By Trace 2 Comments
Giant Bomb's Forza Horizon car club is 200 members strong. It should easily be twice that.
I guess this is my biggest frustration with this generation of consoles. I'm sure Microsoft and Sony didn't have as much information about the habits of online play five years ago as they do now, but with this site, I'm at a point where car clubs reach their 100-user capacity really damn quickly. Using gamertags, be it my own or a dummy account, isn't a great idea either.
While I'm not a complete fan of how they go about it, Steam's style of groups seem like the direction a lot of the next generation of consoles should take their social multiplayer tools. Right now, my friends list is the same capacity as a car club in both Forzas. While it does leave a little room for variance, since not all of my online friends play racing games, it makes it difficult to bring new people into the fold. Imagine if I could have a large community of hundreds or thousands of people who are interested in both Giant Bomb and Forza Horizon. From there, I could make announcements of upcoming race nights, and when that date comes around, I could send out invites to anyone in the club currently playing Horizon, and anyone in the group playing could jump on their own into any active group-only games. From there, if I meet cool people that I enjoy multiplayer with, I can friend them.
Seems ideal, if a bit extravagant and complicated.
It probably won't ever happen, but I'd rather have issues with too many people than not enough capacity. At the very least, these damn Forza clubs could have "Last active" dates so I could easily see who's done with the game and who's still playing. Anything to make managing a club easier would be ideal, at this point.
I certainly shouldn't have to spend hours trying to figure out who's active and who isn't when organizing a club. It's a pain that's in desperate need of correction in the world of consoles over the next year or two.
I've been meaning to get back to it for a while, but I finally jumped back into the Horizon Rally expansion to finish it off. While I have a couple of achievements to finish off before I'm back to that coveted S-Rank, I think it's a damn better experience than I expected.
Here's the thing. When I first heard about the rally pack, I was hoping that its big surprise, which would easily justify a $20 price point, was Pikes Peak. Pikes Peak is scary as hell in real life, and thanks to an initiative to pave its entirety, it's a rather thrilling ten-minute ride of fear. Given that Horizon takes place in Colorado, and given that any potential sequel will probably take the festival elsewhere, it seemed like the best chance for the Forza series to nab the world's greatest hill climb course.
Not counting any potential time or financial issues, I can understand why Playground Games eschewed taking on the most obvious rally-friendly course Colorado had to offer: It's not the kind of rally Horizon wanted to present.
I'm not going to say Horizon Rally has easy stages, but they're almost all very high speed, loaded with major dips, huge jumps, and incredibly banked turns. It feels like a modern arcade rally game, with roads resembling more rollercoaster than any actual function. It's almost a shame once I started noticing that many of these roads are just amped-up versions of the open-world roads in Horizon (and damn the person that clued me into that), because the roads feel like undiscovered treasure before then, and that you're a fair distance away from the festival itself.
There's repetition in stages, but not any more than the rally in DiRT 3, and the layouts feel more creative and thoughtful in general. That goes a long way in justifying the $20 for me.
Plus, using exotic cars for rally purposes is insanely dumb and delightful.
Seriously, my Lotus 2-Eleven and Lamborghini Sesto Elemento make for great rally cars.