Racing games slated for announcements
2017 will be a banner year for racing games, with all the blockbuster titles scrambling for pole position with new releases this year. Fans of racing games have a lot to look forward to, including a brand-new Forza game, the next Need For Speed, and the delayed GT Sport. As E3 kicks off in Los Angeles, we thought we’d take a look at some of the racing franchises that are expected to make announcements at the conference.
Forza Motorsport 7
Thanks to the Xbox briefing on June 11, we now know the release date of the newest Forza Motorsport: October 3. The biggest name in racing games is back and already available for pre-order. Racing games have often been used to display the prowess of new consoles, and Forza Motorsport 7 is no exception. In addition to releases on Xbox One and Windows, it will be one of the launch titles for the new Xbox One X (formerly known as Project Scorpio). This game should be one of the most visually beautiful racers yet, and will run at 4k resolution at 60fps to showcase Microsoft’s new platform.
Of course there will be a lot of new cars, but the number is a bit ridiculous. There are over 700 cars in Forza 7 with which to hurl around 30 locations and over 200 track layouts. From improved physics and sound design to dynamic weather conditions, this could be one of the most realistic driving experiences yet.
Need for Speed: Payback
The 23rd installation of the Need for Speed franchise is here, and is a welcome replacement for 2015’s oft-maligned edition. Payback is an open-world racer that offers plenty of customization and crazy stunts, but more importantly has the offline mode that the previous game omitted. Need for Speed: Payback will launch November 10 on Xbox One, PS4, and PC. There are countless races to win and high-stakes missions and challenges to complete on your way to taking down “The House” cartel. Payback borrows a lot of inspiration from your favorite Fast & Furious movies, so here’s your chance to make like Dominic Toretto and deliver some rubber-burning justice. More information about the gameplay will become available as EA releases it, and we don’t yet know for sure if this game will be available in 4k on the new Xbox One X platform (though it likely will be).
Project CARS 2
Project CARS 2 boasts the largest track roster of any console racing game, and this sequel edition adds new vehicle types like Indy Car and Rallycross. For now, we know that CARS 2 has a scheduled release date on Xbox One, PS4, and PC for “late 2017”. With dynamic real-time and seasonal weather effects, as well as tire grip and damage monitors, this will be an impressive racing sim to rival the Forza and Need for Speed giants this year. We also know that CARS 2 will be a major player in eSports and will lean heavily on VR for further realism. Slightly Mad Studios’ advanced new game will even boast up to 12k resolution when three monitors are linked together in the PC version. Yowza.
So… yes, GT Sport’s release has been postponed a full year, and there’s still no set date in sight except for “2017”. Polyphony’s new GranTurismo game has suffered immense setbacks, and it doesn’t bode well for sales that 2017 is jam-packed with fierce competition in the genre. GT Sport will incorporate 4k resolution, HDR mode, and VR functionality as it gears up for release on the new PS4 Pro platform. It already has a decided focus on eSports, which is worrying the more old-school players of the GranTurismo games. Let’s hope Polyphony can iron out their kinks in time to avoid another pushback.
With DiRT 4 having just been released on June 9, Codemasters has understandably had their attention away from F1 2017. The F1 games have always prided themselves on being as true-to-life as possible, so Codemasters is faced with the interesting challenge of making this an exciting game during what is perhaps Formula One’s least exciting era. There has been nary a whisper of announcements about F1 2017 so far this year, so players are anxious for some word about the new game during E3. Hopefully they’ll get their wish and some information will be made available this week in Los Angeles.