Generally favorable reviews - based on 85 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 81 out of 85
  2. Negative: 1 out of 85
Buy On
  1. Sep 25, 2014
    The location is right, the car list extensive, the handling nuanced but accessible, and the visuals are excellent. Above everything it’s always fun.
  2. Oct 3, 2014
    Horizon 2 is about careening into the sunset while Beethoven symphonies blast from your speakers, as if you might leap off the edge of the Earth and straight into the arms of God.
  3. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 may not be the perfect sequel, but it still delivers stiff challenges, fun racing moments, and a variety of experiences. Hopefully another few years on the Xbox One can create a clearer direction forward for the series and enable it to continue being a worthy branch of the Forza brand.
  4. Sep 30, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is just a better game than pretty much every open world driving game before it. I mean it. It may not revolutionize the formula in brand new and interesting ways, but it understands what it’s trying to be.
  5. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 improves almost everything from the original chapter, serving as a real sequel able to take the series in new directions. The unexpected vocation of off-road proves to be a winning card, although some might not appreciate the lack of realism.
  6. Sep 25, 2014
    Outside of the vast amount of content, another big feather in Forza Horizon 2’s cap is how damn beautiful this world looks. Draw distance is incredible, environment pop-in is kept to a minimum, and the weather effects are stunning. Driving haphazardly through fields at night in the rain is a sight to see, and there’s nary a technical hiccup to be found.
  7. Sep 30, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 may not break new ground, but it excels at what it does due to a high level of polish and a laser focus on fun.
  8. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 may be vanilla when compared to other open-world racers, but if so, it's one of the most well-produced vanillas ever made. While it could be bolstered by having more skill-based challenges and any kind of avatar customization, it impresses with technical brilliance, robust online integration, and graphical splendor.
  9. Sep 25, 2014
    All in all, it's a new, friendly context for multiplayer racing that's in total harmony with the solo game's adventurous, celebratory tone. In the original Horizon, as terrific as it was, the festival theme felt like a marketing hook first and a clever game structure second. In Forza Horizon 2, it's more like a philosophy, an outlook, a mood that has seeped right through to the core of the game and infused the whole thing with a pure, escapist joy.
  10. Sep 25, 2014
    A great evolution of the franchise. It no longer feels like the experiment that was the first one, but like a great experience full of personality, with an outstanding gameplay and full of content.
  11. Games Master UK
    Oct 22, 2014
    Not much of a new-gen leap, but this is pure wish fulfillment: sexy cars, stunning scenery, and superb songs. [Dec 2014, p.62]
  12. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is mainly freedom. It's ready to enchant all Xbox One owners, bringing the quality of the first chapter directly into the next-gen.
  13. Sep 25, 2014
    Every element in Forza Horizon 2 adds up to an exceptional experience. The story isn't over the top so as to get in the way of racing, driving feels as good as it ever did in Forza Motorsport, there's a ton of things to do, and the game looks absolutely beautiful -- especially the long-awaited dynamic weather system.
  14. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is a fantastic racing game, probably the best released so far in this short-lived generation of consoles.
  15. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is an exclusive of undoubted value. The driving experience is compelling. Combine this with a wonderful setting, and this game will be able to provide hours and hours of fun to all the fans of racing games.
  16. Sep 25, 2014
    Horizon 2 masterfully translates the spirit of the series to the next generation. It just lacks more variety of content and diversity of landscapes to take it to the next level.
  17. Sep 25, 2014
    By combining open-world thrills with simulation racing and letting you customize the experience to your liking, Forza Horizon 2 is an excellent entry in the series.
  18. Sep 25, 2014
    Like opening the hood on a Ferrari, Forza Horizon 2 is filled from fender to fender with absolute awesome.
  19. Nov 3, 2014
    There’s a depth of content here that matches the game’s undoubted class, and ensures Playground Games is a genuine powerhouse in the world of digital racing. Forza Horizon 2 is a gorgeous, confident and relentlessly gratifying drive, and easily the best first-party exclusive on Xbox One.
  20. Sep 24, 2014
    Playground Games and Microsoft come back to Forza Horizon to offer a new, greatly achieved episode of the Forza Motorsport spin-off. Exploration in France and Italy, variable weather conditions and night & day cycle are spectacular views you should not miss in this new Xbox killer application.
  21. Edge Magazine
    Nov 5, 2014
    It's a shame that Forza's much-vaunted AI tech proves an ill fit for open-world racing. [Dec 2014, p.112]
  22. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 takes everything that made the original game great, includes it here without removing anything and then adds some new stuff to boot.
  23. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is just about everything you would expect from an already superb game upgraded and moved to a stronger platform.
  24. Oct 14, 2014
    The beautiful setting and sensational visuals are one thing, but when you mix it in with heart-pounding races, an extensive car list, intense competitive online play, and a vast explorable world, it all translates to Horizon 2 being the cream of the crop in the genre and the best in its class.
  25. Sep 25, 2014
    One of the most versatile racers on the market, Forza Horizon 2 fires on all cylinders.
  26. Sep 26, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is perfect in many ways. Visually it is awesome, the details are awesome, the music is awesome and the Drivatars are awesome. That plus lots of different modes makes us forget the lags.
  27. Sep 25, 2014
    There are still a few rough edges to be driven over, but as mild as the improvements are this still makes Forza Horizon 2 one of the best racers of recent years.
  28. Sep 25, 2014
    It lacks variety, both on and offline, and sometimes it strikes a difficult balance between arcade racing and simulation. (It's also far too easy to abuse the rewind function, a problem made worse by the sometimes unclear checkpointing). But there are very few other racing games that can boast such impressive fundamentals, and certainly not very many with a world like this wrapped around them.
  29. Jan 4, 2015
    With a huge map, hundreds of cars, and countless racetrack possibilities, Forza Horizon 2 is a stellar open world racing game.
  30. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is a great new installment in the Turn10 franchise. Playground Games has created one of the best new driving games: full of intense and frantic content with new weather system, great drivatar AI and good visuals.
  31. Oct 6, 2014
    It can’t spark the fascination of its predecessor on 360. But nonetheless this road trip through Southern Europe still is one hell of a racing experience with fantastic driving mechanics.
  32. Oct 7, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is a sequel by the books: the same concept, but with much more content and a more refined end product. The off-road racing injects the game with some variety, but it also ruins the fun for people who prefer to take the roads, as going off-road is almost always the fastest way to your destination.
  33. Sep 25, 2014
    Importing the physics and graphics engines from the Forza series to an open-world arcade game was a great idea, even at the first attempt on Xbox 360, but Forza Horizon 2 on Xbox One does even better, refining everything, and it's actually the best open-world racing game on consoles so far.
  34. Sep 25, 2014
    The open world of southern Europe, rain or shine, not only provides a great backdrop, but it is an awesome automotive playground too.
  35. Pelit (Finland)
    Oct 25, 2014
    is a pretty, fast and varied arcade racing game in an open world. The off-road-surfaces should be a bit more uneven or maybe softer, though. [Oct 2014]
  36. CD-Action
    Dec 13, 2014
    This game convinced me to buy Xbox One and for me FH2 is the only racing game that should be taken into account this year. [Dec 2014, p.54]
  37. Sep 25, 2014
    Its breathtaking take on the world of cars is a petrol head’s wet dream.
  38. Sep 25, 2014
    If you’ve ever wanted to visit Europe, soak up the history and culture in Italy, or bask in the sun on a beach in southern France, then it may not be the game for you. Also, if all you want is a serious racer with the Top Gear guys telling you what to do, then stay well clear. However, if you’d rather bounce maniacally in a Dotcomesqe euro-rave or rip up a hillside of vineyards in a re-conned VW van, then Forza Horizon 2 may be just your thing.
  39. 80
    A triumph in so many respects that lets itself down with some technical issues and a world that needed more variety in the way it looks. That, however, shouldn't stop you from picking this up and loving it until the end of this console generation. Forza Horizon 2 is an accomplishment, and a showcase for what open-world racers can do.
  40. 80
    Forza's combination of speed, presentation values, excellent handling and flexibility in letting players approach the game in a variety of ways makes it really hard to put the controller down.
  41. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Nov 12, 2014
    Arcade racing in a stunning world that is so enjoyable and addictive that topping it seems impossible. [Issue#246]
  42. Sep 29, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 gives unparalleled racing realism on the XBox One.
  43. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is exactly the game that petrol-heads around the world have been waiting for.
  44. Sep 27, 2014
    In some ways, Forza Horizon 2 doesn’t feel that different from the original, but its proficiencies are expressed in new ways as you joyfully tumble across wide stretches of terrain. It gets open-world gameplay right by continually encouraging you to explore, and you may climb a hill just to look out over the scenic landscape and watch the clouds roll in.
  45. Sep 25, 2014
    It sets a fun vibe without coming off as silly or childish. The racing is serious business, but there are plenty of ways to play that aren't so ardently competitive.
  46. Oct 22, 2014
    An amazing example of online and offline racing built around an engaging, satisfying handling model with the looks to match. Very, very nearly worth buying an Xbox One for alone.
  47. Sep 25, 2014
    A beautiful and extremely enjoyable racer, with tons of things to do, a great sense of freedom and one of the best "playgrounds" ever conceived for a videogame.
  48. Oct 24, 2014
    A contender for the title of 2014’s best racer, Forza Horizon 2 builds on foundations laid by its predecessor to make a diverse, entertaining experience.
  49. Sep 26, 2014
    This is a noticeable improvement in all aspects. Its driving style is like the proverbial "golden mean", its graphics are breathtaking, and Drivatars finally start to make sense. If the fifth Forza instalment was a compelling reason to buy a console a year ago, this year the baton has been passed to Forza Horizon 2.
  50. Sep 26, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 repeats one word like a mantra: fun. The game doesn’t put you on the brakes and offers lots of cars and races that are totally doable for experienced drivers and newcomers alike. This is how a racer should be.
  51. Sep 25, 2014
    Horizon 2 is a wheel that has not so much been reinvented as polished to perfection. Whilst comparable to other open-world racers such as Burnout Paradise and Test Drive Unlimited, it takes the genre to a new level.
  52. Oct 10, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 amazes for the sheer quantity and quality of its contents, from the breathtaking vistas to the many single and multiplayer modes. Tons of realistically reproduced cars, spectacular weather effects and an highly entertaining experience with a great sense of freedom concur to make it one of the must-buy games of this generation.
  53. Oct 27, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is very strong on contents and corrects every less-achieved objective of the original game. It’s also closer to the original vision and gives us a clear feedback of a next-gen production.
  54. Sep 25, 2014
    Wonderful vistas, fantastic atmosphere, pretty cars but it lacks in variation and the off-road part is awful.
  55. Sep 30, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 offers intense and over the top racing in a fully open world. In one moment you are driving along a beautiful coastal road, and a few minutes later you are crashing through a vineyard with debris flying everywhere. Unfortunately the off-road racing leaves a lot to be desired and lacks polish. But when you are on the road, Forza Horizon 2 is one of the most entertaining racing experiences ever made.
  56. Sep 26, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is a great racing game, and with its sprawling open world, a huge variety of cars and a clever mix of arcade and simulation, it might be one of the best in quite some time.
  57. Sep 25, 2014
    Barring a slightly more restrictive career mode, Forza Horizon 2 more than builds on the solid foundations laid down by its predecessor. Forza Horizon 2 easily records a podium finish ahead of what is going to be a busy winter for the racing genre.
  58. Oct 1, 2014
    Horizon 2 isn't quite the breath of fresh air that the previous game was, but it's a good open-world driving game that benefits from slow play.
  59. Oct 17, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is simply a joy to play - combining the gorgeous graphics, authentic but forgiving car handling, a wealth of single player content along with some fantastic social features.
  60. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is a total success, from a technical point of a view and from a content point a view. Playground Games has been aware of the demands of their fans and fixed what needed to be. Purists will enjoy all the parameters which were lacking in 2012. But the main quality of this episode is this open world offering of wonderful landscapes.
  61. Sep 25, 2014
    Bigger doesn’t always equate to better. Forza Horizon 2 definitely delivers a gameplay experience a step above its predecessor, but gutting story mode leaves the single- player soulless and more akin to a grind.
  62. Oct 7, 2014
    Playground did a great job with the fist Forza Horizon, and its sequel is exactly what you can expect: bigger, better and faster, possibly the best Xbox One exclusive game you'll play in 2014.
  63. Sep 25, 2014
    Your eyes aren’t the only ones being treated though, with the audio in Horizon 2 being just as spectacular. There’s something indescribably exhilarating about the roar of a car’s engine, and Horizon 2 nails this on the head. It adds beautifully to the immense sense of speed nearly ever car brings, elevating the entire experience to new heights.
  64. Sep 25, 2014
    That same open world serves as a less well-executed space to race and drive than the tracks that have defined previous games, and the open-world activities can't quite make up the difference.
  65. Sep 29, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is another impressive racer from Playground Games. That said, while the original Horizon nailed the single-player and lacked on the multiplayer front, Horizon 2 is the polar opposite to that.
  66. Sep 26, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is a much better game than its predecessor. It doesn't try to get additional money from the player, offers a completely open world and is more skillfully designed. Additionally the player receives beautiful, smooth graphics, tons of cars and a cool atmosphere. Right now Forza Horizon 2 has no real competitor in the arcade racer genre.
  67. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2's world isn't the most lively, beset as it is by roaming bands of automotive enthusiasts, but it leaves room for the living – for you. There's space enough to imprint your moods, whether you rocket into hairpins with a Ferrari or simply cruise around in a gaudy, gold Bentley. Forza Horizon 2 is a big, bouncy summer drive.
  68. Sep 27, 2014
    A meticulously crafted, marvelous-looking and superbly designed racer that dishes up an absolute feast of automotive madness and mayhem. Sheer brilliance through and through.
  69. Oct 1, 2014
    There’s no great revolution here and it occasionally lacks for visual variety and challenge, but Horizon 2 earns its stripes with a breezy determination to simply show you a ruddy good time.
  70. Sep 25, 2014
    It's firmly rooted in the tradition of Bizarre Creations' glorious Project Gotham series, the best arcade racers there ever were. What more could you want from this?
  71. Sep 25, 2014
    Horizon 2 doesn’t just use the Kinect well. It also is one of the best games for the Xbox One controller, and it’s all about those force feedback-capable triggers.
  72. Sep 30, 2014
    Despite a general lack of freshness when it comes to the structure of the game, Forza Horizon 2's outstanding visuals, off-road mechanics, solid controls and gameplay depth, make it an excellent racing experience and a must-have game on Xbox One.
  73. Sep 30, 2014
    The year’s not over yet, but this is the best game I’ve played in 2014 so far, and I’m not even a huge car person. Well, I wasn’t before...An absolute must-own.
  74. The level of choice when it comes to Horizon’s 2‘s core circuits is surprising and ensures there’s something for everyone, regardless of your taste in cars.
  75. Hyper Magazine
    Dec 2, 2014
    Cherry picks the best parts of a number of other racing games to wonderful effect. [Issue#255, p.72]
  76. Game World Navigator Magazine
    Oct 25, 2014
    The game is not technically astounding, even against the backdrop of last year's Need for Speed Rivals. Horizon 2 is certainly very beautiful, but its beauty comes not from technology, but from artistic field. There are very soft and warm sunsets, refreshing summer rains, and really dark nights – every detail done in the right color and carefully accentuated. Each element works on a holiday atmosphere and you absolutely do not want emerge from it into the dank October evening. [Nov 2014, p.82]
  77. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon set out to give racing fans the opportunity to enjoy the Forza series in an open-world environment, and with the addition of a vast and beautiful locale, multiplayer options, both online and in single-player mode, and all of its activities, Forza Horizon 2 is yet another sequel that vastly improves on its original.
  78. Sep 29, 2014
    The Horizon offshoot has unshackled the Forza franchise, letting it run free into the wild, and this new adventure ensures that we don’t take that freedom for granted. Everything is bigger and better, everything is designed to make damn well sure that we’re having fun.
  79. Oct 2, 2014
    There’s an immense feeling of joy and freedom that the racing experience from Playground Games can create, and the title can offer it to both veterans of the racing game genre and to newcomers looking for a fun title to spend time with.
  80. It’s fast, it’s fun, and it’s fulls of adrenaline… Forza Horizon 2 is a great arcade racing game, with lots of content, tons of playable cars, and stunning visuals.
  81. Oct 10, 2014
    The most disappointing thing about Forza Horizon 2 is how little it’s improved since the first Horizon. There is still no meaningful career progression or economy. The career is quite literally running a circle around six chunks of Europe, over and over and over again, in the pursuit of colored bracelets with, as far as I can tell, no significance. Canned bucket list challenges and barn scavenger hunts supposedly break up the action if you feel like heading off in that direction.
  82. Oct 21, 2014
    Was it not for what feels like an overly-long period of hand-holding when you first start out and some other noted minor issues, a perfect ten would have been on the cards here. Forza Horizon 2 is easily the Xbox One’s best driving game and also easily one of the finest, expansive, and most enjoyable racing games of all time.
  83. Sep 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 makes a great first impression but becomes stale after a while. It's a bit like a long vacation in that sense.
  84. Sep 26, 2014
    Really, it’s all a shallow excuse to get players into as many different vehicles as possible, and that’s perfectly fine, because just like the Fast & Furious movies, no one plays Forza games for the engaging plot.
  85. Nov 25, 2014
    Forza Horizon 2 is bigger and faster, sure, but it’s also a masterful snapshot of the joy that fuels car culture.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 1045 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Sep 30, 2014
    Outstanding racer . Graphics are amazing and every detail is just so nice . This game is seriously polished to a fine shine. Online play isOutstanding racer . Graphics are amazing and every detail is just so nice . This game is seriously polished to a fine shine. Online play is unmatched by any game or console . Xbox live really shines.

    Also not to hard for kids = great
    Full Review »
  2. Sep 30, 2014
    Spectacular! Simply amazing! I love the game. The graphics are so awesome! Great job for the team. Forza as always go forward and make me beSpectacular! Simply amazing! I love the game. The graphics are so awesome! Great job for the team. Forza as always go forward and make me be just without words. Love the driveability. Love the news (dark, rain, country races, on line mode). So awesome! Horizon 2 a must have game for who love races games. Full Review »
  3. Sep 30, 2014
    7 people are either DriveClub fanboys, or bought the wrong game. Why? Because this game is brilliant and absolutely fun unless you can't play7 people are either DriveClub fanboys, or bought the wrong game. Why? Because this game is brilliant and absolutely fun unless you can't play it because you have a different console or don't like playing non-hardcore racing open-world driving games, bought this game, and was dissapointed to find it is open world and that its not so focused on hardcore racing.

    For me this is the best racing game I've ever played because it is a game that allows me to do so many things I want to do with cars which I can't do in real life. Everything but race on the Nurburgring, but I can simply do that on Forza Motorsport so I'm happy.
    Full Review »