Forza Horizon 5 is a very good game. It’s also a very popular game. Your Twitter feed might be currently filled with people sharing screenshots and videos from the open-world drive ‘em-up, mine is. And now it’s been confirmed that the latest Forza title has become the biggest launch in Xbox history, with over 10 million players in one-week logging to race around Mexico.
Forza Horizon 5 was released on November 9 and quickly racked up three times as many concurrent players as the last game in the franchise in just 24 hours. Launching across Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, and PC helped a lot, for sure.
Now, according to the official Forza Twitter account, the game has hit a huge milestone: It scored the biggest launch week in Xbox history. This includes all the past Halo games and other Forza titles. With over 10 million players in the first week, it has quickly become one of the most popular games of 2021.
— Forza Horizon (@ForzaHorizon) November 19, 2021
Of course, launching on Game Pass helped a lot, as many people who might not be interested in racing games might have downloaded Forza Horizon 5 to check out what everyone was talking about. But that also shows the power of Game Pass and how Microsoft’s investment in the service has established it as a hitmaker. If a good game launches on Game Pass, the odds are stacked in its favor and Forza Horizon 5 shows just how successful things can get.
This latest success for Xbox and Game Pass comes after years of Microsoft struggling to really hit it big with any of their exclusive titles. Many of them, like Sea of Thieves and past Forzas, have done well. But Forza Horizon 5 feels like a genuine blockbuster for the company and could be a good sign for Halo Infinite’s full launch on Game Pass in December.
It also should be noted that over on Steam, both Forza Horizon 5 and Halo Infinite’s multiplayer are doing great, with hundreds of thousands of active players. So it’s not just Game Pass helping these games hit big, but the strategy of releasing across multiple PC storefronts too.