By Thomas Harrison-Lord and Justin Melillo
The second major downloadable content expansion for Forza Horizon 5 has been revealed – Rally Adventure.
The first rally racing-focused addition will launch on 29th March 2023 with a slew of new rally-bred machines and even a pacenote system. Here are all the most important details.
What is Forza Horizon 5’s Rally Adventure expansion?
Forza Horizon 5‘s Rally Adventure is a game expansion that is designed around the sport of rallying, which means dirt and asphalt-based racing against the clock, as opposed to on-track rivals. Setting the best time is the main goal, across new routes (called stages) that expand the Mexican environment.
Is Rally Adventure set in a new location?
Yes, the Rally Adventure expansion features a new map area for Forza Horizon 5, Sierra Nueva, which is north of the main Mexican area already in the game. It is not, however, all-new terrain, keeping the existing aesthetic of rocks, boulders, gravel and cacti.
The map is not yet public, but the in-game Series 18 Festival Playlist, live from 2nd March 2023, will include some opportunity to view it ahead of the expansion’s release.
New cars in Rally Adventure
The expansion will feature 10 new cars never seen in Forza Horizon 5 before. So far, these include:
- 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Platinum
- 2001 #4 Ford Focus RS WRC – Colin McRae and Nicky Grist
- 1973 Hoonigan Volkswagen Baja Beetle Class 5/1600 ‘Scumbug’
- 2021 RJ Anderson #37 Polaris RZR Pro 4 Truck
- 2019 Casey Currie Motorsports #4402 Ultra 4 ‘Trophy Jeep’
- 2021 Alumicraft #122 Class 1 Buggy
- 2022 Alumicraft #6165 Trick Truck
- 2021 Polaris RZR Pro XP Factory Racing Limited Edition
- 2020 Jimco #179 Hammerhead Class 1
- 2019 Jimco #240 Fastball Racing Spec Trophy Truck
How many events will there be in Rally Adventure?
Listen to your co-driver
In the real-world sport of rally, the main opponent is time. Beat the time of your competitors, as you each take a stage, or route, one by one. In order to do that as quickly and as safely as possible, alongside each driver is a co-driver.
They speak out loud pacenotes during the competition, explaining if there’s a jump ahead or how quickly to take the next corner ahead of time.
A co-driver is part of Rally Adventure, with on-screen icons and the audible sound of Alejandra, Alex or Ramiro warning you of hazards ahead and which way to turn next – the co-driver in this instance not int he passenger seat, but talking from a Horizon Rally Chopper that follows your every move.
“The roads are a lot more extreme and undulating, packed into a tight area,” said Nigel Norman, Level Designer, during a reveal presentation.
“That’s one of the reasons why the co-driver is there to tell you about how to tackle the road that is coming up in front of you.”
Now, as there is a mini-map and a blue line guide like the rest of Forza Horizon 5, at this moment in time before going hands-on, while authentic, the whole system seems a little superfluous.
Split gates are split times
As rallying is against the clock, and usually across lengthy stages, split times are an important factor for a spectator to judge the pace of each competitor. Are they up, or down, on their rivals?
These are implemented within Rally Adventure, although in true Forza Horizon 5 style, they are represented visually with the on-road flags and called Split Gates. Each time you pass through one, the top right of the HUD will show your relative pace to your fellow competitors.
One small extra detail will be a countdown to the stage start and a marshal to wave you away. Neat.
You can turn off the rally elements
In a rally expansion, you can turn off the rally-themed gameplay. Huh.
There are two ways to play, The choice is yours:
- Horizon Rally – Against the clock, with split gates and the co-driver
- Horizon Race – Simply playing through the new content racing against AI-controlled cars just like the rest of the game
ANTI-LAG, LAUNCH CONTROL FEATURED
Some of the biggest additions included in the new expansion are Anti-Lag and Launch Control.
For turbocharged cars or those with the ability to add a turbo, which is over 630 cars in Forza Horizon 5 already, players can add an Anti-Lag system.
In the real-world, it’s a system that rally cars use to avoid large turbos from being off-boost on gear shifting, which in effect keeps drivers from losing valuable time in race events. Basically, those loud backfire pops and exhaust flames are the by-products, and when the expansion hits, it will also be an included feature for all Horizon 5 players, not just those with the Rally Adventure expansion.
It sounds very similar to the system found in Gran Turismo 7 for turbocharged cars.
The title will also now feature Launch Control, or basically a secondary rev limiter, that optimises the RPMs needed to launch successfully off of the starting line from a standing start. In Horizon 5, it will act as a sort of player assist that works together with Traction Control, and it will not only help with getting off the line, but also build up the boost before taking off.
This is indicated by the new LC icon on the on-screen gauge, a part of the in-game HUD.
Alongside these two new tuning options, there will be a suite of rally-based cosmetic items to add to your vehicle collection.
There’s a team element
You will encounter three teams in Rally Adventure, tied to three existing Forza Horizon 5 characters:
- Alejandra, Apex Predators – Asphalt rally fan
- Alex, Horizon Raptors – Enjoys the ‘classic’ mixed-surface rally experience
- Ramiro, Grit Reapers – Rough weather, more challenging
Each of the three teams features a subset of challenges and events, which earns XP to increase your reputation. The structure reminds us of the Hot Wheels Expansion, released last year.
It culminates in a Goliath event
Of course it does, it wouldn’t be Forza Horizon 5 without a long, sprawling, pack-ending Badlands Goliath event.
To unlock this, you complete each of the three team’s challenges, which opens up an ambassador race. Win all three, then enter the Goliath.
On the face of it, a small feature, but also potentially a big element for future Forza Horizon titles. If there will be any… of course, ahem.
All of the trees in the new palm forest area are ‘smashable’. Hit them with enough speed and force, and they will be felled. This isn’t true of all trees in Forza Horizon 5, or even the four previous titles.
There will be a ‘few’ un-smashable trees across the entire map, but this is still set to be a big step forward for palm destruction.
The expansions have historically showcased a new feature, such as snow or the waterfalls in last year’s Hot Wheels add-on. This time, it’s that all trees can be crushed.
It has new music
When the Rally Adventure expansion hits, a list of new artists will be featured in the game, but it’s not just limited to those who unlock the new DLC.
Artists such as the Architechs, The Linda Lindas and The Offspring are included in the Epitaph Records punk rock label, a returning record label from Forza Horizon 3. These songs will be added for all Forza Horizon 5 players.
Forza Horizon 5 Rally Adventure release date
29th March 2023 on PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S. It will be available as a separate paid piece of DLC, or for no additional cost for those with the Premium Edition, Premium Add-Ons Bundle or Expansions Bundle.