Forza Horizon 4 | Welcome Guide

Jacob Norwood
Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Welcome to the Horizon Festival! If you are just joining us, you probably found us through Steam, and that’s fantastic! We want to make sure you’re prepared before jumping into a deep and thrilling open world racing experience, so we’ve put together this Welcome Guide with tips from the community.


The game does a great job of introducing you to concepts like the seasonal playlist, Festival events such as the Road Racing or Dirt Racing series, and story missions like The Stunt Driver in the early hours, but to help jumpstart your game, we wanted to let the Forza community share tips they’ve learned from their time behind the wheel. Remember, you’re joining an established community who has been racing the roads and hills of Britain for more than two years, and they are thrilled to welcome you along for the ride.


Here is some of the best advice that our community offered up for new drivers arriving at the Horizon Festival. (Entries have been edited for clarity and length.)


From @RustBucket533 on Twitter:


Don’t sweat winning or losing. Playing with a high difficulty gains more influence and credits and makes you a better player in the long run.


Cars on the beach


If filling your garage and exploring every corner of the Festival is your goal, @Rustbucket533 makes the case that winning every race shouldn’t be your top priority!


It’s true: the higher the difficulty, the higher the reward, even if you’re not at the top of the podium every time. Challenging yourself will get you further in the long run than dominating every lap every time. Sharpening your skills early on will pay off when you take the race online.


But what’s the most effective way to sharpen your skills? Well, @EXEventure on Twitter chimed in with some useful advice that we’ve seen from some of the top drivers in the world of Forza:


Hone your skills: start with a difficulty setting and the assists you need to get familiar with the physics, then gradually up the difficulty and remove assists as you get more comfortable with the driving. This ensures you’re challenging yourself and increasing your winnings.


Bugeye Sprite



Assists like ABS, the driving line, and automatic gear shifting are meant to make driving more enjoyable for every skill level, and as you become more comfortable and confident in your abilities, you might find it beneficial to start to switch these assists off, one by one. You might even find you get faster as you gain more and more control over every aspect of your car.


Once you’ve learned the basics, and started removing assists, you can graduate to faster and faster cars and still be able to control them effectively. @Xllllllllllx680 on Twitter offered this advice:



Learn how to drive the lower horsepower cars before going on to something like the AMR Vulcan.


Trucks in mud


You might start off the game doing 200 mph in a McLaren Senna, however, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t spend time in the lower classes of cars. The best way to drive is to stay on the road and you need to learn how to do that before you can go break the sound barrier. Mastering C and D class cars will go a long way towards excelling in S1 and S2 class cars.


What’s the best way to know the strengths and weakness of the different classes of cars? Driving them! Race Marshal LeslieDaWelsh1 sent us this piece of advice via Discord:



Spend some time in Rivals to learn how cars can handle.




Rivals mode pits you against ghost Drivatars (AI opponents trained to race like their real-world counterparts) on a hotlapping track, where you’ll have the chance to set faster and faster lap times as you familiarize yourself with each car. Take advantage of this mode as a place to learn the nuances and quirks of each car, so you can find the types of cars that work for you and learn your style of racing. Plus, you can post times against drivers all over the world to see how you stack up, which can be pretty motivating.


Once you’ve nailed the fundamentals of driving in the world of Forza, it’s time to go deeper on customizing and making your cars your own.


From @Juanp627 on Twitter:


Tune your cars! Especially when playing online events.


Drift cars


Let’s talk about tuning. If Forza Horizon 4 is your introduction to Forza, or driving games in general, it’s possible that tuning a car is a foreign concept to you. If that’s the case, we recommend you spend some time with our handy tuning guide, courtesy of Pendulum Tuning Garage’s own PTG Jamie, who stopped by our Forza Monthly stream in June 2020 to give an in-depth guide to the ins and outs of tuning your car to perfection.


PTG Jamie’s Tuning Guide


If PTG Jamie’s guide goes deeper than you were planning to, you can always hop into the Creative Hub and download a tune that someone else has put together to get you where you need to go. Most tuners give their set-ups helpful names for specific objectives like seasonal rewards or drift challenges, to make it easy to find the right tune for what you need.


That brings us to a second piece of advice regarding tuning, this time from @bertanderny via Twitter:


Don’t “over tune” your motors. Go too many classes up, and you will still get smashed. An S2 Scooby is not the same as an S2 Lambo.


Morgan Three Wheel


It’s a good point! It’s important to familiarize yourself with the strengths and weaknesses of the cars in your garage. Even tuning has its limits in making a car effective and sometimes it comes down to simple car choice.


Once you start to define your racing style and getting comfortable behind the wheel, it’s time to head online. Here are some tips from @morphium666 on online driving etiquette:


Be respectful to all other players, do not push them out of the road, do not ruin the race; if someone is faster, accept it, let them pass, try to pass by drafting, slingshot, be better in skills.


Similar advice comes from @Tofuboi86cz:


Treat others how you want to be treated in a race.


Muscle Cars


Racing online is a huge part of the Forza Horizon 4 experience, whether it’s with your regular convoy, or against complete strangers. That’s why it’s so important to maintain a safe and fun online experience. Our Race Marshals work hard to moderate the online experience, but it’s up to every driver to make sure they’re making our community better for everyone.


So, you’ve learned the fundamentals of driving. You have a passing understanding of tuning. You’ve dipped your toe into the livery editor, the photo mode, maybe even Super7 and the Eliminator. But what is it that will keep you coming back to the Festival week after week? What’s the allure of racing the Festival circuits after you’ve challenged LaRacer and Isha’s Taxi Service, discovered every barn find, and smashed every influence board?



Welcome to the Festival playlist. We got this piece of advice from countless players, but we’ll shout out @Kfranek44, who said:


DO THE FESTIVAL PLAYLIST EVERY WEEK! “Hard to Get Car” and “New Exclusive Car” are the most important things from it you don’t want to miss.




The Festival Playlist is the lifeblood of Forza Horizon 4. We’re bringing new and exciting content to the game every single week, often with brand new cars like the Corvette C8, the Koenigsegg Jesko, and even the Quadra Turbo-R VTECH from Cyberpunk 2077.



Here’s how the playlist works:



Navigate to “Festival Playlist” in the main menu and you’ll find a checklist of racing series, online challenges, and stunts that you’ll need to complete to receive everything that week has to offer. Even if you don’t complete the full playlist every week, you’re guaranteed to get some new cars, Wheelspins, and vanity items like car horns and outfits for your driver.


If you head to one of the championship series listed in the playlist, several more races will appear on your map. In order to receive the seasonal reward, whether it be a new car or vanity item or wheelspin, you’ll need to complete every race in the series


There’s so much depth to Forza Horizon 4. It’s a game for all types and styles of players; Photographers can enjoy the photo mode and join our incredibly active photo community on Instagram, track and stunt designers can lose themselves in Super7 or the Blueprint maker, battle royale fans can chase the circle in the Eliminator, and livery artists can spend hours crafting the perfect wrap in the paint booth. In fact, we have some incredible livery artists in the community that are more than happy to share their expertise and insight. Back in February 2020, artist Jake Goodman stopped by Forza Monthly to give a helpful step-by-step tutorial for one of his livery designs.


Jake Goodman’s Livery Design Guide


Everyone has a place at the Festival, and part of the fun is finding yours!


This guide doesn’t even begin to cover everything the game has to offer such as DLC like Fortune Island and LEGO Speed Champions. @M_farda said it best:


Give it time! If you load it up and only play for 30 minutes, you won’t get the whole experience of being in a racing ecosystem with SO much to do. In a way, it’s a Massive Multiplayer Online Racing Game.


Cars racing to the castle


Here’s a few more quick tips from the community to help you get up to speed on every aspect of FH4.


For example, did you know …



    1. Just participating to the end in the weekly Playground Game on FH4 will count towards completion in the Festival Playlist? You don't need to win it to claim your reward.

    2. The Horizon Promo tile in Forza Horizon 4 lets you not only check for any cars you haven’t yet photographed, it also checks which cars you may be missing in your collection by using the option 'not owned'? This does include cars that are not available in the Autoshow (e.g. seasonal rewards etc.)

    3. You can check how to obtain any Forza Horizon 4 item (clothing, horn, phrase) by clicking on the item if you don't own it yet? The game will give you a hint how it can be obtained.

    4. You can judge the popularity of your shared tune setups and vinyl groups by looking into your own Creative Hub where they are sorted most popular first?



    Overall, our friend @DonJoewonSong said it best:


    Main advice… have fun with it. Don’t be overwhelmed with the amount of content in the game. The initial opening hours steadily showcase how to play. The community is massive, don’t hesitate to get in touch if you’re after something specific.



    And when all else fails, take it from @Xisiansss:


    Make car go vroom



    If you would like to connect with the community, there’s a couple of places to start. You can follow us on Twitter and Instagram, or join the official Forza Discord. You can even hop into the forums or one of the many community-run groups. From there, you can start connecting with the wider world of Forza and get started on your nonstop journey through the Festival.


    Good luck and see you at the finish line!