Developer Turn 10 Studios has revealed the map for Forza Horizon 5. This is the biggest map the series has ever seen, about 50% bigger than the one you drove around in Forza Horizon 4. However, it’s also a complete unknown. No one knows exactly what to expect from the roads you’ll be racing along while you play. The only parts we do know are those shown in trailers of gameplay footage. This guide will cover what to expect from the map prior to launch. We want to get you ready and help you understand what you’ll be driving around when the game launches later this year.
This game is set in a Mexican-inspired location. It’s not strictly Mexico, but it is heavily inspired by that country. That’s why it isn’t the full size and breadth of the real country. It’s not trying to be the whole of Mexico. The thing to take into consideration here is that Mexico hasn’t been built from the ground up to be raced around. This map has been though. The roads connect in subtle ways that you won’t recognize as built for racing at first. Before long though, you’ll come to accept that this is the norm, and the world of Forza Horizon 5 is all about racing.
Jungles and Forests
Mexico is a warm part of the world, and therefore there are loads of trees. These grow into lush forests and jungles, and you’ll be racing right through the middle of them in some cases. you should expect the wildlife to get in the way while driving through these areas, but also the trees themselves. It’s likely that there will be some parts of the road that have become overgrown or are in disrepair. These will be hazardous to anyone driving on them, so watch out. In a storm, the roads will almost certainly be incredibly slippy as well, so watch out.
Deserts and Beaches
While there doesn’t look to strictly be a full desert on this map, there are two massive beaches. One is significantly bigger than the other, and that’s likely the desert location that the developers have hinted about. The sand is no place for a road vehicle, so you’ll need to be racing in offroad cars, preferably dune buggies. Driving around on sand is no joke. It shifts beneath your wheels and makes for an extremely poor surface for racing on. Coupled with the sandstorms that can ravage the desert, you might be in for a bumpy ride.
There’s a lot of open grassland on this map. This is probably going to make up the majority of the area you’ll be racing on, at least in the beginning. These areas are easy to drive on and will almost certainly be where you take on a lot of Horizon festival events. However, as seasons change, so too do roads. We predict that the grasslands will become boggy and flooded before too long in the wet season. You’ll need to choose your cars carefully. Something that’s too fast for the road will veer off easily, whereas an offroad vehicle might be a better choice.
Cities and Towns
There will, of course, be cities and towns dotted all around the map. The Horizon festival will take place in a major city location, and the rest of the areas will likely be towns. In these areas, the roads will twist all over the place, requiring precision in your racing over speed. This is something that sets the franchise apart from other racing titles. The focus on precision will help you win if you pay attention to it. If not, then you’ll probably veer off the road and fail every race you get into until you learn.
The weather is a bit different in this game because it’s going through some extremes. For those who live in Mexico, it may be completely normal. For the rest of us though, sandstorms and volcanoes erupting are far from normal. You’ll have to battle with the weather at almost every step of the way with this game. There’s going to be a lot to consider while you drive, and that’s going to make it difficult to know which cars you should tackle a race with.
Something that’s making a return in Forza Horizon 5 is seasons. This means that the world will shift from time to time between summer, fall, winter, and spring. Each season changes the map in some way to make it slightly different. This opens up new races and roads to be explored. In summer, for example, it’s the wet season in Mexico. Therefore, rivers might be bloated, covering roads. In the dry season though, those roads will be free of water and you can drive on them. In winter, the temperatures may even drop enough to make the rivers into roads for offroad vehicles.
The seasons in the game have been pushed to their extremes. It’s unlikely that most of the changes would happen in real life. However, they are based on real weather patterns and models, so a lot of what you see is based in reality. This will ground the game a little more and make it feel like you’re driving around in the real world.
Overall, the map has been made to be interesting, but there’s something underneath every aspect that will trump every other element: speed. The world has been made so that you can drive hypercars incredibly fast across the country. This is a driving fantasy that you can live, and it’s going to be genre-defining. Every road has been built with specific races in mind, meaning if you’re meant to let loose and drive as fast as possible somewhere, you’ll be given the opportunity to do so. Don’t hesitate when this opportunity comes up, because these are the most exhilarating moments in the game.
Forget about normal driving rules and immerse yourself in what the game tells you to do. Stick to the pre-defined lines and you’ll be okay. If you’re really good though, you might be able to work around those lines and come out with some ridiculously good times on races no one else can beat.