Gramview: Forza Motorsport 2
As Forza's successor I must say that they nailed it with Forza 2. And ensuring a place next to the great racing-games. With the more GTA-like approach they know to stay true to the actual dynamics of driving. If you're a "driving freak" or the casual "let's drive a lap-type of guy". No doubt that Forza 2 is a nice addition to your collection.
The first thing that really caught my attention are the dynamics, the handling and reactions of the cars. It pulls you straight in the drivers' seat, making you the next Schumacher. Also the fact that the difference between all the cars is very noticeable all adds to that experience. Even the 'less' experienced driver it's possible to catch the feeling as it suppose to be. This because the different assists that are included. From TCS, ABS to the lines on the road telling you the perfect path and where to break. It all makes sure that really EVERY player can make play the game at the fullest. But that's not all. The different assists are also linked to the difficulty level. Meaning that turning off assists will increase the difficulty and of course you can also adjust the AI's difficulty. Another thing that the assists are linked to is the money (credits) you earn. The more assists are turned on, the more credits you'll receive and vice versa of course. As far as the AI goes I can say it's one of the best I've encountered in racing-games. Acting exactly how you expect it to, a joy to race them and it contributes greatly to the general feeling. You can just feel it's in sync with the rest of the game. The interface itself is pretty easy to use tough that it can be pretty frustrating sometimes. I rather had an easier way to switch cars but further on 'the what', 'where' and 'how' are pretty obvious menu-wise.
The other thing that really surprised me is the amount of licensed cars. There are just too many of them. And I'm sure that Forza 2 must be THE race-game with the most choice of cars. It's just mind-blowing but nice at the same time. Also the fact that all the differences between the cars is so noticeable makes it that much better. I guess they'd spent a huge amount of time just inserting variables on how all the cars would reacting on all the different situation they possibly could think of. Without a doubt one of the stronger aspects in the game. All this is being backed up by awesome looking graphics. Especially the cars got the attention. Being perfectly detailed it's nothing more but a joy to just look at them, let alone drive in them. Also the damage of the cars is very realistic and a great feature which they worked out really good. But not only the cars are detailed and nice to see. Also the surroundings and tracks are great. With enough details and stuff going on to loose concentration while driving.
Though even if the tracks are looking great there's one point where I'm not all too convinced about. And that is the amount of tracks that the game contains. Even if there are licensed tracks I quickly got the feeling that there where not enough of them. Which made it pretty repetitive early on in the game.
Further on I also must say that they've could put a little more effort in the music of the game. This has the same problem as the tracks and gets repetitive pretty fast. Cause of the short list of numbers they've put in there. But you can always listen to your own tracks while you can't drive your own.
Finally the achievements, which are a joy to the achievement-freak like me. You can easily reach the full 1000/1000 just be ready to play the game for about 40 to 60 hours. But none of them are unreasonable and insane to get. Also that almost all of them are offline achievements is really nice.
Which brings me to the conclusion. Where I can say nothing more than; GET THE GAME! It's a perfect game to play all trough or even pick up once in a while to get that cup. Of course also worth to rent or loan. But because you don't need outstanding driving-skills to play. So if you're searching for a nice race-game to play, then stop searching. This is the one...