Forza Motorsport 3

Common Sense Media says

Extraordinarily good racing game -- but has open chat.

Age(i)

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Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

It could be argued Forza Motorsport 3 encourages real-world street racing, but that would be a stretch. Still, kids could get the wrong idea about how cars should be driven. Note that the game does not show the real impact of crashes, so children could get the impression that crashes aren't all that serious.

Positive role models

As there is no avatar in the game, players themselves act as the game's primary character. As such, it's up to them to decide whether they will race safely or aggressively. Note that the game discourages contact with other cars, leveling cash penalties at the end of the race for any damage incurred.

Ease of play

The game lets you select whether you want driving aids to help you with auto-braking and gear-shifting, and such, or if you want more of a real simulation experience.

Violence

Cars can smash into one another and take damage that affects both their cosmetics and performance. Drivers are never injured in crashes.

Sex
Not applicable
Language

It is possible to hear other players swear in an online multiplayer match, but I didn't hear any profanity in our testing.

 

 

Consumerism

The game features hundreds of real-world car licences. There are also in-game ads (billboards, primarily) from companies like Puma.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable
Privacy & safety

Creates privacy and safety concerns: The game features open, online chat during multiplayer races so that players may hear offensive language and be asked personal questions by strangers.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that there is little to be concerned about with Forza Motorsport 3. However, keep in mind that players using the online mode can communicate with one another via headsets, and there is no one moderating what's being said during online multiplayer matches. We didn't hear anything inappropriate in our testing, but the potential exists. Also be aware that while vehicles get banged up and can even break down after an accident, the drivers always go unscathed. This could give children unrealistic expectations as to the consequences of high speed car crashes.

Parents say

Kids say

What's it about?

This Xbox 360 exclusive lets you slip behind the wheel of 400 tune-able dream machines -- be it an American muscle car, sleek European sports coupe or high-tech Asian import -- and tackle more than 100 real-world tracks road courses from around the world. While the game offers truly photo-realistic graphics (featuring 10 times the car detail over its 2007 predecessor) and with many more camera angles to choose (such as a "cockpit" view), its savvy UK developers also made the cars feel like the real deal thanks to authentic physics and handling. That said, those who need driving assists can turn them on with the press of a button. Plus, if you really screw up on a turn you can hit the "back" button to rewind the race a few seconds.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Easily the finest racing game of the year. Racing fans waiting for a thrilling racing sim with all the trimmings won't be disappointed with this deep driving simulator. In addition to multiple solo races, Xbox Live subscribers can take advantage of 8-player matches and tournaments over the Internet, along with downloadable extras and the ability to share custom paint jobs with other racers. Taking the game online brings it to a whole new level, and the races are fast and furious despite the fact you might be driving against players across the country. If you must buy one racing game this year, Forza Motorsport 3 is it.

Online interaction: This game allows for open voice communication between players, which could result in children hearing inappropriate language or swapping personal information. Also, players can create their own "vinyl" car decorations and sell them to others via virtual money. These vinyls could contain inappropriate images or words. Common Sense Media does not recommend open online play for children under 12 years of age. The online interactions can be a blast for adults, though.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about whether they prefer over-the-top arcade racing games -- where you can do things in a car you can't do in real life -- or the challenge of a real simulation. This game is more of the latter, though there are many aids you can turn on to help win races.

  • Families can also discuss the consequences of vehicular accidents. Forza Motorsport 3's depiction of crashes suggests that cars can smash into solid barriers at speeds in excess of 200 miles per hour without its occupant suffering any sort of serious injury. What do you think would happen to a real-world driver who experienced a similar sort of accident?

  • Parents who have teens learning to drive may want to consider a study that suggests playing some racing games can lead to taking more driving risks in real life and share it with their children.

Game details

Platforms:Xbox 360
Price:$59.99
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Microsoft
Release date:October 27, 2009
Genre:Racing
Topics:Sports and martial arts
ESRB rating:E for (No Descriptors) (Xbox 360)

This review of Forza Motorsport 3 was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 15 years old Written bysnowboardsurfandcars March 12, 2011
AGE
2
QUALITY
 

Perfect game for the whole family

I love this game. It taught me how to drive a manual (i use a clutch pedal and a wheel for the game). Nice cars, perfect for everyone.
What other families should know
Educational value
Teen, 14 years old Written byJim Henderson June 20, 2010
AGE
2
QUALITY
 

What were they thinking!?

Really! Ages 14-18 is iffy!?
Kid, 12 years old October 9, 2011
AGE
2
QUALITY
 

HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

14+, soooo funny. Wait, they were joking right?
What other families should know
Educational value

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