Microsoft’s gorgeous British countryside racer Forza Horizon 4 is coming to Steam on March 9, the company announced today. It marks the latest in a long line of first-party Microsoft games coming to rival platforms, and the first time a Forza game has ever appeared on Valve’s storefront.
The Steam version of Forza Horizon 4 will feature cross-play with all of the other versions, including on console and on smartphones via xCloud streaming. It’ll also continue getting upgraded like the console version has, starting with a Hot Wheels Legends car pack coming sometime in the near future.
Forza Horizon 4 has received a bunch of updates since it was originally on Xbox One and PC through the Microsoft Store, including the dull but scenic Fortune Island expansion back in 2018 and a brick-smashing Lego expansion in 2019. Forza Horizon 4 makers Playground Games even added a battle royale mode at one point.
Microsoft has been bringing many of its games to Steam lately, including Gears 5, Halo: The Master Chief Collection, Sea of Thieves, and others. While these games were already available on PC through the Microsoft Store, the Steam releases have led to additional sales and, most importantly, a fresh source of new players. Microsoft announced last year that Sea of Thieves sold one million more copies in its first several weeks after coming to Valve’s platform.
It’s not clear where this leaves the rest of the Forza series. 2017’s more sim racer-focused Forza Motorsport 7 still isn’t on Steam, and it’s not clear if the follow-up, currently titled Forza Motorsport, will be available there either. The game was revealed at last summer’s Xbox Series X showcase, though it doesn’t yet have a release date.
Update - 2:08 p.m. ET, 2/8/21: In a follow-up statement to Kotaku, Microsoft confirmed that Forza Horizon 4 won’t support cross-progression and any save data from the existing version of the game will not carry over to the Steam release:
‘Forza Horizon 4' on Steam is considered a separate purchase outside the Xbox ecosystem, though cross-play is enabled to automatically have online players share sessions across platforms. Save files and overall progression on Steam is completely unique and separate from any pre-existing save file that’s associated with a player’s Xbox Live gamertag. However, two exceptions that will carry over from Xbox to Steam are Leaderboards and Clubs, which are both one per gamertag.