Race The Stig's Digital Cousin in Forza 5

By Marc Hollinshead, 5 years ago
For those of you that are fans of the BBC show Top Gear (but not necessarily Jeremy Clarkson), you'll all be aware of who The Stig is. The record-breaking racing driver is almost unbeatable, and you can now test out that theory as his digital counterpart will be coming to Forza Motorsport 5 when the game launches.

The Stig

Unlike the real-life Stig, it is apparently possible to beat this digital version. The digital cousin's presence is the result of an ongoing partnership between both Forza Motorsport 5 and Top Gear, and, for the first time, the TV show's three presenters will be in the game itself. Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May will all be lending a hand to provide their own perspectives on cars featured in the career mode events. That's not all. The famous test track of Top Gear will also be present, so you will be able to race round corners such as Hammerhead and Gambon as you experience the faithfully re-created track first hand.

A trailer of The Stig's digital cousin has also been released, showing off more record-breaking lap times.

Alongside that interesting piece of news, a Q&A with Turn 10, the game's developer, has also come to the surface. In this particular set of questions, we hear how the guys at Turn 10 have brought the acclaimed Mount Panorama circuit to the Forza franchise.

After all the years of fans requesting Mount Panorama, why was NOW the right time to bring it to “Forza Motorsport 5”?
John Wendl: The Mount Panorama Circuit in Bathurst has been one of the most highly requested tracks for years for the “Forza Motorsport” series. In the past, we simply didn’t have the technology to properly capture and render this unique circuit. Now with digital laser scanning and our all new graphics engine on the Xbox One, we finally have the technology that can let us capture this unique track in all its challenge and grandeur.
Panorama 1

What are some distinct parts of the Bathurst circuit?
Mark Skaife: Definitely The Dipper, the game perfectly captures the breathtaking panoramic view of Skyline, and the adrenaline rush you feel shooting through the Esses and into The Dipper. Also, at 300 km/h, the Chase is the fastest touring car corner in the world. You need to go flat out in the Conrod Straight and hit the drive line perfectly. You don’t want to miss this one.

Mount Panorama is a unique circuit in many ways. Talk about how you were able to capture the various nuances of the track, the surrounding area, etc.
John Wendl: Mount Panorama is a beautifully complex and technically challenging circuit. It’s known for its extreme elevation changes and subtle camber differences throughout the track. To capture all of this intricate detail, we’re now utilizing cutting edge digital laser scanning technology that allows us incredible precision on both the vertical and horizontal axis. In 2012, we sent a six-man crew to the circuit for three days. The team captured not only the racing surface itself, but the immediate surrounding areas as well including walls, trees, grandstands and buildings.

Our goal is to give players not just the look and feel of the track itself but to bring to life everything that makes the circuit so special. Of course this means getting the small details right – the cracks in the asphalt, the track signage, and even things like the TV camera towers correct. Beyond that, however, we want to provide players with a real feel for what it’s like being at the track, what the light looks like at eight o’clock in the morning, how it feels to climb the hill or blast down the Conrod Straight. All of these details contribute to the experience of driving Bathurst in “Forza Motorsport 5” and we treat all these minute specifics with utmost care.

As a final step, we were able to work with Mark Skaife, six-time Bathurst winner and five-time V8 Supercar Champion, who recently drove the circuit in our game and validated the accuracy. Skaife was very impressed with how well we captured the circuit. Specifically the sense of elevation heading through “Griffins Bend” and up Mount Panorama and the subtle camber changes from “Skyline” through the “Esses” and into the “Dipper”. Skaife told us that the Bathurst in “Forza Motorsport 5” is the most accurate recreation he’s ever seen, and that’s coming from the undisputed Bathurst master!
Panorama 2

Can you speak to the authenticity and realism of the sights and sounds surrounding the Bathurst track in “Forza Motorsport 5”?
Mark Skaife: When Turn 10 brought “Forza Motorsport 5” to our practice session, I was blown away by how well they’d captured the track. The racing line takes you through at the right angles to attack the corners. The camber changes on the Mountain Straight are captured perfectly. And the markers that I’ve used for years – like the grate in Reid Park -- are all there in the game. When you play the game you can truly understand what it’s like to challenge the mountain.
Panorama 3

Is there one area/aspect of the Mount Panorama circuit that simply shines through the power of Xbox One?
John Wendl: The Mount Panorama Circuit presents some unique challenges in rendering with its unique atmospheric conditions and long draw distances from the top of Mount Panorama. With the amazing processing power of the Xbox One and our all new graphics engine, we’re able to recreate the unique conditions of Bathurst and really bring the track to life. For example, you can see the early morning sun beaming through the trees as you exit Forrest’s Elbow and head down the Conrod Straight, as well as the patchy ground fog off in the distant valley. Our goal is to really transport the player in “Forza Motorsport 5,” to give them a chance to explore and experience these legendary motorsport settings. Bathurst is a prime example of that and we’re very proud to be able to bring it to life in “Forza Motorsport 5.”
Panorama 4

You'll be able to go up against The Stig's digital cousin and race down Mount Panorama when Forza Motorsport 5 launches with the Xbox One on November 22nd.
Marc Hollinshead
Written by Marc Hollinshead
To summarize Marc in two words, it would be "Christian Gamer." You will usually find him getting stuck into story heavy action-adventure games, RPG's and the odd quirky title when he isn't raving about Dark Souls and Mass Effect. Outside the world of gaming, Marc attends and helps out in his church on a regular basis and has a not-so thrilling job in a supermarket.