Grinding Gears in the Forza Horizon 3 Demo on Xbox One

Forza Horizon 3 Truck Jump (Photo Forza Motorsport)
Forza Horizon 3 Truck Jump (Photo Forza Motorsport) /

We spend some quality time Down Under to check out the Forza Horizon 3 Demo on Xbox One, and end up enjoying every minute of it.

I don’t usually write reviews about racing game Demo’s for the simple fact that they are just that; a Demo. They are normally only a fraction of what the real game will be and to be honest, I just don’t put that much thought in a racing games “worth” by just playing the Demo alone.

Gaming company’s often throw big money into a games Demo, usually during big launch events like E3, or the upcoming TwitchCon, in hopes to attract new customers to their franchise.

I have also played plenty of racing Demo’s that have been complete garbage, but when the full version of the game came out, it was actually a decent racer.

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So I try to keep an open mind when a new racing Demo is released.


when it comes to the Forza racing franchise.

In college, I took a course on Action Research, and we learned about recognizing when personal bias may get in the way of your research. I have to admit; I am completely bias when it comes to the Forza Franchise. And you know what, I am 100% Ok with it.  You see, I expect Forza Horizon 3 to be good. So much so, that I really wasn’t even going to try the Demo.

There really was no need in my opinion. They already have my $100.00 for the early release “Ultimate” version that comes out on the 23rd of this month. There was nothing that the team at Playground Games could have put in the Demo that would make me drive over to my local GameStop and cancel my order.

But then I started thinking, “As someone that is loyal to the Forza franchise, isn’t it my duty to at least try it?” Well, after spending the last 2 days exploring the open world racing that makes the Forza Horizon franchise great, I am extremely happy that I did.

The Demo alone gets an Art of Gears mention. It’s exactly what I like about the series. It truly is a work of Art. From the moment the game loads up on the Xbox One, you know that you are in for a treat. The graphics are truly amazing!

The varied landscape of Australia, makes for the perfect setting for this arcade style racer. Its hard not to want to pause the game to admire all the work they put into these visuals.

The gameplay does not disappoint, either. I spent a lot of time switching between the in-car views, and even though I haven’t had a chance to fire up my race wheel yet (I am saving it for the official launch!) each view works perfectly with the racing physics and gives you a different, enjoyable angle to choose from when playing.

Forza Horizon 3
Forza Horizon 3 visuals are amazing! (Photo Forza Press Kit) /

Then there is the music. Earlier this week, we talked about how a music playlist can “make or break” a road trip. Forza Horizon 3 features some of the best in-game music choices of any racing game to date. Combine this with the announcement that players will be able to use the Microsoft Groove service in-game, your playlist opportunities are endless.

While some people might not think this is a really big deal, for a huge, open-world racing game like Horizon 3, designing a killer playlist that will keep you excited to explore all the different landscapes this game has to offer, is an important factor in keeping this game enjoyable on those long road trips around the map.

Forza Horizon 3
Forza Horizon 3 (Photo YouTube) /

Last but certainly not least, are the vehicles themselves. We already know the Forza franchise prides themselves on great gameplay. With over 350 different vehicles to choose from, I can’t wait to start building my collection of cars, trophy trucks, and rare “barn finds”, when the game releases .

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The Forza Horizon 3 Demo has proved what I already knew about this game. It is going to be great. My excitement for the games release is now in full swing, and I fully plan on enjoying the Demo all the way up until the full games release.