Forza Horizon 3: Blizzard Mountain Expansion Review
*** Forza Horizon 3 Review ***
Return to Australia with Forza Horizon 3‘s first of two planned expansion packs, Blizzard Mountain. Here you’ll be exchanging the sunny coastline and sandy dunes for a wintry landscape with an overhauled progression system and new vehicles. Put on the winter jacket, crank the heater and come take a ride on the snowy side.
Blizzard Mountain is a completely isolated area from Forza Horizon 3‘s massive open world. From the main game, you’ll drive to the airport and get airlifted to Blizzard Mountain. It’s a bit disappointing that the transition isn’t more seamless – but considering the size of Blizzard Mountain, and the possibility that the next expansion will be just as massive – it’s pretty understandable. Blizzard Mountain starts with your descent down the massively snowy mountain to a new Horizon Festival site. With the help of your Horizon team, Warren and Keira, you’ll drive your way to being crowned Blizzard Mountain’s King of the Hill.
“Despite the overabundance of white, powdery snow in Blizzard Mountain, the expansion still looks fantastic.”
In Blizzard Mountain, a new progression system is introduced. You’ll no longer be earning for fans, instead, you’ll compete in events earning stars. Earn ten stars, and you’ll be moving to the next King of the Hill tier. This continues until you’ve earned enough stars to be crowned King of the Hill. It’s a welcome change of pace from the fans system in the main game. As for the events, they’re all the same event variations you’ve played in the main game, but in wintry conditions. I was hoping we’d see some new types of events – but alas, it was just more of the same. For most of Blizzard Mountain, you’ll have access to vehicles with snow tires – while these cars will still drift far more than in the main game on account of the icy conditions, thankfully the driving is not nearly as slippery as I had expected.
Your primary opponents throughout Blizzard Mountain are still the same Drivatar’s you’ve faced in the main game. They’re still customizable before each race – so if you’re having any challenges earning three stars in a race, you can always retry it on a lower difficulty. Unfortunately, the AI hasn’t been adjusted to be less annoying. Just like in the main game, you’ll come across Drivatar’s throughout the world, and they always seem to be in the way. Remember how frustrating it was when you were doing a drift in a Drift Zone when some random Drivatar would just happen to show up and crash into you?Same problems here on Blizzard Mountain.
Make no mistake, despite the overabundance of white, powdery snow in Blizzard Mountain, the expansion still looks fantastic. While Blizzard Mountain is maybe one-third of the size of the main game, they’ve still managed to cram a ton of content into the area. From the summit of Blizzard Mountain, all the way down to the frozen lake and all the cool little places surrounding like the cozy little village. Another addition is the new “Blizzard” conditions that will randomly crop up, causing near white-out conditions and giving you a very short field of distance. It makes races feel stressful – especially when combined with night driving. It definitely felt like winter driving here in Canada! I definitely think Forza Horizon should visit Canada on a future outing.
“Barreling down the side of Blizzard Mountain and sliding around on the frozen lake are some of the best highlights.”
Blizzard Mountain brings a substantial amount of content to an already massive game. The change of scenery is welcome and the wintry driving conditions weren’t nearly as bad as I had thought they might be. The events are mostly enjoyable, with only a few feeling tedious and boring (some new event types would have been appreciated). Barreling down the side of Blizzard Mountain and sliding around on the frozen lake were some of the best highlights for me. It’s safe to say you’ll probably get a good eight to ten hours of playtime on Blizzard Mountain. While it’s a bit disappointing this expansion wasn’t included in the pricey Forza Horizon 3 Ultimate Edition, I’d say the added cost is worth it for fans of Forza Horizon 3 looking for some new content.
*** Xbox One code purchased by reviewer ***
- Brand new wintry environment
- New progression system
- New vehicles
- No new event types
- AI Drivatars are still annoying at times