NFS Unbound Vs Forza Horizon 5: Which Is Better?

Take a look at the detailed comparison of NFS Unbound vs Forza Horizon 5, including a detailed comparison of the story, progression, atmosphere, car list, and customization of both games.

The comparison or debate between NFS Unbound vs Forza Horizon 5 can never be settled without setting side-by-side parallels of cars, modifications, sound, graphics, story, realism, and much more. These elements, even though they are common in both games, are still different because of different teams of developers.  

Key Takeaways
  • NFS Unbound and Forza Horizon 5 are popular titles in the racing genre. 
  • While Forza Horizon 5 is much more realistic than NFS Unbound, there are certain things that NFS Unbound does better. 
  • The story, progression, speed, atmosphere, and customization are way better in NFS Unbound than Forza Horizon 5. 

Difference Between Both Games

Here are all the key differences summarized: 

AspectNFS UnboundForza Horizon 5
RealismCartoonish animations, not realisticEmphasizes realism and simulation
Setting and EnvironmentFictional locationsRealistic settings, locations
Story Length15-18 hours for main story, 25 hours for completion20 hours for main story, 105 hours for 100% completion
ProgressionExtensive car customization, detailed progressionLimited customization options, simpler progression
Starting CarsBegins with slower cars, encourages progressionStarts with high-powered cars, minimal progression
Money SystemBalanced economic systemMoney less significant due to free cars
Car ListCompact, features fan-favorite carsMassive car list with some redundancy
Better CarsIncludes special and fan-favorite carsFeatures many cars with similar stats
CustomizationAbundant customization optionsLimited customization options
StorylineEngaging story with cinematic cut scenesNo prominent storyline, minimal cutscenes
MissionsDiverse and engaging missionsRepetitive and less engaging missions
SpeedOffers a sense of speed with animationsEmphasizes realism, slower pace
MapDense, restricted mapLarge, open map with unused areas
AtmosphereFlashy and immersive environmentBland atmosphere with festival areas
Traffic AIBetter traffic AILess advanced traffic AI


When it comes to realism, Forza Horizon 5 outshines NFS Unbound. Forza Horizon 5 boasts nonfiction settings, such as the Rocky Mountains and The Crew locations, providing an immersive experience closer to real-life environments. In contrast, NFS Unbound mostly features fictional locations.

Realism comparison NFS Unbound Vs Forza Horizon 5 
The realism of Forza Horizon 5 (Image Credits: eXputer)

For Racing Genre enthusiasts seeking realism, Forza Horizon 5 offers a more authentic experience compared to NFS Unbound. While NFS Unbound leans towards flashy elements, Forza Horizon 5 prioritizes realism in its setting and environment, setting a benchmark for NFS to learn from.

Animation Style of NFS Unbound (Image Credits: eXputer)

Story Length 

  • NFS Unbound:
    • Main Story Length: 15 to 18 hours.
    • Completionist Time: Around 25 hours, including story missions, side activities, achievements, and trophies.
    • Objective: Win races over four weeks to gather money for qualifier races.
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Main Story Length: Around 20 hours.
    • Completionist Time: Approximately 105 hours, including trophies and achievements.

Side Missions

  • NFS Unbound:
    • 260 collectibles and 160 activities to complete alongside story missions.
    • Significant time investment required for full achievement.
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Longer and more extensive gameplay experience.
    • Main story requires 20 hours; full completion demands about 105 hours.


  • NFS Unbound:
    • Excellent customization options.
    • Allows tweaking most parts of the car, changing paint, and selecting different body wraps.
    • Provides a personalized experience for each car.
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Lacks the depth of customization found in NFS Unbound.

Starting Cars

  • NFS Unbound:
    • Starts with low-powered cars like the Lamborghini Countach 25, Dodge Charger 69, or Nissan Silvia K’s 98.
    • Offers a sense of progression through racing and grinding.
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Starts with very high-powered cars.
    • Lacks the progression from low to high-powered vehicles, which can affect the sense of achievement.

Money System

  • NFS Unbound:
    • Balanced economic system.
    • Requires effort to earn money but not excessively difficult.
    • Money is crucial for unlocking new cars.
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Easier to earn money.
    • Free cars from the start via Super Wheelspin.
    • Money is less important compared to NFS Unbound.

Car List 

  • NFS Unbound:
    Car list NFS Unbound Vs Forza Horizon 5 
    Cars in NFS Unbound (Image Credits: eXputer)
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Extensive car list with many options.
    • Includes some redundant or less appealing cars.
    • Mix of vehicles with varying relevance to gameplay.
Car comparison NFS Unbound Vs Forza Horizon 5 
Cars in Forza Horizon 5 (Image Credits: eXputer)

Better Cars

  • NFS Unbound:
    • Features a diverse and powerful array of cars.
    • Impressive car list envied by Forza Horizon fans.
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Criticized for including recycled cars and less exciting vehicles.
    • Fans desire more new and iconic rides.


  • NFS Unbound:
    • Extensive customization options.
    • Includes swapping bumpers, wheels, brake components, headlight colors, exhaust sounds, and more.
    • Offers greater creative freedom and personalization.
      customization comparison NFS Unbound Vs Forza Horizon 5 
      Customization Options in NFS Unbound (Image Credits: eXputer)
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Limited customization compared to NFS Unbound.
    • Some cars have wide body kits and adjustable components.
    • Needs improvement in customization variety.
Customization Options in NFS Unbound (Image Credits: eXputer)


  • NFS Unbound:
    • Engaging storyline with well-crafted cinematic elements.
    • Features compelling characters and a movie-like atmosphere.
    • Inspired by Fast And Furious, emphasizing underground culture.
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Lacks a storyline, unlike some previous titles in the series.
    • Minimal close-up shots and unsynced audio in cutscenes.
    • Player preferences vary on the importance of a storyline in racing games.


  • NFS Unbound:
    • Diverse and unique missions.
    • Includes racing, police chases, and takeover missions.
    • Keeps players engaged with action-packed gameplay and interesting game modes.
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Repetitive missions focused mainly on racing.
    • Lacks variety in mission types.
    • Missions feel similar and less engaging compared to NFS Unbound.


  • NFS Unbound:
    • Offers a greater sense of speed with camera-shaking action and motion blur during speed boosts.
    • Cartoonish animations mixed with real-life cars may detract from realism for some players.
    • Enhanced speed sensation, but lacks some visual cues like wind trails.
      Speed test NFS Unbound Vs Forza Horizon 5 
      Speed Of NFS Unbound (Image Credits: eXputer)
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Prioritizes realism, resulting in a slower perceived speed.
    • Uses animations to convey speed, which may not appeal to all players.
    • Lacks certain visual speed indicators but compensates with other realism factors.
Comparison of NFS Unbound Vs Forza Horizon 5 
Speed of Forza Horizon 5 (Image Credits: eXputer)


  • NFS Unbound:
    • Set in Lakeshore City with a dense and somewhat restricted map.
    • Features beautiful city views, stunning nighttime visuals, and a massive highway.
    • Optimal road network with many off-road tracks for varied driving experiences.
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Features a huge, open map with many spread-out roads.
    • Excellent for mastering drifting and exploring open roads.
    • Some areas and the map’s vastness go underutilized.


  • NFS Unbound:
    • Flashy and immersive environments.
    • Features festival areas and pedestrians reacting to cars.
    • Superior traffic AI compared to Forza Horizon 5.
      Bland atmosphere of NFS Unbound (Image Credits: eXputer)
  • Forza Horizon 5:
    • Atmosphere appears boring and lackluster in comparison.
    • Lacks pedestrians and detailed traffic AI found in NFS Unbound.
Vibrant graphics of NFS Unbound (Image Credits: eXputer)

Summing It Up 

With this, we conclude or guide on NFS Unbound Vs Forza Horizon 5. Since the former has just been released, it will be too soon to say if it lacks or is better than Forza Horizon 5, given that there are still many elements in the game that are yet to be explored. Forza Horizon 3 can beat many NFS titles; the same could not be said about Horizon 5.

You won’t get the police chases that NFS Unbound offers in further reason five, along with crazy animations. However, it completely depends upon personal preference and your play style. If you are not a fan of flashy elements and enjoy something realistic, then FH5 is great. 

While you are at it don’t forget to check out our detailed guide on steering wheel support. We have also formulated a definitive guide on how to unlock Palace Edition cars. Also, take a look at all Licensed Clothing brands in NFS Unbound.

If you are looking for the Best Settings, check out our guide on it in order to improve the Performance and quality of the game.

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Huzaifa is eXputer's Review Editor, who’s all about RPG games. He’s got several years of experience critically judging games and writing his unbiased thoughts on them. You can also find his content published on sites like Twinfinite & GearNuke. Huzaifa has been gaming for 23+ years, during which he managed to amass 400+ hours on Elden Ring! You can follow his gaming activity on his Xbox and Steam Profiles.

Experience: 5+ years || Previously Worked At GearNuke & Twinfinite || Mainly Covers RPG Guides & Latest Games Reviews || Education: Bachelors in Hospitality.

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