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E3 2011's Most Anticipated: Forza 4

CVG E3 2011 Awards: Vote for the games that most excite you!

The games on show at E3 2011 are some of the best in living memory. So you really owe it to yourself to vote in CVG's inaugural E3 2011 Awards... in the Most Anticipated Title category.

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Shortly before the show, we'll work out which of these 60 special E3 game previews have enjoyed the most page views, Facebook 'Likes', ReTweets and poll votes (see below) and crown our first victor at the Los Angeles event. Show your favourites the love!

Game: Forza 4
Publisher: Microsoft
Likelihood of E3 2011 showing: Certain

Gran Turismo 5's lengthy development cycle didn't do it any favours. While it's by no means a bad game, even the staunchest GT5 defender would probably agree that it launched with a feature set that was somewhat lacking both in variety and quality.

While GT5 developer Polyphony Digital struggled to stay ahead of the curve during GT5's half-decade development, Forza studio Turn 10 released three polished and finely-tuned racing games. The numerous innovations introduced in each not only propelled the series to the front of the pack, but also made it extremely difficult for by-the-numbers racers such as GT5 to compete.

Now, by building on its already robust feature set and introducing a few interesting new mechanics, Turn 10 is looking set to widen the gap with Forza 4 - and perhaps even strip Gran Turismo of the prestige and adoration its held for years.

TUNE UP
First though, let's get the elephant in the room out of the way. You know, the one prancing about in his boxer shorts and knocking over your favourite vase. Yep, Kinect compatbility has been confirmed and, according to a leaked internal marketing video from April, will allow you to "stand up and use your hands to open the doors, retract the roof [and] fire up the engine," as well as enabling camera-based head tracking.

For now, we're approaching any motion control-related Forza 4 with apprehension - but we're confident that regardless of how all the hand-waving, head-wobbling gameplay turns out, we'll still be delivered a solid, well-built racing game.

Although it hasn't explicitly confirmed features, judging from Turn 10's teaser trailer, it looks like petrol-heads can look forward to night time and off-road races, as well as more variety in the types of terrain - as indicated by the snow-covered footage.

Even today, Forza 3's visuals are capable of standing toe-to-toe with Gran Turismo 5. From what we've seen of F4 so far, it looks like lighting has been given an overhaul along with some improvements to the in-engine car models. If that wasn't enough of a sting to Gran Turismo fan, Microsoft has flaunted its confidence in the next Forza by cheekily tossing out a phrase previously usually used to market GT: According to its publisher Forza 4 will be the most realistic racer "on any console" and "the definitive racing game of 2011".

During its announcement Microsoft promised "Forza Motorsport 4 will be the most expansive and vividly realistic automotive experience on the market, bringing you closer to the edge than you've ever been before", adding that Kinect features in the game will allow players to "step through the TV screen and jump into the driver's seat" and to experience the "bone-jarring physics, unparalleled levels of customisation, and rosters of dream cars and tracks".

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