I don’t have anything uplifting or memorable by any means, but here I go anyway lol.
I first knew of Forza when I was in a game arcade in 2007, and in this game called “Stacker”, one of their Major Prizes was a copy of Forza Motorsport 2. For reference, this is the game:
Stack blocks on top of each other, where the blue border ends is a minor prize win, at the top a major prize win. It gets hard, believe me.
My first experience with Forza was me watching the first two races of FM3 take place on G4’s (remember that? Is that still a thing?) coverage of it. For any that have it, it was Comcast’s On Demand. They showed the first race with the Audi R8, and highlighted the rewind feature - a feature that blew my mind back then. Then they chose their first car (Honda Fit IIRC) and did a race or two in it. The game looked so beautiful to me, and to my parents who were watching it as well.
Around that same time, my friend and I were deciding on whether or not to get a PS3 or Xbox 360, and we were both leaning towards PS3. However, he ended up getting a 360. So if he had it, I had to have it too, right? To think, had he gotten the PS3, I wouldn’t be typing this!
Christmas 2010. I didn’t get a 360 yet, and honestly, wasn’t expecting it. After opening up all the presents (or so I thought), we started clean-up, and it was during that I noticed a rather large present behind our La-Z-Boy, unopened. “Hey, someone forgot one!” I yelled. I pulled it out, and there was no name, no tag, nothing. “Well, whose is it?” I ask. My mom then says “Well, why don’t you open it and see?” followed by a smile at my dad, who returned it back to her. I saw that, and I figured what it was, and sure enough, it was the 360 I wanted. It was the 360 Slim model, the 250GB one, and I got Call of Duty Black Ops (remember Call of Duty for later), and the console itself came bundled with two games: Forza Motorsport 3 on disc and Alan Wake on Full-Game Download code. I played a lot of FM3 inbetween then and December 2011; I fell in love with it on day one. Never had I played a racing game (and from my PS2 days, I had quite a few) that had so many cars, so many upgrades, so many tracks. I was bombarded, and this was the first time I was ever happy to be bombarded. I chose the Citroen C4 VTS as my first car, because I thought it was cool, and living in the US, I’d never seen one (I was aware Citroen existed though lol).
December 27, 2011. I went out to Target, Christmas money in wallet, and bought Forza Motorsport 4. Never have I ever made such a good decision. To date, FM4 has the most amount of time logged in to any game of mine, and I have more than one Skyrim and Fallout (both 3 and New Vegas) playthroughs going for longer than 150 hours. Since I didn’t have Xbox Live at the time (thanks to a terrible router), I was able to do the “import profile” thing where I got some cars for playing FM3, but I couldn’t get the few Unicorns, as I didn’t have the VIP pack. I could talk about how much I fell in love with FM4, but I’d run out of characters. I did some quick math last year while looking at my stats in FM4, and I figured that with the amount of hours I put into the game, if I never slept, took no bathroom breaks, forget eating, etc., just played FM4, I’d play it for an entire month. I think it worked out to something like 31.244 days. Crazy.
October 2012. Forza Horizon came out a week ago, and I played the demo, and I really wanted that “Gone Gold” Viper. So I kindly asked my parents who were going shopping if they could get it for me. They sighed that “annoyed parent sigh”, where you knew once you heard that, forget about whatever you just said, it wasn’t happening. They came home, and plopped a GameStop bag in my hands. I looked inside, Forza Horizon was in it. The worst part about it is I don’t actually remember saying “Thank you”, mainly because I was in shock that I actually got it (pretty sure I said it though).
March 2013. We’re at our local mall, and while my mom and sisters were in Victoria’s Secret and my dad in GNC (it’s a pill and supplement store), since I figured both were equally as boring and with one making me feel awkward and the other making me not want to get old, I walked over to GameStop and browsed, birthday money in wallet (my birthday was the day before, and we went to the mall the next day to pick out my present, a new phone). I was looking at their new games, and said “meh”. I did end up getting Need For Speed: The Run Limited Edition brand new though. So I went to go look at their Pre-Owned games, and couldn’t believe my eyes: Forza Motorsport 2 was there, for the steep steep price of $3.00. After a series of eye rubs and pinches on the arm to make sure I was a. not seeing things and b. not dreaming, I picked it up and bought it. Playing it after playing the others, I was a bit surprised at the lack of in-car view, the graphics, and the sounds, but it was refreshing in its own way.
September 2014. I decided I was done waiting around, and bought myself an Xbox One and Forza Motorsport 5 Limited Collector’s Edition from Amazon. I was so amazed with the graphics when it booted up. I kept thinking over and over to myself “man, this is next gen!” The rumble triggers were a bit of a surprise the first time I finally felt them after just reading about them. I’ve recently decided to start running every car on the 'Ring (I did the same in FM4), and I really have to say, job well done on the Nurburgring guys. Despite running hundreds and hundreds of laps on it in FM4, I was scared to drive on it the first time in FM5.
Also September 2014. I made a decision that I knew my parents would kill me if they found out over. I sort of just bought the Ultimate Edition of FH2 digitally. I just did it. Went to the store, looked at it, said “man, that looks fun!” and I just bought it. It took approximately 7 seconds before I came to the realization of “My God what have I done!?!?!” but after playing it, it was totally worth it. And they haven’t found out, so, yay.
Remember how I told you about Call of Duty? That was my favorite franchise. I own[ed] nearly all of them. From the PS2 to the 360 to the One. Really. I have a bunch of them.
After a realization I had while playing FM4 in 2012, I knew the impossible happened: Call of Duty was dethroned and Forza took over as my favorite franchise. It may have taken some time and overall two new consoles, but hell if it isn’t worth it!
(May be hard to tell [if not obvious enough] but the one with the undetailed cover is FM2, and you can clearly see how excited I was to open my 360 lol. Since it’s a digital download, FH2 is there in spirit)
Congrats on the ten years guys. Even if I was only around for about four and a half of them, I can with no doubt in my mind see how far you’ve come and how far you’ve yet to go! Keep on making the best franchise the Xbox family has ever seen!