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Aujourd’hui — 26 septembre 2021Microsoft

The 'Behemoth' map is now available in the Halo Infinite beta

Vehicles return to Arena with the arrival of Behemoth.

What you need to know

  • The second Halo Infinite technical preview is in full swing right now, focusing on the training academy and Arena game modes.
  • For the third (and final) day of the first week. 343 Industries has added a brand-new map to the Halo Infinite playlist.
  • The new 'Behemoth' map features the first vehicles we've seen in Halo Infinite's technical preview, but is still a 4v4 Arena map.
  • The new map returns vehicles to Arena for the first time in years, and is now available in Slayer and CTF game modes.

As we enter the third, and final, day of the second Halo Infinite beta's first week, 343 Industries is shaking things up by adding an all-new map to the mix. The Behemoth map was previously shown off by 343i, but is now officially available to play in Halo Infinite's technical preview. The map is still an Arena location, meaning it'll pit teams of four against each other, but it's notable in that it marks the return of vehicles to this smaller form factor.

Battle on Behemoth!

As of today, a brand-new map has entered the #HaloInfinite Multiplayer Tech Preview - Behemoth. Dive into Slayer, Capture the Flag, and Strongholds until 2PM PT. pic.twitter.com/hEJXFxAe3B

— Halo (@Halo) September 26, 2021

Vehicles haven't really been seen in Arena game modes since the age of Halo 3, so it's interesting that 343i is returning them to smaller and more intimate maps as well as Big Team Battle (which is the feature of the second week of this technical preview). Behemoth is available in the Halo Infinite playlist in both Slayer and Capture the Flag game modes, and features several Halo Infinite vehicles like the classic Warthog and the Ghost.

Behemoth joins yesterday's additions of Capture the Flag and Strongholds game modes, which are also here to stay. As Big Team Battle is the focus of next week's round of testing, it's not clear if Behemoth will stick around, but the chances are good.

If you want to ensure you don't miss a beat with Halo Infinite's technical preview, we have the full schedule and matchmaking times to help you keep track. There are plenty of known issues and bugs to look out for, but that seemingly hasn't kept players from having a blast, as the community reception has been overwhelmingly positive.

In case you missed it, 343i is giving more players a chance to join the Halo Infinite technical preview next week, meaning you may still have a chance to play what could be one of this year's best Xbox games early, even if you missed out this weekend.

The next adventure in the saga

Halo Infinite

$60 at Microsoft $60 at Best Buy $60 at Steam

A new Great Journey awaits

Halo Infinite is sure to be an incredible game filled with wonder, adventure, and more. Based on the beta experience and what was seen at E3 2021, we can't wait to play it at launch.

A catalog of games

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

From $1/month at Microsoft $45 at Amazon (3-month subscription) $15 at Amazon (1-month subscription)

All your gaming needs, in one subscription.

Is the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate the best value in all of gaming? It's possible. Ultimate bundles your Xbox Live Gold subscription, an Xbox Game Pass subscription for both Xbox consoles and Windows PCs, and Xbox Cloud Gaming for on-the-go. That means access to hundreds of games, with more added all the time, for a single monthly subscription cost.

Hier — 25 septembre 2021Microsoft

The Halo Infinite beta added two new game modes today

Halo Infinite's Arena gains two new game modes today.

What you need to know

  • Halo Infinite is currently hosting its second technical preview, with players enjoying Arena Slayer right now.
  • For day two, 343i has opened the doors on two additional game modes that players can try out on Arena maps.
  • Capture the Flag can be played on the Bazaar map, while the Strongholds mode can be played on Live Fire and Recharge.
  • It's not clear if these game modes will stick around for the rest of the technical preview, but it seems likely.

Halo Infinite is on day two of its second technical preview event, which is allowing players to enjoy the upcoming first-person shooter in all its chaotic and action-packed glory. Of course, 343 Industries is adding something to the mix on day two, with two brand-new game modes now available to play alongside Arena Slayer. Starting right now and (presumably) continuing into the second play session later today, at least, players can enjoy Capture the Flag and Strongholds in Halo Infinite.

Prepare for battle! Today's first #HaloInfinite Multiplayer Tech Preview play session is now live until 2PM PT.

Slayer, Capture the Flag, and Strongholds have officially opened their doors. pic.twitter.com/a9u25Q5ybY

— Halo (@Halo) September 25, 2021

Both of the new game modes are still under the Arena category, meaning they're classic 4 versus 4 Halo action on the three maps that were already included in the technical preview. The Capture the Flag game mode is only playable on the Bazaar map, while Strongholds can be played both on Live Fire and Recharge. At the moment, classic Slayer and the two new game modes are lumped into the same playlist, so you can't pick and choose which you'd like to play.

While the game modes are at least available for today, it's not clear yet if they'll stick around for the rest of the second technical preview. While it seems likely that 343i wouldn't take away the game modes after only one day of testing, it's best to get in and see what all the fuss is about today, just in case.

To ensure you don't miss any of the action, keep track of the full Halo Infinite beta schedule. This time around, 343i is sticking to four-hour windows for online matchmaking, to, hopefully, force a greater number of players into the game at the same time. Despite the prevalent known issues in the Halo Infinite beta, the community reception has been almost overwhelmingly positive so far, highlighting how Halo Infinite definitely could be one of this year's best Xbox games.

If you weren't able to get into Halo Infinite's technical preview this time, all hope isn't lost. It's been announced that additional players will be allowed to join the Halo Infinite technical preview during week two.

The next adventure in the saga

Halo Infinite

$60 at Microsoft $60 at Best Buy $60 at Steam

A new Great Journey awaits

Halo Infinite is sure to be an incredible game filled with wonder, adventure, and more. Based on the beta experience and what was seen at E3 2021, we can't wait to play it at launch.

A catalog of games

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

From $1/month at Microsoft $45 at Amazon (3-month subscription) $15 at Amazon (1-month subscription)

All your gaming needs, in one subscription.

Is the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate the best value in all of gaming? It's possible. Ultimate bundles your Xbox Live Gold subscription, an Xbox Game Pass subscription for both Xbox consoles and Windows PCs, and Xbox Cloud Gaming for on-the-go. That means access to hundreds of games, with more added all the time, for a single monthly subscription cost.

Xbox just gained four classic Castlevania games in this enhanced collection

A fresh batch of Castlevania games arrives on modern Xbox consoles.

What you need to know

  • The Castlevania franchise is one of the most legendary in existence, helping spawn a new genre of video games.
  • Today, Xbox players got a surprise release with the arrival of the Castlevania Advance Collection.
  • The collection includes four classic Castlevania games, releasing for the very first time on Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S.
  • The games also include modern enhancements like an artwork gallery, music player, quick save, Xbox Achievements, and more.

Today, Xbox players are in for a surprise treat as Konami has suddenly dropped the new Castlevania Advance Collection. This new set includes four classic games from the legendary Castlevania series, all of which are releasing on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and Xbox One for the very first time. Complete with a release trailer, modern features and enhancements, and a tantalizing price tag, Xbox players can play these Castlevania games for the first time, or revisit old favorites, right now.

The Castlevania Advance Collection features four titles, including:

  • Castlevania: Circle of the Moon
  • Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance
  • Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow
  • Castlevania: Dracula X

Besides simply bringing these beloved classics to Xbox consoles for the first time, Konami also includes some modern enhancements and features, as well as perks for anyone who picks the collection up. Some of the highlights include:

  • Support for up to 4K resolution
  • Support for cloud saves and Xbox Achievements
  • Ways to play the American, European, and Japanese versions of each title
  • Addition of modern features like quick saving and a rewind function
  • An art gallery featuring never-before-seen artwork
  • A music player that lets you listen to every track from the original soundtracks

Castlevania Advance Collection is available now for Xbox consoles, and could very well already be among the best Xbox games for fans of the franchise.

New to Xbox

Castlevania Advance Collection

$20 at Microsoft

Kill the beasts

Explore four Castlevania classics on Xbox for the first time, complete with a host of modern enhancements and new features.

À partir d’avant-hierMicrosoft

Here's all the armor in Halo Infinite, and how to obtain them

Halo Infinite gives players a near-infinite number of ways to customize their Spartan.

With Halo Infinite, 343 Industries and Xbox Game Studios are placing a lot of emphasis on Spartan customization, a facet of Halo that has grown increasingly important since the series' debut (especially after the arrival of Halo: Reach). In Halo Infinite, players are going to have more control than ever before, with potentially thousands of possibilities for armor, weapon, and vehicle customization. Of course, at the center of every Halo are the Spartans, so players will especially have a ton of options when personalizing their Spartan.

343i is going to include innumerable armor pieces in Halo Infinite, with more being added over time. In our ultimate guide to every piece of armor in Halo Infinite, we'll keep track of it all. Here's the complete list of armor in Halo Infinite.

Endless fun

Halo Infinite

$60 at Amazon $60 at Best Buy

The next Great Journey awaits

Halo Infinite represents the next chapter of Halo's storied journey, and everything we've seen from 343 Industries recently shows that Halo Infinite has what it takes to be an incredible game filled with wonder, adventure, and more.

An overview of armor and customization in Halo Infinite

In Halo Infinite multiplayer, players will take control of a Spartan, an augmented human with increased speed, strength, and combat abilities. Spartans are infamous for the imposing figures they strike in their armor, and it's that armor that provides players with the greatest amount of customization in Halo Infinite. 343i and Xbox Game Studios clearly want to let players be whoever they want in Halo Infinite, and that means customization is getting more in-depth than ever before.

Firstly, Halo Infinite features a new coatings system, a way for 343i to quickly release detailed and diverse "skins" for Halo Infinite's armor. Coatings can feature all kinds of colors, textures, and patterns, and can drastically alter how your Spartan looks. And, thanks to changes to Halo Infinite's multiplayer, where players are now outlined in team colors instead of being forced to adapt to blue or red fully, your choice of color will now remain in all Halo Infinite multiplayer matches. Halo Infinite's coatings system has the potential to be positively massive, so we've compiled a complete list of every Halo Infinite armor coating.

Halo Infinite will also let players customize every weapon in Halo Infinite with Halo Infinite weapon coatings, and the same applies to vehicles as well! Of course, Halo Infinite's armor still retains its edge in customization with a number of other options.

Besides coatings, Halo Infinite will also let players customize multiple aspects of their Spartan's armor, ranging from the base it's built upon (the armor core) to the color of the visor, and many pieces including the helmet, supplemental chest pieces, hip attachments, and much more. There's truly a ridiculous amount of variety here, and the potential for additional armor cores, including special themed ones (like the Samurai-inspired armor we've seen in trailers), and armor kits (collections of armor pieces), raises the stakes even more.

Halo Infinite's armor can be unlocked via the Halo Infinite Battle Pass, bought from the store, or possibly unlocked via in-game challenges and events. We're keeping track of everything we see, including through the Halo Infinite beta, which is ongoing right now with set matchmaking times.

Customization is one small part of a complete multiplayer experience, but Halo Infinite looks to deliver in more ways than one. With everything we've seen from 343i and Halo Infinite's in-depth armor customization, Halo Infinite has a chance of becoming one of the best Xbox games you can play. Be sure to keep up to date with every Halo with our ultimate guide to Halo Infinite.

What is the complete list of armor in Halo Infinite?

Besides color coatings, which we covered above, Halo Infinite provides a staggering 10 different ways to customize your Spartan's armor in multiplayer matches, with an 11th method to connect your Spartan to the wider Halo universe in new ways or let you apply a complete set of customizations in one fell swoop. That means there's a lot to cover here, and the list will only grow as Halo Infinite nears release and, after release, begins to drop new content updates and Seasons with additional customization options.

Without further ado, here is the complete list of armor and its customization options in Halo Infinite, and how to obtain them.

You can select the images next to armor and armor pieces to view the image in greater detail.

Armor cores

Armor cores, as the name implies, sit at the center of your Spartan's armor and are the foundation upon which everything else is built. Your chosen armor core dictates the overall look of your Spartan, and can be pulled from the wider Halo universe, or even be non-canonical and expand beyond Halo's reach (like the Samurai-inspired armor we've seen in trailers).

By default, Spartans will be equipped with the modern Mark VII armor core, but additional variants will undoubtedly be available to players. Here is every armor core we know of in Halo Infinite.

Name Information Unlock requirements
Mark VII

Description: The latest generation of powered assault armor by Materials Group

○ Rare rarity
Default: First armor core for Halo Infinite

Helmets

Second only to armor cores, the helmet is one of the most immediately recognizable and prominent aspects of your Spartan's armor. Spartan helmets can be military-grade hardware specifically designed from combat, or third-party solutions that provide unique perks and benefits to the Spartans that adapted them. Either way, they're a great way to set your Spartan apart from others immediately.

Spartan helmets can support Helmet Attachments, which adds an additional way to customize. Here is every helmet we know of in Halo Infinite.

Name Information Unlock requirements
Cavallino

Description: Cavallino expands Emerson Tactical Systems' offerings with Mjolnir-platform helmets, tailored for the needs of fireteam leaders, trainers, and combat observers

○ Common rarity
○ Helmet attachments supported
Default: Helmet for Mark VII armor core
Enigma

Description: The Enigma by Imbrium Machine Complex was intended for use by Army tank crews, but the Spartans have acquired most of these helmets, as its state-of-the-art vehicle cyberlink is an invaluable resource

○ Rare rarity
○ Helmet attachments supported
Store: Available during Season 0
Aviator

Description: The Aviator helmet by Hannibal Weapon Systems is tailored for use by cybernetically augmented aerospace pilots. Among its many special features is a high-bandwidth machine interlink configured to operate seamlessly with next-gen neural interfaces

○ Rare rarity
○ Helmet attachments available
Battle Pass: Tier 1 of Season 0
Trailblazer

Description: Trailblazer by Imbrium Machine Complex builds on the many successes of Mjolnir (R) to pioneer integration of the latest forward observation and reconnaissance VISR systems into a single Spartan-friendly package

○ Epic rarity
○ Helmet attachments available
Battle Pass: Tier 25 of Season 0
ZVESDA

Description: The ZVESDA faceplate by RKD Group incorporates a programmable phased array antenna grid, though leveraging its full capabilities has proven to be a challenge for software developers

○ Epic rarity
○ Helmet attachments available
Unknown

Visors

Apart from helmet-specific attachments, you can also accessorize your Spartan's helmet with a new visor. New visors can change the color and texture of your helmet's visor, and are a great way to color match a theme or complete an overall look. In a way, visor changes are almost like coatings of their own, since they typically don't physically change from the default helmet visor.

Here is every visor we know of in Halo Infinite.

Name Information Unlock requirements
Enlisted

Description: By Lethbridge Industrial, even Spartans have to start somewhere

○ Common rarity
Default: Visor for Mark VII armor core
Goblin

Description: By Lethbridge Industrial, tricksters are wise to hide their eyes

○ Rare rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 9 of Season 0
Phalanx

Description: With shield and spear, vigilant, by Lethbridge Industrial

○ Rare rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 14 of Season 0
Vandal

Description: By Lethbridge Industrial, an open space means open minds if you don't spot the snipers

○ Epic rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 19 of Season 0
Rampant

Description: The color of despair and madness, by Lethbridge Industrial

○ Epic rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 3 of Season 0
Beltane

Description: Light the bonfire of freedom, by Lethbridge Industrial

○ Rare rarity
Unknown
Dragoon

Description: A favorite of skyborne lancers, by Lethbridge Industrial

○ Epic rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 27 of Season 0

Chests

Chest armor pieces are supplemental upgrades (read: optional) that provide extra personality to your Spartan and can feature a wide range of visual upgrades from grenade belts, packs and storage, technology upgrades, and more. Chest upgrades are one of the biggest single customizable aspects of your Spartan's armor, and vary wildly in appearance and canonical purpose.

Here is every chest we know of in Halo Infinite.

Name Information Unlock requirements
Util / ENAV Beacon

Description: Emerson Tactical Systems delivers emergency navigational transponders, compatible with all civil and military networks

○ Common rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 23 of Season 0
UA / M55OD Halfplate

Description: Up-armor set, specced for minimal impact on Spartan mobility, by Beweglichrüstungsysteme

○ Rare rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 30 of Season 0
UA / M557 Jackplate

Description: Up-armor module for Spartans tasked with breaching and urban warfare, by Beweglichrüstungsysteme

○ Rare rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 13 of Season 0
Util / KHILPK Cooling

Description: Chiller and radiator that extends operational time in high-temperature environments, by Imbrium Machine Complex

○ Rare rarity
Unknown
UA / Relikt Cuirass

Description: Armor reinforcement set made to the specific requirements of Spartan containment teams, by Vakara GMBH

○ Epic rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 8 of Season 0

Left shoulders

Shoulder pads are another important part of a Spartan's armor, but Halo Infinite is making those shoulder pads supplemental, or optional, for the first time in a Halo game. That means you can customize your shoulder pads for each shoulder, including not having any shoulder pads at all.

Here is every left shoulder that we know of in Halo Infinite.

Name Information Unlock requirements
UA / Vitus

Description: Supplemental deltoid and shoulder armor by Chalybs Defense Solutions

○ Common rarity
Default: Left shoulder for Mark VII armor core
UA / Alair

Description: Supplemental deltoid and shoulder armor by Chalybs Defense Solutions

○ Common rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 18 of Season 0
UA / Agathius

Description: Supplemental deltoid and shoulder armor by Chalybs Defense Solutions

○ Epic rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 5 of Season 0
UA / Viator

Description: Supplemental deltoid and shoulder armor by Chalybs Defense Solutions

○ Epic rarity
Unknown

Right shoulders

Shoulder pads are another important part of a Spartan's armor, but Halo Infinite is making those shoulder pads supplemental, or optional, for the first time in a Halo game. That means you can customize your shoulder pads for each shoulder, including not having any shoulder pads at all.

Here is every right shoulder that we know of in Halo Infinite.

Name Information Unlock requirements
UA / Vitus

Description: Supplemental deltoid and shoulder armor by Chalybs Defense Solutions

○ Common rarity
Default: Right shoulder for Mark VII armor core
UA / Alair

Description: Supplemental deltoid and shoulder armor by Chalybs Defense Solutions

○ Common rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 17 of Season 0
UA / Agathius

Description: Supplemental deltoid and shoulder armor by Chalybs Defense Solutions

○ Epic rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 4 of Season 0
UA / Viator

Description: Supplemental deltoid and shoulder armor by Chalybs Defense Solutions

○ Epic rarity
Unknown

Gloves

Players may not think about the gloves their Spartan wears very often, but it's those gloves that will appear on screen most often when picking up guns or equipment, dishing out melee attacks, or interacting with the environment. In Halo Infinite, you'll be able to customize your Spartan even down to the gloves they wear.

Here is every pair of gloves we know of in Halo Infinite.

Name Information Unlock requirements
Capaxx

Description: By Beweglichrüstungsysteme, Mjolnir gloves provide a great deal of protection, but nothing that can't be augmented with a simple up-armor plate

○ Common rarity
Default: Gloves for Mark VII armor core

Wrists

Halo Infinite wrists upgrades may bring to mind some of Halo Infinite's equipment, like the repulsor or grappling hook, but Halo Infinite also lets you apply cosmetic armor pieces to your Spartan's wrist, which presumably provide a number of in-universe benefits you won't see in the game.

Here is every wrist we know of in Halo Infinite.

Name Information Unlock requirements
UA / Type II-A1 Buckler

Description: Despite rumors to the contrary, this buckler does not have an energy shield generator, by Materials Group

○ Rare rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 10 of Season 0

Utility

Utility armor pieces in Halo Infinite, previously referred to as hips, will seemingly be quite diverse, including utility belts, hip accessories (we've even seen concept art of swords!), and possibly thigh and upper leg upgrades as well. In Halo Infinite's first technical preview, a few hip accessories were present but could not be unlocked or seen, but it wasn't until the second technical preview that we were able to see the first utility armor pieces in action. These are supplemental upgrades, and should add plenty of variety to armor customization.

Here is every utility we know of in Halo Infinite.

Name Information Unlock requirements
Medaux Unit / Type 1

Description: Medigel Applicator Unit, Single Pack, by Opticon. Allows for quick replenishment of the suit's internal reservoir

○ Common rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 17 of Season 0
Medaux Unit / Type II

Description: Medigel Applicator Unit, Double Pack, by Opticon. Medigel is as precious as diamondoid dust on extended patrols, or when bartering with colonials

○ Rare rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 24 of Season 0
MAT-2550 / Grenade Pack

Description: A spare tactical radio and grenades go a long way when you are in harm's way, by Emerson Tactical Systems

○ Epic rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 9 of Season 0

Knee pads

Finally, Halo Infinite lets you apply the final touch to your Spartan's armor with knee pad variants, which offer a small measure of personalization to your armor core's mostly untouched leg armor. While knee pads are described as "supplemental," it does seem you're required to have knee pads installed on your Spartan's armor.

Here is every knee pad we know of in Halo Infinite.

Name Information Unlock requirements
UA / Type SA

Description: Supplemental leg armor by Korolev Heavy Industries

○ Common rarity
Default: Knee pads for Mark VII armor core
UA / Type RG

Description: Supplemental leg armor by Korolev Heavy Industries

○ Common rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 22 of Season 0
UA / Type SP

Description: Supplemental leg armor by Korolev Heavy Industries

○ Epic rarity
Battle Pass: Tier 28 of Season 0

Armor kits

Out of all the extensive armor customizations in Halo Infinite, armor kits come with the most mystery and the most potential. Armor kits basically apply a predetermined set of customizations (be it coatings, pieces, or other) to your armor core, likely revolving around a theme. This means that players might be able to instantly become one of their favorite Halo Spartans like Jameson Locke, Sarah Palmer, and more, as long as they own the armor core that character uses. Since Halo Infinite's first Season is reportedly based on Halo: Reach, it stands to reason that armor kits for Spartans like Carter, Kat, Jun, Emile, and Jorge from Noble Team may make an appearance.

Armor kits may also feature other themes as well for seasonal events and more. Honestly, we still don't know exactly what armor kits will entail in Halo Infinite, and we've yet to see one in action. We'll update this section as we learn more about armor kits, and find out which ones will actually be available in the game.

Endless fun

Halo Infinite

$60 at Amazon $60 at Best Buy See at Xbox See at Steam

The next Great Journey awaits

Halo Infinite represents the next chapter of Halo's storied journey, and everything we've seen from 343 Industries recently shows that Halo Infinite has what it takes to be an incredible game filled with wonder, adventure, and more.

Infinite possibilities

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

From $1/month at Microsoft $40 at Amazon (3-month subscription) $15 at Amazon (1-month subscription)

All your gaming needs, in one subscription

Is the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate the best value in all of gaming? It's possible. Ultimate bundles your Xbox Live Gold subscription, an Xbox Game Pass subscription for both Xbox consoles and Windows PCs, and Xbox Cloud Gaming for on-the-go. Halo Infinite is coming to Xbox Game Pass, so be prepared for when the Master Chief arrives.

Here's how to fix the weapon switching bug in Halo Infinite's beta

Not being able to switch weapons in Halo Infinite's latest technical preview is a common problem.

Halo Infinite has just kicked off its latest multiplayer technical preview, which will let Halo fans get another taste of what 343 Industries and Xbox Game Studios have been cooking up for the 2021 holiday season. However, the list of known issues in Halo Infinite's technical preview continues to grow over time, causing some frustrations for players as they try to overcome these obstacles. One of the more widespread bugs we've seen is an issue that prevents you from switching your weapon both in the newfound Training Mode and in multiplayer Slayer matches.

The issue makes it so that, while you can still equip two different weapons like normal, you're entirely unable to switch away from your primary gear. This can be detrimental in a firefight, when being able to switch weapons at a crucial moment can potentially turn the tides. This glitch appears to affect any mode that lets you switch weapons, which makes sense when it becomes apparent how to fix it.

Here's how you can fix the weapon switch bug in Halo Infinite's second technical preview:

  1. While in Halo Infinite, press the Menu button on your Xbox controller.
  2. Navigate to and open Settings in Halo Infinite.
  3. On the "Controller" tab, scroll down to the "On foot" section.
  4. In the "On foot" section, find the "Switch weapon / drop weapon" option.
  5. Press "A" on your Xbox controller to rebind the "Switch weapon / drop weapon" control.
  6. Once the binding menu is open, press the button you wish to use for this control. The default is "Y."

Even though Halo Infinite's controls on the right side of Settings showed that this control was enabled, it actually wasn't in the controller bindings. Rebinding the control should fix the issue, once again letting you switch your weapons whenever it's necessary.

The second Halo Infinite technical preview is ongoing, and we've got the full Halo Infinite beta schedule so that you never have to worry about missing a bout of multiplayer matchmaking. The technical preview may be filled with issues, but it's still giving players a test of what could easily become one of the best Xbox games of the year.

A catalog of games

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

From $1/month at Microsoft $45 at Amazon (3-month subscription) $15 at Amazon (1-month subscription)

All your gaming needs, in one subscription.

Is the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate the best value in all of gaming? It's possible. Ultimate bundles your Xbox Live Gold subscription, an Xbox Game Pass subscription for both Xbox consoles and Windows PCs, and Xbox Cloud Gaming for on-the-go. That means access to hundreds of games, with more added all the time, for a single monthly subscription cost.

The next adventure in the saga

Halo Infinite

$60 at Microsoft $60 at Best Buy $60 at Steam

A new Great Journey awaits

Halo Infinite is sure to be an incredible game filled with wonder, adventure, and more. Based on the beta experience and what was seen at E3 2021, we can't wait to play it at launch.

A new update is rolling out to the Xbox ecosystem with new features

From browsing the web to streaming great games, this update has it all.

What you need to know

  • Microsoft regularly rolls out updates to the Xbox ecosystem, and usually announces them once a month.
  • The Xbox September Update is now available, and features a little something for every part of the widening Xbox platform.
  • Xbox consoles are finally gaining the new Edge browser, including syncing and mouse and keyboard support.
  • PC players will also be able to stream Xbox games through Xbox Cloud Gaming and from their console through the Xbox PC app.

The time has come once again for the Xbox ecosystem to become a little better. Microsoft has just detailed the Xbox September Update, which includes a host of new features that benefit practically any gamer, no matter where you choose to play on the Xbox platform. PC players, especially, have plenty to get excited about in this round of updates. Unfortunately, there aren't any significant OS-level features for Xbox consoles this time around, but Microsoft is busy testing plenty of new features on that front.

There are essentially three exciting new features included in the Xbox September Update, so let's get started.

  • PC players can stream Xbox games. The Xbox app on PC is getting a big boost in functionality with this update, in that PC players will now be able to stream games through Xbox Cloud Gaming, allowing them to access the very best games available through Xbox Game Pass. Also, if you own an Xbox console and and PC, you'll be able to stream your games straight to your PC.
  • Xbox Game Pass gains "Play Later" feature. Xbox Game Pass is also gaining a new feature, which should, hopefully, make it easier to manage growing backlogs. With "Play Later," you'll be able to keep track of interesting games that you may want to play later on. With all the games coming to Xbox Game Pass soon, this could be a very handy feature. When your "Play Later" list is empty, Xbox Game Pass will try and recommend new titles to populate it.
  • Xbox consoles gain a new browser. We've known that Microsoft was testing bringing the brand-new Chromium Edge browser to Xbox consoles, which features nearly innumerable improvements over the current aging browsing solution. With this update, it's finally happening! Players on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and Xbox One consoles will be able to use the new Microsoft Edge, complete with profile syncing and full mouse and keyboard support, to browse the web quickly.

If you were hoping for more in this particular update, not to worry! Microsoft is testing plenty of features in the background right now, which will likely head to the general Xbox population at some point. Xbox Series X|S should work better with certain TVs over HDMI-CED, older Xbox controllers should gain new features, and Xbox Series X|S should look better on 4K TVs after all of this comes to pass. The Xbox ecosystem is constantly evolving with new features over time, culminating in the three new features we're getting today.

A catalog of games

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

From $1/month at Microsoft $45 at Amazon (3-month subscription) $15 at Amazon (1-month subscription)

All your gaming needs, in one subscription.

Is the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate the best value in all of gaming? It's possible. Ultimate bundles your Xbox Live Gold subscription, an Xbox Game Pass subscription for both Xbox consoles and Windows PCs, and Xbox Cloud Gaming for on-the-go. That means access to hundreds of games, with more added all the time, for a single monthly subscription cost.

All the Xbox Game Pass games coming and leaving soon

Discover every new game coming to Xbox Game Pass right here.

Xbox Game Pass is the ever-expanding Netflix-like gaming subscription from Microsoft, the makers of Xbox. For a monthly subscription, Xbox Game Pass partakers gain access to a constantly rotating catalog of hundreds of high-quality Xbox games. The best Xbox Game Pass games include third-party multiplayer games, older AAA titles, indie projects, all first-party Microsoft games, and pretty much everything in between.

Xbox Game Pass is also included in Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, an all-in-one subscription that gives players full access to Xbox Game Pass on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and Xbox One consoles, Xbox Game Pass on PC, Xbox Live Gold, Xbox Cloud Gaming (Project xCloud), and even EA Play. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate represents one of the best values in gaming, and that value only increases from month to month.

That's because Xbox Game Pass is always adding new games, with announcements once or twice a month. While games occasionally leave the service, the number of games available through Xbox Game Pass has been steadily growing since its launch. In this Xbox Game Pass guide, we'll go over all the new games coming to the service, the games about to leave, and the top games you should be keeping an eye on.

If you want the complete list, be sure to bookmark our ultimate guide to every game on Xbox Game Pass.

Note: Bold text indicates the game in question is coming to that platform, but is already available on other platforms through Xbox Game Pass.

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Xbox Game Pass Ultimate includes everything you could possibly need for gaming, including Xbox Game Pass for consoles and PCs, EA Play, Xbox Cloud Gaming, and Xbox Live Gold. Xbox Game Pass gains new games all the time, and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate keeps getting better.

Best new Xbox Game Pass games: September 2021

You'll rarely go wrong with the diverse selection of games on Xbox Game Pass, but there are always a handful of titles that stand above the rest — including but not limited to exceptional indie games, addictive multiplayer games, expansive AAA games, and Microsoft's first-party games. These are the best new games that have recently arrived on Xbox Game Pass.

Sable

  • Available: Sept. 23 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)

Another fantastic indie addition to Xbox Game Pass, Sable is an open-world journey about self-discovery that features unique and beautiful visuals and a frankly terrific soundtrack. There are some technical issues to work around when playing Sable, but that doesn't stop it from being an endearing adventure and well worth your time.

Aragami 2

  • Available: Sept. 17 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)

Aragami 2 is the sequel to a well-loved stealth adventure, and it ups the ante with a bigger adventure and tons of more fast-paced stealth-based gameplay. Some mission repetition and low-quality animations only slightly detract from is one of the best "ninja adventures" you can play. Being able to slink through the shadows with up to two additional friends is another great reason to download Aragami 2.

The Artful Escape

  • Available: Sept. 9 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)

Another wildly unique indie game, The Artful Escape weaves a tale of self-actualization through gorgeous landscapes, captivating music, and simple gameplay that anyone can get into. The Artful Escape is a short adventure, but it's a powerful one, meaning there's no excuse not to download it through Xbox Game Pass (or even play it on the cloud).

Xbox Game Pass new games: Full list and schedule

It can be easy to lose track of all the new games coming to Xbox Game Pass, so we've compiled the full list for your convenience. In this section of our Xbox Game Pass guide, learn what games have been released on Xbox Game Pass recently, when they became available, and what platforms on which they're available.

Sept. 23

  • Sable (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)
  • Lost Words: Beyond the Page (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)
  • Subnautica: Below Zero (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)
  • Tainted Grail: Conquest (PC)

Sept. 17

  • Aragami 2 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)

Sept. 16

  • I Am Fish (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)
  • SkateBIRD (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)
  • Superliminal (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)

Sept. 15

  • Flynn: Son of Crimson (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)

Sept. 9

  • Breathedge (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)
  • Nuclear Throne (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & PC)
  • The Artful Escape (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)

What's coming to Xbox Game Pass soon

Microsoft loves to give Xbox Game Pass subscribers plenty of time to prepare for upcoming additions by announcing them early. This section of our Xbox Game Pass will help you keep track of all the games coming to Xbox Game Pass shortly, so you can decide what you want to play and whether you need to free up some space.

Sept. 28

  • Lemnis Gate (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, & PC)

Sept. 30

  • Astria Ascending (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & PC)
  • Unsighted (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & PC)

Oct. 1

  • Phoenix Point (Xbox Series X|S & Xbox One)

Nov. 9

  • Football Manager 2022 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming)

What's leaving Xbox Game Pass soon

For the most part, more games join Xbox Game Pass than leave. However, most games do leave the service eventually, so Microsoft likes to give players a heads up if they hadn't gotten around to playing that game yet. Keep an eye on this section of our Xbox Game Pass guide for games you still want to play. If you see a game you've played and loved, be sure to purchase it with your Xbox Game Pass discount so you can keep it forever.

Sept. 30

  • Drake Hollow (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC & Xbox Cloud Gaming)
  • Ikenfell (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC & Xbox Cloud Gaming)
  • Night in the Woods (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC & Xbox Cloud Gaming)
  • Kathy Rain (PC)
  • Warhammer: Vermintide 2 (Xbox Series X|S & Xbox One)

Upcoming games launching on Xbox Game Pass

Microsoft gives us updates on games heading to Xbox Game Pass a few weeks before those games become available, usually twice a month. However, Xbox and [email protected] events toss aside this expectation to announce a flurry of games that are hitting Xbox Game Pass day and date, meaning they're launching into the service when they land on Xbox platforms. That means day one access to all of these games for Xbox Game Pass subscribers, including some of the best upcoming Xbox games.

Many of these games are far enough out that they don't even have a release date, and we're not certain exactly which platforms they'll come to through Xbox Game Pass. Still, this list in our Xbox Game Pass guide will give you an idea of what to look out for in the future of Xbox Game Pass. We'll constantly update this list as we get new information about release dates, when games become available, and what platforms are getting them.

The following events have been added to this section:

[email protected] Games Showcase — March 26, 2021

  • Astria Ascending (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — 2021
  • Among Us (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, & PC) — 2021
  • Backbone (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — Unknown release date
  • Dead Static Drive (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & PC) — Unknown release date
  • Edge of Eternity (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — 2021
  • Hello Neighbor 2 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — 2021
  • Little Witch in the Woods (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — Unknown release date
  • Moonglow Bay (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Xbox Cloud Gaming, & PC) — Oct. 7, 2021
  • Nobody Saves the World (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — 2021
  • She Dreams Elsewhere (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & PC) — Unknown release date
  • S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chernobyl (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — April 28, 2022
  • Undungeon (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Xbox Cloud Gaming, & PC) — Unknown release date
  • Way to the Woods (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — Unknown release date

Xbox and Bethesda Games Showcase at E3 2021 — June 13, 2021

  • Starfield (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — Nov. 11, 2022
  • S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chernobyl (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — April 28, 2022
  • Back 4 Blood (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & Xbox One) — Oct. 12, 2022
  • Contraband (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — No release date
  • Party Animals (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — 2022
  • Somerville (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — 2022
  • Halo Infinite (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — Dec. 8, 2021
  • A Plague Tale: Requiem (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — 2022
  • Slime Rancher 2 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — 2022
  • Shredders (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — December 2021
  • Atomic Heart (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — No release date
  • Replaced (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, & PC) — 2022
  • Among Us (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, & PC) — 2021
  • Eiyuden Chronicle: Rising (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — 2022
  • Eiyuden Chronicle: Hundred Heroes (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — 2023
  • Age of Empires IV (PC) — Oct. 28, 2021
  • The Outer Worlds 2 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — No release date
  • Forza Horizon 5 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — Nov. 9, 2021
  • Redfall (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — Summer 2022
  • Scorn (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — Fall 2021
  • The Anacrusis (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — Fall 2021
  • Hello Neighbor 2 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — 2021
  • The Gunk (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — December 2021

[email protected] Games Showcase — Aug. 10, 2021

  • Evil Genius 2: World Domination (Xbox Series X|S & Xbox One) — Winter 2021
  • Pupparazzi (Xbox Series X|S & Xbox One) — No release date
  • Stardew Valley (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & PC) — Fall 2021

Xbox Gamescom 2021 event — Aug. 28, 2021

  • Age of Empires IV (PC) — Oct. 28, 2021
  • Archvale (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — No release date
  • Bushiden (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — No release date
  • Chinatown Detective Agency (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — No release date
  • Crusader Kings 3 (Xbox Series X|S & PC) — No release date
  • Forza Horizon 5 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — Nov. 9, 2021
  • Into the Pit (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & PC) — Oct. 19, 2021
  • Midnight Fight Express (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — No release date
  • Next Space Rebels (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — No release date
  • Signalis (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — No release date
  • The Gunk (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, & PC) — December 2021
  • Unpacking (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — No release date
  • Unsighted (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — No release date

Xbox Game Studios and Bethesda Softworks upcoming games

  • Halo Infinite (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — Dec. 8, 2021
  • Senua's Saga: Hellblade II (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — Unknown release date
  • Avowed (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — Unknown release date
  • State of Decay 3 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — Unknown release date
  • Fable (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — Unknown release date
  • Everwild (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — Unknown release date
  • Forza Motorsport (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — Unknown release date
  • Perfect Dark (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — Unknown release date
  • Forza Horizon 5 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized, Xbox One, PC, & Xbox Cloud Gaming) — Nov. 9, 2021
  • Starfield (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — Nov. 11, 2022
  • Contraband (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — No release date
  • Age of Empires IV (PC) — Oct. 28, 2021
  • The Outer Worlds 2 (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — No release date
  • Redfall (Xbox Series X|S Optimized & PC) — Summer 2022

Xbox Game Pass adds new games all the time, but there's already a vast selection of high-quality titles available for gamers to play. Check out our list of best games on Xbox Game Pass for some fantastic ideas on what you should play next. You can also pick up one of the best external SSDs for Xbox Series X|S to ensure you always have enough storage for all these games.

A catalog of games

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All your gaming needs, in one subscription

Is the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate the best value in all of gaming? It's possible. Ultimate bundles your Xbox Live Gold subscription, an Xbox Game Pass subscription for both Xbox consoles and Windows PCs, and Xbox Cloud Gaming for on the go. That means access to hundreds of games, with more added all the time, for a single monthly subscription cost.

The second 1.18 snapshot for Minecraft: Java Edition has arrived

Minecraft: Java Edition snapshots have officially transitioned to Part Two of the 'Caves and Cliffs Update.'

What you need to know

  • For weeks, Mojang Studios was testing upcoming Minecraft features and changes through "experimental snapshots" on PC.
  • Now, these features from the upcoming 1.18 'Caves and Cliffs Update' Part Two are finally appearing in regular snapshots.
  • Minecraft: Java Edition Snapshot 21w38a is now available, and includes plenty of tweaks and fixes over the last snapshot.
  • There's also a new way for Mojang to collect telemetry data, to aid in developing for better performance in future snapshots.

As was foretold during the release of Minecraft: Bedrock Edition Beta 1.17.40.21 yesterday, Mojang Studios is now releasing the second official snapshot for 1.18 Caves and Cliffs Update Part Two, which includes a new range of fixes and tweaks, the return of strongholds, and a new way for Mojang to collect vital performance-related telemetry data (more on that below).

Minecraft: Java Edition Snapshot 21w38a follows its predecessor with fewer new features and changes, but it does include some important alterations nonetheless. Besides the return of strongholds, which were removed in the previous snapshot, copper is now more common in this snapshot. Lots of bugs were also squashed, which should hopefully provide a more stable experience.

For many, though, the most interesting aspects of this build will be on the technical side of things. This snapshot allows world generation to take advantage of a greater number of background CPU threads, which will be particularly useful for those playing on higher-end gaming rigs. Mojang is also improving telemetry collection in this snapshot, and will collect vital information during world loading that, ideally, will help the studio improve performance for world generation and loading in future snapshots.

If you're interested in the information that will be collected by Mojang when playing this snapshot, be sure to check below.

Minecraft is one of the greatest games ever made, and the Java Edition certainly earns its designation as one of the best PC games. This is further proven by the extensive list of best Minecraft toys and gifts, which includes something for everyone.

The full changelog for Minecraft: Java Edition Snapshot 21w38a includes:

Known issues

  • This snapshot is still not compatible with older worlds — to play in this snapshot, you will have to create a new world
  • World saving can sometimes take a very long time — if you see the world stop moving for a time, this is why

Changes

  • Sprinting is no longer reduced to walking when gently brushing your sleeve against a wall
  • Fixes for the distribution of ores

Sprinting

  • Previously, any collision with a block would reduce sprinting to walking. Now, for very minor angles of collision with a block, players retain their sprint. For larger angles of collision, the old behavior is retained

Ore distribution

  • Copper ore generates up to y 95 (as originally designed)
  • Increased the amount of copper
  • Lapis lazuli generates in blobs, like other ores (instead of spread out)

Technical updates

  • A new setting has been added: "Simulation distance"
  • Maximum amount of background threads increased
  • Added telemetry for world loading

Simulation distance

  • Entities will not be updated outside of simulation distance
  • Allows higher render distance with less CPU load
  • A new slider in video settings on the client
  • A new simulation-distance property in dedicated server properties
  • We will continue working on it with a goal of simulation distance also affecting block and fluid ticking

Background threads

  • Various background tasks including worldgen are executed on a background thread pool. Its size equals the amount of available CPU threads minus one, but there was an upper limit of 7. Now this upper limit is 255. This should help higher-end machines with world-gen performance
  • The upper limit can be overridden by max.bg.threads Java system property, for example when running multiple servers on a single machine

Telemetry

  • In this release, we are re-introducing diagnostic tracking, which was part of Minecraft: Java Edition until 2018. We are bringing it back to understand our players better and to improve their experience. Specifically, we hope to ensure stronger performance for the extremely heavy world generation in the second part of the Caves & Cliffs update later this year
  • In practice, this can mean identifying technical pain points in the game, like how less powerful hardware performs in high-complexity terrain. This information will also help us prioritize various aspects of development, balance game features (by learning, for instance, that the goats are pushing every single player off the cliffs) and lend new Minecrafters a helping hand (after realizing that many of them get stuck at the same points). All data is treated according to GDPR and CCPA best practices and is used to develop a better-performing and generally more enjoyable Minecraft: Java Edition
  • World load event
    • Sent when loading singleplayer world or connecting to multiplayer server
    • Contains following information:
    • launcher identifier
    • user identitifer (XUID)
    • client session id (changes on restart)
    • world session id (changes per world load, to be reused for later events)
    • game version
    • operating system name and version
    • Java runtime version
    • if client or server is modded (same information as on crash logs)
    • server type (single player, Realms or other)
    • game mode

Fixed bugs

  • Game fails to switch the audio output from one device to another after the game has started (from title screen)
  • No sound for using shears on weeping, twisting, cave vines or kelp
  • Strongholds don't generate in 21w37a
  • Liquids sometimes do not propagate
  • Random light level of 0 in sky
  • Crash when changing render distance / java.lang.ArrayIndexOutOfBoundsException: Index 28084 out of bounds for length 26136
  • Memory leak in 21w37a
  • Big Spruce Trees don't generate in Groves
  • Starting and stopping JFR profiling multiple times within the same minute overwrites previous JFR results saved during that minute
  • Dripstone caves generate above the ground
  • Cannot start with alternate JVM due to JFR requirement
  • Problems with JFR event metadata
  • Too many aquifers on biome surfaces at Y=63 and below
  • Aquifers often generate with harsh straight borders

Here are the best racing games on Xbox right now

The video games industry is filled with countless genres and categories of awesome games to choose from, but some of the most popular are racing games. Driving a wide variety of vehicles at speeds ranging from glacial to hypersonic, meticulously tuning and customizing every ride to exact specifications, going head-to-head with other racers from all over the world, and exploring beautiful worlds and tracks are all part of what makes racing games special, and Xbox is one of the greatest places to find them. Here are the best racing games for Xbox right now.

An overview of Xbox racing games in 2021

Racing games is a pretty major genre, so dozens of companies and teams have attempted to tackle the space and deliver their vision of a premium racing experience, to differing degrees of success. Xbox is often considered to be one of the best places to play for racing fans, if only because Microsoft has two powerful forces in the genre under the Xbox Game Studios banner: Turn 10 Studios and Playground Games.

Turn 10 and Playground are two halves of the same coin: Forza. They work together on the ForzaTech game engine and the illustrious, established Forza racing franchise. Turn 10 handles the Forza Motorsport series, a more simulation-centric racer that features wide rosters of real race tracks from all over the world, while Playground handles the Forza Horizon series, an open-world arcade series that follows the fictional Forza Festival and lets players race wherever they want, however they want.

Beyond Forza, Xbox also offers a ton of other great racing games from third parties, including more long-running franchises like Need for Speed, F1, DiRT, and more. All in all, there's no shortage of great choices, but quality tends to be inconsistent at times due to the surprising complexity and nuances of a good racing game. One of the few major racing franchises that Xbox misses out on is Gran Turismo, which is exclusive to Sony's PlayStation consoles.

Not all racing games are created equal, and many cater to entirely different categories of players. Are you looking for the most realistic simulation racer possible? An off-roading adventure? How about a casual yet expansive open-world? There's a lot to think about, so we've compiled the absolute best of the best for any racing game fan. Some of these games have even risen to be considered on our list of best Xbox games.

The games on this list are the best Xbox racing games right now, which means they can be available for Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, Xbox One, and PC. Some of these games are also available through Xbox Game Pass and even Xbox Cloud Gaming (xCloud), making it easy to jump in and play.

Forza Horizon 4

  • Available on Xbox Series X|S (Optimized), Xbox One, and PC with Xbox Play Anywhere support, and through Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Cloud Gaming

If any game deserves to hold the title of "best racing game ever," it's undoubtedly Forza Horizon 4. Set in an absolutely gorgeous open-world rendition of the UK, Forza Horizon 4 hands players the keys to a massive roster of over 700 officially licensed and high-quality vehicles from dozens of manufacturers, and tells them to go nuts. Playground Games and Xbox Game Studios have faithfully supported FH4 for three years with constant content updates and additional features, so the game has improved steadily since its release in 2018.

Forza Horizon 4 is an open-world arcade racer with simulation elements, so it's far from the most realistic racer on this list. Still, you have a fantastic array of customization options to make your car look and perform exactly the way you want, and there's a decent set of tuning tools to give you that extra edge in a race. FH4 is also consistent, so it's easy for even novice racing fans to get into, and provides a ridiculous amount of freedom to play the way you want. Something about Forza Horizon games and their expansive open-worlds even draws in players that normally wouldn't touch racing games.

If there's anything that holds Forza Horizon 4 back (besides being more arcade-like than some players prefer), it's the fact that Playground Games is gearing up to release Forza Horizon 5 later this year, which looks massively improved over FH4 in every single way. Even so, Forza Horizon 4 is still and will continue to be an excellent racing game, and continues to grow its already-impressive community of racers.

Pros:

  • An incredibly detailed open world
  • A huge roster of officially licensed vehicles
  • Tons of activities and different ways to play
  • A large community and extensive post-launch support

Cons:

  • A little closer to an arcade racer
  • Forza Horizon 5 is coming

Forza Horizon 4 — Xbox

$30 at Microsoft (Standard) $40 at Microsoft (Deluxe) $45 at Microsoft (Ultimate) $49 at Amazon (Xbox)

Forza Horizon 4 released as one of the best racing games of all time, and it's continued this trend with three years of solid post-launch support and a faithful, continually growing community. Forza Horizon 4 is still one of the best games on Xbox and PC, and is also available through Xbox Game Pass.

DiRT 5

  • Available on Xbox Series X|S (Optimized), Xbox One, and PC with Xbox Play Anywhere support, through Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Cloud Gaming, and through Xbox Game Pass Ultimate on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and PC via EA Play

The Xbox Series X|S current-gen consoles are beacons of power and advanced gaming features, and they need games to show off what they can do. One of the earliest games to launch on the consoles was DiRT 5, a continuation of the popular DiRT franchise from Codemasters (now a part of Electronic Arts) that went in a different direction for the series but still manages to deliver lots of fun to players and fans of intense off-roading action.

As the name implies, DiRT games are all about taking highly modified cars off the beaten path to create new trails, and the franchise has appealed to a large variety of racing fans over the years. DiRT 5 is absolutely a different, more casual game than its predecessor, but this doesn't hold it back for most players. The game is ridiculously fun, easy to get into, and features a wide variety of game modes and races with a non-linear campaign and player-made "Playgrounds." There's also a diverse range of environments, complete with dynamic weather, that spice things up even more.

If you're looking for a more simulation-like, off-roading game, however, DiRT 5 is not that. The game is pretty simple and easy to get into, and even more serious difficulties probably won't be an extreme challenge for veteran racers. Visuals in DiRT 5 are also slightly inconsistent, ranging from pretty good to kind of "off." Finally, vehicles and vehicle customization are sadly lacking in DiRT 5, with the livery editor especially offering disappointing options and ways to design.

Pros:

  • Great, fun casual rally racing
  • Lots of variety and ways to play
  • Solid performance on current-gen consoles
  • Supports Xbox Play Anywhere, Game Pass, and Cloud Gaming

Cons:

  • Visuals and customization are just okay
  • Not as "real" as its predecessor
  • May be a little bit too easy for some

DiRT 5 — Xbox

$60 at Microsoft (Standard) $80 at Microsoft (Year One) $50 at Amazon (Xbox)

DiRT 5 may have taken the series in a different direction versus its predecessors, but it doesn't stop Codemasters from delivering an excellent casual off-road racer with a ridiculous amount of content, tons of variety in environments and weather, and surprising levels of support for player-centric Xbox features (for a third-party Xbox game).

DiRT Rally 2.0

  • Available on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and PC, and through Xbox Game Pass Ultimate on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One via EA Play

For those who desire a hardcore off-road racing experience with no holds barred, there's really only one good choice: DiRT Rally 2.0. The Rally half of the DiRT franchise is more simulation-focused than its non-Rally counterparts, and aims to test the skills of even the most experienced off-road drivers. Players should expect an authentic rally challenge when they step behind the wheel of a DiRT Rally 2.0 vehicle. with little-to-no handholding.

DiRT Rally 2.0 makes its claim to fame with excellent driving mechanics and physics, including surface degradation on tracks and tire wear, blisteringly difficult AI opponents and simulation-like racing, class-leading audio, and a decent selection of rally-grade vehicles to drive on through six countries. DiRT Rally 2.0 still more than holds up today, especially with a ton of post-launch DLC and additional cards, and is a great choice for any rally fan looking for a challenge.

It's not all perfect, of course. DiRT Rally 2.0's tracks can become repetitive over time, with a pretty limited number of options to choose from, and that simulation-like racing and difficulty would be forgivable if not for the lack of tutorials to ease newer players into the series and the genre. DiRT Rally 2.0's single-player campaign, as well, leaves a little to be desired. Pick up the Game of the Year Edition if you want access to DiRT Rally 2.0's extensive DLC collection at a compelling price.

Pros:

  • Authentic and challenging rally racing
  • Great driving mechanics and physics
  • Tons of additional DLC content and expansions
  • Visuals, audio, and performance are great

Cons:

  • Tracks can become repetitive and boring
  • Single-player campaign is shallow
  • Game may be too challenging for newcomers

DiRT Rally 2.0 — Xbox

$30 at Microsoft (Xbox Standard) $50 at Microsoft (Xbox GotY) $45 at Microsoft (PC GotY) $26 at Amazon (Xbox)

DiRT Rally 2.0 is still the premier simulation rally experience, and is a great game all around for rally fanatics who love tearing tracks apart. However, the game goes from "challenging" to "inaccessible" with a lack of tutorials, and can become a little repetitive over time.

F1 2021

  • Available on Xbox Series X|S (Optimized) and Xbox One

Another entry from racing champions Codemasters and their newfound parent EA, F1 2021 is the latest installment in another long-running racing franchise that revolves around the global and well-known Formula One racing series. Featuring real drivers, teams, sponsors, and high-performance formula race cars across a wide variety of meticulously recreated real-world tracks and circuits, F1 2021 is the culmination of years of expertise from Codemasters handling Formula One.

Their newest game follows the aptly named F1 2020 and delivers a mostly familiar Formula One racing experience with better visuals and customization than ever before. F1 2021 even includes a full-fledged campaign mode that will likely keep players interested and engaged for hours to come, even if it likely won't win any rewards for storytelling. If you love the idea of driving a formula race car in any sense, there's seriously no better option than the officially licensed F1 series, and the best of the bunch is F1 2021.

F1 2021 will likely only cater to those who are interested in racing formula race cars, but it does feature a ton of options, customization, and ways to tinker the experience to be as real as you want it to. Of course, F1 2021 will never quite approach what real Formula One racing is like, since the game is limited by its "E for Everyone" rating, and Codemasters has followed their traditional F1 formula, for better or worse.

Pros:

  • Class-leading Formula One simulation racing
  • Excellent visuals, customization, and features
  • Solid single-player campaign

Cons:

  • Very similar to F1 2020
  • Not quite as intense as real F1 racing
  • May be missing some tracks and content

F1 2021 — Xbox

$60 at Microsoft (Standard) $75 at Microsoft (Deluxe) $45 at Amazon (Xbox)

Choices are limited for fans of Formula One, and the F1 series is the only real option. It's a good thing F1 2021 is a fantastic racing game from every angle with fantastic driving mechanics, visuals, and a single-player campaign. Similarities to previous F1 games aren't enough to hold F1 2021 back.

Project Cars 2

  • Available on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One

It may seem strange to have Project Cars 2 on this list without its successor, Project Cars 3, but for many players the older game is the clear winner. While Project Cars 3 stripped a lot of its features and realism, losing most of its identity in the process, Project Cars 2 continues to be a generally excellent simulation racer — and a solid competitor for Forza Motorsport.

Project Cars 2 features a ton of gorgeous, officially licensed vehicles and a huge variety of different tracks, complete with impressive visuals (that still hold up today) and dynamic weather effects. There's even a decently robust single-player campaign, which will take players through multiple events and race types. In many ways, especially for fans of simulation racers, Project Cars 2 comfortably beats its successor and still remains competitive with more modern racers.

While Project Cars 2 does feature pretty decent tutorials for newcomers, many may still find this game a little too challenging. A smaller car list and a lack of customization for vehicles are big negatives when compared to Project Cars 2's biggest competitor, Forza Motorsport 7. If you're looking for another great racing game, though, Project Cars 2 makes a solid case.

Pros:

  • Solid tutorials and great single-player campaign
  • Still-gorgeous visuals with dynamic weather effects
  • Great driving mechanics on a huge number of tracks

Cons:

  • Can be too challenging, even with tutorials
  • Small car list compared to other racing games
  • Lack of customization or livery editor for vehicles

Project Cars 2 — Xbox

$60 at Microsoft (Standard) $90 at Microsoft (Deluxe) $18 at Amazon (Xbox)

Project Cars 2 continues to be a great simulation racing game, even after its sequel dropped the ball, and features visuals that still look awesome today. The game may struggle to shine in Forza Motorsport 7's shadow, but it's definitely one of the better racing games on Xbox.

Burnout Paradise Remastered

  • Available on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One, and through Xbox Game Pass Ultimate on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One via EA Play

Many people may think of the legendary Need for Speed franchise when they think "casual arcade racer," but the Burnout series was equally as infamous back in its prime. Unfortunately, there hasn't been a proper addition to the Burnout franchise since the incredible Burnout Paradise, which paired Burnout's glorious crashes and intense arcade races with an open world. Over a decade later, EA let players return to Paradise City with the arrival of Burnout Paradise Remastered, and it's one of the best racing game remasters.

Everything that was great about the original Burnout Paradise remains great in the remastered version, but EA of course modernized the visuals with support for up to 4K, better and more stable performance, upgraded textures and lighting, and much more. Players still get to drive around a beautiful open world and engage in several different race types all over the city. Crashes and collisions are still immeasurably satisfying, and are miles above many of the top racing games available today.

Burnout Paradise Remastered still features many of the same annoying menu and UI quirks of the original, which may be frustrating for some players. The cars are generic semblances of real-world vehicles, as Burnout Paradise lacks the official licensing of other racers, but they still look and drive great. Especially for fans of the original, though, Burnout Paradise Remastered is an excellent facelift and one of the best open-world racers right now.

Pros:

  • Intense racing and awesome collisions
  • A faithful and proper remaster of the original
  • An expansive open world with lots of personality

Cons:

  • Annoying menu and UI quirks remain
  • Cars are not officially licensed
  • Visuals still don't compare to newer games

Burnout Paradise Remastered — Xbox

$20 at Microsoft $18 at Amazon (Xbox)

Burnout Paradise Remastered definitely isn't going to compete with Forza Horizon 4 in the visuals department, but it is a faithful remaster of an excellent racing classic, and lets players return to Paradise City with a myriad of upgrades. Many flaws of the original still remain in the remastered version, however.

GRID

  • Available on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One

Codemasters has managed to place a ridiculous number of games on our list of best Xbox racing games, and now we're adding another one. Another classic racing franchise was brought into the modern gaming world with GRID, one of the finest racing experiences you can currently play. While GRID may leave behind some aspects of the originals that made players fall in love, the new and improved GRID can still stand toe-to-toe with the best racers today.

GRID looks absolutely fantastic, and shares a similar vibe with DiRT 5 in that it's an excellent and incredibly fun casual racer to pick up and play at any moment. The difference is that GRID takes a decent collection of carefully chosen and well-known vehicles and puts them on a wide variety of road-based tracks. There's also a non-linear single-player campaign here, and it all exists to help players jump in a race exactly the way they want to.

As a casual racer, GRID is all about casual, sheer racing fun, and it mostly delivers. However, you may need to splurge for the Ultimate Edition, as it includes a ton of additional content that makes the base game feel slightly empty. If you're looking for a vibrant and varied multiplayer scene in GRID, you're not going to find it. Overall, though, GRID is a gorgeous and detailed casual racer, and the Ultimate Edition does include a ton of content for players to enjoy.

Pros:

  • Gorgeous visuals and details
  • Simple, fun gameplay
  • Easy to jump in and out of

Cons:

  • Lack of content in base game
  • Lack of online and multiplayer content

GRID — Xbox

$30 at Microsoft (Standard) $40 at Microsoft (Ultimate) $28 at Amazon (Xbox)

GRID rebooted a classic racing franchise and was a return to arcade racers for Codemasters, true experts in their field. GRID stands out with insanely fun gameplay that's easy to jump in and out of, but you'll likely want to splurge for the Ultimate Edition for more content and races.

The Crew 2

  • Available on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One

There's a relative shortage of proper competitors for Playground Games' genre-leading Forza Horizon series, but Ubisoft took a crack at the title with The Crew 2, an open-world racer that encompasses a shrunk-down version of the United States of America and a wide variety of different vehicles to drive — and players aren't limited to just cars.

At its core, The Crew 2 is about cars and a casual arcade racing experience, and in this aspect it mostly delivers with a decently sized roster of vehicles and pretty fun gameplay. However, Ubisoft wanted to deliver a more ambitious and encompassing experience than Forza Horizon, often to its detriment. It does mean that, if players desire, they can get behind the wheel of a bike, plane, or boat, in addition to all the traditional cars.

The Crew 2 is gorgeous, as one would expect from an open-world Ubisoft game, and it is a joy to explore this version of the USA that Ubisoft has built. However, The Crew 2 suffers from feeling too ambitious and ends up becoming messy and occasionally frustrating. If you're looking for another open-world racer that's a little bigger and a little more arcade-like than Forza Horizon, though, The Crew 2 can still offer hours upon hours of fun.

Pros:

  • Beautiful open-world version of the USA
  • Lots of vehicles to choose from
  • Mostly great arcade racing

Cons:

  • Feels messy and unfocused at times
  • Planes, bikes, and boats feel out of place
  • More arcade-like than Forza Horizon

The Crew 2 — Xbox

$50 at Microsoft (Standard) $60 at Microsoft (Special) $90 at Microsoft (Gold) $21 at Amazon (Xbox)

The Crew 2 aims to be a more arcade and more ambitious version of Forza Horizon, and it does deliver in some aspects, with a fantastic open world to explore, superb visuals, and mostly fun racing. However, the game feels too big for its own good, resulting in a messy experience.

NASCAR Heat 5

  • Available on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One

NASCAR is one of the biggest racing championships around, but many racing games leave the stockcars behind in favor of other vehicles and more variety. For NASCAR fans, there's only one great option and that's NASCAR Heat 5, the best stock car racing game and one of the better racing games on Xbox right now. NASCAR Heat 5 is the complete package for NASCAR fans, and features officially licensed real-world cars, teams, brands, and tracks, complete with a long career mode and plenty of options.

NASCAR Heat 5 also looks pretty great, even if it's not going to best some of the other best racing games out there (and lacks enhancements for more powerful consoles). Driving feels great, and you have a ton of circuits to choose from, which all look amazing and detailed. There's also a lot of options for assists and settings, and a test mode to ease you into driving a new car, learning a new circuit, or taking control of a new team.

Where NASCAR Heat 5 falls apart is how it differentiates itself from its predecessor. NASCAR Heat 4 players will likely find very little reason to purchase the new game, as Heat 5 only includes a few relatively minor improvements and remains mostly the same in visuals, performance, and physics. It's also worth mentioning how the Heat series is being replaced by the upcoming NASCAR 21 Ignition, which looks to feature major improvements in a variety of ways. However, for newcomers to the franchise, especially NASCAR fans, there's definitely no better option (right now) than NASCAR Heat 5.

Pros:

  • Looks and plays great
  • Officially licensed drivers and circuits
  • Lots of options for players

Cons:

  • Nearly identical to its predecessor
  • Not likely to win over non-NASCAR fans
  • NASCAR 21 Ignition is coming

NASCAR Heat 5 — Xbox

$20 at Microsoft (Standard) $30 at Microsoft (Ultimate) $27 at Amazon (Xbox)

It may not be the first pick for "best racing game" on most people's lists, but NASCAR Heat 5 is absolutely top of the pack when it comes to racing stock cars around NASCAR circuits. Not just because it's practically the only choice, but because Heat 5 is a genuinely good game, despite similarities to the game that came before it.

Forza Motorsport 7

  • Available only on Xbox Series X and Xbox One with a physical disc, or on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and PC through Xbox Play Anywhere if you already purchased the title digitally

While open-world Forza Horizon games may capture a lot of player attention nowadays, the original Forza games are Motorsport, and they serve the audience that desires simulation and realism above all else. Forza Motorsport 7 is the culmination of years of expertise from Turn 10 Studios and Xbox Game Studios, and is a near-perfect racing game with hundreds of high-performance vehicles, meticulous upgrade parts and customization options, and dozens of detailed real-world tracks and locations.

Forza Motorsport 7 isn't an arcade racer by any means, which means trading casual racing and an open world for realistic driving physics and actual circuits, all to fantastic effect. Turn 10 Studios is a master of their craft now, and FM7 is highly lauded as one of the best realistic racing games you can play, even nearly four years after its release. Unfortunately, FM7's age is also a negative, as Forza Motorsport 7 is officially end-of-life date. Turn 10 Studios is currently working on a current-gen soft reboot of their premier racing franchise with Forza Motorsport, which doesn't have a set release date yet.

This means that, as of Sept. 15, 2021, Forza Motorsport 7 is no longer available to purchase from digital stores, and is no longer included through Xbox Game Pass. If you purchased the game before its end-of-life date, or purchase a physical copy, FM7 will continue to be fully functional indefinitely (including online multiplayer!). This is still an incredible racing game, but Forza games, like many other racing titles, do have a defined shelf life due to licensing agreements with music, cars, and brands.

Pros:

  • Dozens of meticulously recreated tracks and circuits
  • A massive roster of officially licensed high-performance cars
  • Polished and customizable driving mechanics and physics

Cons:

  • Game is no longer available to purchase digitally
  • Only physical copies are an option for most new players, while supplies last
  • Online multiplayer isn't as busy anymore

Forza Motorsport 7 — Xbox

$20 at Amazon (Xbox) $20 at Walmart (Xbox) $22 at GameStop (Xbox pre-owned)

Forza Motorsport 7 is absolutely one of the best racing games for track fanatics, as long as you already own it or are willing to go physical. FM7 is officially end-of-life, meaning it's no longer available to purchase from digital storefronts, and is much harder to get a hold of.

Xbox makes it easy to love cars

When it comes to racing games on Xbox, it's obvious fans of the genre have plenty of options to choose from. It might seem unclear at first glance what the best among the best racing games are, but Turn 10 Studios and Playground Games have proven their expertise and greatness repeatedly with the Forza franchise. Whether you're looking for a simulation-like arcade racer in Forza Horizon 4 or an in-depth simulation racer like Forza Motorsport 7, Forza is indisputably the king of Xbox racing games.

Codemasters, now under EA, certainly gives the Forza duo a run for their money, however, with a wide range of excellent racing games that cater to a variety of audiences. From casual arcade racers like DiRT 5 and GRID to simulation racers like DiRT Rally 2.0 and F1 2021, Codemasters is certainly a master of their craft. Of course, you can't go wrong with any of the racing games on our list of best Xbox racing games, as every title here has something to offer for lovers of cars and high speeds.

A catalog of racers

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

From $1/month at Microsoft $45 at Amazon (3-month subscription) $15 at Amazon (1-month subscription)

All your gaming needs, in one subscription

Is the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate the best value in all of gaming? It's possible. Ultimate bundles your Xbox Live Gold subscription, an Xbox Game Pass subscription for both Xbox consoles and Windows PCs, and Xbox Cloud Gaming for on-the-go. Many of our favorite Xbox racing games are also available on Xbox Game Pass, including Forza Horizon 4.

You can now preorder Chorus before it releases later this year

Chorus joins the lineup of great-looking games coming this holiday season.

What you need to know

  • Chorus is an intense space-bound dogfighting game from Deep Silver and FISHLABS.
  • Today, a new overview trailer for the upcoming title revealed a release date of Dec. 3, 2021.
  • Coinciding with the reveal, Chorus is now available to preorder on most gaming platforms.
  • If you preorder Chorus on Xbox, you'll get 'The Elder Armor' cosmetic set for your character and some gear.

Chorus is officially joining the list of upcoming Xbox games arriving this year, as its newly released overview trailer also finally reveals its release date. Chorus, the action-packed space dogfighting game from publisher Deep Silver and developer FISHLABS, officially releases for most modern gaming platforms on Dec. 3, 2021. If you're interested in what this dark and broody game has to offer, Chorus is also now available for preorder, with an exclusive cosmetic set up for grabs if you close the deal.

You can check out the new trailer, look at some beautiful screenshots from Chorus, and preorder the game below.

Chorus is a gorgeous indie game that follows the journey of space-bound fugitive Nara and her seemingly intelligent starfighter, Forsaken. You'll have to engage in plenty of fast-paced space combat across a variety of environements to come out on top in Chorus. Chorus looks great in trailers and screenshots we've seen so far, but we'll have to wait until release day to truly know if Deep Silver and deliver another winner, this time with engaging dogfighting gameplay.

If you're interested in preordering Chorus to play it the moment it launches, it's now available to do so. Preordering Chorus earns you "The Elder Armor" cosmetic pack, which apparently alludes to the main character's past and can be applied to your ship and all three starter weapons.

Chorus officially releases on Dec. 3, 2021 for Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, Xbox One, PlayStation, PC, and Google Stadia. The title will be Xbox Series X|S Optimized, supporting increased visuals and performance at up to 4K resolution and 60 FPS. In case you missed it, the Chorus developer has previously mentioned how easy it is to develop for Xbox Series X|S.

Space dogfights

Chorus

$40 at Microsoft (Xbox) $40 at Steam (PC)

Action-packed and dark

Follow Nara and her AI-powered starfighter Forsaken as she battles across space against a devastating foe. Chorus is dark, beautiful, and filled with high-intensity zero-G dogfighting. You can now preorder Chorus ahead of its release on Dec. 3.

New Minecraft: Bedrock Edition Beta arrives with new experimental features

The Minecraft beta program continues with new fixes and more for testers.

What you need to know

  • While the first half of the 'Caves and Cliffs Update' continues to see new releases, Mojang is working on Part Two.
  • The latest Minecraft: Bedrock Edition beta has arrived, and includes something for both halves of the major update.
  • Minecraft: Bedrock Edition Beta 1.17.40.21 includes new experimental features for world generation and flat worlds.
  • On the less-experimental side, we're getting plenty of bug fixes and technical updates, including to world generation.

Yesterday, Mojang Studios released a new patch update for Minecraft: Bedrock Edition with a flurry of improvements across the board. Work isn't done on the more experimental side, however, as today marks the release of Minecraft: Bedrock Edition Beta 1.17.40.21. Today's release continues to iterate on the first half of the Caves and Cliffs Update, while also adding to the experimental feature set pertaining to the second part arriving later this year.

There's nothing terribly exciting in this build, with world generation for flat worlds being updated and copper becoming more prevalent on the experimental side. On the other hand, players can expect lots of bug fixes and technical updates across the board, touching on things like elytra, world generation, and more. The beta is available now to download and test on Xbox, Windows 10, and Android devices.

Normally, Mojang makes a habit of releasing Minecraft: Bedrock Edition betas and Minecraft: Java Edition snapshots around the same time, but an unforeseen issue prevented a snapshot release today. If you prefer to play the legacy version of Minecraft on PC, a snapshot may be arriving tomorrow.

Minecraft is often considered to be one of the best Xbox games you can play, and this is supported by a wide selection of toys and gifts suitable for any Minecraft fan. Part of this success can be undoubtedly attributed to Mojang's constant drive to improve Minecraft with these betas and snapshots. If you're interested in the future of Minecraft, be sure to tune into Minecraft Live 2021 next month.

The full changelog for Minecraft: Bedrock Edition Beta 1.17.40.21 includes:

Experimental Features

  • Added new world / cave generation when upgrading saved chunks below Y=0 using the Caves and Cliffs experimental toggle
    • Chunks previously upgraded with Bedrock underneath will not see this change

Flat world generation

  • Upgrades older flat worlds to the new extended heights available with the Caves & Cliffs experimental toggle
  • New flat worlds using the Caves & Cliffs experimental toggle will generate starting at "y=-64"

Gameplay

  • Fixed an issue in beta builds where flying above the world limit (255 for non-Caves & Cliffs experimental, 319 for Caves & Cliffs experimental) would be prohibited

Copper ore

  • Copper Ore now generates up to y=96 instead of y=64

Features and bug fixes

General

  • Holding Top Snow in hand while hovering over Grass Blocks no longer causes incorrect behavior
  • Bee Nests now generate correctly in the world
  • Non-fireproof mobs now avoid pathing through fire

Gameplay

  • Vanilla Parity: Players are now able to activate Elytra gliding while moving upward
  • Using Dye on Signs that contain formatted color text will overwrite the formatted color text

World generation

  • Fossils are now much less likely to generate in, and destroy, structures
  • Dungeons are no longer misplaced or missing outside of the Caves & Cliffs experimental toggle

Mobs

  • Iron Golem now spawns only on solid blocks
  • Wielded weapons now render properly on Pillagers and Vindicators

User interface

  • Riding an animal now displays the correct button prompt when playing with non-touch controls

Character creator

  • Back appearance pieces will no longer cover the left and right arrows in the profile screen
  • Fixed featured items in the profile screen not opening the featured catalog in the Dressing Room
  • Fixed default clothes changing color if another item's color was edited previously
  • Sidebar options can now be selected in expanded view after navigating back from previously selected sidebar option while using controller
  • Sidebar no longer opens upon expanding any of the classic skin packs in the Dressing Room
  • Improved the navigation flow for Character Creator so that it always switches to the selected Character Creator profile
  • Skins that are equipped from Marketplace while in-game now apply to character

Technical updates

Animation

  • Fixed a bug that caused animations to be restarted when changing render controllers

Graphical

  • Fixed text on Signs losing their formatting when new lines or word-wrapping are encountered. Formatting will now persist until the reset code or an overriding code is found. This is not retroactive and previously created Signs will not be changed

Graphics

  • As part of continued testing, removed RenderDragon engine on Android devices (ARMv7)

Molang

  • Molang expressions that contain capital letters are properly evaluated now
  • query.get_equipped_item_name will now recognize Sea Lantern
  • Add new compile errors for expressions like 1 + (9 10), which were previously ignored (This is a Versioned Change as of engine version 1.17.40)

GameTest Framework

  • Updated the GameTest Framework interface and added a new SimulatedPlayer capability:
    • Added SimulatedPlayer class to GameTest. This class enables GameTest to simulate a variety of player behaviors such as movement, using items, and interacting with blocks and entities.
    • Added function spawnSimulatedPlayer(blockLocation: BlockLocation, name: string): SimulatedPlayer
    • Added function removeSimulatedPlayer(simulatedPlayer: SimulatedPlayer): void
    • mojang-gametest.Test type
    • Changed signature of function assertEntityInstancePresent(entity: Entity, blockLocation: BlockLocation, isPresent: boolean = true)
    • mojang-minecraft components
    • Component inventorynow works with Player inventories

A gaming masterpiece

Minecraft

$50 at Microsoft (Xbox Master Collection) $30 at Microsoft (Xbox Starter Collection) $50 at Microsoft (Windows Master Collection) $30 at Microsoft (Windows Starter Collection)

Available everywhere you play.

Minecraft is an inarguable and complete success. It has sold copies in the hundreds of millions, has a huge following of dedicated players, and lets you unlock your every creative desire. It's also available on every platform imaginable, including Xbox, Windows 10, PlayStation, Nintendo Switch, Android, and iOS. Play with anyone and play anywhere.

Mojang celebrates as Minecraft Dungeons finally hits Steam

Minecraft Dungeons is the latest Microsoft game to make its way to Steam.

Minecraft Dungeons has enjoyed a long and prosperous journey since its initial release nearly a year and a half ago, and now it's about to embark on the next chapter of its adventure. Today, Minecraft Dungeons Ultimate Edition becomes available to an all-new pool of players on Steam that have possibly not experienced what this unique action-RPG has to offer. This is the perfect debut for Mojang Studios' newest project on Steam since it includes the base game and all previously released DLC.

To mark the occasion, I got to speak with Executive Producer David Nisshagen and Game Director Måns Olson. We discussed how Minecraft Dungeons had reached this point, what it took to release the game on Steam, and a tiny hint for what's to come for the game.

Minecraft Dungeons has come so far

With the release of the Echoing Void DLC, Minecraft Dungeons officially concluded the story that followed the Arch-Illager and the Orb of Dominance. When Minecraft Dungeons initially released, the general consensus was that it had a wonderful foundation, but was a little light on content (most notably in the endgame). Mojang Studios isn't known for leaving a game alone, however, and released a multitude of updates and paid DLC expansions for its title in the months following launch, including over a dozen updates, featuring six premium expansions, which means Minecraft Dungeons is a significantly larger game than it was at launch. I've already explored in-depth why I believe Minecraft is the greatest game ever made, and Minecraft Dungeons was certainly a part of that discussion, especially when it comes to Xbox games.

"We had a lot of plans for things that we'd like to get out... especially bringing more content to players," said Olson. "So with all the DLCs, we've released free content that we think does a good job of complementing the base game experience."

Devotion to Minecraft Dungeons has led to over 10 million unique players.

It wasn't all set in stone from the beginning, however, with Nisshagen adding, "Many of these things from our perspective I won't say were experimental, but they were things that we liked to try. We don't have any master plan. We're trying things that we think are fun and cool. And it also seems to be quite appreciated by the players, right? So having that sort of lightweight approach, trying things, has been a really lovely journey."

Many community-requested features and changes, like cross-play and cross-save support, were added to Minecraft Dungeons after release. There were also meaningful content additions to Minecraft Dungeons' endgame, like the exciting Ancient Hunts, brand-new secret levels, new gear and enchantments, and much more. These were all released for free, while new story content was explored in larger paid expansions.

This devotion to the game has led to Minecraft Dungeons accumulating over 10 million unique players on all of its platforms. Olson and Nisshagen confirmed that the number of players is indeed higher now, but they elected not to reveal the exact number.

With Minecraft Dungeons' last DLC concluding its current story, however, and the Ultimate Edition bundling all Minecraft Dungeons content into one comprehensive bundle, many players are left wondering what's coming next. When I asked about exactly this, Olson said, "We aren't ready to talk about all of our future plans. As you might have guessed, there's more forthcoming in the not-too-distant future. We definitely want to keep updating the game, and we're not done with Minecraft Dungeons in any way. We are done with the story of the Arch-Illager and the DLCs that relate to that, but we have exciting plans, I think, for what's coming next."

A whole new pool of players

"Steam is a very interesting platform in that it's a very big one," Nisshagen said. "It's especially big in Sweden, or in Scandanavia, so it's almost seen as a little bit of the natural state. A game should be on Steam, so we're super happy to be able to bring Dungeons there."

Minecraft Dungeons, of course, was already available on PC through the Microsoft Store and Mojang Studios' own launcher, which can also be used to play Minecraft: Java Edition. However, a huge number of PC gamers practically play exclusively through Steam, which is by far the largest singular platform for purchasing and playing PC games in many parts of the world. Minecraft Dungeons is the latest Microsoft game to arrive on Steam, alongside titles like Halo: The Master Chief Collection, meaning the game is about to be exposed to a brand-new pool of potential players.

I asked Nisshagen and Olson about their experience with porting Minecraft Dungeons to Steam, and fortunately, it seemed like a relatively painless process. Between Minecraft Dungeons already being available through Mojang's PC launcher (which apparently shares many similarities with Steam), Steam's support, and Mojang's own experience with supporting games on multiple platforms, bringing Minecraft Dungeons to Steam was straightforward. One thing that was important to Mojang, however, was ensuring the experience on Steam matched the experience everywhere else.

Minecraft Dungeons offers the exact same experience for everyone

"If we are on a platform, we want it to be treated like every other platform — we want total parity," Nisshagen said. "There shouldn't be anyone having a better or worse experience because you choose to play the game on a platform that you have or like. And, to some extent, it causes a little bit of a headache for us. We could have done things more automatically with the cross-platform progression if we leaned into some platforms and away from others. It's a bit more manual now... but we have full parity, and we treat every platform just the same. We think that's the way it should be."

This means Minecraft Dungeons on Steam still fully supports cross-play and cross-save, and player-centric features like players being able to play with friends that own DLC expansions, even when they don't. Other than being through the Steam platform, Minecraft Dungeons offers practically the exact same experience for everyone, and that's great to see.

Minecraft Dungeons is available right now through Steam, joining Minecraft Dungeons on Xbox, PC, PlayStation, and Switch platforms. Minecraft Dungeons is also available through Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Cloud Gaming. When you pick up Minecraft Dungeons on Steam, you'll be getting the Ultimate Edition, so you don't have to worry about missing out on anything.

The complete package

Minecraft Dungeons Ultimate Edition

$40 at Steam $40 at Microsoft (Xbox) $40 at Microsoft (PC) $40 at Amazon (Switch)

The Ultimate collection for Minecraft Dungeons

Minecraft Dungeons has evolved by leaps and bounds since its initial launch, and now Mojang Studios is giving players a way to access absolutely everything the game has to offer in one slick package. Minecraft Dungeons Ultimate Edition includes the base game and all previously released DLC, and it also marks Minecraft Dungeons' debut on Steam.

A new Minecraft update is rolling out with plenty of fixes and more

Minecraft is about to get a little bit better on every platform around.

What you need to know

  • While Mojang Studios works hard on the next major update for Minecraft, the current release continues to improve.
  • The Minecraft: Bedrock Edition 1.17.30 patch update is now releasing on all platforms, with plenty of fixes and changes.
  • This release is still part of 1.17 'Caves and Cliffs Update' Part One, so don't expect any significant new features here.
  • However, this release does feature some experimental features from the 1.18 'Caves and Cliffs Update' release that people can now test.

Minecraft players all over the world are currently enjoying 1.17 Caves and Cliffs Update Part One, while Mojang Studios tirelessly develops the second half of the major release. Today, however, players who aren't at the forefront of early Minecraft betas and snapshots can pick up a new patch update with the release of Minecraft: Bedrock Edition 1.17.30, which is currently rolling out to all platforms. As expected, this patch doesn't include any big feature additions, but there are plenty of changes, fixes, and technical updates for creators.

Those who are interested in taking a look at what's to come in the second half of the Caves and Cliffs Update can also enable the "Experimental Features" toggle in this release to enjoy some of the major features that were added in previous betas. Be aware, however, that these features are likely to be less stable and more buggy than the regular build.

It's a common assertion that Minecraft is one of the greatest games ever made, backed up by a hefty list of best Minecraft toys and gifts, and a large part of this is likely due to Mojang's constant dedication to its title. Minecraft continues to improve over time, and the 1.17.30 update looks to be a solid (if boring) release with lots of polish and bug fixes for players to enjoy.

The Minecraft: Bedrock Edition 1.17.30 patch update is now available for players on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, PlayStation, and Switch devices.

The full changelog for Minecraft: Bedrock Edition 1.17.30 includes:

New features

Respawn Blocks Explode game rule

  • Added the "Respawn Blocks Explode" game rule, which can be used to prevent Respawn Anchors and Beds from exploding

Structure Block: Corner Mode

  • Corner Mode is used with the Detect button in Save Mode to define the area to save. It will only detect Corner Blocks with the same name as the structure being saved

Caves and Cliffs Update Experimental Features

Monster spawning

  • Monsters now only spawn in complete darkness
  • This change is being made to balance the player's ability to light up the new larger caves and make them safe from monster spawning
  • Note that this change only affects block-light and not sky light

Multi Noise World Generation

  • New and improved terrain and biome generation algorithm that creates more natural terrain and biome transitions
  • Improved surface decoration that detects the difference between when blocks are generated underwater and underground
  • Introduces large ore veins to world generation adding more strategy to mining
  • Introduces noodle caves to world generation, creating small pathways between bigger caves
  • Introduces the possibility of dry cave entrances that make it easier to access the new noise caves
  • Introduces a new algorithm that finds suitable spawn positions closer to origin
  • Added logic to save and load SubChunks by absolute Y index to support data-driven dimension height ranges

Changes

  • Updated the Achievements button and moved from the Profile screen to the Main Menu and Pause screens

Fixes

Performance & stability

  • Optimised pasting Unicode text into Book & Quill
  • Fixed a crash that could occur when crafting a Crafting Table with Gameplay Tips enabled
  • Fixed a crash that could occur after disconnecting from the internet while playing in an online session as the client on iOS
  • Fixed a crash that could sometimes occur when downloading large Marketplace worlds

Gameplay

  • Worlds with the Caves & Cliffs experimental toggle enabled are now more likely to have the same default world spawn position as worlds without the experiment using the same seed
  • Matched respawn from Bed behavior with Java Edition by attempting to avoid placing players on damage dealing blocks when waking up and attempting to place players on the side of the bed they entered from
  • Nether Portals placed between chunks no longer break when leaving the Nether
  • Damaging buff effects no longer bypass absorption hearts
  • Enchanting Table's enchantment probability is now weighted
  • Fixed incorrect position when dismounting at a negative world height
  • Abandoned villages are now far rarer, more closely matching the Java Edition
  • Fixed emissive light propagation in ray tracing mode by increasing irradiance cache sample size
  • Fall damage is no longer applied when falling into Scaffolding

Mobs

  • Cartographers will now only give maps to undiscovered monuments
  • Tweaked Iron Golem spawning logic to better match Java Edition
  • Axolotls now spawn only when there is stone up to 10 blocks under them, and not inside bubble columns
  • Collecting Fish or Axolotl with a Bucket no longer immediately releases them
  • Armor Stands now drop equipped items when destroyed by fire or lava
  • Limited the maximum number of Phantom mobs that can spawn
  • Goats now play their "impact 3" sound
  • Grown up Goats no longer lose their Horns when reloading a world
  • Baby Goats no longer have horns
  • Fixed an animation parity issue with Skeletons not using both arms to hold their Bows
  • Undead mobs standing near Powder Snow now burn normally
  • Powder Snow above undead mobs now prevents burning effect
  • Multiple Shulkers are no longer able to spawn in the same position from spawn eggs or End City generation
  • Mobs can now pathfind correctly when standing on Amethyst Buds
  • Lightning no longer randomly strikes mobs that are under blocks
  • Fixed mobs sometimes rendering with incorrect geometry when viewed from the Structure Block preview window
  • Experimental Features: Wither can now be spawned at negative heights
  • Ghasts no longer spawn in less than 5x4x5 areas
  • Magma Cubes no longer spawn in less than 3x3x2 areas
  • Medium Magma Cubes now have a larger hitbox
  • The Thorns enchantment now does Knockback to mobs

Blocks

  • Cave Vines can now be pollinated by Bees
  • Enchantment Tables now emit light level 7
  • The falling position of Pointed Dripstone is no longer slightly offset
  • Disabled biome tinting for Spruce and Birch Leaves
  • Bubble Columns are now placed properly when loaded with a Structure Block
  • Vanilla Parity: Using Bone Meal on Moss Blocks now also replaces Tuff blocks
  • Grass and water block tint colors are no longer slightly randomized with noise
  • Fixed Light Block not being displayed correctly when being held
  • Weeping and Twisting Vines now grow correctly after the player breaks them
  • Minecart with Chest will now copy over its chest contents when advanced pick blocked
  • Crimson Roots now have a small chance of growing on Warped Nylium blocks when using Bone Meal
  • Candle now drops when Candle Cake is pushed by a Piston
  • Renamed Structure Blocks will no longer have the incorrect data mode on creation
  • Unicode font now correctly highlights on Signs with glowing text
  • Pumpkins placed facing South, East, or West now can now be used to trade with Villagers if they were mined with Silk Touch tools
  • More Candles can no longer be added to Candles placed without any support block
  • Shulker Boxes now remain in Dispensers when dispensed at world height limit
  • Monster Spawners no longer emit light
  • Powder Snow can now be collected with a Dispenser
  • Target Blocks now conduct Redstone signals
  • Fixed text from signs drawing on maps on ray tracing enabled hardware
  • Amethyst Cluster and Amethyst Bud can no longer be placed on Grass Path blocks
  • Corrected "Deepslate Lapis Lazuli Ore" name from "Deepslate Lapis Ore"
  • Fixed Bed display if the foot of the Bed is in a brighter area than the head
  • Fixed Large Chest display so the brightest end of the Chest is chosen to light the whole Chest
  • Dispensers now remove bubble columns when removing water
  • Sea Pickles now change light depending on being in underwater or not
  • Snow layers are now melted by light from torches, etc.
  • Vanilla Parity: Falling gravity blocks will no longer break when landing on certain blocks
  • Half of the Enchantment Table book doesn't render dark anymore
  • Blocks moved by a Piston no longer appear white while moving
  • Spore Blossoms no longer have a randomly offset hitbox
  • Measurements of hitbox of Spore Blossoms now match Java Edition
  • Moss Block and Moss Carpet now break when moved by Pistons and Sticky Pistons can no longer pull them
  • Water dripping from Pointed Dripstone can no longer fill Cauldrons with Potions. Sorry, we knew it was fun but too overpowered!
  • Fixed an issue causing Slime and Honey Block movement slowdown to not be fully applied to players
  • Light Blocks are once again visible while holding one and properly show their brightness value
  • Fixed Light Blocks not being removed when destroying them while holding a Light Block
  • Fixed Light Block brightness not being adjustable when interacting with it
  • Fixed Barrier Blocks being destructible while not holding a Barrier Block

Items

  • Shulker Boxes now drop their contents when destroyed as an item
  • Bows and Tridents are now held more similarly to Java Edition
  • Eating Chorus Fruit while gliding no longer deals fall damage to the player
  • Swords now break Bamboo in a single swing
  • Fixed a bug that could cause the Trident, Shield, and Crossbow to render incorrectly when an additional player is connected over the internet using a Marketplace skin
  • Fixed a bug which could cause the Spyglass to appear as if it's being thrown when using a custom skin
  • Using a Powder Snow Bucket on a Cauldron filled with Powder Snow no longer creates a new Powder Snow block
  • Clock and Compass items no longer function in the Recipe Book
  • Lava Buckets can now be emptied into a Cauldron filled with Lava
  • Fixed offhand Shields clipping into players' arms while in third-person perspective
  • Holding a Shield in Marketplace maps no longer shows a content error
  • Made projectile items move more smoothly when far from players
  • Strong/Long/Splash/Lingering Potions can now be placed in the Brewing Stand manually
  • Soul Speed Boots can now be unequipped properly after losing durability
  • Diamond Pickaxes found in Hoglin Stable chests are now enchanted
  • Fixed held items not disappearing visually to other players after a player dies when the Keep Inventory game rule is enabled
  • Shears now correctly cut Vines and Glow Lichen faster
  • Campfires and Soul Campfires now stack in the inventory

Audio

  • Amethyst walking sounds are now affected by the "Player" volume slider
  • Deepslate walking sounds are now affected by the "Player" volume slider
  • Moss Block walking sounds are now affected by the "Player" volume slider
  • Sounds of moving in/on Powder Snow are now affected by the "Player" volume slider
  • Jumping and landing on blocks have now their sounds affected by the "Player" volume slider
  • Dripstone drip sounds are now affected by the "Block" volume slider
  • Block interaction "click" sounds are now affected by the "Blocks" volume slider
  • Turtle Eggs no longer produce the Bone Meal sound when placed on Sand
  • Swapped the toggle sounds for Levers so they are now parity with Java Edition
  • Using a Water Bucket on a fully filled Cauldron now produces the correct sound

Accessibility

  • Text to Speech chat setting once again correctly narrates chat messages
  • Text to Speech now correctly reads item names in the inventory
  • Inventory grid slots are no longer double counted for Text to Speech focus controls

User Interface

  • Fixed the hotbar being misaligned with XP bar by 1 pixel
  • The hotbar is no longer too dark when anti-aliasing is increased
  • The crosshair no longer flickers during multiplayer sessions
  • Using the touch interface, holding the output slot on the Stonecutter or Loom will now rapidly craft items
  • Fixed an incorrect popup when attempting to activate a pack with a missing dependency
  • Fixed translation issues for some keys containing upper case letters
  • Replaced loading bars with new loading spinner in the Marketplace
  • Recipe Book crafting estimates no longer differ from the actual results
  • Cursor items no longer count towards recipe ingredient in Recipe Book
  • The selected recipe in the Recipe Book is now deselected when the player runs out of ingredients
  • Non-craftable recipes no longer displayed in Recipe Book when search mechanism is used
  • Nether blocks now appear in the crafting grid if any other ingredient is unavailable
  • Fixed a wireless network connection error message that appeared when players were connected via a wired network
  • Fixed various spelling errors in Character Creator
  • Hover of widget buttons were showing corrupted appearance before full load was complete
  • Fixed a legibility issue with some Japanese font characters
  • Riding an animal now displays the correct tooltip term when played on a non-touch screen
  • Experimental warning message is no longer displayed inconsistently when loading beta worlds
  • A debug string is no longer shown for how to open chat
  • Fixed an issue where the item category text color did not match the item text color if it was changed in Resource Packs
  • Fixed an issue where patterns in the Loom would not display correctly with some texture packs
  • The emote wheel no longer appears when pressing Ctrl+B in-game
  • Fixed Input Method Editor (IME) not working after suspending the game on Windows 10
  • Added a new sidebar to some Marketplace and Dressing Room related screens to help better improve the experience of navigating these areas
  • There is now an item transferring animation when deselecting a recipe
  • Sidebar text is now localized properly when a new language is loaded or the current language changes
  • Fixed a bug that could cause the Sign In button to appear behind the Marketplace button
  • Fixed the Noto Sans Smooth font on Windows and Xbox platforms with the Japanese locale to address legibility and usage of correct characters
  • Fixed "CR" characters incorrectly appearing at the end of lines for some display languages
  • Enabled new achievements screens for VR (not including PS VR)
  • Placing a Sign on Rooted Dirt now correctly opens the text editor
  • The Sign In dialog is no longer shown on a split-screen game to anyone other than the primary player on PlayStation 4
  • Fixed tamed Wolves being transparent on the Structure Block screen

Realms

  • Improved responsiveness of Realms menus, particularly on Nintendo Switch
  • The "Download World" button is now visible for worlds on expired Realms
  • 2 player Realms no longer count against the 10 player realm limit
  • Realms reset button will now navigate to the loading screen while reset is happening
  • The Realms Slots screen will now open faster and have a loading dialog if it takes a long time
  • The Realms Backup page now only shows the most recent 1100 Realms backups to prevent text overlap issues
  • Switching the active world slot in Realms no longer spams the "Fetching World Info" prompt
  • Renaming a Realm now takes effect immediately while playing
  • Fixed some issues with being unable to kick players via the user interface or the /kick command
  • The text on the Realms Plus trial button on the play screen no longer changes when hovered
  • Pressing the View Privacy Policy button now opens properly on Nintendo Switch

Commands

  • Fixed a crash that could occur if a structure was placed with a command in an unloaded area, and that structure was deleted
  • Teleporting a mob between dimensions no longer causes the mob to despawn
  • Loading a structure with the /structure command now displays the correct output messages

Technical updates

Updated Add-On Template Packs

  • Updated Add-On templates for 1.17.30 are available for download with new resources, behaviors, and documentation

Gameplay

  • Data-driven blocks can now be added to the Creative menu
  • New chemistry material reductions for Education Edition can now be defined in the JSON files
  • potion.prefix and potion..postfix potion string resources have been renamed to potion..name
  • Potion name string resources have been changed so there are separate Splash and Lingering string resources
  • The old style of using potion.prefix and potion.*.postfix is still supported
  • UI bind objects can now utilize the "ignore" field
  • Attachables that are visible in first person view will no longer render backwards

Fixes

  • Fixed a bug where an entity might fail to initialize its tag component
  • Sky no longer renders through walls of a large enclosed area when using fog
  • Updated documentation formatting for item components and how they work within Resource Packs and Behavior Packs
  • Using Water Buckets to collect fish has been version locked to prevent breaking old world templates
  • Fixed controller support when editing NPC dialog
  • behavior.knockback_roar now has a vertical and horizontal strength value
  • Adjusted padding for HD Textures in mipmaps level 1 in texture atlas to fix texture bleeding
  • Killing a custom mob with an unknown loot table entry type will no longer cause a crash, and will now throw a content error
  • Rabbit with initialEvent specified now scales properly to adult rabbit size
  • Similar to the spawns_on_block_filter, the spawns_above_block_filter specifies a list of blocks and a distance. The mob can then spawn only if the nearest block within the specified distance below the desired spawnpoint is in that list (water and air not included). minecraft:spawns_above_block_filter": { "blocks": "minecraft:stone", "distance": 10 }
  • Improved documentation for DamageableItemComponent
  • Fixed the ability to add launch point positional offset for projectiles spawned with the spawn_entity component
  • Fixed the ability to add angular offset to launch vector for projectiles spawned with the spawn_entity component
  • Fixed offset not working for projectiles summoned through an interaction
  • Fixed projectile angleoffset value only reflected if shooter is riding another entity
  • Fixed rotation of projectile launch point around a mob when projectile offset specified
  • Parsing of UI json field ignored now throws a content error if it is invalid
  • Fixed movement prediction interpolating with invalid data in even more scenarios
  • Removed the replace element from sound_definitions.json for being ambiguous in its usage (and was never used)

Commands

  • Commands ran through animations now will run in the order defined in animation files on all platforms, including Realms
  • Animations and events defined in Behavior Packs can now run commands that require cheats without the player enabling cheats (such as setting certain rules with the /gamerule command)
  • Target selectors ry and rym now support wrapping around north
  • The /particle command position argument is now optional
  • The /particle command will now output on success
  • The /particle command no longer shows an error when run successfully through '/execute'
  • The /clone command now copies signal strength for Levers and Redstone Dust
  • The /structure command can now specify a <to: x y z> position argument with y below 0 as long as it is equal or above the minimum height for that dimension
  • Added functionality for Intellisense options: "d" and "default" in the gamemode command selector
  • Minecart with Command Block can now use the self selector (@s) in its commands to target itself
  • The /time set command now sets the correct time and day when specifying a time above 24000 or below the current time (e.g. /time set 0 sets the day to 0, /time set 28000 sets the day to 1), and /time can now set or add to a negative world time
  • The /spawnpoint command can now be used while the player is sleeping and outputs success when setting to the player's existing spawnpoint
  • The camera shake command no longer shakes every player's screen when "@s" is used as the selector

GameTest Framework (Experimental)

  • Renamed module "Minecraft" to "mojang-minecraft"
  • Renamed module "GameTest" to "mojang-gametest"
  • "GameTest" (now "mojang-gametest")
    • Added helper method spawnAtLocation(location : Location) : Entity - Spawns an entity at the given Location
    • Added helper method walkToLocation(mob : Entity, location : Location, speedModifier : number) - Commands an entity to move to the given Location
    • Added method assertCanReachLocation(mob : Entity, location : BlockLocation, bool canReach) - Asserts that the given mob can reach the target block location
    • Renamed helper method worldLocation(location : BlockLocation) to worldBlockLocation(location : BlockLocation)
    • Renamed helper method relativeLocation(location : BlockLocation) to relativeBlockLocation(location : BlockLocation)
    • Added helper method worldLocation(relativeLocation : Location) : Location - From a Location with coordinates relative to the GameTest structure block, returns a new Location with coordinates relative to the world
    • Added helper method relativeLocation(worldLocation : Location) : Location - From a Location, returns a new Location with coordinates relative to the current GameTest structure block
    • Added helper method spawnWithoutBehaviorsAtLocation(entityIdentifier : string, location : Location) : Entity - Spawns an entity at a location without any AI behaviors
    • Added helper method rotateDirection(direction : Direction) : Direction - Rotates the given direction relative to the GameTest structure rotation
    • Added helper method getTestDirection() : Direction - Returns the direction the GameTest is facing based on its structure rotation
    • Renamed function assertBlockTypePresent to assertBlockPresent
    • Renamed function assertEntityData to assertEntityState
    • Removed function assertBlockTypeNotPresent (added boolean isPresent to assertBlockPresent instead)
    • Removed function assertEntityNotPresent (added boolean to assertEntityPresent instead)
    • Removed function assertEntityNotPresentInArea (added boolean to assertEntityPresentInArea instead)
    • Removed function assertEntityNotTouching (added boolean to assertEntityTouching)
    • Removed function succeedWhenEntityNotPresent (added boolean to succeedWhenEntityPresent)
    • Modified signature of function assertBlockState(blockLocation: BlockLocation, callback: (Block) => boolean)
    • Modified signature of function assertBlockPresent(blockType: BlockType, blockLocation: BlockLocation, isPresent: boolean)
    • Modified signature of function assertEntityPresent(entityTypeIdentifier: string, blockLocation: BlockLocation, isPresent: boolean)
    • Modified signature of function assertEntityPresentInArea(entityTypeIdentifier: string, isPresent: boolean)
    • Modified signature of function assertEntityTouching(entityTypeIdentifier: string, location: Location, isTouching: boolean)
    • Modified signature of function succeedWhenEntityPresent(entityTypeIdentifier: string, location: Location, isPresent: boolean)
  • "Minecraft" (now "mojang-minecraft")
    • Renamed BlockTypes class to MinecraftBlockTypes
    • Renamed Effects class to MinecraftEffectTypes
    • Renamed Items class to MinecraftItemTypes
  • Events
    • Added event World.events.beforeExplosion - Fires before an explosion occurs
    • Added event World.events.explosion - Fires when an explosion occurs
    • Added event World.events.explodeBlock - Fires when a block breaks due to an explosion
    • Added event World.event.beforeActivatePiston - Fires before a piston is activated
    • Added event World.event.activatePiston - Fires when a piston is activated
    • Added read-only property currentTick to tick event - Returns the current server tick
    • Renamed event createEntity to entityCreate
    • Renamed event addEffect to effectAdd
    • Renamed event activatePiston to pistonActivate
    • Renamed event beforeActivatePiston to beforePistonActivate
    • Renamed eventexplodeBlock to blockExplode
    • Renamed event changeWeather to weatherChange
  • Block
    • Added method getDimension() : Dimension
  • Added BlockPistonComponent

Molang

  • Added experimental queries for item cooldowns: query.is_cooldown_type, query.cooldown_time, and query.cooldown_time_remaining
  • Updated many Molang content errors to specify which operator or query was involved
  • min_engine_version from Resource Pack and Behavior Pack manifests is now passed into Molang expression parsing. This allows for future breaking changes tied to a specific engine version
  • Added BlockPartVisibilityComponent
    • Allows creators to specify Molang conditions for each "bone" listed in the geometry JSON that turn on / off bones based on the block state
    • Must have the Experimental toggle enabled to use
  • Fixed experimental query.bone_orientation_trs to have correct translation Y and scale results
  • Added experimental block_neighbor_has_any_tags and block_neighbor_has_all_tags Molang queries
    • Takes a block relative position and a set of tags
    • Returns 0 / 1
    • Must have the Experimental toggle enabled to use
  • Fixed a crash that could occur when entering a world with a custom Resource Pack that contained query.armor_color_slot
  • Fixed query.item_remaining_use_duration having improperly scaled or inverted results (This is to fix a Versioned Change as of engine version 1.17.30)
  • Added query.facing_target_to_range_attack, which returns whether or not the queried actor's minecraft:behavior.ranged_attack goal is currently running
  • Moved experimental Molang queries (other than those related to Actor Properties) to a new "Experimental Molang Features" toggle
  • Improved Molang documentation related to experiments
    • Experimental queries and language expressions now list which experiment(s) they require to be available
  • Versioned Changes are now detailed in the documentation, starting with the query.item_remaining_use_duration fix

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Here's everything we know about Forza Horizon 5 on Xbox and PC

Forza Horizon 5 is already making its case as game of the year

Forza Horizon is the open-world counterpart to the legendary Xbox Forza racing franchise. Forza Horizon 5 follows the hugely successful and brilliant Forza Horizon 4, and will almost certainly set the bar for the best Xbox racing games and best PC racing games for years to come. Playground Games and Xbox Game Studios know how to deliver a premium open-world racing experience, and Forza Horizon 5 is sure not to disappoint. Of course, Forza Horizon 5 is also positively massive in scope, meaning there's a lot to cover.

Here's everything you need to know about Forza Horizon 5 for Xbox and PC.

The Festival returns

Forza Horizon 5 (Preorder)

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An epic adventure

Forza Horizon 5 is the latest project from Playground Games and continues the epic Forza Horizon adventure with a new roster of amazing cars and a brand-new location to explore: Mexico. Forza Horizon 5 launches on Xbox and PC later this year, and it's already available to preorder.

What is Forza Horizon 5?

Forza Horizon 5 is the follow-up game to Playground Games' Forza Horizon 4 from 2018. Like other Forza Horizon games, Forza Horizon 5 is an open-world racing game with gorgeous visuals, accessible driving mechanics, and a massive roster of high-quality, licensed vehicles from dozens of manufacturers, all centered around the fabled Forza Horizon festival. And, also like previous Forza Horizon games, FH5 is exclusive to Xbox and PC platforms.

Forza Horizon 5 is the more arcade-like open-world counterpart to the highly anticipated eighth Forza Motorsport. While Forza Horizon 5 is coming later this year, not a ton is known about the mysterious Forza Motorsport reboot. Playground Games and Turn10 share a ton of technology and resources between them, as well, which means FH5 may give us a peek at the quality that can be expected from Forza Motorsport.

Forza Horizon 5 is akin to a "car-lovers sandbox," and mostly lets you play however you want. While there is a story and full-blown campaign with the Horizon Adventure, Expeditions, and smaller Horizon Stories, it's still up to players how they progress and what path they take. All in all, the focus of Forza Horizon 5 is the vast arsenal of cars, the wide variety of races and events, the sheer level of creative freedom available, and the deeply integrated online multiplayer gameplay.

If Forza Horizon 4 gives us a peek at what we can expect from Forza Horizon 5 throughout the next several years, we can expect a ton of post-launch support and updates to introduce new cars, events, challenges, and even premium DLC expansions.

You can check out more images of Forza Horizon 5 below, including some incredible wallpapers featuring mural art that will actually appear in-game.

When is the release date for Forza Horizon 5?

Forza Horizon 5 releases on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, Xbox One, PC, Xbox Game Pass, and Xbox Cloud Gaming on Nov. 9, 2021. If you preorder Forza Horizon 5 Premium Edition or the Premium Add-Ons Bundle, you can play the game early on Nov. 5.

Forza Horizon 5 is the latest Xbox Game Studios title to launch simultaneously on Xbox, PC, and Xbox Game Pass. Xbox Cloud Gaming players on mobile devices will also be able to hop behind the wheel on day one. Forza Horizon 5 looks to be a technical and visual showcase on every one of those platforms, with all the stunning graphics and effects expected from a Forza game.

Versions & pricing

Ever since Forza Horizon 5 first became available to preorder, we've been keeping careful track of every edition, DLC, and option you need to be aware of. Our ultimate guide to buying or preordering Forza Horizon 5 covers absolutely everything, including all you need to know about why there isn't a Forza Horizon 5 demo, what editions are available, where you can purchase FH5, and what kind of preorder bonuses or perks FH5 might be offering. There's also an exclusive limited edition FH5 Xbox Controller, which even includes in-game perks, available for preorder.

How can I watch the trailers for Forza Horizon 5?

Official announcement

Gameplay overview

Let's Go! Episode One

Let's Go! Episode Two

Let's Go! Episode Three

Audible upgrades preview

Car recording behind-the-scenes

Car audio gameplay trailer

Let's Go! Episode Four

Let's Go! Episode Five

Let's Go! Episode Six

Initial drive gameplay

Official cover cars trailer

Ford Bronco Badlands trailer

Farid Rueda artist spotlight

Star27 artist spotlight

Cix artist spotlight

Raul Urias artist spotlight

Senkoe artist spotlight

Let's Go! Episode Seven

Ambient nature sounds

Let's Go! Episode Eight

When was the reveal and announcement for Forza Horizon 5?

We knew Forza Horizon 5 was coming long before it was announced, and even had a hefty pile of leaks and rumors fueling speculation. Of course, the game had to be confirmed eventually. Forza Horizon 5 was officially revealed by Xbox and Playground Games at E3 2021 during the Xbox and Bethesda Games Showcase at E3 2021.

Forza Horizon 5 was right near the end of the show and deservedly garnered a huge amount of hype and excitement for its release. It arrived alongside heavy hitters like Halo Infinite and Starfield. There was no way Microsoft could've made the announcement of Forza Horizon 5 a bigger deal.

From now on, expect more news and information to trickle out as we head towards the official release of Forza Horizon 5 on Xbox and PC. Playground plans to host periodic streams (under the "Let's Go!" moniker) to cover different aspects of Forza Horizon 5. The first stream was a general introduction to the world of FH5, while the second covered the impressive technology powering FH5's sky. You can watch all those streams and more in the "Trailers" section above.

FH5 also made a huge appearance at the Xbox Gamescom 2021 event, where a ton was shown off like the initial drive in Forza Horizon 5, the official FH5 cover cars and art, and more.

Where is the location for Forza Horizon 5?

Forza Horizon 5 aims to be the largest and most diverse Forza Horizon game ever, and that means it needs to be set in a location that can accommodate its lofty ambitions. Fortunately, Playground Games found the perfect setting, as Forza Horizon 5 takes the series back to the North American continent with Mexico. FH5 will feature a huge variety of different environments and locales, with dynamic weather, the return of seasons, and so much more.

Our ultimate guide to Forza Horizon 5's map includes everything you need to know about FH5 and its rendition of Mexico, including just how big the map is in comparison to previous Forza Horizon games, an overview of different locations you'll be able to explore, and a peek at the full Forza Horizon 5 map in all its glory.

What are all the cars and vehicles in Forza Horizon 5?

While Forza Horizon 5's location is undoubtedly a massive part of the game, it's absolutely the cars that make or break most racing games. This is an area where Forza games rarely struggle, and FH5 intends to up the ante by offering the largest launch list of cars in a Forza Horizon game yet.

It can be tough to keep track of every car in a Forza Horizon game, especially when you're looking for something specific, but our Forza Horizon 5 full car list is constantly updated with every car we know of, including gifts, DLC additions, special cars, and much more.

We already know of nearly 350 cars that are going to appear in Forza Horizon 5 at launch, and Playground Games continually confirms new vehicles as we inch closer to release day.

What is the story and campaign in Forza Horizon 5?

While the story or plot in a racing game may not be the most crucial element for some players, it does still add to the atmosphere and, dare I say, immersion of the experience. Forza Horizon 4 was gently criticized by the community for its lackluster story and general lack of direction for players, so Playground Games went back to the drawing board for Forza Horizon 5. FH5 will take players on a journey through the Horizon Festival to have their name added to the Hall of Fame, and the drive there should be pretty wild.

Playground obviously doesn't want to spoil too much about Forza Horizon 5's story, but they still shared a ton of new gameplay and story details in one of their FH5 streams, which highlights the player-first direction they've taken.

Here's everything we know about the story and campaign in Forza Horizon 5:

  • The story of Horizon Mexico. Forza Horizon 5 is canonically set directly after the events of Forza Horizon 4. Players are still basking in the glory of emerging as the championing during the FH4 Festival, and have been sent to Mexico to aid in setting up Horizon Mexico, the next major Horizon Festival.
    • Haley is your number one when it comes to the know-how of Horizon Mexico and making things happen. She's a good friend of Keira, who filled a similar role in Forza Horizon 4 (and is apparently still there looking after Horizon Britain)
    • You are the boss of Horizon Mexico, and that means it's up to you to decide what direction the Festival goes in. It's also important to note that you are the champion of Horizon Britain, so your name is known far and wide in Mexico
  • Hall of Fame. The eventual goal of Horizon Mexico and Forza Horizon 5's story is to be accepted into the Hall of Fame, which is reserved for only the greatest and most skilled racers around. There are hundreds of paths players can take to reach the Hall of Fame, meaning the story in FH5 is ultimately still yours to direct.
  • Horizon Adventure. The guiding, overarching entity in Forza Horizon 5's story is the Horizon Adventure, which gives players a broad outline of what they're able to do and how they're able to progress to the Hall of Fame. This means that, unlike FH4, you'll always have guidance on where you can go next. The Horizon Adventure splits FH5's massive map into several categories, with each category featuring chapters that players can unlock and play through at their discretion. In order to progress through Horizon Adventure and eventually reach the Hall of Fame, players will need to earn Accolades.
    • Horizon Adventure has its own charming screen in FH5 that clearly outlines the areas and chapters, and will be the hub from which players will choose their path. The Horizon Adventure screen is visually distinct with amazing-looking stylized graphics
    • The Horizon Adventure is how you unlock Expeditions (covered below), new Festival sites, Showdowns, and much more
    • Individual areas in the Horizon Adventure feature unique themes, Festival sites, Horizon Stories, and much more
    • It'll take approximately 10 to 20 hours for most players to finish the Horizon Adventure and reach the Hall of Fame
  • Accolades. Forza Horizon 5 will feature literally thousands of "Accolades," which are mini objectives that players can complete that cover practically every aspect of the game. Absolutely everything in FH5, including playing online, painting cars, growing your car collection, winning races, exploring the map, and more can earn you Accolades, which in turn reward Accolade Points. It's these points that are used to unlock new chapters and areas of the Horizon Adventure and progress the campaign.
    • There are thousands of Accolades, but players will not need to 100% them to finish the FH5 story. After completing the campaign, there will still be plenty of reasons to play and new Accolades to complete
    • Accolade progression continues no matter how you play FH5, be it with solo play, online, in co-op, or anywhere else
  • Expeditions. There are six Horizon Festival sites in Forza Horizon 5, and each one of them will require progressing through the Horizon Adventure and completing an Expedition. These Expeditions are full-scale road trips across various parts of Mexico, with cinematic cutscenes, story-driven narrative brought to you by Ramiro (Rami, for short), FH5's enthusiastic tour guide, and huge set pieces that showcase the graphical and technical prowess of Forza Horizon 5.
    • Expeditions will go all over Mexico, including over an active volcano, through a storm-torn jungle, and more. Expeditions will also put players behind the wheel of a variety of vehicles
    • Expeditions will also feature optional Accolades to complete while on your journey, like finding specific locations, taking pictures, choosing spots for gear and sites, and more
    • You can play Expeditions by yourself, or in co-op with friends, and all progress is retained no matter what
  • Horizon Stories. Forza Horizon 4 introduced a new way to experience a single-player campaign with Horizon Stories. With Forza Horizon 5, they're bigger than ever. Forza Horizon 5's Stories are part of a deeper and more rewarding campaign, and provide multiple avenues to explore the world. Players can meet dozens of new characters and decide the outcome of their individual stories, and some Barn Finds are even unlocked through Horizon Stories.
  • Horizon Showcases. Forza Horizon's massive Showcase events have always been a way to show off how far the game can go, and give players an opportunity to display their skills and feel like a true racing master. In Forza Horizon 5, players will be able to participate in four Horizon Showcases, which promise to be bigger and grander than ever before. The first Showcase pits players against a cargo plane, and another Showcase will have players race a train once again.

What are the features and gameplay in Forza Horizon 5?

A new Forza Horizon game always comes with at least a handful of new features and improvements over its predecessor, but Forza Horizon 5 seems set on delivering even greater amounts of content to players. The extra year of development Forza Horizon 5 got over previous entries in the series clearly helped things along because there is a lot about which to talk.

Not only has Playground Games baked in significantly more content into Forza Horizon 5's base game, but it's also given the community a way to add essentially infinite new events and races to Forza Horizon 5 over time. FH5's online features have also seen significant improvements to more completely connect players all around the world. We'll constantly add to this section as we learn more about all the additions in Forza Horizon 5, so be sure to check in regularly.

From the addition of convertibles to major updates for creators, Forza Horizon 5 is a big upgrade for Forza. Playground also knows how to work up hype for a game, as they continue to show off new Forza Horizon 5 gameplay and details through periodic streams.

Here's everything we know about the features and gameplay in Forza Horizon 5:

Game features and visuals

Playground Games wants this to be the biggest Forza Horizon in more ways than one, which means players have more ways to play and more reasons to keep returning. This is also by far one of the most gorgeous games we've ever seen, and Playground Games has achieved this feat with several methods.

Here are some of the best features about Forza Horizon 5 and its visuals:

  • Horizon Festival. Forza Horizon has always revolved around the "Horizon Festival," a fictional event that belongs in every car lover's dreams. Pro racers from all over the world converge in one location, for exactly one purpose: to race. The Horizon Festival returns in Forza Horizon 5, and players are once again put in charge. Like Forza Horizon 4, multiple Festival sites can be opened, which unlocks new races and event types. Playground Games has also confirmed a new Horizon Festival logo for FH5. Six Horizon Festivals in total will be available in Forza Horizon 5.
    • Horizon Mexico is the main Horizon Festival sites in Forza Horizon 5, where players will begin their journey. This site is situated on an abandoned air strip (right for drag races) and right next to a fantastic racing circuit
    • Horizon Apex is one of the new Horizon Festivals that has been confirmed, and will feature a number of asphalt road races, and focuses on high-performance vehicles
    • Horizon Wilds is another Horizon Festival, and is practically the opposite of Apex, as it revolves around dirt roads and offroad racing
    • Horizon Rush is the next Horizon Festival, a location set back in the wild canyons of Mexico that revolves around dangerous and ridiculous PR stunts like jumps, speed traps, and more
    • For the very first time, Forza Horizon's semi-legal Street Scene racing series is getting its own tournament, with the aptly named Horizon Street Scene Festival, which will revolve around chaotic nighttime races in collaboration with local street racers
    • Finally, Horizon Baja is all about cross-country racing through a variety of environments, and can be found in FH5's Living Desert biome
  • Barn Finds. Barn Finds have been a mainstay feature in the Forza Horizon franchise, where players can look for long-lost cars buried throughout the world. Barn Finds are returning in Forza Horizon 5, and Playground has said that FH5's Barn Finds are the most detailed and location-specific Barn Finds ever. Barn Finds are also discovered in different ways, such as through Horizon Stories, during Expeditions, and more.
  • Visuals and graphics. One of the most impressive parts about Forza Horizon 5 has indubitably been its eye-catching and mind-boggling visuals, which rank among some of the most impressive graphics we've ever seen in a video game. Several things factor into this achievement, including:
    • The use of photogrammetry, which has Playground Games send dedicated teams of photographers all over Mexico to take thousands of pictures of locations and objects, to accurately capture everything from the individual needles on a cactus to the unique texture of volcanic boulders. Almost everything in Forza Horizon 5 is based on photogrammetry
    • A 12K resolution recording of the real Mexican sky, meaning the sky you see in Forza Horizon 5 literally couldn't look more authentic if it tried. This also makes the sky feel more dynamic as time passes and the weather changes
    • The addition of more 3D effects, like in new dynamic weather events, which evolve from pure textures to actual 3D occurrences that can affect the world and player perspective
    • The addition of ray tracing when in Forzavista, showcasing Forza Horizon 5's cars in the most realistic light possible
    • The highest amount of detail on roads for a Forza Horizon game, including location-specific textures (like deteriorating quality as players approach the volcano)
    • Hundreds of cinematics and cutscenes, which tie in with FH5's newly revitalized story and campaign elements
  • Photo and Drone Modes. Forza Horizon games have always been visual showcases, and it stands to reason that players would want to show off their custom cars when playing. Photo Mode is absolutely returning in Forza Horizon 5, and will take advantage of FH5's numerous visual and graphical upgrades. On top of this, Drone Mode is seemingly making a return in FH5, letting players fly around Mexico by leaving their cars behind.
  • Updated user interface (UI). The UI in Forza Horizon 5 is finally getting a long-overdue redesign, which aims to make activities like car customization and more in Forza Horizon 5 more accessible and efficient. Menus are simplified and are easier to scan, while various menus are completely redesigned, such as car upgrades and customization.
    • It hasn't been entirely confirmed yet, but it looks like Forza Horizon 5 may do away with the much-criticized "white room" victory screen in Forza Horizon 4, and returns to a more dynamic and visually appealing location-based cinematic
  • Improved accessibility. Accessibility in games is extremely important, and Playground Games seems to recognize this. While details haven't been shared yet, Playground Games promises Forza Horizon 5 is by far and away the most accessible Forza Horizon game so far, with new accessibility settings and options.
    • Forza Horizon 5 wants to be the most inclusive and easy-to-access Forza Horizon game yet, and part of this means providing more information to players about the optimal car and track combinations for races. Players will still have the freedom to drive any car they want anywhere they want, but the game will be better at helping players that want that help to pick the right car for the situation
    • A new "Tourist" difficulty will offer new assists and settings for newcomers to racing games and Forza Horizon, so that anyone can play at a pace they're comfortable with
  • Drivatars and traffic. Drivatars are returning in Forza Horizon 5, as expected, giving players realistic and challenging opponents to go up against when not racing online. Something that hasn't been seen but is now confirmed is that civilian traffic is also returning in FH5, so be prepared to race around these minor inconveniences when jumping into the game.
    • AI Drivatars have apparently been overhauled in Forza Horizon 5 to be more receptive to the abilities of individual players, and are able to offer a more realistic and dynamic experience. If this is the case, it'll be interesting to see how these new AI opponents fare in races
  • Improvements to the wheel experience. Many racing game fans love to play with a dedicated driving wheel or even more elaborate setups for a more immersive feel. Forza Horizon has never been considered to be one of the best games for lovers of wheels over controllers or mouse and keyboard, but Playground Games apparently vastly improved the wheel experience in Forza Horizon 5.
    • Force feedback has been greatly improved, partially thanks to improved physics systems like suspensions and braking
    • Far more settings and options for players who use a wheel, which are also contextual

Open world, biomes, and seasons

We already know Forza Horizon 5 is set in Mexico, but it turns out there's a lot more going on behind the scenes. Forza Horizon 5, of course, has a broad open world to explore, and marks the return of seasons that were introduced in Forza Horizon 4. However, Forza Horizon 5's map is the largest and most diverse world we've ever seen in a Forza Horizon game, with major changes even for existing features like seasons and weather.

Forza Horizon 5's Let's Go! Episode 4 stream was all about biomes and gave us a ton of information about different parts of the FH5 world. Every info drop we've gotten indicates the world in FH5 will be bigger and more diverse than ever, and it's very exciting.

Here are some of the best features about Forza Horizon 5's world:

  • 1.5 times larger than Forza Horizon 4. True to their word, Playground Games has made Forza Horizon 5 the biggest Forza Horizon game yet, with a map approximately 1.5 times the size of Forza Horizon 4's Britain. That's a lot of ground to cover, and it features a huge variety of different locations, including:
    • The largest highway in a Forza Horizon game yet, which stretches nearly corner to corner in Forza Horizon 5
    • Several towns and cities, all of which capture Mexican culture in beautiful and colorful ways
    • The return of multiple Horizon Festival sites, with the first Festival site being located on top of an old racetrack and airstrip (that's right, drag racing!)

Hold on tight! #FH5 pic.twitter.com/3DScmH9XIx

— Forza Horizon (@ForzaHorizon) July 30, 2021
  • Eleven different biomes. To diversify the largest map in a Forza Horizon game to date, Playground has included 11 different biomes for players to explore. Every biome will have unique attributes, and interact with weather and seasons in different ways. Biomes will also blend together seamlessly, instead of abruptly cutting off at points. The 11 confirmed biomes include:
    • Arid hills — An excellent choice for offroading fans, the Arid Hills biome features dry and grassy plains and hills, and even features a lake that dries up in the winter and opens up new secrets and routes.
    • Canyon — One of the more striking FH5 areas, the Canyon biome is filled with unique rock formations and striations, including the existence of hoodoos (rock pillars and columns) and tons of reverb and echoes for audio.
    • Farmland — Farmlands in FH5 aren't like the farms in previous games, and actually feature lots of hilly and varied terrain filled with diverse foliage and vegetation, fruit-bearing trees, and much more for players to explore.
    • Jungle — As in the real world, the Jungle biome in FH5 is the most foliage dense and claustrophobic of all the biomes, with a ton of trees and other vegetation, heavy fog from heat and humidity, and a ton of secrets for players to discover
    • Living Desert — Not every desert is dry and full of nothing but sand, as is proven by the Living Desert biome in FH5, which features a ton of vegetation like cactuses and flowers, and even boasts of unique rock formations.
    • Urban City — Headlined by Guanajuato, the Urban City biome is exactly as the name implies: an urban area densely packed with beautiful buildings showcasing Mexican architecture and culture, and lots of tight roads to drive down
    • Sand Desert — The Sand Desert biome is closer to your typical desert, and is perfect for speed demons and offroading fanatics, as it features tons of towering sand dunes and long, straight roads.
    • Swamp — One of the most interesting biomes in FH5 is the Swamp, an absolutely gorgeous area that connects jungles to oceans and is filled with beautiful blue-green shallow water, rooted mangrove trees that can be crashed through, and more.
    • Tropical Coast — Most of the time, the Tropical Coast biome in FH5 is the definition of a picturesque Mexican vacation, with resorts, long white-sanded beaches, palm trees, and more, but that all changes with tropical storms in the wet season.
    • Rocky Coast — While it's still bordering the ocean, the Rocky Coast biome is the polar opposite of the Tropical Coast (and actually appears on opposite ends: tropical in the East and rocky in the West), and is characterized by unique rock formations, long uninterrupted beaches, and a golf course.
    • Volcano — Another of the most anticipated FH5 biomes, the Volcano is not only the largest geographical location ever in a Forza Horizon game, but it's also the highest and features blistering blizzards, long winding roads, and even a volcanic research center and satellite dish.
  • The return of seasons. Forza Horizon 4's innovative seasons system is returning, but things are a little different this time around. While seasons in Britain have very clear dividers between them, making for immediately obvious differences, Mexico's wide variety of ecosystems and environments means all four seasons affect all 11 biomes in different ways. This means:
    • Every season will behave and look different depending on where you are on the map
    • You can be in a blizzard on the mountain top and then drive down to the sweltering coast
    • Biomes will completely change for different seasons, including some areas only being accessible during a specific season
    • Seasons affect gameplay in new and exciting ways, and is even more deeply integrated into the world. There are new events, challenges, and rewards for every season
    • The season will still change once every week
    • Seasons are also localized for how they appear in Mexico, meaning Spring is actually the Hot Season, Summer is the Wet Season, Autumn is the Storm Season, and Winter is the Dry Season
  • Dynamic and localized weather. One of the most exciting additions to Forza Horizon 5 is dynamic and localized weather. Yes, the weather in Forza Horizon 4 looked amazing, but when it was raining in one area, it was raining everywhere. In Forza Horizon 5, weather exists in specific areas, can be seen in the distance, and can be tracked down by players. Forza Horizon 5's weather system includes:
    • Storm chasing, which means players can keep an eye out for major storms and literally track them across Forza Horizon 5's world. While it hasn't been confirmed yet, this could make for an excellent Horizon Story in the game.
    • Tropical and dust storms, which have huge and dramatic effects on the world. Dust storms are 3D, encapsulating everything and obstructing your view. Tropical storms shred trees and everything else in the area with high levels of wind, causing a buildup of debris.
    • These storms can grow and swell as they occur, but tend to stick in the location they started in. Storms can appear in multiple locations around the map.
  • The best Forza Horizon sky yet. Related to the new seasons and dynamic weather effects, Playground has also put in the effort to ensure the sky in Forza Horizon 5 is the most impressive ever put in a game.
    • Playground Games used an updated version of their sky capture rig, which uses three 8K cameras to stitch together a 12K picture of the sky.
    • Over 400 hours and 75TB of the Mexican sky was recorded, with the best parts picked out to be used in FH5.
    • Forza Horizon 5 uses advanced interpolation and algorithms to seamlessly stitch these recordings together, creating a nonstop and authentic Mexican sky.
    • All this work means there are significantly more weather presets for races and events, up to 2,000 (versus just over 300 in Forza Horizon 4).
  • Authentic Mexican representation. Playground Games is obviously proud of the world it built for Forza Horizon 5, and its developers have mentioned that Mexico features a wonderful and deep culture in its people, locations, and cars. Playground has always strived to represent the cultures in the locations of its games accurately, and FH5, like in many other ways, aims to turn this up to 11.
    • Original compositions from Mexican musicians for FH5's soundtrack
    • Original artwork and murals from seven Mexican artists, including the one in the FH5 debut gameplay trailer by Farid Rueda
    • Mexican writers and voice actors, which portray many of the characters in FH5
  • New and updated world features. There's obviously more to Forza Horizon 5's improvements on top of these major changes as well, including (but not limited to):
    • A ton of foliage, including cactus, is smashable in Forza Horizon 5, so you don't have to worry about them getting in your way
    • Animals are making a return, including flamingos, wild dogs, donkeys, goats, horned sheep, parrots and other birds, and more. Animals are more intelligent than in Forza Horizon 4, and can even have unique behaviors
    • A ridiculous attention to detail, including how flocks of monarch butterflies can appear in certain locations and certain times of the year, coinciding with the annual monarch butterfly migration that moves through Mexico

You can see more screenshots of Forza Horizon 5's gorgeous world below.

Cars, character, and event customization

If there's one thing that brings Forza Horizon players together like nothing else, it's the sheer level of creative freedom afforded by the games. Forza Horizon 5 wants to be the most customizable and inclusive Forza Horizon yet, and it also gears for infinite replayability with new player tools and features. Players have control over their cars, in-game characters, races, and even full-blown unique events you can't find anywhere else.

Here are the best features about Forza Horizon 5's car, character, and event customization:

  • New car customizations. Cars are in everything you do in Forza Horizon 5, so it makes sense that you'd have a lot of control over your vehicles. Forza Horizon has always given players a lot of freedom to make their cars look and drive the way they want, but new additions have been lacking lately. Forza Horizon 5 finally adds a ton of new options, including:
    • Major improvements to the interface for designing and painting cars, to make it closer to modern image editing software
    • You can port liveries and car designs from Forza Horizon 4
    • Hundreds of new visual upgrade parts for cars
    • Over 100 new rim options
    • Thousands of new performance upgrades for cars, including over 500 new engine swaps
    • The ability to paint brake calipers, which has been a requested feature for years now
    • Fully body kits, which significantly alter the look of supported cars
  • Improved car physics. One of the smaller, but still welcomed, improvements in Forza Horizon 5 is the return of "drivetrain flex," which essentially refers to how cars wobble when revving their engines or accelerating. This ties into massively improved (and rebuilt) suspension and braking systems, which contribute to more realistic offroading in FH5 (and a brand-new "Offroad" performance stat for all cars). Apparently, these updates actually make driving easier in FH5, since cars behave closer to how you'd expect.
  • Improved car engine sounds. One of the biggest community complaints about Forza Horizon 4 was its lackluster car engine sounds, which often didn't accurately reflect the cars, and even repeated engine noises across cars. Playground has assuaged concerns from players and stated that their audio team has devoted a ton of time to improving engine noises in Forza Horizon 5.
    • If you want to know more about how the audio has improved in Forza Horizon 5, be sure to check out the "Audio" section below!
  • Improved tire smoke and effects. The Forza Horizon community has also critiqued the tire smoke in Forza Horizon games in the past, and even here Playground is listening. Tire smoke in Forza Horizon 5 is getting a big upgrade to have more volume and presence in the world, and these upgrades also apply to other effects like kicking up sand or dirt. Tire smoke even changes depending on how hot your tires are and how hot the current season is.
  • Return of perks. Every car you drive in Forza Horizon 5 will still have a collection of perks you can spend skill points to unlock, which will grant unique bonuses and perks to your car (such as increased XP or credits, or even new cars).
  • Car Collection screen. Forza Horizon 5 features a Car Collection screen, which is almost a "sticker book" of every available car in the game. Players can come here to view their car collection and see what vehicles they're missing, purchase missing cars in the collection directly from this screen, and even redeem rewards for reaching milestones and completing manufacturer collections. Rewards include XP, credits, and even exclusive Forza Edition cars.
  • New character customizations. In-game characters have taken the spotlight more in recent Forza Horizon games, giving players another way to express themselves and personalize their game experience. Forza Horizon 5 characters are getting a similar treatment to cars, with all-new ways to customize them, including:
    • Major improvements to inclusivity, including options for pronouns, a more diverse selection of base characters, and prosthetic limbs
    • Hundreds of new clothing options
    • New choices for voices and hairstyles
    • While rarer clothing items are still obtained through Horizon Wheelspins, most of FH5's clothing and character customization items can be obtained through a new dedicated clothing shop
  • EventLab. Likely one of the most exciting additions to Forza Horizon 5 for many players, EventLab is a full-blown level editor. This isn't like the race editor feature from Forza Horizon 4, which lets you design custom tours and events from preexisting tracks. EventLab adds near-infinite possibilities to Forza Horizon 5, and includes a ton of features like:
    • Tools and options similar to the ones used by Forza Horizon developers
    • The ability to individually place objects, tracks, items, and more, to custom design your track or world
    • The ability to choose game objectives and rules, to create something truly unique
    • EventLab is similar to Super7, but apparently provides more power and control in every way
    • EventLab will improve over time as the community provides feedback
    • Races made in EventLab can even appear on the FH5 map for players
    • Playground will pick the best and coolest modes and events from EventLab to showcase in Festival Playlists and Horizon Arcade
    • Possibilities are endless enough that Playground genuinely has no idea what the community will be able to accomplish with EventLab

Click the left thumbstick. #FH5 pic.twitter.com/E1MvPlNvbw

— Forza Horizon (@ForzaHorizon) July 19, 2021
  • Convertible cars. Convertible cars have existed in Forza Horizon games before, but with FH5 you'll be able to put the top off or take it down with the click of a single button, even when you're out in the wide FH5 world! This is an awesome addition, and the above clip shows the attention to detail players can expect when they get into a convertible.
  • Driving modes. Related to how some cars will have convertible tops that can be toggled on the go, different cars in Forza Horizon 5 may also feature different driving modes that players can toggle between. The only car we know of that supports this at the moment is the titular Mercedes-AMG ONE, which can toggle between street and track modes, but other cars may also feature this ability.

Online play and social features

Online and social features have long been a huge part of Forza Horizon, connecting players across the open world and making it easier to play together. Forza Horizon 5 is making big changes to make online play more accessible and seamless than ever before, with a host of new features to incentivize players to participate in online events and play. This means new tools, events, and more in Forza Horizon 5.

Forza Horizon 5 Let's Go! Episode 8 covered many of FH5's online features, and showcased plenty of multiplayer gameplay. It looks like FH5 has made meaningful improvements to multiplayer to make it even easier for players to join games together, and to incentivize players to jump online.

Here are some of the best features about Forza Horizon 5's online play:

  • Horizon Open. Forza Horizon 5 is condensing its classic Forza Horizon PvP modes under one barrier, with players able to seamlessly leap into races, challenges, and events while driving around in the massive open world. With this change, Forza Horizon 5 is more "MMO-like," with all players connected simultaneously. This is also contextual, so players are more likely to run into other players in different locations, like cities. Finally, Horizon Open's races and events have been designed to be more accessible and inviting, so that players aren't needlessly penalized and dragged down (skill-based matchmaking is also going away). Horizon Open is divided into four categories, including:
    • Open Racing, which includes a wide variety of classic race events
    • Open Drifting, which lets players test out their drifting skills on a variety of surfaces
    • Playground Games, a cleverly named series that combines a ton of game modes like Flag Rush, King, and more
    • The Eliminator, a Battle Royale mode that debuted late in FH4's career and is returning in Forza Horizon 5
  • Horizon Tour. Related to Horizon Open, Tour lets you meet up to five other players and travel to various race locations to battle it out against AI Drivatars. Horizon Tours periodically change their location and themes (types of vehicles and customization allowed, etcetera), meaning there's plenty of variety. Using Forza LINK (more below), you can seamlessly join convoys and Horizon Tours at any point.
  • Horizon Arcade. Forza Horizon 5 is packed with over 130 new mini-games, spread across 12 different game modes, all of which fit under the Horizon Arcade banner. These aren't game modes you need to search for. Instead, they happen dynamically all over the Forza Horizon 5 map as public events while you're driving around with other players. Participate in these spontaneous events to earn new rewards and more, and be automatically linked to the next event if you want to keep playing.
  • Forza LINK. Forza Horizon's ANNA AI isn't going anywhere, but the antiquated "Chat" option is being replaced with another AI: LINK. LINK intelligently keeps track of what players enjoy playing, how they've progressed, and what they're currently up to when playing online, and helps you connect with other people with seamless and easy recommendations.
  • Kudos. A new social currency in Forza Horizon 5, Kudos can be gifted to players (or recieved) at any point. This is to encourage players to practice fair and generous gameplay, as Kudos can be gifted for helping players out, being a good sport, giving Gift Drops, and more. Collecting Kudos can help you unlock new flairs, which can be attached to your player label.
  • Gift Drops. Gift Drops are similar to Barn Finds, except players can tune and design their own cars, and then hide them in the world for a specific group of Forza Horizon players. Anyone in Forza Horizon 5 under that group has a chance to find the Gift Drop, and then they get to keep the car. This is a great way of encouraging charitable play in Forza Horizon 5.
    • Gift Drops can be customized with a selection of friendly messages, and can be optionally signed by the player sending them
    • Gift Drops do permanently remove the selected vehicle from your garage, but someone else will get to keep that car forever
    • Whenever you find a Gift Drop, you're able to give the gifting player a Kudos
  • Festival Playlists. Returning from Forza Horizon 4, Festival Playlists are new and improved in FH5. Weekly and monthly updates are still planned for Forza Horizon 5, with Festival Playlists offering several hours of additional gameplay every week and exclusive rewards. Playground is apparently taking everything they've learned from FH4 and applying it to FH5.
  • Co-op support. Everything in Forza Horizon 5 can be played in co-op, including the campaign chapters and Expeditions. Progress is maintained no matter how you play, so there's no barrier to playing in co-op.
    • You can start playing online or with co-op immediately after the opening drive and first Horizon Story in FH5
  • Better accessibility and inclusion. Playground Games wanted to make Forza Horizon 5 more accessible, especially as players become more likely to return after months-long absences or play older games for the first time through Xbox Game Pass. Some of these improvements include:
    • A more seamless and natural transition from single-player campaign play to the live service Festival Playlist
    • Less focus on purely winning and more of a focus on having fun and winning if you can

Audio and car sounds

Forza Horizon 4 is a fantastic game in practically every way, but there is one thing that it consistently lacks in according to the Forza community: car sounds. Forza Horizon 4 uses the same car sounds repeatedly for multiple vehicles, features low-quality recordings, and has a tendency to make every car sound practically the same. One of the biggest question marks surrounding Forza Horizon 5 has been whether or not audio will be noticeably improved. Now, we finally have some answers.

Playground Games recently held a stream detailing Forza Horizon 5 audio improvements, and there's hardly anything to be upset about. It seems Playground has invested substantial time into improving not just engine noises in FH5, but all audio in general. You can even watch a Forza Horizon 5 gameplay trailer just showing off improved car audio, which is awesome for fans. Finally, there's this interview with Jalopnik that offers another look into the "how" of audio in FH5.

There's enough here for audio and car sounds to earn its own section in our ultimate Forza Horizon 5 guide, so let's get started. Here's what you need to know about audio in Forza Horizon 5:

  • No more "dyno" recording method. Many other racing games use the "dyno" method to record their car audio, which effectively straps a car in and records it revving up to max. This method is officially retired in FH5, as it's inherently limiting and doesn't accurately capture a car's complex sounds.
  • Live recording on a track or airstrip. Instead, Forza Horizon 5 leans fully into Playground Games' favorite method of recording: strapping a bunch of microphones to a car and driving it around. This leads to more authentic and varied engine sounds per car.
  • Over 320 new car recordings. During the development of FH5, Playground has recorded over 320 new car recordings on top of the existing library in Forza Horizon 4, a huge surplus that should lead to more varied sounds.
    • Playground also went the extra mile by ensuring they recorded a ton of different individual upgrade parts and levels, so that engine sounds can accurately shift with the addition of new and improved upgraded parts
  • Major improvements to car audio. With over 320 new live car recordings, Playground is already set up for massively improved audio in Forza Horizon 5. However, car engine noises are getting several other major enhancements in FH5, including:
    • 100% use of the granular synthesis technique, versus only 10-15% in Forza Horizon 4. Granular synthesis lets Playground chop up audio files into many segments and stitches them together seamlessly as needed. This means no matter how you're driving, your cars will always sound dynamic and natural
    • Car audio is always 90 FPS, versus the 60 FPS the game plays at normally. Combined with granular synthesis, this means car sounds in Forza Horizon 5 are incredibly reactive, with no gaps between action and sound
    • Forza Horizon 5 also uses a brand-new modular audio system, which can intelligently recognize your car, its engine type, and its various engine upgrades, and pull from the existing library of sounds to create a unique and natural sound, including for engine upgrades like turbochargers, superchargers, exhausts, and much more, and distinct sounds like transmission whines and the characteristic sound of an electric or hybrid car
    • Improvements to tire sounds are also included, with FH5 able to use all of its upgrades (including the new modular system) to adapt tire sounds to the car and tire type being used
  • Engine upgrades can be heard in real-time. If you're excited to try out the upgraded audio in Forza Horizon 5 by upgrading your car with various new performance parts, you're in luck. FH5 will let you hear engine upgrades in real-time while customizing your car with a new "Rev engine" button. This will let you hear the difference between different engine upgrades like intakes, camshafts, and more, and even between entire engine swaps.
  • Improvements to first-person audio. If you prefer to drive your car in first person, you're in luck! Audio is also getting major improvements in this department to elevate the cockpit feel to a new level. Some of the improvements include:
    • Audio can be muffled accurately when inside a closed car
    • New FH5 audio systems can track how sound travels around the inside of a car, including reverb
    • Convertibles will have different first-person soundscapes depending on whether or not the top is up or down
  • Audio ray tracing. While visual ray tracing is limited to Forzavista (which includes the menu for upgrading your car!), audio ray tracing is being applied to the entire game. This means Forza Horizon 5 can trace audio as it bounces off the environment like walls, ceilings, buildings, and more. Reverb and echoes will be realistic and accurate, especially in environments like tunnels.
    • Ray tracing occlusion also means players will be able to pinpoint the locations of nearby cars (even around buildings and other obstacles) by the noises of their engines
  • Forza Horizon 5 sounds better on Xbox Series X|S. Microsoft's current-gen gaming consoles have unlocked a new compression format for audio. This means FH5 will have higher fidelity audio on Xbox Series X|S, which applies to all audio, including music, environmental noises, and car sounds.
  • All cars benefit. Finally, it should be noted that all cars in FH5 will benefit from these audio improvements. This means whether you're exploring the world by yourself, playing online with others, or racing through Mexico, all the cars around you will reflect all of these audio improvements.
  • Horizon Bass Arena returns. Many fans were concerned that Forza Horizon's infamous Horizon Bass Arena radio station wouldn't return in FH5, but those fears have been assuaged. Bass Arena is coming back better than ever, and it'll still feature charismatic host Scott Tyler at its helm, who is the only character in the Forza Horizon franchise to appear in every single entry.

What platforms will get Forza Horizon 5?

Forza Horizon 5 is heading to Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, and Xbox Cloud Gaming. It'll be available on day one on Xbox Game Pass. Forza Horizon 5 is not coming to other platforms like PS5, PS4, Nintendo Switch, Google Stadia, or Amazon Luna.

Here's everything you need to know about every platform Forza Horizon 5 is launching on.

Xbox Series X|S

Forza Horizon 5 has been designed from the ground up to show off what the Xbox Series X|S current-gen consoles are capable of, and it delivers. Playground Games has already revealed the Forza Horizon 5 performance targets for Xbox Series X|S, and we like what we see. It's been made clear from the very beginning that Forza Horizon 5 is going to look fantastic on Xbox Series X|S, with a wide range of supported features.

Here's everything you need to know about Forza Horizon 5 on Xbox Series X|S

  • Performance targets. To get the most technical (and arguably least important) information out of the way first, here's how Forza Horizon 5 runs on Xbox Series X|S:
    • 4K resolution and 30 FPS on Xbox Series X in Quality Mode
    • 1080p resolution and 30 FPS on Xbox Series S in Quality Mode
    • 4K resolution and 60 FPS on Xbox Series X in Performance Mode
    • 1080p resolution and 60 FPS on Xbox Series X in Performance Mode
  • Parity between consoles. Aside from resolution, the experience between Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S should be almost identical, with both consoles managing to push similar graphical and visual settings.
  • Ray tracing. Forza Horizon 5 is the first Forza Horizon game to embrace ray tracing, which enables accurate and true-to-life tracking for lights, shadows, reflections, and much more. Forza Horizon 5 will support ray tracing on Xbox Series X|S at launch, although it's limited to the Forzavista mode, where players can admire their cars in their full ray-traced glory.
  • Smart Delivery. Like many other Xbox games that span generations, Forza Horizon 5 supports Xbox Smart Delivery. This means you have to buy Forza Horizon 5 only once for Xbox consoles, and Xbox will automatically download the best possible version of the game for the console you're playing on, at no additional cost. This also includes Xbox cloud saves, meaning there's full cross-progression between generations.
  • Cross-platform play. Forza Horizon 5 embraces every platform it's available on, which means it supports cross-play between Forza Horizon 5 on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, and Xbox Cloud Gaming. Cross-save is also supported across all of these platforms, with the exception of Forza Horizon 5 on Steam.
  • Improved world and visuals. The power of Xbox Series X|S allows for improvements across the board for both gameplay and visuals. This includes features like:
    • Full HDR10 support for improved contrast and colors
    • Improved draw distances, so players can see farther and with more detail
    • Improved load speeds, so players can start racing faster
    • Improved details and textures for both cars and the world
    • Improved audio fidelity
    • Massively increased resolution for car paints and decals
  • Xbox Series X faith. It's clear that Playground Games has a lot of faith in how Forza Horizon 5 looks and runs on Xbox Series X, as it was confirmed that, as of the Let's Go! Episode Five stream, practically everything that had been shown off of Forza Horizon 5 so far was running on Xbox Series X.

Xbox One

Xbox One may be "last-gen," but they still have a lot of life left in them. Forza Horizon 5 is heading to Xbox One, Xbox One S, and Xbox One X when it launches on Nov. 9, and it should offer a fantastic experience when it does. We don't know how well Forza Horizon 5 will run or look on Xbox One consoles when it launches, but we're expecting it to be similar to how previous Forza Horizon games did.

Here's everything you need to know about Forza Horizon 5 on Xbox One:

  • Smart Delivery. If you buy Forza Horizon 5 while on Xbox One, know that you'll always have the best experience possible wherever you play. Forza Horizon 5 will scale across all Xbox consoles using Smart Delivery, meaning you can buy and fall in love with the game while on Xbox One, and then immediately experience an upgraded version of Forza Horizon 5 when you move to an Xbox Series X or S.
  • Cross-platform play. Forza Horizon 5 embraces every platform it's available on, which means it supports cross-play between Forza Horizon 5 on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, and Xbox Cloud Gaming. Cross-save is also supported across all of these platforms, with the exception of Forza Horizon 5 on Steam.
  • Improvements over Forza Horizon 4. Forza Horizon 4 already pushed the Xbox One generation of consoles to its limits when it came to graphics, so don't expect Forza Horizon 5 to be a big visual jump when playing on Xbox One. That doesn't mean there isn't a ton to look forward to, including:
    • A bigger and more diverse world than ever before
    • Brand-new ways to play with new races, events, challenges, and more
    • Improved online multiplayer with in-world public events, more ways to find new friends and more
    • EventLab event editor, which allows full creative freedom to build new events, maps, and more
    • Tons of other improvements to customization, accessibility, cars, the world, and more

PC

Microsoft's newfound and growing support of PC gaming means Forza Horizon 5 (and practically every other Xbox Game Studios title) launches on PC at the same time as Xbox platforms. Playground Games hasn't divulged all the details for how Forza Horizon 5 will behave on PC, but you can rest assured knowing PC gamers will be able to experience the best Forza Horizon 5 has to offer (with the right hardware, of course).

Here's everything you need to know about Forza Horizon 5 on PC:

  • Minimum PC requirements. If you want to play Forza Horizon 5 on your PC, you need to make sure you at least achieve the minimum requirements to run Forza Horizon 5 on PC. Ideally, you'll want to have much better hardware than the minimum requirements ask for, as Forza Horizon 5 will look and run worse with this hardware.
    • OS: Windows 10 version 15063.0 or higher
    • Processor: Intel i3-4170 @ 3.7GHz, Intel i5-750 @ 2.67GHz, or equivalent
    • Memory: 8GB RAM
    • Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 650 Ti, AMD R7 250x, or equivalent
    • DirectX: Version 12
    • Network: Broadband internet connection
    • Storage: 80GB available space
  • Recommended PC requirements. Unfortunately, we currently don't know the recommended PC requirements. If you're looking to upgrade your PC to ensure it passes the test, be sure to check out our list of best graphics cards (GPUs) for PC gaming. Alternatively, you can invest in one of the best gaming desktops or best gaming laptops for an all-inclusive PC gaming experience.
  • Xbox Play Anywhere. Forza Horizon 5 is an Xbox Play Anywhere title. This means you can buy any edition of Forza Horizon 5 directly from the Microsoft Store and instantly own the game on PC and Xbox, with cross-progression between the two versions. This is a fantastic pro-consumer feature and is awesome if you own both an Xbox and PC, or plan to in the future.
  • Cross-platform play. On top of being an Xbox Play Anywhere title, Forza Horizon 5 also blends the lines between platforms and generations. No matter where you're playing, Forza Horizon 5 supports full cross-play and cross-saves. The only exception is the Steam version of Forza Horizon 5, which still supports cross-play with all other versions but unfortunately does not support cross-save.
  • The best of Forza. Just like how Forza Horizon 5 expertly scales from the near-ancient Xbox One to the new-and-glorious Xbox Series X, Forza Horizon 5 also scales on PC. If you have the hardware to run it, you can play Forza Horizon 5 at its very best (even better than Xbox Series X|S!) with higher resolutions and framerates than anywhere else. It's all about the computer you're using.
  • No mod support. Forza Horizon 5, unfortunately, does not support any kind of mods on PC. This is likely to protect the online-centric nature of the game, but may be a disappointment for players who were hoping for full-fledged mod support in a Forza Horizon game. Instead, players are being given the EventLab editor, which features powerful developer-level tools for creating maps and events.

Xbox Cloud Gaming (xCloud)

Forza Horizon 5 has been confirmed to be heading to Xbox Cloud Gaming, previously known as Project xCloud, on day one. If you're not familiar with Xbox Cloud Gaming, it's included in Xbox Game Pass Ultimate (which also includes Xbox Game Pass for consoles and PC), and lets you play a wide variety of full-blown Xbox games on your phone, tablet, or laptop. This means you'll not only be able to tear through the Mexican deserts on your Xbox console or PC while at home, but also while you're on the go.

Here's everything you need to know about Forza Horizon 5 on Xbox Cloud Gaming:

  • Powered by Xbox Series X. Xbox Cloud Gaming has long been powered by server blades based on the aging Xbox One S console. Now, Xbox Cloud Gaming is officially built on top of custom Xbox Series X server blades, delivering superior load speeds, latency, performance, and visuals. Xbox Series X|S Optimized games get the greatest benefits, which will include Forza Horizon 5 when it launches.
    • Xbox Cloud Gaming streams games at up to 1080p and 60 FPS
  • Cross-platform play. Playing Forza Horizon 5 on Xbox Cloud Gaming doesn't mean giving up on online multiplayer with your friends or managing a separate save. Forza Horizon 5 still supports full cross-play and cross-save on Xbox Cloud Gaming, just like it does on Xbox consoles. Play on PC or Xbox, then take your phone on the go and never lose a moment.
  • Xbox One upgrade. This hasn't been implemented yet, but Xbox Cloud Gaming will one day be used to bring current-gen-only games like Microsoft Flight Simulator or the upgraded version of Forza Horizon 5 to older Xbox One consoles. Using the power of the cloud, you'll someday be able to play games far beyond the capabilities of the aging Xbox One consoles, breathing new life into the console platform. Xbox Cloud Gaming for Xbox One should arrive sometime in 2021, meaning it may be here in time for Forza Horizon 5.
  • Mobile gaming. It should go without saying, but Forza Horizon 5 and Xbox Cloud Gaming means you can play one of the best racing games ever literally anywhere you have an internet connection. Be it your phone, a tablet, or even a non-gaming computer, Xbox Cloud Gaming aims to "just work."

Forza Horizon 4 isn't just one of the best Xbox racing games, it's also one of the best Xbox games in general. There's every reason to believe that Forza Horizon 5 will continue the trend and deliver an excellent racing experience to Xbox and PC.

The Festival returns

Forza Horizon 5 (Preorder)

$60 at Microsoft (Standard) $60 at Amazon (Physical) $60 at Steam (PC)

An epic adventure

Forza Horizon 5 is the latest project from Playground Games and continues the epic Forza Horizon adventure with a new roster of amazing cars and a brand-new location to explore: Mexico. Forza Horizon 5 launches on Xbox and PC later this year, and it's already available to preorder.

Vrooms included

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

From $1/month at Microsoft $45 at Amazon (3-month subscription) $15 at Amazon (1-month subscription)

All your gaming needs, in one subscription

Is the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate the best value in all of gaming? It's possible. Ultimate bundles your Xbox Live Gold subscription, an Xbox Game Pass subscription for both Xbox consoles and Windows PCs, and Xbox Cloud Gaming for on-the-go. Forza Horizon 5 will be available through Xbox Game Pass day one, including on consoles, PC, and the cloud.

Online play is the focus of Forza Horizon 5's latest stream

Forza Horizon 5 includes a ton of ways to play together and have fun.

What you need to know

  • Forza Horizon 5 is the newest title from Playground Games, and it's heading to players later this year.
  • Ahead of launch, Playground has been hosting periodic streams to tease and reveal features of FH5.
  • Forza Horizon 5 Let's Go! Episode 8 just concluded, and focused entirely on FH5's numerous online features.
  • This includes the inclusive and revamped Horizon Open, the easy-to-use Horizon Tour, fun Horizon Arcade games, and more.

The impossibly long road to Forza Horizon 5 continues to shorten, and Playground Games continues to reveal new information about their hotly-anticipated open-world racer ahead of release. While Forza Horizon 5 Let's Go! Episode 7 was all about the single-player campaign, the latest entry in the pre-release series focuses almost entirely on FH5's newly evolved online multiplayer features. If you're excited for what's bound to be one of the best Xbox racing games when it launches, this stream is one to watch.

Today's stream went over many of FH5's biggest online features, including Horizon Open, Horizon Tour, and Horizon Arcade. Here's a quick rundown of the features we saw during the show:

  • Horizon Open is more accessible. Horizon Open is the new hub for FH5's online game modes and races, splitting everything into four categories (Open Racing, Open Drifting, Playground Games, and The Eliminator). Horizon Open has apparently been tweaked and altered to be more accessible and less punishing to players, encouraging fun all around without as much of a focus on winning.
    • The Eliminator is a Battle Royale mode added to Forza Horizon 4 in 2019, and it's making a return in FH5. Score upgraded vehicles, hide or explore the map, engage in intense head-to-head races with other players, and attempt to survive until the end
  • Horizon Tour lets you connect. If you're ever lost for how to meet new players and join races, Horizon Tour is your answer. This mode is a rotating collection of events and themes, and lets you easily connect to other players in the world. You can participate in co-op races with up to five other players against AI Drivatars, and join convoys to move between races.
  • Horizon Arcade is mindless fun. Horizon Arcade is a collection of fun mini-games that inhabit the online-connected world of Forza Horizon 5. Players can join or leave whenever they want, participating in a wide variety of casual games like smashing piñatas, hitting airborne bullseyes, playing a version of "Simon Says," and more. It's also easy to stay in the fun, as well, as players can join convoys and move between Horizon Arcade events for as long as they want.
  • Plenty of other great features. The stream also touched on plenty of other awesome features in FH5, including the contextual LINK system that lets you communicate and connect with other players quickly, Gift Drops that let you send or receive cars to random players (complete with friendly messages and more), Kudos currency that lets players be rewarded for friendly or helpful behavior, upgraded AI Drivatars for an enhanced racing experience, and much more.

FH5 is still over two months away from its official release, meaning there's still a ton we don't know. Playground continues to give us new gameplay footage of the beautiful Forza Horizon 5 map, and the Forza Horizon 5 car list is steadily growing over time. More Let's Go! streams are also planned for the future, so players will have further opportunities to learn exactly why they should be excited for Forza Horizon 5.

Forza Horizon 5 officially releases on Nov. 9, 2021 for Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, Xbox One, PC, Xbox Game Pass, and Xbox Cloud Gaming. You can now preorder Forza Horizon 5, which may include early access to the game and additional DLC content.

The Festival returns

Forza Horizon 5 (Preorder)

$60 at Microsoft (Standard) $60 at Amazon (Physical) $60 at Steam (PC)

An epic adventure

Forza Horizon 5 is the latest project from Playground Games and continues the epic Forza Horizon adventure with a new roster of amazing cars and a brand-new location to explore: Mexico. Forza Horizon 5 launches on Xbox and PC later this year, and it's already available to preorder.

Vrooms included

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

From $1/month at Microsoft $45 at Amazon (3-month subscription) $15 at Amazon (1-month subscription)

All your gaming needs, in one subscription

Is the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate the best value in all of gaming? It's possible. Ultimate bundles your Xbox Live Gold subscription, an Xbox Game Pass subscription for both Xbox consoles and Windows PCs, and Xbox Cloud Gaming for on-the-go. Forza Horizon 5 will be available through Xbox Game Pass day one, including on consoles, PC, and the cloud.

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