The first trailer for Forza Horizon was leaked on March 3, 2012. It showed several sports cars racing in a open environment based around a musical festival.
It was developed by Playground Games and Turn 10 Studios.
As opposed to other Forza Motorsport titles, Forza Horizon approaches an arcade-style gameplay with slightly tweaked driving physics and an open-world location consisting of numerous terrain types.
A sequel was released in Fall 2014.
Forza Horizon is based around "Horizon Festival", a festival of music and motor racing. The player must become the most popular racer of the event by successfully completing driving stunts, challenges and winning races.
- Main article: Forza Horizon/Events
To progress in the game, the player must complete as many Festival Events and Showcase races as possible to increase their popularity rank. After winning a certain number of races, the player must obtain a wristband to unlock more events. These items are rewarded upon beating a specific rival in a Star Showdown event.
- Main article: Sponsor Challenges
Sponsor Challenges are a series of driving stunt challenges conducted by sponsors of the Horizon Festival that can be completed anytime in the game. Progress is indicated by ten ranks. Upon completing a rank, the player will be rewarded with bonus credits.
- Main article: PR Stunts
PR Stunts are promotional Horizon Festival events that can be accessed in Horizon Outposts. They include photo shoots, as well as speed and stunt point challenges.
The setting of Forza Horizon is based in Colorado, USA and featured with a day/night cycle. Throughout the map, players will encounter AI traffic and rivalled racers, who can be challenged to quick races. In addition, players can drive through speed traps, partake in Street Races and have the ability to return to the Horizon Festival by using a Horizon Outpost.
- Main article: Forza Horizon/Collectables
Players can discover up to nine barn finds and at least one hundred discount signs in Forza Horizon.
- Main article: Forza Horizon/Music
Forza Horizon features 3 radio stations each with different music.
Horizon Bass Arena - features dance music from dubstep to electro
Horizon Pulse - features indie festival favourites
Horizon Rocks - features rock music
- Main article: Forza Horizon/Car List
Forza Horizon features over 300 cars but does not includes racing cars from other installments. Each car can be customized with performance upgrades and new paint jobs. Tuning setups are absent from the game.
Forza Horizon was delisted from the Xbox Live Marketplace on October 24, 2016, and can not no longer be purchased. Owners of a physical disc can play the base game on either an Xbox 360 or Xbox One, but they will not have access to any digital content.
Those that own a digital copy of the game, and any related downloadable content, prior to its delisting can reacquire any purchased digital content through their account purchase history or their Xbox One dashboard.
- Hey Boy Hey Girl (Soulwax Remix) by The Chemical Brothers is played during the trailer.
- Forza Horizon features dubstep, indie, and rock radio stations.
- Forza Horizon was the first and only game in the series to receive a T Rating.
- Players with Forza Motorsport 4 save files will have several bonus cars added to their garage.