Forza Motorsport continues very much in the tradition of the Forza series, creating a fairly nice balance between simulation and arcade accessibility. It always takes some time to adjust to the Forza physics, but once you do and get the force feedback tuned properly, it actually feels quite good.
The Thrustmaster T248 works very well with it, but the default settings make the wheel far too heavy and lifeless. This is easily fixed with the right settings.
With so many cars of wildly different types, it's difficult to find the perfect settings for every one. These settings have worked well for all the cars I've tried, but you may need to tweak them if certain cars don't feel right.
In this guide, I will show you what you need to set in the Thrustmaster Control Panel, on the wheel and in the game to improve the force feedback.
Forza Motorsport doesn't set the rotation automatically for the vehicle you are driving, so the easiest thing to do is to set it manually on the wheel. I typically use 720° for road cars, 540° for rally-style cars and 360° for F1-style cars.
FORCE at 4 bars with FFB at 1 creates a perfectly linear force feedback response with no clipping, which is the ideal for any racing game.
|TM Control Panel Setting
|Overall Strength of all forces
|by the game
Rotation and Overall Strength are identical to the ROT and FORCE wheel settings, respectively. Changing it in one place overwrites the other. I recommend changing these on the wheel and ignoring the values in the Thrustmaster Control Panel.
Spring and Damper control the Center Spring and Wheel Damper settings in Forza Motorsport.
BOOST should always be turned off. For an in-depth look as to why, see my BOOST Force Feedback Analysis.
Forza Motorsport Settings
In Settings > Input:
On the PC, I needed to manually load the T248 layout before I could navigate the menus with the wheel. This may be an isolated incident since I had the TMX wheel connected before this one.
In Settings > Driving Assists:
There is quite a lot of confusion about whether to set the Steering Assist to Normal or Simulation. When you are using a gamepad, the Normal Assist does some magic to adjust the input as well as the physics to make steering easier. When you are using a wheel, only the physics changes apply, nothing happens to your actual inputs. In Simulation mode, both the input and the physics changes are removed entirely for both gamepad and wheel.
In Settings > Advanced Input:
|Steering Axis Deadzone Inside
|Steering Axis Deadzone Outside
|Steering Axis Invert
|Invert Force Feedback
|Force Feedback Scale
|Self Steering Alignment
|Mechanical Trail Scale
|Pneumatic Trail Scale
|Road Feel Scale
|Wheel Damper Scale
|Center Spring Scale
|Dynamic Damper Behavior
|Use Gamepad Steering Filters
Steering Axis Deadzone Inside should be set to 0 or there will be an area around the center of the wheel that will have no input recognized.
Steering Axis Deadzone Outside should be set to 100 to use the full range of the wheel's rotation.
Vibration Scale vibrates the wheel when you lose traction. This can be useful since it makes it very obvious if you are sliding, but it can get annoying if it's set too high. You may even want to turn it off completely. If this is set much under 55, it becomes very difficult to feel.
Force Feedback Scale is the overall strength of forces. You will need to change this on a per-car basis using the Tune Car menu. You can check if the force feedback is clipping by pressing down on the d-pad and navigating to the FFB Telemetry page.
Self Steering Alignment is the main force feedback you feel. Setting this too high will overwhelm the wheel and make the wheel very heavy.
Mechanical Trail Scale is lowered to make the force feedback a little sharper and more responsive. This helps you feel when your tires have lost grip.
Pneumatic Trail Scale lets you feel the tires load up as you reach the grip limit. You will feel the wheel get heavier as you push the tires.
Road Feel Scale controls the vibrations you feel from bumps in the road surface. This is quite light, so feel free to raise this if you want more of that feedback.
Load Sensitivity brings out the more of the tire feel in the force feedback.
Wheel Damper Scale adds some weight to the wheel. This is not needed on these wheels.
Center Spring Scale pulls the wheel back to the center position. I find this makes the wheel heavier, but doesn't add any useful information.
In Car > Tune Car > Steering Wheel:
The easiest way to set the proper steering angle for each car is to change the rotation on the wheel and leave the Steering Lock Range at 100%. However, if you want to set a perfectly accurate steering angle for a particular car, set the rotation on the wheel to 900° and change the Steering Lock Range. The game has a Soft Lock, so the wheel will stop turning at the exact angle you want.
Besides some pretty bad glitches and crashes I've had with this game, I've enjoyed it so far. It's never going to feel perfect, since it has elements of simulators and arcade games in it. That's an awkward balance to find, but I think they've done a good job of it.
Let me know if you have any questions or comments.