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Forza Horizon 4 at 60fps Is a Thrill on Xbox One X

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While Microsoft’s first-party line-up has suffered a slight slump this generation, one major bright spot is the continued success of the Forza franchise. The track-based “Motorsport” original and the open-world “Horizon” variant continue to deliver solid results year after year, and Forza Horizon 4 doesn’t buck that trend.

Sure, there have been some complaints around the progression and micro-transaction model – that’s not nothing. But when you compare these games to the lackluster Driveclub and Gran Turismo releases on the Sony side, car fans have been much better served by Microsoft this generation. Layer in the killer performance on the Xbox One XSEEAMAZON_ET_135 See Amazon ET commerce and PC, and there’s basically no comparison here — Forza Horizon 4 is astounding.

Luke Reilly reviewed Forza Horizon 4SEEAMAZON_ET_135 See Amazon ET commerce at our sister site IGN and gave it an Amazing score of 9.6 out of 10. The wide selection of cars, the wondrous landscape, and the brand new cycling seasons come together to make this IGN’s highest-scoring Forza game to date.

66 reviews for the Xbox One version are currently tracked on Metacritic, and that averages out to a metascore of 92/100. Not only does that go beyond the 91 score of Forza Horizon 3, but it matches the 92 metascore achieved by early installments in the mainline Forza Motorsport series. Four games in, and Playground Games can still delight us.

While IGN’s score was on the high end, outlets like The Telegraph and Giant Bomb represent the lower end of the scores with ratings of 4/5. But besides some niggling irritations on the periphery, those reviews are overwhelmingly positive – especially with regard to the elements added specifically for this installment.

We’ve come to expect 30fps from these open-world racers, but Xbox One X owners are in for a pleasant surprise. The half-step X console defaults to a beautiful image at full 4K at 30fps, but dropping the resolution down to 1080p lets a smooth 60Hz refresh take over. And even on the vanilla Xbox One at 30fps, it’s hard to think of a game that has done more with the relatively limited hardware.

The Digital Foundry folks speak highly of both the 1080p60 and 2160p30 modes on the X, and a lot of that comes down to underlying tech and the unparalleled attention to detail. The high-quality deformation of snow, a great physics system, realistic reflections, and lovingly made approximations of the English countryside add up to what might be the prettiest Xbox One game to date.

In addition, the Windows 10 version of Horizon 4 is even better than we expected. DF points out a few bugs and quirks that should be patched away, but this is a big improvement over the launch of 2015’s Horizon 3. As long as you have a capable rig, the dream of native 4K at 60fps is yours to enjoy.

[Image credit: Microsoft]

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