Damage is an integral gameplay aspect of and a driver assist in the Forza series. Damage occurs when a vehicle crashes into or touches something, such as an indestructible scenery object or another vehicle; however, vehicles can also roll over and suffer damage in the process. Damage can range from purely cosmetic damage to actually degrading the mechanical health of the vehicle.
Types of Damage
- Cosmetic: Ranges from simple scratches and dents to visual deformations, broken headlights and taillights, detached rear wings (usually if they are fixed rear wings), detached mirrors, and shattered windshields and windows.
- Mechanical: Includes destruction of and damage to vital car parts, including but not limited to the suspension, brakes, downforce, transmission, and the engine, degrading the performance of the vehicle. Fuel and tires will also wear out.
Accessing the telemetry's Damage section shows the damage percentages for each part of the car. A fully stock vehicle starts with 0% damage and can accumulate up to 100% for each part, after which it becomes crippled, greatly degrading the car's performance. It is possible, but difficult, to suffer complete mechanical damage without suffering any type of cosmetic damage.
If a car's fuel runs out, it loses its ability to be driven. This can be very dangerous, especially with cars that have low fuel efficiency, as with these cars, it is possible to run out of fuel before the end of the race.
Worn out tires negatively affect grip and stability.
Note that the higher the damage setting, the more CR and XP earned.
- Off - Cosmetic damage only occurs. In the Forza Horizon games, cosmetic damage is removed altogether when this option is selected, but the car can still get dirty or covered in snow.
- Cosmetic - Cosmetic damage only occurs. The vehicle's mechanical performance is unaffected, including fuel and tires. No CR bonus for this setting.
- Fuel and Tires - Introduced in the NASCAR Expansion for Forza Motorsport 6, cosmetic damage only occurs. This time, though, the fuel can run out and the tires can get worn out. This damage type is useful for endurance racing, as with the Simulation damage type, even a single hit can result in a huge loss of time and positions due to mechanical damage. Awards a +5% CR bonus except in Forza Motorsport 7.
- Simulation - Full damage occurs. Both cosmetic and mechanical damage. Awards a +10% CR bonus except in Forza Motorsport 7.
Damage can be reversed by stopping at the pit stop (if the track has one). At the pit stop, the car's mechanical health is restored, but not cosmetic damage aside from disabled headlights and taillights.
In the Forza Horizon series, damage (both cosmetic and mechanical) can be reverted by Fast Traveling to any one location on the map or entering a Fast Travel Hub (Forza Horizon), a Horizon Hub (Forza Horizon 2), or a Horizon Festival Site (Forza Horizon 3). In all games, starting any race, PR Stunt (except for Speed Traps, Speed Zones, Drift Zones, or Danger Signs), or Bucket List Challenge will also repair the vehicle (the event doesn't have to actually start; just select from a list of events and exit out). Also, in Photo Mode (except in Forza Horizon), cosmetic damage (including dirt, dust, sand, and snow) can be reset by pressing RB, but it may persist after exiting Photo Mode. The damage may still return if the car hits something.
Dealing with Damage
If playing on the Cosmetic damage setting:
- Cosmetic damage that is incurred can be ignored since it does not affect the car's performance in any way.
If playing on the Fuel and Tires damage setting:
- Always make sure to get to the pit stop as soon as possible when either fuel levels are low, tires are starting to wear out (noted by orange or red tire icons), or both.
- As with the previous damage setting, cosmetic damage can be ignored since it does not affect the car's performance in any way.
- Cars like the Koenigsegg One:1 and Le Mans Prototypes are notorious for having low fuel efficiency, meaning that after seven minutes of driving them, their fuel levels will have reached below 25%. This is especially troubling on a track like the Nürburgring, where the track is very long and lasts for at least 12.93 mi (20.81 km), so if doing a multi-lap race on this track with the aforementioned cars, it is highly recommended to get to the pit stop at the end of the first lap, although this may come at a cost of not finishing 1st or at least 3rd.
If playing on the Simulation damage setting:
- Do not engage in aggressive and/or reckless driving, as this can result in severe damage to the car's vital mechanical parts, especially if the vehicle lands upside down.
- A single hit, depending on how much force was exerted, can sometimes deal severe damage to the player car's mechanical parts, resulting in a loss of positions and a clean lap.
- Be careful in public lobbies, especially Hoppers, as the racers in the lobby mostly tend to drive very recklessly, crashing into the player or other racers.
- In Rivals events in the Forza Horizon games, cosmetic damage is always enabled.
- Damage that is incurred in any way during the race results in a dirty lap.
- Sometimes, a very slight touch of a wall may not result in a dirty lap.
- In Forza Horizon 3, a bug exists in Co-op Campaign where sometimes, even if a player has cosmetic damage disabled, a player may still see slight cosmetic damage on other players' cars.
- In the Forza Horizon games, Drivatar cars are unaffected by the player's current damage setting and can still take mechanical and cosmetic damage.