In all the furore surrounding the release of the latest installment in the Grand Theft Auto franchise, it’s easy to forget that there’s another prospective smash-hit automotive game waiting in the wings.
Forza Motorsport 5 will be released in November this year, and developer Turn 10 says that no other game will better deliver “the wide-eyed thrill of racing”.
As part of the pre-launch promotion, a new short film has been released, featuring American stunt driver and TV presenter Tanner Foust, a McLaren 12C, and a zoetrope.
A what now? Well, a zoetrope is a device that used to be used to turn static images into moving ones, by placing them a fixed distance apart inside a rotating drum and then spinning the drum around in front of the viewer’s eyes to create the illusion of movement.
Now replace the drum with a race track in Birmingham, Alabama, and the viewer’s eye with a camera mounted on the back of the McLaren, thus creating one of the fastest camera cars ever built. All starts to become a little clearer, doesn’t it?
Aluminium billboards were placed around the track – each placed precisely six inches apart and showing an individual frame of gameplay – and with Foust driving the 12C at specific target speeds, the images merged to form a sequence taken from the game.
Sounds like a lot of effort to go to, but the result is pretty convincing – and Microsoft hopes that the stunt will help convey its message to the public that the game is as closely-matched to reality as it gets. And if it can steal a few of the headlines from the GTA V launch, so much the better.