Building on the foundation established by the franchise’s Xbox One debut Forza Motorsport 5, the new series entry features over 450 cars and a new focus on the simulation of weather and road conditions.
Speaking to Ars Technica, Turn 10 studio head Alan Hartman notes that Forza Motorsport 5‘s weather simulation features required frame rate and presentation compromises. That’s why the game shipped without weather or a day-night cycle. Now that the developers have a better handle on the hardware, they’ll be including both for the first time ever in the main Forza series.
Series creator Turn 10 partnered with Forza Horizon 2 developer Playground Games in a bid to up Forza Motorsport 6‘s graphical output and fidelity. Hartman describes the partnership as “two great studios working with the same codebase.”
Hartman explains that Forza Motorsport 6‘s refined weather simulation focuses specifically on porosity and how water can collect and spread across different types of material. Players racing in rainy weather conditions will need to worry about puddles, track slickness, and the possibility of hydroplaning while making difficult turns.
Night races add another degree of challenge to Forza Motorsport 6. Racing with limited visibility or under stadium lighting elicits a markedly different experience, as players will need to focus on elevation and the possibility of rivals creeping up from under cover of darkness.
Other simulated features planned for Forza Motorsport 6 include g-force, sidewall flex for tires, and improved behavior for player-created Drivatars. Forza Motorsport 5‘s notoriously vicious AI Drivatars now have limitations in place that prevent them from crashing into other vehicles on purpose, resulting in more consistent on-track behavior.
In terms of the game’s 450-vehicle roster, the new Ford GT will appear as a playable option in Forza Motorsport 6, along with a selection of touring cars. Porsche-branded vehicles are also slated to return, though not at launch – Ars Technica reports that an existing licensing agreement prevents Porsche from making an appearance in Forza Motorsport 6 until 2016.
Forza Motorsport 6 will launch in North America on September 15. A release in Europe will follow on September 18.