Canadian pro racer Daniel Morad gives his opinion on Forza Motorsport 4.
Electric Playground:As a professional racecar driver, what do you like about Forza?
Daniel Morad: Every time they come up with a new one, it just keeps getting better. Significantly better. The physics are amazing. It’s so close to real life now.
You get a sense of weight transfer in the car now. If you break too hard too quickly, the weight transfers really quickly to the front and you have an unstable car and most likely, you’re going to spin out. There’s no other racing game that I’ve ever played that has something similar to that.
EP: Are you much of a gamer?
DM: I’m not a big gamer, but at the same time when I do get a chance to play videogames I love it. It’s kinda perfect for me. I own every Forza Motorsport.
EP: When you play racing games, are you ever frustrated by the lack of realism?
DM: In other games, you know what their target is. They’re for anybody who wants to play a racing game and have fun. But yeah, it kinda frustrates me when someone who has no clue how to drive a car jumps on a videogame and they’re the fastest thing ever. It’s like, “How are you doing that? It makes no sense!”
EP: Do you have a favourite car in Forza?
DM: You’re going to have a big fluctuation in power, grip and over-all balance of the car. I generally try to go for a race car, something I’m more used to. It’s too slow for me to drive a normal road car! I want to drive faster, so I get the fastest car right away. Usually a DTM car, an Audi or Mercedes.
EP: Have you ever driven on any of the tracks in the game in real life?
DM: Yep. I’ve driven on all the tracks on the game. Hockenheim, Silverstone, Sebring, Mugello, Laguna Seca… I’ve driven on all those tracks, which I am pretty fortunate to have done. I know generally where to break. Everything… it works. The breaking points are where you would think they would be in real life.
It’s cool because when I play the game, I’ve been there. I know where everything is. Sometimes in the game you don’t pay attention to where certain things are off the circuit, but because I’ve been there I know, “Oh yeah, I know there’s something over here!” It brings back memories and it’s pretty cool to see the two together.
EP: Have you ever used Forza as a training tool before you took on the real circuit?
DM:Funny enough, two years ago I was playing Forza Motorsport 3, and I was going over to Italy to do a test at Mugello. I used the Mugello track in the game to just lap around the track and get used to it, because I don’t really know [the track] that well. It helped, because [the test] went really well.
EP: What do you think is the next step for a game like this? What would you like to see added?
DM: One big thing is the lack of Formula cars in the game. They’re aren’t any. You have a few race cars, but the majority of the cars are production cars. I think they’d really tie everything together if they introduced Formula cars.
They’re starting to include more and more damage. With licensing you can’t really include any more damage than there is, but when someone hits a wall [in real life] you’re going to get more than a little scratch. I see the trend is closer to what it should be.
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EP: Anything you prefer about racing Forza to the real thing?
DM: Not really. You can’t beat the real deal.
EP: Here’s something important. Were you a fan of the series before Microsoft approached you?
DM: Yep. I’m not going to sugar coat anything. If I don’t like something, or see that something needs to be improved, I’ll say it. I’ve played every racing game on the market and as far as I can see, there’s nothing that comes close to Forza Motorsport, simulation-wise. Plus, it’s fun because you can do so many other things. Customize your car, be part of a club, play games like bowling online with your friends… The possibilities are endless.
-Interview by Jason MacIsaac