Seems as though Microsoft isn't going to lie around though and is paving the way for what a simulation racing game should be like on their new console. Forza 2 is the standard now we'll see if the ps3 can counter.
I bought this game last week. I was actually expecting it to be better. That's not to say that it isn't good, but it just isn't a huge leap from Forza 1. It basically improves every aspect of the original, but the graphics aren't a huge leap, there are no new modes, they even got rid of some content like point to point races that I liked. Its still good though and I would recommend it to racing sim fans.
As for the comment about driving a car with a gamepad, would you rather use a keyboard on your PC? If you are thinking about playing a racing sim using the PS1/2/3 controller, the xbox controller is vastly superior. The triggers used for braking and acceleration are excellent. And if you are talking about buying a wheel and pedals, that is just too much money / space. Also, I am not a fan of the cockpit view, it never really did it for me. I'm sure it wouldn't have been hard for them to add and maybe they should have, but I haven't heard anybody else complain about this.
I've got GTR2 (and a raft of other racing games) for the PC, Forza2 for the 360, and GT-HD demo for the PS3, they all have their strengths.
GTR2 is fun but the big attaction of Forza is the amazing diversity of cars. Graphics are better in Forza2 but not strikingly so compared to GTR2 (and GT-HD blows them both out of the water). The strongest feature of GTR2 is the fact that you can tune it for your system... I would never play a PC racing game with the level of jaggies that Forza 2 has, I'd turn the resolution down to 720p and crank up the AA. GT-HD is the ultimate teaser... it looks so much better than any other racing game that most don't think that the full version could possibly live up to it (not with more than one car on track and damage modeling), but I have hope, the PS3 has a LOT of potential. So we wait until GT5 comes, but in the meantime we have a game that is darn solid overall to keep us busy.
The 360 control IS better than the PS3 control, but not 'vastly'. I like it because it's a bit bigger and fits my hand better (and the vibration is a handy plus), but the PS3 control has it's advantages too, like the fact that every button is proportional, not just the two trigger buttons. The six axis thing MIGHT be an advantage if a game ever figures out how to take advantage of it.
Neither control is GREAT for racing, but until the 360 supports the G25 I'm going to have to live with it on the 360. On my PC and PS3 the G25 is the ultimate racing game addition... and well worth the 250 beans.
No cockpit view is a strange oversight in a sim, but the more significant problem with Forza 2 is the limited number of tracks. I'm at level 37 and while it has 3 of my favorite tracks (and all the real world tracks are excellent), it would be nice to have some diversity. How about a tight street course, GT4 wasn't perfect but it had a great variety of tracks.
On the car front, Ferrari and Lambo are great but what about ultralights? Where's the Radical SR4 & 8, where's the Catterham and the Atom? The worst track in the game is one of the imaginary ones (rattlesnake or something or other... I always hire a driver because it stinks that bad)... it's got so many twists it looks like a go-cart track so why not throw in some shifter carts? Then there's open wheel (or rather there ISN'T)... where are the Formula cars, Cart. And finally... why'd they take out the drag strip?
Not a perfect game but a great one... I bought the 360 specifically for this game and I'm not disappointed, it'll keep me racing until GT5 comes out... and who knows, maybe a track pack will get released.
I had heaps more fun with GT3. Maybe because it didn't take itself as seriously as GT4.
Who remembers the GT4 pre-release screenshots? Can anyone say "photoshop?" Same thing happened with Forza 2 (luckily it's fun to play).
If I wanted a sim, I'd play Live For Speed on PC. Developed by a massive team of 3 people and the driving physics are more accurate than anything Polyphony Digital and it's multi-million dollar budgets can come up with.