Aaron DiManna
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The Vehicle Customization in Forza Horizon is Insane

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A dark red Nissan GT-R in the game Forza Horizon 3
A snazzy Nissan GT-R owning the digital road
Photo: Stefans02 via Flikr

I’ve loved video games for as long as I can remember, and I’ve gone through a few distinct phases as I learned how broad the medium was. At first I was completely loyal to third-person games, then I was devoted to any and everything single player, then I got way into PC gaming for a while. The one genre I never really got into was racing games.

In fairness, that’s definitely because I was terrible at them.   

In my most recent trip to the video game store, I decided I would grab Forza Horizon 3 and see what all the fuss was about.

Better in real life: The Nissan GT-R

It turns out that the fuss was about the diverse selection of drivable vehicles, the incredibly responsive controls, and the insane level of customization.

Feel like driving a dune buggy across the Outback? Or are you more interested in tearing down the street in a Nissan GT-R? Either way, Forza has got you covered. Once you’ve picked your car, you can get under the hood and mess around with everything from the engine to the tire width to the way the suspension is tuned.

The most remarkable thing about this system is the way you can actually feel the impact of your tweaks in the way your car handles. If you added components that increased the body weight, it might corner a little bit more effectively, but its acceleration might feel slightly more sluggish. If you opt for Sport tires, you’ll excel in the city, but Rally tires are far better for off-roading. Forza even allows you to mess with the manifold, air filters, and clutch. The game gives you control over virtually everything.

Stay in control: Find the Nissan that’s right for you

Lots of games feature dense customization menus, but I’m not sure I’ve encountered one where minute details have such a tangible impact. Suffice it to say, I’m about to get a lot more invested in racing games.