Video game footage or a live action shot?  Look closely.  If you guessed video game, you’re WRONG!  But you can’t be faulted, today’s video games are so realistic it is nearly impossible to tell the two apart.  Here’s another shot – what do you think, real or fake?

With so much detail, this can only be a live-action shot by a professional photographer, right?  Wrong again!  This is an in-game screenshot from the new Forza 5 on the highly anticipated XBox One.

In the first photo, that’s me enjoying a hobby that I rarely have enough time to partake in – autocross racing.  For the uninformed, it is a timed racing event where you drive your vehicle as fast and as smooth as possible through a course made of traffic pylons.  You’re racing against yourself and others in your vehicle class for the lowest time.  It is truly a race that is more about the driver than the car; fast isn’t always better than smooth.  You really learn a lot about your car, how it handles in different situations and how to control these beasts when you get a little too aggressive.  Unfortunately because reasonably nice weather is required (and I live in Iowa), this is something that we only get to experience for a few months each year.

To remedy this issue I received a copy of Forza 3 and a wireless racing wheel from my wife for Christmas a few years back.  The wheel has force feedback to simulate some of the bumps and g-forces that you’d get behind a real wheel.  Not 100% the same, but close enough for those winter months.  This got me by for a while…but now there is a new kid coming to town…the XBox One.

Slated to be on retail shelves on November 22nd, this 3rd generation gaming console from Microsoft is shaping up to be a ‘game-changer’ (pun intended).  Not only will it play video games, it is meant to be an entire living room media replacement.  Netflix/Hulu streaming, TV and online gameplay at the same time, XBox Music Pass for ad-free music streaming, 4k support and so much more.  I really hope I’ve been good enough for Santa to remember me this year!

Just like real auto racing, the drivers do not have enough time to eat a proper meal or snack.  Portability (and lack of mess) are required.  While we may not be lucky enough to be able to enjoy the new XBox One and the latest issue of Forza, we can do the next best thing.  Forza 4!  But first, as proper drivers, we’ll need snacks.  And what is the perfect non-messy, portable snack?  M&M’s of course!  Off to Walmart!

First things first.  We can’t have our M&M’s all mixed up.  They must be sorted by color.

Let’s have a little fun and see what we can make from this.

Single M&M’s won’t do, so we decided to make another treat.  Since we want to get racing, nothing fancy here – just a box of brownie mix with some M&M’s thrown in for that extra-chocolatey taste!

That should do it – I think we’re ready to go!

First up was my wife.  Did I mention that she likes to autocross also?

In fact, she wanted to add a little more ‘realism’ so she fetched her racing helmet.

Of course I wasn’t about to let her have all of the fun.

I was so pleasantly surprised that Forza 4 even had a copy of my exact car from the first photo!

We can hardly wait to see what Forza 5 will bring to the table.  And even better, there is a promotion to get a $10 gift card when you purchase Forza 5 and M&M’s!  With their “Buy, Snap, Redeem” promotion, all you have to do is when you purchase Forza 5 is to be sure to pick up a large bag of M&M’s with it.  Take a photo of your receipt and text it to 811811 and you’ll receive a text back with a reward code valid for a $10 eGift card for Walmart!  Can’t be much easier!  Be sure to read more about this XBox One/M&M’s promotion online!

Wonder what it is like to race one for real?  Here’s a quick video of one of my autocross runs from 2010.  Filmed at Rockford Speedway – don’t get dizzy!

One final note.  Did you like the design I made out of M&M’s?  It’s the Forza 5 logo and will be my entry into an upcoming Instagram/Twitter contest where you make “Pixel Art” out of M&M products in a gaming design.  You say you want details so you can steal it from me?  Here they are!


  • Dates – December 4th – 18th
  • Prize – XBox One gaming pack (containing XBox One, Forza 5 and M&M’s OR cash equivalent)
  • NOTE – You are only eligible for the prize if your entry is uploaded to Instagram AFTER 12/4.
  • Create your own Pixel Art using M&M’s candies and snap an Instagram photo.  Tag your image with #FueledByMM & #Contest and post the image on Instagram and Twitter.

Good luck!

4 thoughts on “No Helmet Required With Video Games

  1. Being a hobby photographer I could tell the differences between the two photos, but yes, video games have come such a long way in the past 20 years.. it's really amazing seeing what they can do… the game looks like a ton of fun, of course, I'm a big racing game fan.

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