Forza Horizon 5 Esports Roundup: Trials, Champions & Upcoming Events
With Forza Horizon 5 officially stepping into the world of esports – or at least dipping their toes into the equation. In the absence of official developer and publisher support (short of the Honda Fan Cup), the community have been hard at work delivering gripping racing for all levels of skill and production.
24 Hours of Prospera (or is it?)
Dominating this and last week’s community calendar is the 24 Hours of Prospera. Touted as one of the game’s longest officiated endurance events, the key things to note were a $750 prize pool, 3 splits according to skill and hundreds of hours in the making, from the finely crafted custom track to the delicately balanced cars.
The event itself was hosted over 3 days, with each round presented live on the official Team Wars Twitch channel. While the event did play host to some unfortunate technical and stability issues, resulting in the event having to run in a kneecapped state, (The original implementation had a ruleset allowing for pit stops and refuelling, which failed to function when the lobby was full and so had to be scrapped) the event itself was nothing short of exhilarating.
Regardless of what Split you were watching – Split 3 for the more amateur-level entrants, all the way up to Split 1 representing the world’s fastest – the racing was tense and all the way to the finish. While some instances had drivers running in a league of their own (See WarnerBrosXD of Split 3, getting a brilliant start and leading the race in peace the whole way), Split 1 in particular saw drivers battling for upwards of 10 laps or more, with Forza veterans like Mars, Eclipse and Barcode (All conveniently on the same endurance racing team for Forza Motorsport) fighting it for the podium all the way to the line.
The top 5 teams for Split 1 take home a chunk of a $600 prize pool, with Split 2 getting $150. While small scale at present, hopefully this opens the door for grander – and better backed – community efforts in the future.
1 Hour of Racing Crowns a Points Champion
The community’s staple endurance event headed into it’s 5th and penultimate round over the weekend, heading to the Elevation Grand Prix. A twisting track named after it’s heavy altitude changes and undulation, the track posed a unique challenge to all the drivers, and with the championship on the line on points, tensions were high.
Importantly for the Pro Championship protagonists like Eunos, Mars and JustinTime, Mars was absent for both Round 4 and Round 5, the crucial chance for others to swoop in and take the points title where Mars had built such a commanding lead in the rounds prior.
While it was hard fought, some crucial mistakes from Justin allowed him to fall behind to 4th place, all but dooming his efforts if his primary rival, Eunos, finished any higher than he did with just a few points between them. In the end, it was Justin’s fastest lap earlier in the race that secured him the title, clinching the lead by a single point as Eunos finished 5th and fellow competitor Spydin took the chequered flag. All that remains now, is for the top drivers to duke it out in the final, one-make showdown to celebrate the season and crown who is truly the fastest when all are equal.
1 Hour of Racing is set to run their Championship Finale on November 6th, along with the much-awaited Honda Fan Cup returning October 29th, both of which can be found on Twitch at my own channel Sappytron and twitch.tv/forza respectively.