New Forza 2 details revealed

Including PGR3-style TV mode.

Dan Greenawalt, lead designer on Xbox 360 racer Forza Motorsport, has revealed all sorts of interesting info about the game - including the fact that it'll feature a Project Gotham Racing-style TV mode.

It's all thanks to a new partnership between Forza developer Turn 10 and Bizarre, the studio behind the PGR series. Speaking in an interview with XboxWorld, Greenawalt said: "We are constantly redefining what it means to be an online racing game. However, we are also sharing technology. This means we are able to leverage the power of both teams."

With Forza Motorsport TV, "You won't just be watching a bunch of Ferraris racing together - you'll be watching completely customised Ferraris racing in a simulation environment... Paint schemes and physics mastery add to the excitement and diversity of the telecasts."

And like PGR3, Forza 2 will feature a Photo Mode, so you can take in-game pictures of your car. "If there was one thing I felt was a missed opportunity for PGR3's Photo Mode it was that you couldn't take those cool images you spent ages tweaking to print out, email or use as desktop wallpaper," said Greenawalt.

So will you be able to do those things with Forza 2? "We're not going into details right now about what happens to photos after the player has snapped them. I'll just say we're always looking for more ways to get players to go to the community site," he added rather uncryptically.

Forza 2 will feature more than 65 tracks across 18 environments, including 13 real-world licensed circuits such as Silverstone, Tsukuba, Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca and the Road America race track. There are four all-new licensed tracks including Sebring International Raceway.

Turn 10 is busy "improving and expanding Drivatar Technology to give even more personality and realism to the opponent AI" - apparently, "The AI you face in Forza Motorsport 2 will have names and personalities that were specifically trained/created by the designers.

"Some will be fast, but tentative in traffic. Others will take slower lines, but will be more aggressive toward other cars. By giving them names, the players will be able to recognise the fast and the dangerous drivers from the field."

Other bits of info include news that the game will work with the Xbox 360 wireless racing wheel, that you'll have a bonnet view option, and that up to 12 cars will be able to race at once over Xbox Live. You can expect exciting new physics and damage effects and more dramatic crashes - but as for weather effects, "Not at this stage," apparently.

As for when the game's out... "We are still aiming for a Holiday 2006 release and at this stage things are on track."

But "Game development is never easy - especially on a title as big as Forza Motorsport," Greenawalt said.

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