Friday, January 15, 2010

James Bond, with a black eye.

Forza 3 is an amazingly smooth, polished, professional looking product. It oozes suave right down to the british accent of the narrator. It goes without saying that the cars and the tracks are amazing to look at, but the menus are amazing to look at. The logo is amazing to look at. Not since the Wipeout's (and maybe Project Gotham 2) have I played a racing game that is such a tight package of looks and driving. At first glace it is flawless, streamlining even the car upgrade process for those of us who just what to go fast and don't know the difference between a tie rod and fule injector.

However, the way races are set up leaves a little to be desired, mostly because of how they force you to drive. Beginning races are very short, usually around three laps on a track less than a mile long. Cars are very close together power wise in the beginning as well, meaning that no one, including the player, is going to have a significant advantage once you get past easy difficulty. All of this forces you to pretty much drive like an ass hole to have any hope of moving from eigth to first. So much effort has been put into realism here, and it all succeeds, but give me a qualifying lap so I don't have to wade through 7 AI drivers who refuse to give up their line even though I am going much faster. This isn't nascar, I shouldn't have to put a guy into a wall just to make a pass.

Nitpicky? Of course, but all the more needed because Forza 3 is good enough to make me forget about Gran Turismo. It's so close to perfect, and this seems like such a trivial change, that I can't imagine why it isn't here.

I have given up on trying to put together a top 25 of the decade list using the poll from PA. There are too many games to think about; too many good ones, too many bad ones. With a gun to my head, perhaps, but none of you know where I live.

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