September kicks off with two racing games.
Forza Motorsport 5: GOTY Edition is aimed at those who prefer the more serious racing games. If the game resonates with you, expect to lose dozens of real life hours to it!
Hydro Thunder Hurricane is more akin to Mario Kart, except you will be driving speedboats on water courses. There's a lot of fun to be had, whether you're in single or multiplayer and it's a great remake of an old classic.
Forza is available from September 1st - 30th and Hydro is available from September 1st to 15th. Trials Fusion from August's Games with Gold are still free to download until September 15th, and you can see the review for that game here.
Available September 1st - 30th
Forza MotorSport 5 is a simulation racing game where you can choose to drive from hundreds of different cars. They hail from all era's too, from modern sports and racing cars to classic models.
One of the draws of this game is its level of attention to detail in the car models. From the outside to the interior, everything is modeled as an exact replica to their real life counterparts. This includes things like small manufacturer stickers you might find, too!
A game with intricate detail does not hold up very well if the actual racing is poor. Thankfully, this is not the case in Forza Motorsport 5.
Forza tries its best to emulate the feeling of driving each and every single car in the game, and they will all handle at least a little differently, based on their wheels, suspension, and current speed for example.
In single player, you will be facing AI that benefits from Forza's Drivatar system. Drivatar is a system that learns from real life players of the game, and it's all funneled into the AI drivers that you're up against.
What this means in practice is you're not going to be able to predict how the vehicle in front of you is going to take the next corner. Yes, they might just use a similar technique as another, but they may also have an entirely unique way of driving that really shakes things up for you.
One of the major changes in the fifth game of the series is the sense of progression. You will be driving far fewer cars than in previous versions because you're going to be limited to the vehicles you've bought with your in-game money.
If you're lucky enough to be playing this game with an Xbox One controller, the Haptic triggers will give you feedback on how your car is performing. This translates into things like knowing when your wheels are slipping under the throttle or maybe you're about to lose control if you don't ease off on the breaks.
You will also be limited to those particular cars when you're in the free-play mode which may be a downside for returning fans. What this does mean, though, is that you're more likely to carefully pick and choose the cars you actually buy, and you'll feel a lot more attached to them in the process.
Available September 1st - 15th
Hydro Thunder Hurricane is another racing game, but this time it's arcadey rather than a simulation. You'll be driving various speed boats than you can unlock as you progress, along with new maps to get wet in.
It's a game that's much more in the vein of Mario Kart due to the power-ups you can collect, the boosts and the alternate routes you can decide to take.
In single player, you'll be racing to beat times achieved by other players, as well as your friends and trying to get a higher rank is a big reason to keep playing the game.
Your supply of nitrous will help you shave precious seconds off your best times, and knowing when to use it is part of the mastery of the game.
Learning the tracks will also teach you where the nitrous refill spots are, too, so a little exploration can mean the difference between victory and defeat.
In multiplayer you can play online with up to 7 other opponents, and it's full of frantic fun, as you can imagine. Alternatively, you can play in local mode with 4 players all vying for first place.
Hydro Thunder Hurricane is an easy game to get into, and you'll enjoy playing it, whether you like 30-minute sessions or ones lasting 3 hours long.