bonus points for not crashing into anything-or points for destroying the landscape as well as means-you are constantly progressing. The seasonal changes look good, though they do not radically change the handling of the vehicles. That’s probably the best, as I grew up in Utah and Colorado and could unequivocally state that driving in the snow and ice in real world sucks. Give me a light sim that lets me take my hypercar off a 500-foot jump, however, and I am happy.
Andy K: I can not enjoy driving games that are not Forza anymore. The handling has a note-perfect balance of weight, power, and responsiveness, and in the horizon series we get a satisfyingly streamlined, accessible take on that driving model. The UK is an inspired choice for setting, especially the winding mountain roads of the Scottish Highlands. Aside from everything else, it’s a feeling of driving that I really love in Horizon 4, whether you are carving up a dirt track or screaming along a large stretch of motorway.
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Phil: “Racing” can not be the most accurate award, but “Best Having a Fun Time in Variety Cars Game” was too long of a title. Forza Horizon 4 is a great racing game-offering just enough realism to give its arcade handling a proper sense of seven and presence-but its real success is to ensure that each of its activities are reliably entertaining. Maybe that’s an offroad race against AI drives, or a cooperative forzathon challenge to drive very fast down a specific road. Maybe it’s hunting down rare cars in abandoned barns or smashing billboards for XP. And maybe it’s skidding around a big field, your skill chain builds your car for unlock perks that lets you get even bigger, more skillful skill chains. That handling system is so expertly tuned that, whatever you decide to do, and whatever car you drive, you will be a good time.
Fraser: I have not since since 2002 and generally think that cars kinda suck. With Forza Horizon 4, I Get It Now. I had a similar revelation with Burnout Paradise, but I drifted away and stopped caring again. Now I can not get enough of cars. Dumb cars, mostly. I found a rubbish little thing that could hit at least 40, tuned it up and now it could not drive anywhere without donuts up and down the road or smashing into the wall. It’s uncontrollable and also my favorite car. And what a treat it is to careen through Edinburgh! I lived there for 11 years, and it’s eerie how good the digital facsimile looks. Sure, the real Edinburgh is less than an hour away on the train, but exploring it in a game just wild.
Samuel: A friend of mine said this feels like the Playground’s audition to make the new Fable game, which has been in place since E3 before rumored. I pretty much agree: this makes me realize how well Britain really looks … in places. As ever, the setting is a vital part of Forza Horizon’s enduring appeal.