E3 2019It’s time for the biggest gaming show of the year. We’ve got articles, videos, podcasts and maybe even a GIF or two.
Apparently, the Forza Horizon team is creating expansion packs by reaching directly into my mind and rummaging around for a bit. The Lego Speed Champions expansion for Forza Horizon 4 assembles on June 13.
Shades of Forza Horizon 3‘s Hot Wheels expansion, the Lego Speed Champions expansion pack gives racers a Lego wonderland to race through. It’s filled with bricks to smash, Lego cars to drive and oh god I am going to faint.
In Forza Horizon 4, vehicles are like characters in a role-playing game. Players can grind for skill points to buy perks and unlock each vehicle’s full potential. A game update that went live last week wiped many players’ skill trees clean, erasing months of progress. A fix is in the works, but the developers say it could take weeks to implement.
Reader Dennis tipped us off to the situation over the weekend, pointing us towards a massive thread about the issue over at the Forza Motorsports forums. According to several players’ accounts, the error occurred following the installation of the May 7 “Series 9” update for Forza Horizon 4. Upon entering the game post-update, some players discovered that the car mastery perks they’d unlocked for their vehicles had been reset. Making matters worse, these players also said that perks purchased with skill points following the update would reset when they restarted the game, making further progress impossible.
This is very unpleasant news for the Forza Horizon 4 players who’ve been affected by the bug. The car mastery system, one of my favorite features of the game, is one of the most compelling reasons to play. In order to unlock all of a single vehicle’s perks, players must spend hours driving that specific car, stringing together tricks to earn skill points. With more than 600 cars in the game, that’s a lot of driving. Understandably, the affected players sound upset. The poster of the original forum post wrote, “After today’s update, I’ve lost almost all progress. It’s like I’d done nothing. Any light anyone can shed on this would be appreciated. I’m sick to my stomach right now.”
Developers reacted quickly to the issue. On May 8, the day following the bugged update, Forza Support Twitter acknowledged the problem. On May 10, a fix was issued that prevented the issue from affecting any more players and made it so that purchased perks did not disappear upon restarting the game. What the fix did not do is restore skill points to the players who had lost progress. That particular fix is going to take much longer, possibly weeks. From the Forza Support Twitter:
We are now working on a fix to return all players’ lost Skill Points. We are expecting this fix to be live with or before the Series 10 update.
The Series 10 update for Forza Horizon 4 is slated for release in early June, so the fix for skill points could arrive any time between now and then. In the meantime, players affected by the issue have been awarded 10 Super Wheel Spins for their troubles. Perhaps they can win cars via the in-game prize roulette to keep them occupied until their favorites are restored.
The Carlton and Floss dance emotes are no longer available in Forza Horizon 4 following changes made to the game as part of today’s big Series 5 update. Although publisher Microsoft won’t say why it removed the emotes, both dances are the subjects of lawsuits against publisher Epic Games for using them in the mega-popular game Fortnite.
While the player controls cars in Forza Horizon 4 and not people, driver avatars sometimes appear on screen, at which point they can perform dance moves of the player’s choice. The game’s Carlton emote lets players’ avatars perform actor Alfonso Ribeiro’s dance from The Fresh Prince while the Floss emote lets them perform the dance originally performed by Instagram personality Russell Horning, better known as Backpack Kid, on Saturday Night Live back in 2017. Both have now been taken out of the game.
When reached for comment, a spokesperson for Microsoft would not elaborate on why the emotes were removed. In a statement, the spokesperson said, “Forza Horizon 4 features a large portfolio of content and is continuously updated.” The emotes have been in the game since it released in October 2018. Other emotes based on popular dances, like one that imitates Drake’s Hotline Bling dance, are still in the game.
Their removal today comes as lawsuits pile up against Epic Games for some of the emotes included in its game. In December 2018, rapper 2 Milly filed a lawsuit against the company for Fortnite’s use of his Milly Rock dance, re-named in the game “Swipe It.” Later that month, Ribeiro and Horning joined in with their ownlawsuits. Ribeiro is also suing 2K, the company behind the NBA 2K games, for using the Carlton dance as an emote in the past.
The latest person to file a lawsuit over emotes based on real-life dances is Rachel McCumbers, the mother of the boy whose dance was added to Fortnite after he submitted it as part of Epic Games’ BoogieDown contest. As Variety reports, McCumbers’ son, known in the Fortnite world as “Orange Shirt Kid,” lobbied the company and fans to try and get his dance added to the game, which Epic Games eventually ended up doing, titling it “Orange Justice.” The rules of the contest stated that no one who participated would be paid, but that hasn’t stopped McCumbers from suing the company for unspecified damages.