Forza Motorsport developer Turn 10 doesn't get inspired by other racing games. In fact, creative director Dan Greenawalt told SPOnG that, "the worst place to look for inspiration is in your own genre." So what was the studio inspired by? Pokémon.
Yep. Pokémon. When asked about the similarities between the upcoming Forza Horizon and Criterion's open-world racer, Burnout Paradise, Greenawalt shrugged off the comparison and said, "Forza Motorsport has had inspiration from Pokémon and World of Warcraft, and a lot of other genres. So, there were games that influenced Forza Horizon, but they weren’t racing games.
"The truth is, our inspiration for the game itself came from some of the great open world games like Red Dead Redemption, Assassin’s Creed, Skyrim... that is what actually inspires a lot of our gameplay," he added, noting that the artistic change specifically was down to the studio's own creative vision for the franchise.
But what about Pokémon? How did Game Freak's monster-capturing RPG inspire Forza? "I knew that I wanted this car-collecting element to be implemented into the game. What game, especially back in 2002, had inspired collecting more than Pokémon?
"It did collecting using a rarity system - through different coloured versions - with a sense that everything felt very natural. And actually, there’s a really natural sense of rarity in cars. So in Forza 1, the cars had a rarity meter, and you had to pick your region - much like choosing Pokémon Sapphire or Ruby - and that made certain cars more or less rare in the game. That was directly inspired by Pokémon."
Since then, Greenawalt said that the rarity system had evolved so that it "borrowed more from the real world rarity paradigm that’s in car collecting."
Read more in the full SPOnG interview, later today.